The Calgary Hitmen were desperately seeking a cure for their lethargy and they got it from the Prince Albert Raiders.
With the Raiders in town, the Hitmen snapped a two-game losing streak with a 6-2 win last night at the Saddledome.The Hitmen put in their best performance since the Christmas break thanks to an electric powerplay and a tired, young Prince Albert squad that has 11 rookies on the roster.
In fact, the Raiders were such good medicine, Hitmen head coach and GM Kelly Kisio declared himself a happy camper.
"I'm much happier tonight than I have been in the past," said Kisio, whose club netted five powerplay goals. "I thought we had a lot of jump and did a lot of good things in the first period that were paid back in the second period."
In the second, the Hitmen (23-13-0-3) scored all six of their goals and set a new team record with 26 shots on a goal, eclipsing the previous mark of 25 set in Feb., 2000 against Medicine Hat.
Defenceman Alex Plante posted four assists, while rookie Brandon Kozun, a Calgarian, scored his first WHL goal as he lost his balance at the side of the net and managed to direct the puck in off a Raiders defenceman in the second period.
"I was trying to get it to the net after I got a good pass from my winger (Devon Kalinski) and good things happen when you go to the net," said Kozun, who has also spent time with the Calgary Royals of the AJHL this season.
There was no scoring in the first period, a frame the Hitmen dominated but couldn't beat Raiders starting goalie Jesse Deckert. He stole a goal from Keegan Dansereau with a great glove save, but was benched to start the final frame.
The second period was a different story, however, as the Hitmen gave up the first goal to Ashton Hewson at 2:31 then exploded for six unanswered goals, including five on the powerplay.
Brett Sonne started the flurry at 5:52, then Dansereau tallied at 7:45, followed by Dylan Yeo, Kozun, who scored at even strength, Ian Duval and Brodie Dupont rounded it out the Calgary scoring.