Monday, 31 October 2011

Hitmen begin East Division Road Trip

The Calgary Hitmen have arrived in Prince Albert as the team gets set to kick-off their longest road swing of the season Tuesday night at the Art Hauser Centre.  Between now and next Tuesday, the team bus will make a stop in every East Division city along the way.  When the dust settles the Hitmen will have played six games in eight nights.  The schedule breaks down as follows:
-November 1st in PA, 2nd in Saskatoon, 4th in Brandon, 5th in Regina, 6th in Moose Jaw and 8th in Swift Current.

After starting the season 0-3 on the road, the Hitmen have won two straight in enemy buildings.  They hit the road with a 23 man roster as 17-year-old Luke Gordon was recently re-assigned to the BHCL's Nanaimo Clippers.  He scored in his Clippers debut Friday night.

Plante sent back to the AHL

The Alex Plante stay with the Edmonton Oilers was a short one.  Despite playing over 12 minutes, finishing the game +1 with one assist, the former Hitmen defenceman has been returned to the American Hockey League.  Here is the Oilers news release.

Sunday, 30 October 2011

Hitmen grad heads to NHL

Former Calgary Hitmen defenceman Alex Plante has been called up by Edmonton and is in the Oilers line-up tonight against the St. Louis Blues.  Plante played parts of five seasons with the Hitmen (2004-05 to 2008-09).  Tonight marks this eighth career game in the NHL.  Plante finished the night +1 and also had one assist setting up Ryan Smyth.  He finished the game with 12:04 of ice time. 

Calgary 2 Everett 1

Silvertips goalie Kent Simpson, a second round pick of the Chicago Blackhawks, did his best to try and steal a road win for the visitors making 39 saves, but in the end the Calgary Hitmen skated to a 3-1 victory at Scotiabank Saddledome.  The Hitmen struck for a goal in each period with their first getting a little help from lady luck.  Cody Sylvester's shot sailed over the net, but bounced off the back glass then off Simpson's back and in.  Trevor Cheek scored the game winner in the second period shorthanded breaking a 1-1 tie.  Jimmy Bubnick then added an insurance goal in the final frame.  The Hitmen are now 5-6-0-1 and will open a six game East Division road trip Tuesday night in Prince Albert.

Click here to see game pictures Special thanks to photographer Linda Coward.

Everett Silvertips 1 at Calgary Hitmen 3

Saturday, October 29, 2011 - Scotiabank Saddledome - Calgary, AB

Everett 1 0 0 - 1
Calgary 1 1 1 - 3

1st Period
1, Calgary, Sylvester 3 (Humphries, Kosterman), 3:48.
2, Everett, Erricson 2 (Yadlowski, Boyd), 7:15.
Penalties-Grayson Evt (tripping), 9:54; Morden Evt (hooking), 17:18.

2nd Period
3, Calgary, Cheek 4 (Humphries, Brooks), 19:33 (SH).
Penalties-Walters Evt (roughing), 1:28; Grayson Evt (cross checking), 3:29; Mychan Evt (major-fighting), 8:32; Humphries Cal (major-fighting), 8:32; Morden Evt (hooking), 8:52; Sylvester Cal (inter. on goaltender), 17:41.

3rd Period
4, Calgary, Bubnick 2 (Rissling, Kornelsen), 10:19.
Penalties-Winquist Evt (hooking), 1:41; Yadlowski Evt (holding), 6:14; Bowman Cal (interference), 6:27; Cheek Cal (hooking), 14:09.

Shots on Goal
Everett 4-5-7-16. Calgary 17-13-12-42.
Power Play Opportunities
Everett 0 / 3; Calgary 0 / 7.
Everett, Simpson 4-8-0-1 (42 shots-39 saves). Calgary, Driedger 4-2-0-1 (16 shots-15 saves).
Referees-Steve Papp (17), Colin Watt (72).
Linesmen-Chris Carlson (92), Michael Roberts (87).

Saturday, 29 October 2011

Everett at Calgary

The Calgary Hitmen 4-6-0-1 are back in Scotiabank Saddledome tonight as they wrap up a three game home stand against the U-S Division's Everett Silvertips (4-9-0-2).  Game time is 7:00 p.m.  The Hitmen are coming off Tuesday's 7-1 home ice loss to the Portland Winterhawks while Everett produced a 3-2 shootout win last night in Red Deer.

Top Scorers Both Teams:

Victor Rask 7g 5a 12pts
Brooks Macek 4g 6a 10pts
Cody Sylvester 2g 8a 10pts

Josh Birkholz 8g 7a 15pts
Tyler Maxwell 8g 3a 11pts
Cody Fowlie 3g 6a 9pts

Friday, 28 October 2011

Hitmen Hockey Hour on Sportsnet 960-The Fan

New this season is the Hitmen Hockey Hour on Sportsnet 960-The Fan.  This weeks show is from 6 to 7pm.

Here is the complete guest lineup for October 29th.
-Voice of the Moose Jaw Warriors James Gallo to talk about the Hitmen/Warriors trade this week
-We'll hear from the newest Hitmen and former Warriors Collin Bowman and Joey Kornelsen
-Calgary Flames first round pick Sven Bartschi joins the program along with Flames free agent signing and current Red Deer Rebel Turner Elson
- Colorado Avalanche scout Don Paarup talks about the five WHL defenceman who are all expected to be first round NHL picks in 2012.

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Numbers Assigned

Newly acquired Hitmen Joey Kornelsen and Collin Bowman have picked their numbers here in Calgary.  Kornelsen keeps the same number he wore in Moose Jaw in #12 while Bowman will wear #28.  He was #10 in Moose Jaw, a number currently held by Alex Gogolev.

Both new additions are expected in the line-up Saturday when the Hitmen host Everett.

Hitmen blanked

For the first time in recent memory the Calgary Hitmen have been blanked when it comes to Team WHL invites for the SUBWAY Super Series.  However two Calgary products are on the list, Matthew Dumba of the Red Deer Rebels and Adam Lowry of the Swift Current Broncos.

Here is the official release...

CALGARY, AB – The Canadian Hockey League in association with the Western Hockey League and the Moose Jaw Warriors and Regina Pats Hockey Clubs today announced the rosters for Team WHL that will compete against Team Russia in the 2011 SUBWAY® Super Series.

The 2011 SUBWAY® Super Series will take place November 7 – 17 and marks the ninth straight year that teams of CHL All-Stars have competed against Team Russia in preparation for the World Junior Hockey Championships.  The SUBWAY® Super Series is an integral part of the evaluation process prior to Team Canada’s final selection camp in December.  This season, Canada will be competing for their 14th straight medal at the 2012 tournament in Calgary and Edmonton, Alberta.

Team WHL will face Team Russia in games five and six of the series played Wednesday, November 16 in Regina, SK, and on Thursday, November 17 in Moose Jaw, SK.  The first two games of the series are hosted by the QMJHL with the OHL hosting games three and four.

Team WHL was selected by a special committee of WHL General Managers along with Kevin Prendergast, Hockey Canada’s Head Scout for the Canadian National Junior Team, as part of the selection process for the 2012 World Junior Hockey Championships. 

Team WHL Roster – Regina, SK – November 16, 2011

15Sissons, ColtonForward1993Kelowna RocketsNorth Vancouver, BC
23Reinhart, Max*Forward1992Kootenay IceVancouver, BC
8Rattie, TyForward1993Portland WinterhawksAirdrie, AB
18Ross, BradForward1992Portland WinterhawksLethbridge, AB
22Kambeitz, AdamForward1992Red Deer RebelsCoaldale, AB
19Weal, Jordan*Forward1992Regina PatsNorth Vancouver, BC
20Nicholls, Josh*Forward1992Saskatoon BladesTsawwassen, BC
11Gallagher, BrendanForward1992Vancouver GiantsDelta, BC
9Sundher, KevinForward1992Victoria RoyalsSurrey, BC
27Murray, RyanDefenceman1993Everett SilvertipsWhite City, SK
7Morrow, JoeDefenceman1992Portland WinterhawksSherwood Park, AB
24Dumba, MattDefenceman1994Red Deer RebelsCalgary, AB
6Petrovic, AlexDefenceman1992Red Deer RebelsEdmonton, AB
5Siemens, Duncan*Defenceman1993Saskatoon BladesSherwood Park, AB
4Kichton, BrendenDefenceman1992Spokane ChiefsSpruce Grove, AB
30Bunz, Tyler*Goaltender1992Medicine Hat TigersSt. Albert, AB
1Pickard, Calvin*Goaltender1992Seattle ThunderbirdsWinnipeg, MB

