Veteran Jacob Dorohoy prepares to clash with the Surrey Knights on Feb. 4. Dorohoy's speed and size will be crucial for the 2023 postseason. | Photo courtesy of Alistair Burns / White Rock Whalers.
PK ‘leader’ Travis Smythe scores first of the season
CENTENNIAL ARENA – It was the best of times in a tale of two Travises – Whalers defenceman Dylan Travis and forward Travis Smythe – during the regular season’s penultimate weekend.
Travis Smythe was pleased to contribute to the scoring summary on Feb. 4. | Photo courtesy of Alistair Burns / White Rock Whalers.
Both scored in a 4-1 victory over the Surrey Knights on Feb. 4. Smythe was also crucial during two separate 5-on-3 penalty kills.
“Everyone just knows their role on the team,” Smythe said. “We play the puck well and just get pucks deep.”
White Rock head coach Jason Rogers has pointed out Smythe’s exceptional play while shorthanded on numerous occasions. “He’s a leader – the fellas are happy for him,” Rogers said after Smythe finally notched his first of the season.
The next night, the other Travis – rugged defenceman Dylan Travis – added another goal during a 5-3 win on the road in Chilliwack.
Pod controls their own destiny
With these results, the Whalers are on a high – 12 games over .500 – and a record of 27 wins, 15 losses and two shoot-out losses for a total of 56 points. At press time, Feb. 6, White Rock, the third seed, is only a single point ahead of the Grandview Steelers.
Ultimately, the Whalers have their destiny in their own hands with their final four regular-season games in the upcoming week as the home side: vs. Grandview (Feb. 7); Richmond (Feb. 8); Chilliwack (Feb. 11); and Aldergrove (Feb. 12).
Travis Smythe, a veteran of last season’s run to the Ray Stonehouse Cup final, is eager for the postseason.
“It’s exciting – especially when we play at home. No one really comes here and gets a lot of wins in the play-offs.”
Jennifer Wang of the White Rock / South Surrey Skating Club performed her short program Feb. 4. A Grade 8 student, she's also a flutist. | Photo courtesy of Alistair Burns / White Rock Whalers.
POST GAME AUDIO with Coach Rogers, Zach Johns and Travis Smythe
"The big thing between now (Feb. 4) and next Sunday...is that we're resting, recovering and dealing with any injuries," head coach Jason Rogers said of the sprint to end the 2022-2023 regular season.
Live Audio with Coach Rogers
"We're building good habits, especially going into lots of games coming up. Just consistently playing well and doing the right thing," Whaler veteran forward Zach Johns said.
Live Audio with Zach Johns
"Charlie [Derrheim] just put the puck on net and I just buried" the rebound, commented Whaler Travis Smythe about his first goal of the season.