Top line repays its debt

SCOTT FISHER -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 12:05 PM ET

LETHBRIDGE -- One night earlier, Ryan Getzlaf said the Calgary Hitmen owed their goaltender a win. Last night, his line delivered.

Calgary's top trio -- Getzlaf, Andrew Ladd and Shaun Landolt -- dominated as Calgary evened the Eastern Conference quarter-final series at a game apiece with a 3-2 victory over the Lethbridge Hurricanes.

Justin Pogge made 32 saves but it was top guns who stole the show by completing the trifecta.

Getzlaf scored an even-strength marker in the first period, Landolt connected on the powerplay early in the second and Ladd broke the Hurricanes' backs with a shorthanded goal two minutes later as the Hitmen seized control of Game 2.

Calgary GM/head coach Kelly Kisio was happy with the performance he received from the talented triumvirate.

"Our best players have to be our best players every night," Kisio said. "They can't take any nights off. They were our best players tonight and it showed."

Jonathan Filewich scored with 2:13 to go but the 'Canes got no closer as Calgary managed to close the deal this time.

Landolt said his line wasn't feeling any added pressure after being blanked in Game 1.

"It wasn't pressure so much as it was us wanting to do better," Landolt said.

"We picked it up. We had to do something, create some more chances. Last night, we didn't bear down on our scoring chances. Tonight, we scored in three different situations.

"It feels good to get that monkey off our backs so we can get going now."

The Hurricanes looked determined to blow the visitors out of the rink in the opening minutes.

World junior blueliner Brent Seabrook got the sold-out Enmax Centre crowd fired up when he scored Lethbridge's first powerplay marker of the series at the 2:45 mark.

The Chicago Blackhawks first rounder ripped a shot along the ice that beat Pogge to the glove side.

The overwhelmed Hitmen didn't have a shot on goal until Lethbridge starter Aaron Sorochan was forced to play an icing at the eight-minute mark.

But Getzlaf brought Calgary even near the midway point of the period when he held a puck in at the line, toe-dragged it around a defender and beat Sorochan between the pillows.

Kisio said Getzlaf's tally, his first in eight games against the 'Canes this season, was the turning point.

"They were flying in the first

10 minutes," Kisio said. "The last

10 minutes, we started to get our legs going and got our heads into it.

"Getz's goal obviously turned the game around for us and allowed us to at least get through that first period unscathed."

Lethbridge held a 16-8 advantage on the shot clock but Pogge, who flashed the leather to turn away Kris Versteeg in the final minutes, held his club in it.

Calgary's top line dominated the middle frame.

On a Hitmen powerplay, Landolt accepted a Getzlaf feed at the line, walked in a few feet and blazed a slapper through a screen into the back of the net three minutes in.

Two minutes later, with Calgary a man short, Ladd blocked a Tyler Redenbach shot from the point and was off to the races.

The Carolina Hurricanes prospect skated in all alone and beat Sorochan to the blocker side.

Games 3 and 4 are Tuesday and Wednesday at the Saddledome.

- - -

CALGARY HITMEN: 3

LETHBRIDGE HURRICANES: 2


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