Team WHL Roster – Moose Jaw, SK – November 17, 2011

16Stone, MarkForward1992Brandon Wheat KingsWinnipeg, MB
27Ferland, MichaelForward1992Brandon Wheat KingsBrandon, MB
23Reinhart, Max*Forward1992Kootenay IceVancouver, BC
21Howden, QuintonForward1992Moose Jaw WarriorsOakbank, MB
9McNeill, MarkForward1993Prince Albert RaidersEdmonton, AB
19Weal, Jordan*Forward1992Regina PatsNorth Vancouver, BC
20Nicholls, Josh*Forward1992Saskatoon BladesTsawwassen, BC
17Lowry, AdamForward1993Swift Current BroncosCalgary, AB
41Holland, PatrickForward1992Tri-City AmericansLethbridge, AB
22Feser, JustinForward1992Tri-City AmericansRed Deer, AB
6Fransoo, JordanDefenceman1993Brandon Wheat KingsNorth Battleford, SK
3Pysyk, MarkDefenceman1992Edmonton Oil KingsSherwood Park, AB
8McIlrath, DylanDefenceman1992Moose Jaw WarriorsWinnipeg, MB
4Rielly, MorganDefenceman1994Moose Jaw WarriorsW. Vancouver, BC
5Siemens, Duncan*Defenceman1993Saskatoon BladesSherwood Park, AB
10Yuen, ZacharyDefenceman1993Tri-City AmericansVancouver, BC
30Bunz, Tyler*Goaltender1992Medicine Hat TigersSt. Albert, AB
1Pickard, Calvin*Goaltender1992Seattle ThunderbirdsWinnipeg, MB

*Players competing in both games
Team WHL Staff:
Don Hay, Head Coach (Vancouver Giants)
Ryan Huska, Assistant Coach (Kelowna Rockets)
Lorne Molleken, Assistant Coach (Saskatoon Blades)

Team WHL Training Staff:
Greg Mayer (Regina Pats)
Curtis Amiot (Moose Jaw Warriors)
Jamie LeBlanc (Swift Current Broncos)

2011 SUBWAY® Super Series Schedule of Games:
 Game 1 – Monday November 7 at Victoriaville, QC
Game 2 – Wednesday November 9 at Quebec City, QC
Game 3 – Thursday November 10 at Ottawa, ON
Game 4 – Monday November 14 at Sault Ste. Marie, ON
Game 5 – Wednesday November 16 at Regina, SK
Game 6 – Thursday November 17 at Moose Jaw, SK

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Hitmen and Warriors Deal

The Calgary Hitmen have made a move to add some scoring to their blueline, while at the same time creating some playing time for the youngsters up front.  The deal sees two older forwards moved out while a younger centre, veteran powerplay d-man and a draft pick are on their way in.  Here is the official trade release....

Calgary, AB - Calgary Hitmen General Manager, Executive VP and Alternate Governor Kelly Kisio announced today the team has acquired 18-year-old center Joey Kornelsen, 20-year-old defenceman Collin Bowman and a fourth round pick in 2012 in exchange for 19-year-old forward Justin Kirsch and 20-year-old center Kenton Miller.

“We needed a puck-moving defenceman for our powerplay and to add young talent up front,” said Kisio.  “This deal accomplishes both of those needs.  We would like to thank Justin and Kenton for their time in Calgary and wish them success with the Warriors.”

Kirsch joined the Hitmen in 2009 and over three seasons of play registered 55 points (30g 25a) in 110 games.  The 6’2” 173lbs. forward earned 25 of his 30 career goals last season.

After three campaigns with the Spokane Chiefs, the Hitmen claimed Miller off waivers during the 2011-12 offseason.  The 6’0” 191lbs. center recorded three goals in 11 games played for Calgary.

Since his 2008 WHL debut, Kornelsen had played his entire career with Moose Jaw, scoring 15 goals and recording 22 assists in 118 regular season games played.

Last season, Bowman appeared in 72 regular season games and earned 49 points (11g 38a) with the Warriors.  The 6’2” 200lbs. defenceman has earned five points (4g 1a) in seven games played this season.

Calgary wraps up a three-game home stand on Saturday, October 29 when they host the Everett Silvertips for the Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer game.  Puck drop is 7:00 p.m. at Scotiabank Saddledome.

All Calgarians are invited to join the Calgary Hitmen with community partner TELUS in supporting the Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer campaign.  Fans can bid now on game worn third jerseys and pink helmets by visiting  Net proceeds go to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation (CBCF) Prairies/NWT Region.

The online auction closes Thursday, October 27 at 9:00 p.m. MST.  Fans with the winning auction bids will be presented with their signed jersey and helmet following Saturday’s game. 

Fans can also support the campaign through on-site donations and the purchase of CBCF promotional items. In addition, 50/50 proceeds from the October 29 matchup will support the cause.

For information on ticket packages including Flex Packs, Group Tickets or Season Tickets, call Customer Service at 403-777-4646.

Portland 7 Calgary 1

Mac Carruth made 37 saves to backstop the Portland Winterhawks to a 7-1 win over the Calgary Hitmen Tuesday night at Scotiabank Saddledome.

The Winterhawks built period leads of 1-0 and 2-0 before blowing the game open with a pair of goals in the first two minutes of the third period.

Victor Rask was the lone Hitmen to beat Carruth, scoring on a two man advantage just past the midway mark of the final frame.

The loss drops the Hitmen record to 4-6-0-1 while Portland improves to 7-5-1-1.

Flames first round pic Sven Bartschi sat out the game with an injury but he will be a guest on the Hitmen Hockey Hour this Saturday from 1-2pm on Sportsnet960 The Fan.

Check out some game pics here! Special thanks to photographer Linda Coward.

Portland Winterhawks 7 at Calgary Hitmen 1
Tuesday, October 25, 2011 - Scotiabank Saddledome - Calgary, AB

Portland 1 1 5 - 7
Calgary 0 0 1 - 1

1st Period
1, Portland, Swenson 1 (Rutkowski, Morrow), 19:08.
Penalties-Peters Por (interference), 4:56; Petan Por (delay of game), 12:01; Rattie Por (embellishment), 16:25; Sylvester Cal (cross checking), 16:25.

2nd Period
2, Portland, Trott 3 (Wrenn), 3:31.
Penalties-Humphries Cal (interference), 8:28; Bubnick Cal (slashing), 15:36.

3rd Period
3, Portland, Leier 2 (Peters), 0:51.
4, Portland, Leipsic 5 (De Leo), 1:18.
5, Portland, Ross 8 (Rattie), 8:48 (PP).
6, Calgary, Rask 7 (Sylvester, Clayton), 12:48 (PP).
7, Portland, Trott 4 (Swenson, Pouliot), 18:44 (PP).
8, Portland, Wrenn 1 (Trott), 19:52.
Penalties-Parker Por (major-fighting), 4:25; Kirsch Cal (major-fighting), 4:25; Rissling Cal (tripping), 4:43; Brassart Cal (inter. on goaltender), 8:33; Morrow Por (tripping), 11:09; Ross Por (roughing, roughing), 11:09; Brassart Cal (roughing), 11:09; Rattie Por (interference), 16:08; Rissling Cal (holding), 16:08; Ross Por (major-fighting), 16:10; Sutherland Cal (major-fighting), 16:10; Lubin Cal (inter. on goaltender), 18:01; Trott Por (major-fighting), 19:56; Sylvester Cal (slashing, major-fighting), 19:56.

Shots on Goal
Portland 8-15-13-36. Calgary 18-10-9-37.

Power Play Opportunities

Portland 2 / 6; Calgary 1 / 4.


Portland, Carruth 6-5-1-0 (37 shots-36 saves). Calgary, Glover 1-3-0-0 (10 shots-7 saves); Driedger 3-2-0-1 (26 shots-22 saves).


Referees-Tyler Adair (58), Jon Stephenson (38).
Linesmen-Chris Carlson (92), Justin Slimm (105).

