All talk, all action

SCOTT FISHER -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 1:41 PM ET

It's been five years since he's worn a Calgary Hitmen jersey but Brad Moran is still finding ways to beat the Red Deer Rebels. Moran, who had his No. 20 retired last night, spoke to the Hitmen prior to the game and the pep talk worked as Calgary played its most complete game of the year in a 5-2 shellacking of its provincial rival.

Andrew Ladd, Riley Merkley, Brodie Dupont, Shaun Landolt and Ryan Getzlaf provided the offence as the Hitmen improved to 32-21-7-4 and moved five points clear of the Rebels.

Dupont, who scored the game-winner as part of his Gordie Howe hat-trick, said he got a lift out of hearing the franchise's all-time leading scorer speak.

"We all met at about 5 p.m.," Dupont said. "He talked to us and told us what it takes to get to the Memorial Cup.

"It was pretty cool meeting him."

Not that Dupont needs much external motivation to face the Rebels, a team he has thrived against this season.

"It's not hard getting up for this game," said Dupont, whose club overcame an early two-goal deficit.

"It's an awesome rivalry and there were 16,000 people here. Plus, they're right on us for third spot in the division.

"It was basically a playoff game out there tonight."

The Hitmen set a regular-season mark for a single game with last night's crowd of 16,388 and also eclipsed the WHL regular-season overall record of 315,763 (Portland, 1995-96).

The world junior stars were the story of the opening period as all four players hit the scoresheet.

Red Deer captain Colin Fraser opened the scoring at the 9:02 mark when he took a cross-ice feed from Ty Morris and went top shelf for a powerplay goal.

The visitors took a two-goal lead just over a minute later on another powerplay as Dion Phaneuf set up camp in front of the Calgary net and tipped a point shot through Justin Pogge's pads.

Getzlaf and Ladd teamed up on a beauty with Calgary enjoying a man advantage.

Getzlaf sent a pass to Ladd, who had his back to the net, spun around to his backhand and beat Andrew Leslie.

The period wasn't without fireworks either.

Rebels winger Karey Pieper ran Getzlaf's head into the glass with an elbow but barely had time to turn around before he was buried by Shaun Landolt, who had dropped the gloves, landing some major shots.

A few minutes later, it was the Rebels' turn to prove they wouldn't be pushed around.

Dupont destroyed Red Deer d-man Mikko Kuukka with a big hit in the corner and was immediately engaged by Ted Vandermeer. The two exchanged bombs in a lengthy, crowd-pleasing bout.

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CALGARY HITMEN: 5

RED DEER REBELS: 2


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