Freddie's dead-on

SCOTT FISHER -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 12:42 PM ET

LETHBRIDGE -- The Hitmen cracked the 100-point barrier last night.

But it may not even be enough to wrap up first place in the division.

Freddie Pettersson scored once in regulation time and then potted the shootout winner as the Hitmen edged the Lethbridge Hurricanes

3-2 to keep their hopes of a first-place finish alive.

The Hitmen (47-18-3-3), who play their regular-season finale tonight in Red Deer, moved into a tie with Medicine Hat atop the Central Division standings. But they'll still need a Tigers loss (against either Swift Current tonight or Regina tomorrow) to nail down top spot.

"We've just got to do our job," said Pettersson, who also set up Riley Merkley's third-period tally.

"That's the only thing we can do."

Trailing 2-0 in the third period, the Hitmen offence finally sprang to life.

Pettersson got the visitors started when he circled the net, came out front and beat Hurricanes starter Justin Leclerc.

The slick Swede also set up the tying goal, showing great patience before centring to Merkley, who, from the seat of his pants, shovelled the puck under Leclerc.

Keegan Dansereau nearly won it for Calgary but his rocket clanked off the crossbar with 50 seconds remaining.

Pettersson won it with a nifty deke to the backhand in the shootout. He was the only player among the six shooters to find the back of the net.

The Edmonton Oilers prospect, who scored his fourth shootout goal in 10 attempts, said he planned on trying something different.

"They know my moves," he said. "The coaches said the other teams watch the tapes. So I was going to shoot but I saw (Leclerc) was standing still so I deked."

Justin Pogge, debuting a new set of black pads, made 25 stops to pick up his 38th win of the season. He turned away Roman Wick, Colton Yellow Horn and Mitch Fadden in the shootout.

Calgary improved to 5-1 against the 'Canes, a possible first-round opponent. Lethbridge trails third-place Swift Current by a point with each team having one game left.

Following a quick-paced, scoreless opening period, the Hitmen went to sleep in the middle frame.

Fadden put the 'Canes in front on their first powerplay opportunity.

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HIT PARADE: The three stars were Calgary RW Freddie Pettersson, Calgary C Riley Merkley and Lethbridge RW Michael Kaye ... Not dressed for Calgary were D Dylan Yeo (wrist, 2 months), D Curtis Kelner and RW Ryan Letts ... The Hitmen finish up tonight in Red Deer.

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CALGARY HITMEN: 3

LETHBRIDGE HURRICANES: 2

SHOOTOUT


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