My Post Game Highlights:

1st period
-Winterhawks sniper Brad Ross was stopped on a break-away by Chris Driedger
-The Hitmen had 17 shots on goal through the first 17 minutes

2nd period
-Hitmen Kenton Miller it a goal post
-Hitmen Brooks Macek was stopped on a break-away by Mac Carruth

3rd period
-Portland's two goals 27 seconds apart in the first two minutes of the third period not only shocked the Hitmen, but also took the crowd out of the game.
-Hitmen Justin Kirsch hit a goal post

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Portland at Calgary

The Calgary Hitmen (4-5-0-1) play game two of their three game home stand tonight when they host the Portland Winterhawks (6-5-1-1) in their only meeting of the season.  Game time is 7:00pm at Scotiabank Saddledome.  The Hitmen are coming off Sunday's 4-2 home ice loss to the Kootenay Ice while the Winterhawks last played Saturday night dropping a 2-1 six round shootout decision in Red Deer.  For Portland this is stop number three on a nine game in 17 day road trip which won't end until November 5th in Kelowna.

The Winterhawks roster boasts four players taken in the top two rounds of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft: Sven Bartschi 13th overall to Calgary, Joe Morrow 23rd overall to Pittsburgh, Ty Rattie 32nd overall to St. Louis and Tyler Wotherspoon 57th overall to Calgary.

Meanwhile 17-year-old defenceman Derrick Pouliot is projected to be a 2012 first round NHL pick this coming June.

In their lone meeting last season the Hitmen skated to a 5-1 win in Oregon on October 13th.  Kris Foucault and Cody Sylvester both scored twice while Mike Snider made 31 saves. 

DID YOU KNOW?  Calgary's next win will be their fifth.  Last season after winning their fourth game of the season on October 16th the team went on a season high 12 game losing streak and didn't record their fifth victory until November 19th.

Top Scorers Both Teams:

Victor Rask 6g 5a 11pts
Brooks Macek 4g 6a 10pts
Cody Sylvester 2g 7a 9pts

Ty Rattie 10g 9a 19pts
Brad Ross 7g 12a 19pts
Sven Bartschi 5g 12 17pts

ALUMNI WATCH:  Joel Broda who played parts of two seasons with the Hitmen (08-09 to 09-10) is in the American Hockey League with the Houston Aeros.  He has two assists in seven games.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Kootenay 4 Calgary 2

The Kootenay Ice jumped out to a 3-0 second period lead and held on for a 4-2 win over the Calgary Hitmen Sunday at Scotiabank Saddledome.

The loss snapped the Hitmen's three game winning streak.

Erik Benoit led the Ice with a goal and an assist while Mike Simpson, Drew Czerwonka and Adam Rossignol into an empty net also scored for the visitors.

Brooks Macek with his fourth goal of the season and Trevor Cheek with his third replied for Calgary.

Kootenay Ice 4 at Calgary Hitmen 2
Sunday, October 23, 2011 - Scotiabank Saddledome - Calgary, AB

Kootenay 2 1 1 - 4
Calgary 0 1 1 - 2

1st Period
1, Kootenay, Simpson 1 (Reinhart), 4:37.
2, Kootenay, Benoit 3 (Montgomery, Antilla), 19:57.
Penalties-Gogolev Cal (embellishment), 5:08; Reinhart Ktn (hooking), 12:37.

2nd Period
3, Kootenay, Czerwonka 5 (Reinhart), 3:07.
4, Calgary, Macek 4 (Rissling), 18:59 (PP).
Penalties-Rossignol Ktn (instigator, major-fighting, 10-minute misconduct), 2:52; Humphries Cal (checking from behind, major-fighting), 2:52; Simpson Ktn (tripping), 3:46; Neibrandt Ktn (unsportsmanlike cnd.), 13:26; Wand Ktn (holding opp. stick), 18:49.

3rd Period
5, Calgary, Cheek 3 (Driedger), 6:21 (PP).
6, Kootenay, Rossignol 5 (Leach, Benoit), 19:17 (EN).
Penalties-Ismond Ktn (inter. on goaltender), 5:23; Cheek Cal (elbowing), 8:27.

Shots on Goal
Kootenay 6-14-9-29. Calgary 4-7-12-23.

Power Play Opportunities
Kootenay 0 / 2; Calgary 2 / 5.

Kootenay, Lieuwen 6-2-0-2 (23 shots-21 saves). Calgary, Driedger 3-0-0-1 (28 shots-25 saves).

Attendance 7,559

Referees-Trevor Hanson (19), Colby Smith (57).
Linesmen-Aidan Henderson (78), Jeff Jobson (52).

Check out some game pics here! Special thanks to photographer Linda Coward

Kootenay at Calgary

The Calgary Hitmen (4-4-0-1) are back in Scotiabank Saddledome this evening to host the Kootenay Ice (8-3-0-2).  Game time is 4pm.  The Hitmen have won a season high three in a row and are coming off Thursday's 3-1 win in Regina.  The Ice meanwhile were 2-1 winners at home last night against the Moose Jaw Warriors.

SEASON SERIES:  The two teams have met twice this season with the home team winning both.
-Sept. 24 in Cranbrook: Ice 5 Hitmen 1.  Ice goalie Nathan Lieuwen made 29 saves in a first star performance.
-Oct. 2 in Calgary: Hitmen 4 Ice 2.  Danny Gayle and Victor Rask each had 1g 1a for Calgary.

DID YOU KNOW?  The Ice have played four more games than the Hitmen this season....Kootenay is 2-2-0-2 on the road while the Hitmen are 2-1-0-1 at home....The Ice have given up an average of two goals per game this season while Calgary has scored a combined 15 goals during their current three game winning streak.

ABORIGINAL NIGHT:  Today's game will celebrate the Aboriginal culture.  With representation from the Blood Tribe, Siksika Nation, Tsuu T'ina Nation and Piikani Nation, fans will experience a traditional Drum Group and Aboriginal Dance during the game.

PINK HELMETS:  The Hitmen will wear pink helmets during warm-ups today.  They are among the items up for bid in the Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer Fundraiser.  Find the online auction here!

Top Scorers

Victor Rask 6g 5a 11pts
Brooks Macek 3g 6a 9pts
Cody Sylvester 2g 7a 9pts

Max Reinhart 6g 9a 15pts
Jesse Ismond 4g 6a 10pts
Joey Leach 2g 8a 10pts

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Calgary Hitmen 3 Regina Pats 1

Regina, SK – The Calgary Hitmen extended their winning streak to three games with a 3-1 victory on the road Thursday night over the Regina Pats.

A quick start was a key ingredient as all three Hitmen goals were scored in the first period. 

Danny Gayle opened the scoring on a powerplay tipping home a Victor Rask shot for his second goal of the season.

Cody Sylvester then struck shorthanded for his second goal of the young season before Kenton Miller’s third goal of the year rounded out the scoring.

Colton Jobke, on a second period powerplay, was the only Pat to beat Hitmen goaltender Chris Driedger (dree-gurr) who made 23 saves in a first star performance.

The win for Calgary improves their record to 4-4-0-1 and comes over the Canadian Hockey League’s seventh ranked Pats.

The Hitmen will now return home to face the Kootenay Ice Sunday at Scotiabank Saddledome for Aboriginal Night.  With representation from the Blood Tribe, Siksika Nation, Tsuu T’ina Nation and Piikani Nation, fans will experience a traditional Drum Group and Aboriginal Dance during the game.

Game time is 4:00 p.m.

Calgary Hitmen 3 at Regina Pats 1
Thursday, October 20, 2011 - Brandt Centre - Regina, SK

Calgary 3 0 0 - 3
Regina 0 1 0 - 1

1st Period
1, Calgary, Gayle 2 (Rask, Macek), 3:19 (PP).
2, Calgary, Sylvester 2 (Gayle, Kosterman)   11:07 (SH).
3, Calgary, Miller 3 (Brooks, Chase), 17:02.
Penalties-Underwood Reg (roughing), 3:04; Gogolev Cal (tripping), 10:50; Davidson Reg (tripping), 14:53.

2nd Period
4, Regina, Jobke 2 (Volek, Weal), 5:20 (PP).
Penalties-Macek Cal (major-fighting), 0:41; Marantz Reg (major-fighting), 0:41; Miller Cal (cross checking), 5:12; Roach Cal (checking from behind), 11:46; Chase Cal (tripping), 18:20; Klimchuk Reg (tripping), 19:26.

3rd Period
No Scoring.
Penalties-Bubnick Cal (roughing), 0:53; Ouellette Reg (roughing), 0:53; Macek Cal (slashing), 11:01; Rissling Cal (interference), 16:26; served by Ouellette Reg (too many men), 19:37; Kosterman Cal (instigator, major-fighting, game misconduct), 20:00; Davidson Reg (major-fighting), 20:00.

