Rookie helps power Hitmen

CAM MAXWELL -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:42 AM ET

The Calgary Hitmen got their powerplay going last night, but it wasn't enough juice for a win.

The hosts scored three man-advantage goals last night but still fell 5-4 to the Medicine Hat Tigers at Father David Bauer Arena in WHL pre-season action.

Hitmen rookie Chase Schaber, the Hitmen's top bantam draft pick in 2006, scored his first goal for the WHL team, and it came on the powerplay.

"I thought our line came out clicking in the first period, and I got a goal out of it," said Schaber, a Red Deer product. "I thought I came out ready to play."

Schaber's goal came at 7:50 of the opening frame, but the young forward is happy to be playing at the next level after toiling in the Alberta Midget Hockey League with Red Deer last season.

"It's been awesome so far -- just to get a chance to play with these bigger, faster guys," Schaber said. "It really gets you thinking, and you've got to rise to the occasion."

Schaber has spent the bulk of the pre-season playing on a line with Ian Schultz, and he said the two have clicked.

As for Schultz, he sustained what appeared to be a shoulder injury. How bad it is wasn't immediately known.

Hitmen head coach Kelly Kisio wasn't too pleased with how his team as a whole came out to start the game but noted they played better as the contest went on.

Also scoring for the Hitmen was Ryan Fox, Brandon Kozun and Keegan Dansereau, who returned yesterday from the Florida Panthers' rookie camp.

Linden Vey, with a pair, Wacey Hamilton, Tyler Ennis and Jordan Hickmott scored for the Tigers, who went 1-for-10 on the powerplay.

Martin Jones and Dan Spence split the netminding duties for the hosts. Spence gave up three goals on 22 shots, while Jones surrendered two goals on 15.

The Hitmen wrap up their pre-season schedule Friday in Lacombe against the Red Deer Rebels (7:30 p.m.).


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