WATCH: The Victoria Royals will take on the Kelowna Rockets in a deciding Game 7 Tuesday night at Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre and fans across the city are gearing up for the game
The morning after the Victoria Royals won Game 6 of their Western Conference Semi-Final series against the Kelowna Rockets, fans were lining up to try to get tickets for Game 7.
But the game was sold out by mid-morning and many left the box office disappointed.
“I would definitely liked to have been there, guess I should have been there a little earlier in the morning I guess,” said fan Rich Gallop.
“Unfortunately we’ve had to turn away some fans, they’ve all been very understanding of it, they realize the support is there, we have a 7000 seat arena and it’s going to be great to see the support Tuesday night,” said Devin Mazur, Director of Ticketing for the Royals.
Only those who bought their tickets online walked away with seats to what will be the biggest hockey game in Victoria in decades.
“I came all the way back from Arizona in part to go to this game, I figured it would go to Game 7,” said fan Bob Sproule who ordered his single ticket online.
The last time a Victoria WHL team made it this far in the post-season was 35 years ago — the Victoria Cougars took home the WHL Championship in 1981.
There was huge fan support back then, and that same electricity is expected at Save-On-Foods Memorial Tuesday night.
But Royals fever isn’t contained to one building, it’s spreading throughout the city, including at the Yates Street Taphouse where they’ll have Game 7 on the big screen.
“They love the fact it’s their team, they’re very proud of them, they come in here a lot… they’re all logo-ed up, they’ll have some painting going on and then the energy level just carries,” said owner Grant Turner.
And that fan energy is felt by the players on the ice.
“The barn’s going to be rocking, the fans have been great all playoffs,” said fan favourite Joe Hicketts as he returned to Victoria from Kelowna.
While fans are hopeful the Victoria Royals will take Game 7 and move on to the Western Conference Final, they don’t doubt it will be a battle to the final seconds.