Shots on Goal
Calgary 11-7-6-24. Regina 4-12-8-24.

Power Play Opportunities
Calgary 1 / 4; Regina 1 / 6.

Calgary, Driedger 3-0-0-1 (24 shots-23 saves). Regina, Hewitt 7-2-0-0 (24 shots-21 saves).


Referees-Cole Hamm (51), Chad Williams (60).
Linesmen-Curtis Funk (117), Ryan Lundquist (106).

Rask signs with Carolina

Calgary Hitmen leading scorer Victor Rask (8GP 6g 4a 10pts) has signed with the Carolina Hurricanes.

Here is the story from Mike G. Morreale - Staff Writer

The Carolina Hurricanes announced on Thursday that they have agreed to terms with forward Victor Rask on a three-year, entry-level contract.

Rask, chosen in the second round (No. 42) last June, currently leads the Calgary Hitmen of the Western Hockey League with 10 points (6 goals).

"Victor is a smart player with a lot of offensive upside to his game," said Carolina's Director of Hockey Operations, Ron Francis. "He is leading Calgary in scoring so far this year, and we are excited to watch him continue to develop."

The deal pays Rask $550,000 in the first year, $650,000 in the second year and $750,000 in the third year at the NHL level, or he will make $70,000 per year at the minor-league level. He also receives a signing bonus of $277,500.

The Leksand, Sweden, native had an impressive showing during the Traverse City Prospects Tournament in September. Rask played in 37 games for Leksand in the Swedish Elite League last season, producing 5 goals and 11 points. He also represented his country and won a silver medal at the Under-18 World Junior Championship in Buffalo, collecting 2 goals and 5 points in six games. He was named one of the top three players on the team.

It appears the adjustment to the North American game hasn't really fazed the 6-foot-2, 194-pound Rask, who was one of 21 Carolina prospects competing at the Traverse City prospects tournament.

"I need to get quicker because everything happens faster here; the rink is smaller and the zones are bigger," Rask told in September. "It's more physical here than in Sweden, but I think I got it in me so that's no problem."

Carolina general manager Jim Rutherford is glad Rask decided to perfect his game in North America this season instead of returning to Sweden.

"I think it would be good for his maturity on and off the ice and to start to learn the North American culture and game," Rutherford told "Based on what I've seen, he's a guy that could play in the AHL or in junior hockey, so it'll boil down to what's the best for him and the best thing for him is to play somewhere where he'll play a lot of minutes and play in all situations."

Rutherford felt Rask wasn't given the proper chance in Sweden.

"He played in a situation that didn't give him an opportunity and expose his real assets," Rutherford said. "He didn't play enough minutes, didn't play in the right situations, and that's the point I'm trying to make with regard to him playing in North America this season. You can certainly see why he was rated in the first half of the first round at the start of the season; he's a highly-skilled player who does things at high tempo with his head up. He's well aware of where he's supposed to be on the ice."

Calgary at Regina

The Calgary Hitmen (3-4-0-1) will look to extend their winning streak to three games tonight as they visit the Regina Pats (7-3-0-0).  Calgary is coming off Tuesday's 7-1 win in Swift Current while the Pats last played Saturday dropping a 4-1 decision in Red Deer.  The latest Canadian Hockey League Top 10 Rankings have Regina ranked seventh, up from eighth the week before. 

VS REGINA:  The two clubs met last Wednesday with the Pats posting a 4-3 shootout win at Scotiabank Saddledome.  Regina erased a 3-1 third period deficit scoring twice in the final 2:50. 

DOWN TO THE WIRE:  Five of the last six meetings between the Hitmen and Pats have ended in either overtime or a shootout.

Top Scorers:

Victor Rask (6g 4a 10pts)
Alex Gogolev (4g 4a 8pts)
Brooks Macek (3g 5a 8pts)
Cody Sylvester (1g 7a 8pts)

Jordan Weal (4g 9a 13pts)
Brandon Davidson (4g 7a 11pts)
Morgan Klimchuk (4g 6a 10pts)

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Calgary Hitmen 7 Swift Current Broncos 1

Calgary Hitmen 7 at Swift Current Broncos 1
Tuesday, October 18, 2011 - Credit Union i-plex - Swift Current, SK

Calgary 2 2 3 - 7
Swift Current 0 0 1 - 1

1st Period
1, Calgary, Miller 2 (Humphries, Roach), 2:46.
2, Calgary, Cheek 2 (Gogolev, Sutherland), 18:10.
Penalties-Blanke S.c (kneeing), 8:34; Bubnick Cal (roughing), 11:55; Craig S.c (roughing), 11:55; Lowry S.c (interference), 20:00.

2nd Period
3, Calgary, Kirsch 3 (Trzonkowski, Sutherland), 5:28.
4, Calgary, Rask 4 (Kirsch, Sylvester), 14:35 (PP).
Penalties-Humphries Cal (interference), 9:40; Rissling Cal (delay of game), 12:08; Humphries Cal (tripping), 12:16; Lowry S.c (hooking), 13:38; Cheek Cal (roughing), 14:02; Black S.c (roughing), 14:02; Roach Cal (interference), 15:24; Clayton Cal (roughing), 16:25.

3rd Period
5, Calgary, Rask 5 (Sylvester, Macek), 11:43.
6, Swift Current, Gordon 6 (Lowry, Nedomlel), 12:39 (PP).
7, Calgary, Rask 6 (Sylvester, Gayle), 15:00 (PP).
8, Calgary, Kosterman 1 (Macek, Clayton), 15:26 (PP).
Penalties-Roach Cal (roughing), 5:07; Scarlett S.c (slashing), 5:07; Nedomlel S.c (roughing), 9:12; Cheek Cal (slashing), 12:17; Bubnick Cal (roughing, roughing), 13:36; Rissling Cal (roughing), 13:36; Roach Cal (roughing, 10-minute misconduct), 13:36; Blanke S.c (roughing, checking to the head, 10-minute misconduct), 13:36; Heatherington S.c (roughing), 13:36; Howorko S.c (10-minute misconduct), 13:36; Magnus S.c (roughing), 13:36; Cheek Cal (major-fighting), 14:15; Miller Cal (major-fighting, game misconduct), 14:15; Lowry S.c (major-fighting, game misconduct), 14:15; Nedomlel S.c (roughing, game misconduct), 14:15; Scarlett S.c (instigator, major-fighting, 10-minute misconduct), 14:15.

Shots on Goal
Calgary 16-9-19-44. Swift Current 12-13-9-34.

Power Play Opportunities
Calgary 3 / 7; Swift Current 1 / 7.

Calgary, Driedger 2-0-0-1 (34 shots-33 saves). Swift Current, Smith 2-3-0-0 (19 shots-16 saves); Groenheyde 2-3-0-1 (25 shots-21 saves).

Attendance 2,521

Referees-Devin Klein (9), Matthew Sanders (70).
Linesmen-Ian Schafer (56).

My Post Game Thoughts:

1st period
-Chris Driedger was excellent in the first period making 12 saves including an impressive right to left cross crease stop on Trevor Cameron who appeared to have an open net.
-Trevor Cheek had huge jump for the Hitmen and could of had a first period hat trick. 
-Spencer Humphries hit the crossbar from the neutral zone on a shot that fooled Broncos goalie Austin Smith.

2nd period
-Hitmen killed a pair of 5-on-3 Swift Current powerplays, one for 1:52 and another for 59 seconds.
-Justin Kirsch  scores 5:28 into the second period to chase Broncos starting goalie Austin Smith who allowed 3 goals on 19 shots.

3rd period
-The Hitmen scored three more times including a pair from Victor Rask who completed his first hat trick in the Western Hockey League.

Hitmen prospect earns award

Calgary Hitmen prospect Travis Sanheim is the Manitoba Midget AAA Hockey League's West Division Player of the Week. 

The 9th round draft pick of the Hitmen in the 2011 Western Hockey League Bantam Draft had five points (2g 3a) in two games to earn the award. 

Sanheim, a 15-year-old defenceman, is in his first season with the Yellowhead Chiefs and leads the club in scoring with 12 points.

His five goals and seven assists has him tied for seventh in league scoring and leading all defenceman in the MMAAAHL in points.

Calgary at Swift Current

The Calgary Hitmen (2-4-0-1) open a two game Saskatchewan road trip tonight in Swift Current against the Broncos (4-6-1-0).  It's a rematch following Sunday's 5-1 Hitmen win at Scotiabank Saddledome.  Monday was a travel day for the team but the Hitmen did hold a morning skate today.

