Hitmen Ice enemy

SCOTT FISHER -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:06 AM ET

It hasn't taken T.J. Galiardi long to get accustomed to the WHL.

Galiardi and Brett Sonne each scored a powerplay and shorthanded marker, while Carson McMillan chipped in with another man-advantage goal as the Hitmen beat the Kootenay Ice 5-1 last night at the Saddledome.

Galiardi has three goals and three helpers in the first three games of the season.

"The first game, I was using a brand new pair of skates because mine broke," Galiardi said. "So that was the only discomfort I've had so far.

"There was a little bit of a transition but not much, obviously."

Michael Stickland was the only Ice player to beat Hitmen starting goaltender Dan Spence, who kicked out 24 shots as the Hitmen improved to 3-0 on the year.

The Hitmen hit the scoreboard first less than five minutes after the opening faceoff. They were on the powerplay and a delayed call against the Ice was coming, giving the Hitmen a 6-on-4 advantage.

McMillan stopped a pass in front of the visitors' net and tucked the puck behind Ice goalie Nathan Lieuwen.

The Ice tied it just three minutes later, when Stickland put his club's second shot of the game past Spence.

The Hitmen seized control of the game with three unanswered goals in the second.

Galiardi, a Calgary product who played with the AJHL Royals two seasons ago, scored his first goal on Saddledome ice. He kicked the puck to his stick in the neutral zone, skated in 1-on-2 and sent a quick wrister past Lieuwen on the stick side.

He said he's enjoying playing in front of friends and family. Good thing, because that's pretty much all there was in the 'Dome for a rare Monday night tilt (5,616).

"It's great," he said. "My mom just got back from Phoenix, so she got to see me score a couple of goals."

Sonne picked up his first of the campaign while killing a Hitmen penalty. Lieuwen misplayed a Hitmen dump-in behind the Ice net, and Sonne swooped in, stole the puck and wrapped it in for the shorthanded marker.

Sonne, 18, was back six minutes later on a two-man advantage. Sonne knocked in Ryan White's rebound to give the Hitmen a 4-1 lead after 40.

White was returned to the Hitmen by the Montreal Canadiens yesterday.

Galiardi then sealed it with a shorthanded breakaway.


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