The Calgary Hitmen (30-17-2-1) winners of five in a row and 13 of their last 14 host the Tri-City Americans (35-11-1-1) today in a 4:00 p.m. start at Scotiabank Saddledome. Calgary is coming off last night's 5-2 win in Medicine Hat while the Americans dropped a 3-2 overtime decision Friday night in Red Deer.
Calgary enters the contest fourth in the WHL's Eastern Conference with 63 points, trailing Medicine Hat by a single point for third. Tri-City is second in the Western Conference with 72 points, two points back of front running Kamloops. The Americans are also ranked #3 in the Canadian Hockey League Top 10 Rankings this week.
Today is the first and only meeting between the two clubs but there is a lot of familiarity between several players. Four current Hitmen once played for Tri-City: Chris Driedger, Spencer Humphries, Brooks Macek and Brock Sutherland while the Americans line-up has former Hitmen forward Nathan MacMaster.
Over the last five seasons Calgary is 1-2-0-1 against the Americans including a 1-0-0-1 record at the 'Dome.
DID YOU KNOW? Calgary is 16-3-0-0 when leading after the first period while Tri-City is 18-3-1-0 when leading after 20 minutes.
WHL LEADERS: Tri-City's Adam Hughesman, Brendan Shinnimin and Patrick Holland are three of the Top 10 scorers in the WHL. Americans goalie Ty Rimmer leads the WHL with a 2.19 GAA while teammate Eric Comrie is eighth at 2.62. Hitmen puckstopper Chris Driedger is tied for 10th at 2.74. Hitmen imports Victor Rask and Alex Gogolev are both Top 10 in rookie scoring. Rask is tied for fifth while Gogolev is ninth.
Cody Sylvester 17g 36a 53pts
Jimmy Bubnick 21g 26a 47pts
Victor Rask 21g 19a 40pts
Adam Hughesman 29g 47a 76pts
Brendan Shinnimin 29g 45a 74pts
Patrick Holland 20g 47a 67pts