Containing the Broncos high scoring offence will again be key for Calgary as only Victoria has scored more goals in the WHL this season than Swift Current.  What a start to the young season for the Broncos top line of Taylor Vause, Adam Lowry and Coda Gordon who have combined for 45 points through the first 11 games.  All three are from the city of Calgary.  But it should also be noted Hitmen were able to blank the top trio in Sunday's win.  

Swift Current is 2-2-1-0 at home this season while the Hitmen are 0-3 on the road.  Internet Broadcast on starts at 7pm.  Click the Husky Hitmen Hockey logo on the lower right side of the main page to listen.

Top Scorers:

Alex Gogolev 4g 3a 7pts
Victor Rask 3g 4a 7pts
Brady Brassart 3g 3a 6pts
Brooks Macek 3g 3a 6pts

Swift Current
Taylor Vause 9g 9a 18pts
Adam Lowry 5g 9a 14pts
Coda Gordon 5g 8a 13pts

HITMEN ALUMNUS:  Kris Foucault who was originally drafted by the Swift Current Broncos in the 2005 WHL Bantam Draft (5th rd) is in the American Hockey League with the Houston Aeros.  The 21-year-old who played parts of three seasons with the Hitmen (2008/09 to 2010/11) has two assists in four games with the farm team of the Minnesota Wild.

WILSON WATCH:  Hitmen grad Ben Wilson is in the American Hockey League with the Lake Erie Monsters.  The 20-year-old has played five games.  Although he has been held pointless, Wilson does have two shots on goal along with 15 penalty minutes.  One interesting note he's listed as a centre on the Monsters roster despite playing most of his time in Calgary as a defenceman.

SHOT CLOCK:  Calgary has out-shot their opponents in six of their seven games this season.

Monday, 17 October 2011

Calgary 5 Swift Current 1

Swift Current Broncos 1 at Calgary Hitmen 5
Sunday, October 16, 2011 - Scotiabank Saddledome - Calgary, AB

Swift Current 1 0 0 - 1
Calgary 3 1 1 - 5

1st Period
1, Calgary, Gogolev 3 (Sylvester, Bubnick), 3:13 (PP).
2, Calgary, Brassart 2 (Gogolev, Bubnick), 7:28 (PP).
3, Calgary, Macek 3 (Rask), 13:51.
4, Swift Current, Moser 4 (Hoban, Reum), 17:13.
Penalties-Reum S.c (interference), 1:49; Lowry S.c (cross checking), 6:39; Brassart Cal (slashing), 11:46; Cameron S.c (major-fighting), 14:57; Lubin Cal (major-fighting), 14:57; Dale S.c (major-fighting), 15:18; Trzonkowski Cal (major-fighting), 15:18; Brassart Cal (checking from behind), 17:31.

2nd Period
5, Calgary, Brassart 3 (Bubnick, Gayle), 15:56.
Penalties-No Penalties

3rd Period
6, Calgary, Gogolev 4 (Kosterman), 9:15.
Penalties-Sutherland Cal (interference), 12:07; Blanke S.c (roughing), 15:06; Scarlett S.c (roughing), 15:06; Miller Cal (roughing), 15:06; Sutherland Cal (roughing), 15:06; Roach Cal (roughing), 15:46; Hoban S.c (10-minute misconduct), 16:41; Lowry S.c (roughing, major-fighting), 16:41; Humphries Cal (major-fighting), 16:41; Sylvester Cal (10-minute misconduct), 16:41; Rissling Cal (holding), 17:07.

Shots on Goal
Swift Current 5-14-10-29. Calgary 12-8-7-27.
Power Play Opportunities
Swift Current 0 / 5; Calgary 2 / 3.
Swift Current, Groenheyde 2-3-0-1 (27 shots-22 saves). Calgary, Driedger 1-0-0-1 (29 shots-28 saves).
Attendance 7,671
Referees-Reagan Vetter (79).
Linesmen-Reid Anderson (53), Ian Shaver (74).

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Medicine Hat 5 Calgary 0

Calgary Hitmen 0 at Medicine Hat Tigers 5

Saturday, October 15, 2011 - Medicine Hat Arena

Calgary 0 0 0 - 0
Medicine Hat 1 3 1 - 5

1st Period
1, Medicine Hat, Shinkaruk 8 (Etem, Jensen), 14:06.
Penalties-Rehak M.h (charging), 2:31; Dieno M.h (hooking), 5:51; Lewington M.h (holding), 16:10.

2nd Period
2, Medicine Hat, Konan 3 (Etem, Valk), 0:37 (PP).
3, Medicine Hat, Hart 2 (Dieno, Busenius), 2:21.
4, Medicine Hat, Shinkaruk 9 (Etem, Konan), 3:52.
Penalties-Bubnick Cal (slashing), 0:22; Chase Cal (slashing), 16:38.

3rd Period
5, Medicine Hat, Bredo 2 (Etem, Shinkaruk), 19:51.
Penalties-Konan M.h (slashing), 0:47; Sylvester Cal (unsportsmanlike cnd.), 5:00; Gogolev Cal (hooking), 9:29; Sylvester Cal (inter. on goaltender), 12:12; Bunz M.h (roughing), 12:12; Rehak M.h (holding), 13:27; Shinkaruk M.h (hooking), 17:24.

Shots on Goal
Calgary 14-11-11-36. Medicine Hat 5-16-8-29.
Power Play Opportunities
Calgary 0 / 6; Medicine Hat 1 / 4.
Calgary, Glover 1-3-0-0 (11 shots-7 saves); Driedger 0-0-0-1 (18 shots-17 saves). Medicine Hat, Bunz 6-3-0-0 (36 shots-36 saves).
Referees-Nathan Wieler (18).
Linesmen-Keith Salamon (55), Matthew Sanders (70).

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Calgary at Medicine Hat (Preview)

The Calgary Hitmen (1-3-0-1) board the bus and head to Medicine Hat for a date with the Tigers (6-3) tonight.  Internet Broadcast on starts at 7:30 p.m. from The Arena.  The Hitmen are coming off Wednesday's 4-3 home ice shootout loss to the Regina Pats while the Tigers are back at home following a BC road trip that wrapped up Wednesday in Kelowna with a 4-2 win.

Slowing the Tigers scoring attack will be a key for the Hitmen.  Medicine Hat heads head into the game averaging four goals per game.

Top Scorers This Season:

Victor Rask 3g 3a 6pts
Brooks Macek 2g 3a 5pts
Alex Gogolev 2g 2a 4pts

Medicine Hat
Emerson Etem 13g 4a 17pts
Dylan Bredo 1g 8a 9pts
Kellan Tochkin 0g 8a 8pts

Friday, 14 October 2011

Hitmen Hockey Hour on Sportsnet 960-The Fan

New this season is the Hitmen Hockey Hour on Sportsnet 960-The Fan.  I host the show every Saturday from 1 to 2pm.

Here is the complete guest lineup for October 15th.

-WHL Commissioner Ron Robison on Saskatoon getting the 2013 MasterCard Memorial Cup
-Hitmen Danny Gayle and Rob Trzonkowski along with their mums to talk about the launch of the 3rd annual Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer Campaign.  Willow Carriere from the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation also stops by.
-Captain Cody Sylvester and the alternate captains Brooks Macek, Jimmy Bubnick and Spencer Humphries
-Hitmen Alumnus Brent Dodginghorse.

Hitmen launch 3rd annual Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer Campaign

Calgary, AB - October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the Calgary Hitmen Hockey Club is proud to launch the third annual Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer Campaign with community partner the TELUS Calgary Community Board.

The Campaign, which raised more than $25,000 last season, features an online Game Worn Jersey and Helmet Auction to support the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation (CBCF) Prairies/NWT Region.

Fans can bid on the Calgary Hitmen game worn black and pink jerseys and pink helmets by following the Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer link on or by visiting Elevate Auctions at The auction closes Wednesday, October 26 at 9:00 p.m. MST.

Calgary will showcase the pink helmets on Sunday, October 23, during the home game warm-up against the Kootenay Ice. Both the jerseys and helmets will then be worn at the Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer Game on Saturday, October 29 when the Hitmen host the Everett Silvertips. Game time is 7:00 p.m. at Scotiabank Saddledome. Fans with the winning auction bids will be presented with their signed jersey and helmet following the game.

