Hurricanes Earn 4-1 Win Over Hitmen Sunday
Calgary, AB – The Lethbridge Hurricanes opened a four-game road trip on Sunday afternoon with a 4-1 victory at Scotiabank Saddledome over the Calgary Hitmen.
It was the final of a three-in-three weekend for the ‘Canes who entered 1-0-1-0 in the first two games after a pair of overtime games at the ENMAX Centre on Friday and Saturday. Calgary, who was idle since Friday, had a great start to the game outshooting Lethbridge 6-2 in the early going, but it was the ‘Canes the opened the scoring. At the 10:34 mark, Cole Shepard threw a puck to the front of the net, and it deflected off a body in front of the net and beat Brayden Peters to make it 1-0; Blake Swetlikoff earned the lone assist on the goal. Just over a minute later, Shepard struck again after a turnover by the Calgary netminder behind the net and the ‘Canes overage forward buried his 15th goal of the year to make it 2-0. Lethbridge was outshot 11-9 in the first period but led 2-0.
The Hitmen peppered Hurricanes overage goaltender Bryan Thomson – who made his fifth start of the season – with a whopping 21 shots in the second period. Thomson made a trio of great saves in the middle frame, with his best being a right-pad stop on Hitmen leading scorer Riley Fiddler-Schultz on a point-blank chance. The Hurricanes had a great opportunity to build on their lead on a three-on-two opportunity, but a Logan McCutcheon shot rang the goal post – the second post of the game for the ‘Canes – as the game stayed 2-0 Lethbridge. Calgary continued to press and eventually solved Thomson on a partial two-on-one as Carter MacAdams shot was stopped, but Carson Wetsch was able to tap home his eighth goal of the season to make it a 2-1 game after two periods of play. Shots in the second favoured Calgary 21-5.
Lethbridge entered the third period with a record of 20-1-0-0 on the season when leading after two periods. The ‘Canes had an early power play opportunity but failed to capitalize with the extra man despite a few good looks with their first man advantage. Just after the conclusion of the power play, the ‘Canes restored their two-goal lead as Tyson Laventure redirected a Joe Arntsen point shot passed Peters for his 14th goal of the year to make it 3-1; Jett Jones earned the second assist on the tally. Lethbridge added another goal late as Logan Wormald ripped home his team-leading 16th goal of the season with 2:20 remaining in the game to make it a 4-1 final; Miguel Marques earned the lone assist on the put away goal.
The Hurricanes outshot the Hitmen 15-7 in the third period but were outshot 39-29 in the game. Lethbridge went 0/1 on the power play while going 3/3 on the penalty kill.
Three stars of the game were:
1) ‘Canes – #30 Bryan Thomson (38-saves)
2) ‘Canes – #27 Cole Shepard (2 goals, game-winner)
3) Hitmen – #16 Carson Wetsch (1 goal)
The win for the Hurricanes ended their three-in-three with a record of 2-0-1-0 collecting five out of a possible six points while going 3-0-1-0 in their stretch of four games in five days. The victory improved the ‘Canes record to 8-3-0-0 in their last 11 road games and 11-8-0-0 overall away from home. The Hurricanes now sit with a 24-15-1-2 record on the season.
The Hurricanes will continue their four-game road trip on Wednesday when they visit the Everett Silvertips at 8:00pm MT before visiting Seattle and Portland on Friday and Saturday. The ‘Canes will return home to host the Winnipeg ICE on Friday, January 27th at the ENMAX Centre. Individual game tickets can be purchased in person at the ENMAX Centre Ticket Centre, the Yates Memorial Theatre Ticket Centre, by calling 403-329-SEAT (7328) and online at www.lethbridgehurricanes.com.