Hitmen answer nation's calling

CAMERON MAXWELL -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 10:01 AM ET

It could be a trifecta for Calgary Hitmen players on Canada's world junior team.

Yesterday the CHL announced defenceman Karl Alzner, along with forwards Ryan White and Brodie Dupont, were selected to play for Team WHL in the 2006 ADT Canada/Russia Challenge.

The series plays a big role in helping Team Canada officials select the squad that will play in the upcoming world junior championship in Sweden at the end of December.

For Alzner, who hails from Burnaby, B.C., the chance to play for Team WHL is the first step on the road to realizing a childhood dream.

"I can remember watching that tournament on TV at Christmas when I was 10," said Alzner, who has 10 points (2g, 8a) in 14 games.

"And this tournament will give the scouts a good indication of how you play against European teams."

Alzner has worn the Maple Leaf before, playing on the u-18 team in 2005 and he was at the junior team development camp this summer.

Both White, a Montreal Canadiens draft pick, and Dupont, a New York Rangers selection, are among the WHL scoring leaders this season.

White, a Brandon, Man., native, has five goals and 11 assists, while Dupont's got eight goals and eight helpers, so all three are having great individual seasons, although Alzner acknowledges their stock might be higher if the 7-6-0-1 Hitmen had more wins.

Alzner will play in Chilliwack Nov. 29, while Dupont and White will suit up in Kamloops Nov. 30. The six-game series begins Nov. 20 in Rouyn-Noranda, Que.

Meanwhile, the Hitmen players voted 20-year-old defenceman Dylan Yeo the team's captain for the remainder of the season.

The stalwart blueliner is the 11th player to wear the 'C' in team history.

The Prince Albert native will suit up tonight when the Hitmen host the Regina Pats (Saddledome, 7 p.m.) for the first time this season after recovering from a wrist injury he suffered last season.

Alzner, White and Dupont are the Hitmen assistant captains.


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