In addition, fans can support the Campaign through on-site donations and the purchase of CBCF promotional items. Plus, 50/50 proceeds from the October 29 matchup will also support the cause.

“The Calgary Hitmen are very excited to have the TELUS Calgary Community Board, our players, staff and all Hitmen fans join in the fight against breast cancer,” said Mike Moore, Calgary Hitmen director of Business Operations. “Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer Campaign is an exciting promotion we proudly support. Our players enjoy wearing the pink themed jerseys and helmets and recognize the value of contributing to this cause. Our goal is to make a significant contribution to support breast cancer research and continue to raise awareness of this threat to women’s health.”

The TELUS Calgary Community Board is led by Ken King and 15 local community leaders who are passionate about making Calgary even better for our youth. They provide funding for local charities and support them through grants and expertise. This year, the TELUS Calgary Community Board will invest $500,000 in local youth projects.  Calgary charities are invited to apply for funding at

Since 2000, TELUS has given more than $15 million for research, early detection and treatment of cancer in Canada. Hitmen fans can show their support by visiting TELUS' Facebook page at and create their own Pink Network: an online, shareable photo gallery of their best friends, their support network and the people they cherish. For every new photo gallery created, TELUS will contribute an additional $1 to the Foundation.

And right now TELUS will contribute $25 to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation for each purchase of a pink BlackBerry Curve 9360 from TELUS and an additional $5 with each purchase of select pink phone accessories.

“The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation is honored to be the beneficiary of the third annual Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer fundraising initiative,” said Willow Carriere, development officer of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation Prairies/NWT Region. “With the support of corporate partners like the Calgary Hitmen and TELUS Calgary Community Board, the Foundation is able to work towards creating a future without breast cancer, not only by raising funds to support innovative research, but also create public awareness of a disease that will affect one in nine Canadian women at some point during their lifetime.” 

Breast Cancer Facts
Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among Canadian women. One in nine Canadian women is expected to develop breast cancer at some point during her lifetime and one in 29 Canadian women will die from breast cancer. Since 1986, breast cancer mortality rates have declined by 35%. The current five-year survival rate for a woman diagnosed with breast cancer is 88% largely as a result of improvements in screening and treatment.
All Calgarians are invited to join the Calgary Hitmen Hockey Club and TELUS Calgary Community Board to support Hockey Mums Fight Breast Cancer Campaign.  For more information, visit

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Sylvester gets the "C"

For the first time since the 2007/08 season there won't be Co-captains on the Calgary Hitmen.  19-year-old centre Cody Sylvester has been given the captaincy. 
He will wear the letter full time and is joined by three alternates: Brooks Macek, Spencer Humphries and Jimmy Bubnick. 
Sylvester is in his fourth season with the Hitmen.  His resume includes Rookie of the Year honours as a 16-year-old and the Petro-Canada Player of the Year award last season. 
He's a tireless worker on the ice and shows a team first approach off the ice whether it be by volunteering his time at community events or sliding back from forward to play defence when called upon.  He also has the respect of his teammates.

Here is a look back at the history of Hitmen captains:

1995/96 Derek Wood     
1996/97 Jeremy Schaefer     
1997/98 Ryan Shannon     
1998/99 Ryan Shannon     
1999/00 Brad Moran     
2000/01 Kris Beech     
2001/02 Rod Sarich     
2002/03 Wade Davis*     
2002/03 Patrick Weller     
2003/04 Patrick Weller     
2004/05 Ryan Getzlaf     
2005/06 Brett Carson             
2006/07 Dylan Yeo     
2007/08 Karl Alzner     
2008/09 Kyle Bortis, Carson McMillan (Co-captains)     
2009/10 Ian Schultz, Michael Stone (Co-captains)     
20010/11 Tyler Fiddler, Matt MacKenzie*, Cody Sylvester, Ben Wilson (Co-captains)     
* Traded during the season     

Three Hitmen prospects to play for U-16 Challenge Cup

The four Western Provincial Hockey Associations – Hockey Alberta, BC Hockey, Hockey Manitoba and the Saskatchewan Hockey Association – in partnership with the Western Hockey League (WHL) announced today the players and coaching staff competing in the 2011 Western Canada Under 16 Challenge Cup.

The following three Hitmen prospects have been named to the tournament:

Team BC
Jake Virtanen, Fraser Valley Bruins (BCMML)
Josh Thrower, North West Giants (BCMML)

Team Saskatchewan
Brayden Oleksyn, Beardy’s Blackhawks (Midget AAA)

The Western Canada Under 16 Challenge Cup will be held at Mosaic Place in Moose Jaw, SK, October 27 – 30,

Regina 4 Hitmen 3 - Shootout

Regina Pats 4 (SO) at Calgary Hitmen 3 SO
Wednesday, October 12, 2011 - Scotiabank Saddledome - Calgary, AB

Regina 1 0 2 0 - 4
Calgary 0 2 1 0 - 3

1st Period-
1, Regina, Klimchuk 3 (Volek), 9:31.
Penalties-Elynuik Reg (hooking), 13:53.

2nd Period
2, Calgary, Sylvester 1 (Cheek, Gogolev), 1:00 (PP).
3, Calgary, Macek 2 (Sylvester, Rask), 6:40 (PP).
Penalties-Rieder Reg (high sticking, high sticking), 0:46; Elynuik Reg (instigator, major-fighting, 10-minute misconduct), 4:59; Helgesen Cal (major-fighting), 4:59; Marantz Reg (hooking), 6:02; Bidlevskii Reg (slashing), 9:40; Stevenson Reg (tripping), 16:14; Rissling Cal (roughing), 18:36.

3rd Period
4, Calgary, Cheek 1 (Humphries, Macek), 10:42.
5, Regina, Weal 3 (Klimchuk, Stevenson), 17:10 (PP).
6, Regina, Stevenson 4 (Davidson, Scheidl), 19:09.
Penalties-Macek Cal (hooking), 11:12; Cheek Cal (hooking), 16:32; Macek Cal (tripping), 19:34.

OT Period
No Scoring.
Penalties-Rodewald Reg (tripping), 3:30.

Regina 2 (Weal G, Klimchuk G),
Calgary 1 (Rask NG, Macek G, Gogolev NG).

Shots on Goal
Regina 9-1-9-4-1-24.
Calgary 5-20-10-1-0-36.

Power Play Opportunities
Regina 1 / 4;
Calgary 2 / 8.

Regina, Hewitt 6-1-0-0 (36 shots-33 saves).
Calgary, Driedger 0-0-0-1 (23 shots-20 saves).

Attendance 7,242

Referees-Tyler Adair (58), Ryan Bonnett (39).
Linesmen-Scott Sharun (103), Justin Slimm (105).

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Regina at Calgary

The Calgary Hitmen (1-3) wrap up a three game homestand tonight against the Regina Pats (5-2).  Game time is 7:00 pm.  The Hitmen are 1-1 in Scotiabank Saddledome this season and are coming off Friday's 4-2 loss to the Red Deer Rebels.  The Pats meanwhile are ranked #8 in the Canadian Hockey League this week.  Their last outing was a 2-0 home ice loss to Prince George on Saturday night.  Regina is 3-1 in enemy rinks this season. 

There is little doubt that special teams have played a role in the 1-3 start for Calgary.  The powerplay is just 1-16 this season including 0-8 at home.  The penalty kill hasn't been much better giving up six goals on 21 chances.  Right now it's proving to be the defining mark between wins and losses as the Hitmen and their opponents have each scored 11 goals five on five.

VS. REGINA: Tonight is the first of four meetings between the two clubs this season.  It's also their first since they met February 21st at McMahon Stadium in Calgary in WHL Outdoors.  The game drew a CHL record crowd of 20,888.  Chandler Stephenson broke a 2-2 third period tie scoring the game winning goal with 47 seconds left.  The rest of the season series was just as tight as all three previous meetings ended in either overtime or a shootout.  Calgary finished the season series posting a 2-1-0-1 record against the Pats.

Top Scorers This Season:

Victor Rask 3g 2a 5pts
Brady Brassart 1g 3a 4pts
Alex Gogolev 2g 1a 3pts

Jordan Weal 2g 8a 10pts
Dyson Stevenson 3g 4a 7pts
Lane Scheidl 2g 5a 7pts

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Goaltender Snider Released

The Calgary Hitmen have trimmed their goaltending roster to two by releasing 20-year-old Mike Snider.  Snider played in 78 career games with the club first earning a spot straight out of training camp in the 2008-09 season.  During his time with the Hitmen Snider posted 36 wins to go along with a 3.11 goals against average.  He was also a part of the 2010 WHL Champion Hitmen that won an Ed Chynoweth Cup backing up starter Martin Jones.
The 2011-12 Hitmen will now go with the goaltending tandem of 19-year-old Brandon Glover and 17-year-old Chris Driedger.

