Sunday, 6 January 2013

Vancouver at Calgary

The Calgary Hitmen wrap up a three game homestand this afternoon against the Vancouver Giants.  Game time is 4:00 p.m. at Scotiabank Saddledome.  Radio Broadcast on Sportsnet 960 The Fan also starts at 4 o'clock.

THE STANDINGS:  Calgary is 26-10-1-3.  At 56 points they sit third in the Eastern Conference three points back of the conference leading Edmonton Oil Kings.  Vancouver is 11-29-0-0.  At 22 points the Giants are not only last in the Western Conference but also have the fewest points in the WHL.

COMING IN:  The Hitmen last played on Friday beating Moose Jaw 6-1.  Calgary has now won two straight outscoring their opponents by a combined 16-3.  For Vancouver today will be their third game in as many days.  After falling in a shootout Friday in Red Deer by a score of 5-4, the Giants were blanked 5-0 in Edmonton last night.

HEAD-TO-HEAD:  Today is the second and final meeting this season.  Calgary won the first 5-4 in Vancouver on October 20th.  Cody Sylvester led the way with a hat trick finishing the game with four points (3g 1a).  Brooks Macek (1g 1a), Greg Chase (2a) and Alex Roach (2a) all had two points each for Calgary who led 5-1 after 40 minutes.

WHO ARE THE GIANTS?  A pair of former Hitmen make their return to Calgary today.  For Trevor Cheek it his first after being dealt to the West Coast early in the season.  Cheek has five goals in his last four games.  Rob Trzonkowski is also now in Vancouver after Kamloops sent him west in the last week.  The Giants roster includes Calgary Flames prospect Brett Kulak.  The defenceman was a fourth round pick of the Flames (105th overall) in the 2012 draft. 

SPECIAL TEAMS IMPACT:  After a 3-43 powerplay drought the Hitmen powerplay as come to life going a combined 7-13 (53.8) in its last two games.  The penalty kill has been red hot of late killing 23 of its last 24.  The only goal againt in that span was a 5-on-3 for Brandon.

CHASING POINTS:  Hitmen rookie forward Chase Lang had no points in his first 20 games.  He has a combined five (2g 3a) in his last two games.

Brooks Macek 20g 29a 49pts
Cody Sylvester 22g 20a 42pts
Brady Brassart 11g 28a 39pts

Jackson Houck 9g 25a 34pts
Trevor Cheek 18g 15a 33pts
Marek Tvrdon 8g 14a 22pts (Out for the season - Shoulder Blood Clot)
Brett Kulak 7g 15a 22pts

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