Friday, 24 February 2012

Edmonton at Calgary

The Calgary Hitmen (36-22-2-1) host the Eastern Conference leading Edmonton Oil Kings (39-15-3-4) tonight at Scotiabank Saddledome.  Game time is 7:00 p.m. in the Lunar Celebration and Calgary Catholic School District game featuring dragon dancers, post-game fireworks and fortune cookies containing great prizes, including a chance to win a trip for two to Las Vegas.  The Hitmen have won four in a row and are coming off Wednesday's 5-3 win over Medicine Hat.  The Oil Kings, with just two wins in their last five, dropped a 6-4 decision to visiting Kelowna on Wednesday.

Calgary is fourth in the WHL's Eastern Conference with 75 points, two back of third place Medicine Hat and one up on fifth place Kootenay.  Edmonton leads the conference with 85 points, four ahead of Moose Jaw but tied for third overall with Tri-City two points behind Portland and three back of WHL leading Kamloops.

                                                Photo Credit: Brad Watson

VS. EDMONTON:  Tonight is the sixth and final regular season meeting with the Oil Kings.  Edmonton leads the season series 4-1 with the home team victorious in four of the five games.  Cody Sylvester (2g, 4a) least the Hitmen with six points in the series while Trevor Cheek (1g 4a) is next with five.  Tyler Maxwell (6g 2a) leads Edmonton with eight points while T.J. Foster (5g 2a) and Dylan Wruck (1g 6a) are next with seven points each.  Dating back to last season the Oil Kings are 6-2 in their last eight trips to Scotiabank Saddledome. 
- Dec. 1 in EDM: Oil Kings 6 Hitmen 1.  Mark Pysyk led the Oil Kings with three assists.
- Dec. 6 in EDM: Oil Kings 6 Hitmen 2.  Griffen Reinhart had 1g 2a for Edmonton.
 -Dec. 17 in EDM: Oil Kings 2 Hitmen 1.  Cody Corbett had two assists for the Oil Kings who out shot Calgary 33-22.
-Jan. 15 in CAL: Hitmen 4 Oil Kings 3.  Jimmy Bubnick scored twice.
-Feb. 8 in CAL: Oil Kings 9 Hitmen 5.  T.J. Foster and Tyler Maxwell both scored hat-tricks for Edmonton.
                                                         INSIDE THE SERIES
Shots on Goal: CAL 135  EDM 142     Power Plays: CAL 3-23  (13%)  EDM 7-23 (30.4%)

Click here to listen to an interview with Cody Sylvester

STREAKIN':  Six Hitmen put point scoring streaks on the line tonight.  Victor Rask (3g 4a), Brady Brassart (2g 4a) and Joey Kornelsen (1g 4a) all have points in four straight.  Collin Bowman (1g 3a) has points in three straight while Cody Sylvester (2g 3a) and Jimmy Bubnick (2g 2a) have points in back-to-back games.  Chris Driedger has won his last three starts in goal.  Meanwhile three Oil Kings are riding point scoring streaks.  Michael St. Croix  (3g 3a) has points in four straight.  Kristians Pelss (2g 2a) and  (Mark Pysyk (1g 3a) both have points in back-to-back games.

WHAT'S LEFT:  Including tonight Calgary has 11 regular season games remaining against the following opponents: Edm (1), Leth (2), Kel (1), Koot (3), RD (2) Sask (1), SC (1).  Seven of the final 11 are at home.

OFFENSIVE PUNCH:  Calgary has scored the third most goals in the 12 team Eastern Conference at 235.  Only Brandon at 238 and Edmonton with 263 have produced more.

Top Scorers:

Jimmy Bubnick 28g 34a 62pts
Cody Sylvester 20g 42a 62pts
Brady Brassart 20g 30a 50pts

Michael St. Croix 39g 54a 93pts
Dylan Wruck 20g 55a 75pts
Tyler Maxwell 35g 29a 64pts

HITMEN HOCKEY HOUR:  A reminder the Hitmen Hockey Hour can be heard tomorrow (Saturday) from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. on Sportsnet 960 The Fan.  Guests will include Hitmen Alumnus Michael Stone in the city this week with the Phoenix Coyotes.

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