Meanwhile today is the last of the quiet times for the Hitmen having played only four games through the first 18 days of the regular season.  Starting tomorrow the club will open a stretch of five games in nine days hosting the Regina Pats at Scotiabank Saddledome.  Game time is 7pm.

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Red Deer 4 Calgary 2

Calgary, AB - Red Deer Rebels goaltender Patrik Bartosak (Bar-TOE-Sack) made 32 saves in a 4-2 victory over the Calgary Hitmen Friday night at Scotiabank Saddledome. 
Victor Rask with his team leading third goal and Brady Brassart with his first goal of the season scored for the Hitmen in the loss.
John Persson and Colton Mayor each posted a goal and an assist to lead the Rebels while Locke Muller and Cory Millette also scored for the visitors.
Special teams played a large role in the Red Deer win as the Rebels went 2-7 on the powerplay and killed all four Hitmen chances.
Calgary will wrap up a three game home stand on Wednesday, October 12th when they host LA Kings prospect Jordan Weal and the Regina Pats.  Game time is 7:00 p.m. at Scotiabank Saddledome.

Post Game Thoughts
-Hitmen looked great early when they played a pressure game that involved a strong forecheck on the Rebels defence, but their work ethic tailed off as the game went on.  In the post game show Head Coach Mike Williamson said "we had too many passengers tonight"
-Special teams have been a issue through the first four games.  Calgary is a combined 1-16 on the powerplay while giving up six powerplay goals on 21 chances.
-Newly acquired 20-year-old defenceman Brock Sutherland did not play.  Friday was his travel day to Calgary from Tri-City and he simply didn't make to the game in time.

Check out some game pics here. Special thanks to the photographer Linda Coward.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Red Deer at Calgary

The Calgary Hitmen (1-2) are back on 'Dome ice tonight to host the Red Deer Rebels (2-2).  Game time is 7pm.  For the Hitmen who have spent plenty of time on the practice ice I'm sure tonight is a welcome change as it's just their fourth game through the first 14 days of the season.  The Hitmen are coming off Sunday's 4-2 home ice win over Kootenay while the Rebels were beaten 7-2 in Prince Albert on Saturday.  Can't make the game?  Radio Broadcast on Sportsnet 960-The Fan starts at 7pm MST.

VS RED DEER:  Tonight is the first of six meetings with the Rebels.  Last season Red Deer won the season series taking five of six meetings.  The Hitmen and Rebels won’t meet again until Sunday, January 22nd in Calgary.

STREAKS:  Jaynen Rissling (2a), Brooks Macek (1g 1a), Victor Rask (2g 2a) and Brady Brassart (3a) all have points in back-to-back games.  Cody Sylvester is a combined +4 in his last two games while Victor Rask is +3 over that same span.  Justin Kirsch (2g 1a) and Alex Gogolev (2g 1a) both had their two game streaks snapped in Sunday’s home opener.  

CARRYING THE PLAY:  The Hitmen have out shot their opponents in all three games and in six of their nine periods this season. 

AUTOGRAPH SESSION:  Following every home game this season a Hitmen player will be signing autographs at the Booster Club table located behind section 211.  Signing following tonight’s game is forward Jimmy Bubnick.  


Victor Rask 2g 2a 4pts
Alex Gogolev 2g 1a 3pts
Justin Kirsch 2g 1a 3pts

Red Deer
Alex Petrovic 0g 5a 5pts
Adam Kambeitz 3g 0a 3pts
John Persson 1g 2a 3pts


Hitmen trade for 20-year-old D-man

The Calgary Hitmen added some veteran experience to their blueline late Thursday afternoon acquiring 20-year-old defenceman Brock Sutherland from the Tri-City Americans in exchange for 19-year-old forward Nathan MacMaster.
Sutherland, a Brandon, MB product, brings experience (182 regular season games) and size (6'2" 205lbs.) to the Hitmen.  He also has adds some grit with 15 career WHL scraps and stirs up a little offence picking up 23 points last season (4g 19a) while playing all 72 games.  This is his fourth full season in the WHL first appearing with the Lethbridge Hurricanes before being traded to Tri-City as part of the Mitch Fadden deal in November of 2008.  Through two games with the Americans this season, Sutherland was +5. 
Here's a quote on from the Americans website from GM Bob Tory on Brock Sutherland, “He has developed into a very good, reliable defenseman in this league"
It should be a fairly easy transition to Calgary for Brock joining former fellow Americans on the Hitmen in Spencer Humphries and Brooks Macek.
Meanwhile there's no doubt MacMaster will be missed in the Hitmen dressing room, a well liked teammate who could also be counted on for hard work on the ice.  However given the depth up front this season with 17 forwards GM Kelly Kisio dealt from a position of strength to help solidify the back end.
Of course another big unanswered question is will 20-year-old Ben Wilson return from the AHL's Lake Erie Monsters.  I would suggest given the arrival of Sutherland in Calgary it would appear Wilson may be about to sign a pro contract.  Time will tell but more moves are to come as the Hitmen now have five overage 20-year-olds on their roster: Jimmy Bubnick, Kenton Miller, Mike Snider, Brock Sutherland and Ben Wilson.  The WHL max is three by October 13th.

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Postma among last Jets cuts, 5 WHL teens make jump

Tough to see Paul Postma, who set a Calgary Hitmen franchise record in the 2008/09 season for goals by a defenceman with 23, among the last cuts this week by the Winnipeg Jets.  Postma, now 22-years-old played in four preseason games with the Winnipeg Jets where he racked up five points (2g, 3a). Last season he appeared in his first-ever NHL game with the Atlanta Thrashers and played 69 games with the Chicago Wolves for 45 points (12g, 33a) and 20 penalty minutes.  Safe to say Posma is on a short list for a recall to the Jets this season.
I see the NHL has released its opening day rosters for the 2011/12 season with five WHL teenagers poised to make the jump at least for now...
1)    19-year-old Ryan Johanson is on the Columbus rosters.  He piled up 92 pts in 63 games for the Portland Winterhawks last season plus nine more points in seven games for Team Canada at the 2011 World Juniors.
2)    18-year-old Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has made the Edmonton Oilers.  He'll wear #93 with the Oilers and is coming off a 106 point season with the Red Deer Rebels appearing in 69 games.
3)    19-year-old Brett Bulmer will start the season with Minnesota.  Bulmer has played the last two seasons with the Kelowna Rockets grabbing 49 pts in 57 games in the WHL a year ago.
4)    19-year-old Nino Niederreiter is on the New York Islander injured reserve list (groin).  After starting the season a year ago in New York the talented Swiss returned to Portland where he amassed 70 pts in 55 games.  He also added four pts in six games for Switzerland at 2011 World Juniors.
5)    19-year-old Brett Connolly is in sunny south Florida with the Tampa Bay Lightning.  After fighting hip injuries Connolly was mainly healthy for the Prince George Cougars last season where he recorded 73 pts in 59 games.  He also added three assists for Team Canada at World Juniors.

One other note, former Hitmen power forward Ryan White has made Montreal but will start the season on injured reserve (groin).

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Hitmen bus trip to Medicine Hat

The one comes from the Junior Hockey Junkies........

Finally, the schedule gods have blessed the Junior Hockey Junkies with a Hitmen road game on a Saturday!!! On Saturday Oct 15 the Junkies will be running a bus down Highway #1 for a tilt between our Calgary Hitmen and those pesky Medicine Hat Tigers. We will have access to a limited number of tickets for this game in what is arguably the toughest arena in the WHL to secure tickets. The Medicine Hat fans pride themselves in their sold out barn and it is often referred to as the “loudest barn in the dub”. This is a great opportunity for Hitmen Fans to venture into enemy territory and support the boys as they battle an age old rival. Due to the limited number of tickets there will only be one price for this trip. The price for this trip will be $75.00 per person. Because of the limited availability of tickets our ticket numbers must be confirmed on Oct 07 so don’t delay and reserve spot as early as possible.

