VICTORIA - Kale Kessy scored a hat track Monday as the Kamloops Blazers defeated the Victoria Royals 6-2 to win their first-round Western Hockey League playoff series 4-2.
Cole Ully, Sam Grist and JC Lipon also scored for Kamloops, while Ben Walker and Keegan Kanzig replied for the Royals.
Cole Cheveldave made 16 saves to get the win, while Patrik Polivka stopped 37 shots in taking the loss.
The Blazers opened the scoring early in the first when Ully shovelled the puck past a fallen Polivka.
The Blazers went up by two goals late in the first off a goalmouth feed that was finished off by Kessy.
In the second, the Royals cut the Blazers' lead to 2-1 on the power play when Walker dove for a loose puck at the side of the net and backhanded it in.
But the Blazers regained their two-goal lead later in the period with a man advantage when Polivka was caught out of the net and Kessy scored his second of the game.
Victoria got back within one goal less than two minutes later when Kanzig buried a backhander from the slot, but Kamloops answered with another power-play goal, with Grist burying one in the slot to make it 4-2.
The Blazers took a 5-2 lead just over a minute later as Lipon slid the puck behind Polivka.
Kamloops got its third power-play goal of the night in the third period, with Kessy putting a low shot from the slot past Polivka to complete his hat trick.