PREVIEW: CALGARY AT BRANDON

Nov 03, 2012 - 03:02 MDT
Written By: Curle, Brad

HITMEN HEADLINES: The Calgary Hitmen (9-4-1-2) play game two of a three game East Division road trip tonight in Brandon against the Wheat Kings (8-6-2-1). Calgary snapped a three game winless streak with a 4-1 win in Regina last night.  Brooks Macek (2g 1a) and Cody Sylvester (3a) both had three points each.  Carson Samoridny (1g 1a) and Spencer Humphries also scored for the Hitmen while Chris Driedger made 30 saves to record the win.  Calgary went 1-1 on the powerplay while killing all four chances for the Pats. Calgary is tied with Edmonton for first place in the Central Division at 21 points, three points behind the Eastern Conference leading Prince Albert Raiders.  

VS. BRANDON: Tonight is the first of four meetings between the Hitmen and Wheat Kings.  Last season Calgary was 3-1 against Brandon.  Over the last five seasons the Hitmen are 9-6-1-0 against the Wheat Kings including a 5-3 record in Brandon.  The two teams won’t meet again this season until January 2nd in Calgary.

HITMEN TEAM LEADERS:     
Goals (13) Cody Sylvester            Power Play Goals (8) Cody Sylvester        PIM (49) Darian Henry
Assists (15) Brooks Macek            Plus/Minus (+15) Alex Roach
Points (24) Brooks Macek        Wins (7) Chris Driedger

BUS LIFE:  Calgary is 6-1-0-1 away from Scotiabank Saddledome having outscored their opponents by a combined 26-12.

U16 CHALLENGE CUP: Five of Calgary’s 10 prospects from the 2012 WHL Bantam Draft are competing in the Western Canada U16 Challenge Cup from November 1-4 at Father David Bauer Arena in Calgary.  Lochlan Morrison, Terrell Draude and Brennan Riddle are members of Team Saskatchewan, while James Shearer and Jordan Stallard are on Team Manitoba.  So far Riddle has one assist while Shearer has 1g 1a.  Today is the final day of round robin action with the medal round Sunday.

MILESTONE WATCH:  Brooks Macek picked up his 200th career regular season points last night in Regina.  Chris Driedger is 29 minutes shy of 4,000.  

WHL TOP 10:  Brooks Macek is tied for sixth in the WHL scoring race with 24 points and tied for seventh in assists with 15.  Cody Sylvester leads the WHL with eight powerplay goals.  Sylvester is also tied for fifth overall in goals with 13.  Alex Roach is tied for fifth in plus minus at +15.  Chris Driedger has the seventh best goals against average at 2.57.  His .914 save percentage is 10th.
 
KILLING TIME:  Calgary has killed their last 12 short handed situations.

TEAM WHL: Forward Brady Brassart has been named to Team WHL for the 2012 SUBWAY® Super Series.  The 19-year-old forward is third in team scoring with 15 points (six goals, nine assists). Team WHL will face Team Russia in games five and six of the series played Wednesday, November 14 in Vancouver, B.C., and on Thursday, November 15 in Victoria, B.C. The first two games of the series are hosted by the QMJHL with the OHL hosting games three and four. Tonight’s opponent, the Wheat Kings, will send defenceman Ryan Pulock to the series for game five in Vancouver.

ROSTER ADDITION: Brendan Hurley, a native of Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta, has been added to the roster.  The 19-year-old forward recorded his first point in Hitmen silks on Oct. 28, netting Calgary’s lone marker in a 4-1 setback to the Kelowna Rockets.  Now at 26 players, Calgary’s roster includes 16 forwards, eight defencemen and two goaltenders.

NHL PROSPECTS:  Chris Driedger (Ottawa 2012); Kenton Helgesen (Anaheim 2012); Jaynen Rissling (Washington 2012); Alex Roach (Three-year, Entry-level Contract, Los Angeles 2011); Victor Rask (Three-year, Entry-level Contract, Carolina 2011).

HITMEN ALUMNUS:  Brandon Kozun, who played just over three seasons in Calgary, (2006-10) has eight points (2g 6a) in seven games this season with the Los Angeles Kings AHL affiliate in Manchester.

MOVEMBER:  The Calgary Hitmen together with Canada Safeway Ltd. and Prostate Cancer Canada are proud to support Movember, a month to fight prostate cancer, for the fourth season.  During the month of November, Calgary Hitmen players and staff will grow moustaches to raise funds and awareness for prostate cancer.  The funds raised in Canada through Movember support programs run directly by Movember and Prostate Cancer Canada. Together, the two channels work to ensure that Movember funds support a broad range of innovative, world-class programs. To support your favorite Hitmen team member, visit mobro.co/hitmenmovemberteam.  The Calgary Hitmen Movember team has raised $45,950 for Prostate Cancer Canada since the launch of the inaugural campaign in November 2009.  

UPCOMING GAMES: Calgary wraps up their three-game East Division road swing Sunday in Moose Jaw. The Hitmen return to Scotiabank Saddledome on Wednesday, Nov. 7th to host the Warriors in the back half of a home and home series.  Game time is 7pm.  It will mark the start of a four game home stand at the ‘Dome.  It also kicks off a stretch of eight of their next nine games on home ice.