The Junior Hockey Junkies cordially invite you to join us on this trip to Medicine Hat. Full details of the trip can be seen below. We will be departing at 2:15 PM from the Marks Work Warehouse parking lot at 130 Ave SE (map attached). After the game we will return immediately to Calgary.

Based on posts on the Junior Hockey Junkies the 2011-2012 Hitmen Team will be an exciting team to watch. This trip will be a great way to show support for the team in an arena where they typically don’t receive a lot of love but rather face many “cat” calls from the Tiger fans. We can give the boys a boost as they strive to knock off the Tigers. The Hitmen players and coaches have told us over the years that the travelling Hitmen fans always give them a boost as they play in enemy barns.

“I really like it when Hitmen fans come to our road games because it shows how much they care about our team and how much they love to watch us play”
Alex Roach (Recently returned from LA Kings training camp with a 3 year entry level NHL contract in his pocket)

“I am amazed at how much fun the Junior Hockey Junkies and Hitmen fans have on the road.  I can always hear them chanting and cheering from as far away as the broadcast booth!  And I know their presence makes the Hitmen feel much more comfortable in an enemy rink.”
Brad Curle (Play by play broadcaster of the Calgary Hitmen)

Reserve your seat on this trip by registering at the Junior Hockey Junkies booth at the Scotiabank Saddledome at home games on Sunday Oct 02 and Friday Oct 07. Our booth is located in the concourse behind Sec 213. If you cannot make it to one of the two Hitmen home games please reply to this email or call the Junior Hockey Junkies information number at 403-236-7560. We look forward to having you join the Junior Hockey Junkies on this junket to Medicine Hat. If paying for your trip at the booth payment can be in the form of cash, cheque or money order payable to Junior Hockey Junkies. If mailing payment in the form of cheque or money order payable to Junior Hockey Junkies can be mailed to
Junior Hockey Junkies
71 Douglas Park Blvd.
Calgary, AB
T2Z 2K9

JHJ Bus Trip #2...
Destination: Medicine Hat
Date: Saturday Oct 15
Departure Time: 2:15 PM Sharp
Departure Location: Marks Work Warehouse 130 Ave SE (map attached)
Price: $75 per person (Due to limited ticket availability this trip will only have one price)         
Deadline: Friday Oct 07 (at the completion of the Hitmen home game vs. Red Deer Rebels)

Trip Includes:
Return transportation from the defined departure location to the Medicine Hat Arena and back, Game Ticket plus On Board activities.

Activities on the coach to MH:
- Door Prize Draws
- Cribbage (card table set up on all JHJ Bus Trips)
- Hockey Talk
- 50/50 Draw (50% to the lucky ticket holder and 50% to the JHJ sponsorship of the – Hitmen Corporate Caring Corner)
- Videos and/or Music

MacKenzie signs with Buffalo

Former Calgary Hitmen defenceman Matt MacKenzie has signed a three year entry level contract with the Buffalo Sabres.  MacKenzie, known as Walt during his time in Calgary, was a third round pick of the Sabres in 2010.  The 20-year-old will not return to the Tr-City Americans instead opting to turn pro.  This move also means the Hitmen will not receive a third round pick in 2013 from the Americans.  That clause was in January's trade agreement and only kicked in if MacKenzie returned to the WHL this season. 

Here is the official media release from the Sabres

(Rochester, NY)... Buffalo Sabres General Manager Darcy Regier today announced that the team has signed defenseman Matt MacKenzie to a three-year entry level NHL contract.
MacKenzie was selected by Buffalo in the third round (83rd overall) of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft. In four WHL seasons, MacKenzie has compiled 98 points (18+80) and 180 penalty minutes in 225 games with the Calgary Hitmen and Tri-City Americans.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Hitmen 4 Ice 2 - October 2, 2011

Calgary, AB – The Calgary Hitmen erased a 2-1 third period deficit to beat the Kootenay Ice 4-2 Sunday afternoon in the Adrenalin Source for Sports Home Opener.
Victor Rask and Danny Gayle led the Hitmen scoring attack with a goal and an assist each.
However it was Brooks Macek who scored the game winning goal, breaking a 2-2 tie with less than seven minutes remaining.
Kenton Miller had the other Hitmen goal, scoring into an empty net with ten seconds left.  Brady Brassart chipped in a pair of assists.
Calgary outshot the Ice 26-18 including 8-1 in the third period.  Brandon Glover made 16 saves to record the victory.
The win improves the Hitmen record to 1-2.
They’ll now enjoy a full four day break before hosting the Red Deer Rebels Friday night at Scotiabank Saddledome.  Game time is 7:00 p.m.
For information on ticket packages including Flex Packs, Group Tickets or Season Tickets, call Customer Service at 403-777-4646.

My Post Game Thoughts

-Very impressed with Danny Gayle.  I thought his energy in the second period gave the club a big boost.  His goal was icing on the cake.
-Cody Sylvester was excellent while playing defence today.  It's such a huge boost to any team when you have a forward that can slide back and play D when called upon.  He ate huge minutes today and looked great in doing it.
-The Hitmen managed the ice surface in the third period as well as they have all season.  Real smart decision making.
-Props to Jimmy Bubnick who was a physical beast for the club.  He put Flames pick Joey Leach on his butt twice in one shift and was tough to handle all game.

Kootenay Ice at Calgary Hitmen - October 2, 2011

The Calgary Hitmen are in Scotiabank Saddledome today for the Adrenalin Source for Sports Home Opener.  Game time is 2:00pm against the Kootenay Ice.  The Hitmen have started the season 0-2 despite outshooting their opponents in both games by a combined 77-55. 

Kootenay meanwhile owns a record of 3-0.  Buffalo Sabres prospect Nathan Lieuwen has been a rock in the Ice net posting a WHL best .97 goals against average while Calgary Flames draft pick Joey Leach leads Kootenay with six points.  The defenceman has 1g 5a. 

A reminder it's the annual Hitmen game worn jersey auction today.  All white jerseys from the 2010-11 season are up for bid on the concourse by section 226.  Net proceeds go to the Hitmen Education Fund.  Here is the complete list of jerseys in the silent auction.

1 – Snider
2 – Wilson
3 – Berg
4 – Kosterman
5 – Humphries
6 – Lubin
7 – Roach
8 – Schmidt
9 – Rissling
10 – Fisenko
11 – Macek
12 – Kirsch
14 – Bubnick
15 – Clayton
16 – Sylvester
17 – Trzonkowski
18 – Foucault
19 – MacMaster
21 – Lawrence
22 – Gayle
23 – Fiddler
24 – Gordon
25 – Chase
26 – Skrudland
27 – Luhning
29 – cheek
31 – Glover
32 - Santini

Today's game can also be heard on Sportsnet Radio The Fan 960 starting with a one hour pre-game show at 1:00 p.m. 

Also new this season the Booster Club will be selling line-up sheets at their table for $1.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Lethbridge Hurricanes 6 Calgary Hitmen 5 - September 30, 2011

Lethbridge, AB – The Lethbridge Hurricanes scored with point four seconds remaining in the second period in what turned out to be the game winning goal in a 6-5 win over the visiting Calgary Hitmen Friday night.

Justin Kirsch scored twice in the loss for Calgary while Alex Gogolev, Jimmy Bubnick and Victor Rask added singles.

The two teams were tied at three after the first period with the Hurricanes owning a 6-4 lead after forty minutes thanks to the buzzer beater from Cam Braes.

Former Calgary AAA Midget Buffalo Jay Merkley had three points (2g 1a) for Lethbridge in a first star performance while Brody Sutter added a pair of goals for the Hurricanes.
For the second straight game this season Calgary owned the lead on the shot clock finishing the night with a 47-37 advantage.

The Hitmen will now take to the community on Saturday appearing at Adrenalin Source for Sports (9309 Macleod Trail SW) from Noon to 3pm.  Several players will be on hand to sign autographs along with assistant coach Joel Otto.  Anyone who purchases skate sharpening, equipment or a stick will receive a FREE ticket to Sunday’s home opener.  Sportsnet Radio The Fan 960 will be live on location.  An autograph Hitmen jersey and Anaheim Ducks jersey signed by Hitmen Alumnus Ryan Getzlaf will also be given away.

The Hitmen then return to the ice Sunday afternoon in the Adrenalin Source for Sports Home Opener.  Game time is 2pm against the Kootenay Ice at Scotiabank Saddledome.

For information on ticket packages including Flex Packs, Group Tickets or Season Tickets, call Customer Service at 403-777-4646.