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PREVIEW: CALGARY VS. VICTORIA

Nov 09, 2012 - 10:53 GMT

HITMEN HEADLINES: The Calgary Hitmen (12-4-1-2) continue their four-game homestand tonight as the Victoria Royals (9-9-0-0) pay a visit to the Scotiabank Saddledome. After a second consecutive 2-1 victory over the Moose Jaw Warriors, this time in a shootout, the Hitmen now find themselves on a four-game win streak. The stretch of success started during their latest road trip when Calgary picked up six points in three games versus the East Division. Sitting at the top of the Eastern Conference, the Hitmen will look to improve their home record (4-3-1-1) as they play seven of their next eight contests in the confines of the ‘Dome.

VS. VICTORIA: Tonight is the second of three games played between the Hitmen and Royals, with Victoria leading the season series 1-0. In October, in the first game between the two squads, the Royals triumphed in a defensive battle 3-1, handing the Hitmen their first road loss of the 2012-13 campaign. Zane Jones scored the lone goal for Calgary, while Steven Hodges and Alex Gogolev (2g) found the back of the net for Victoria. Last season, the Hitmen played two games against the Royals, both in Victoria, and picked up wins in both meetings.
SERIES RECAP
Oct. 18/12 in VIC    Royals 3 Hitmen 1     Alex Gogolev scores two goals, including the game winner to help defeat his former club.
INSIDE THE SERIES
Shots on Goal: CAL 21  VIC 29        Power Plays: CAL 0-0 (0%)  VIC 0-5 (0%)       Next Meeting: Sat., Feb. 16 at Calgary, 7 p.m.

HITMEN TEAM LEADERS:     
Goals (13) Cody Sylvester                Power Play Goals (8) Cody Sylvester        PIM (58) Darian Henry
Assists (15) Brooks Macek                Plus/Minus (+16) Alex Roach
Points (26) Brooks Macek                Wins (9) Chris Driedger

FAMILIAR FACES:  For the second time this year, Zane Jones and Alex Gogolev will have the chance to face their former teams after being traded for one another in September. Jones laced up for Victoria in 68 games last season and scored in his return to Victoria last month. Alex Gogolev, who scored 25 goals in a Hitmen jersey last year, has 21 points in 18 games with the Royals this season.  Tonight Calgary will also face former bench boss Dave Lowry who led the Hitmen to a 59-9-3-1 regular season record during 2008-09 campaign.

MILESTONE WATCH: Defenceman Peter Kosterman is four games away from his 200th career WHL contest.

WHL TOP 10:  Brooks Macek sits seventh in the WHL scoring race with 26 points (11g, 15a).  Cody Sylvester is tied for sixth overall in goals at 13 and leads the WHL with eight power play markers.  Alex Roach is ranked seventh in the WHL with a plus-minus rating of +16, while Chris Driedger sits fourth amongst WHL netminders with a 2.40 goals-against average. With his shootout goal on Wednesday, Greg Chase is now tied for the league-lead in shootout-winning goals with two.

KILLING TIME:  Calgary has killed their last 22 shorthanded situations. A streak that now stretches over six full games, the Hitmen haven’t allowed a goal while down a man in 391 minutes of action. The Calgary penalty kill ranks 11th in the league at 78.9%. The Hitmen also have the league’s third best road penalty kill at 90.0%.

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 were hosted by the QMJHL with the OHL hosting games three and four. The Super Series is currently tied 1-1. Royals’ forward Steven Hodges will have the opportunity to play in front of home fans as he is slated to play in game six in Victoria.

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).

MO BROS:  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, Hitmen players and staff are growing moustaches to raise funds and awareness for Prostate Cancer Canada. 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.  

HOMETOWN HEROES:  On Mon., Nov. 12, Calgary will honour Hometown Heroes when the Hitmen host the Kootenay Ice at 7 p.m.  Past and present members of the military as well as all police, fire and EMS service members will receive complimentary admission to Monday night’s game by presenting their identification card at the Scotiabank Saddledome box office.

POST-GAME AUTOGRAPHS: Meet forward Joey Kornelsen at the Booster Club table located by section 212 after the game.

UPCOMING GAMES: Calgary will be back in action on Monday, November 12 as they continue their four-game homestand against the Kootenay Ice at 7 p.m. This game, originally scheduled for Sunday, November 11, was moved to Monday to provide fans with the opportunity to attend the CFL Western Semi-Final at McMahon Stadium on Remembrance Day.  The homestand will finish on Sun., Nov. 18 when Calgary hosts Swift Current, with puck drop at 2 p.m.