Game Preview: Hitmen vs Wheat Kings – Jan. 31

Candice Ward/Photos

A feat they have yet to accomplish this season.

Five straight wins. And here they are on the brink of setting the new season-high win streak.

The Hitmen have caught fire as of late, winning four straight games as they welcome the Brandon Wheat Kings to the Scotiabank Saddledome Friday night.

It’s the third meeting of the season between the clubs, with the series knotted up at one game apiece. Jan. 17 saw the Wheat Kings defend home ice with a 3-1 win, backstopped by Jiri Patera’s 30 saves, while the Hitmen secured the first victory on Nov. 22 in a 4-3 overtime win thanks to a Carson Focht winner 3:40 into the extra session.

Since their last meeting, the Hitmen have gone 4-1 outscoring the opposition by an 18-13 margin with 13 goals coming in the last three games alone.

Wednesday night saw the club match their season-high win streak of four games as they topped the Winnipeg ICE 3-2, as Mark Kastelic was the hero scoring the game winner with 44 seconds left in the contest.

Highlights Jan. 29: Hitmen vs ICE

January has been the best month and busiest for the Hitmen, racking up 18 points in the 13 contests thus far. It’s a large reason why they have been able to create some breathing room between them and the Saskatoon Blades for the first Wildcard spot in the Eastern Conference.

After tonight all that remains is 21 games, with each game sure to have a playoff like approach in the intensity.

What They Are Saying

“We have to be mindful of our own game and where we finish in the standings will be a by-product of that. We very well could face someone from the East Division. These are important games from a perspective of making sure we are confident in the way we play.”– Steve Hamilton

“It’s going to be important to be feeling good about our game and growing it to reach the full potential that we know we are capable of. We want to keep this win streak going for as long as we can and get stronger each time out. – Mark Kastelic

Quick Hits

Riley Stotts is six points away from matching his career-high set a year ago when the forward finished with 57 points (19G, 38A) in 62 games. He currently leads the team in scoring with 51 points.

Calgary is 14-7-1-1 at home, grabbing points in 11 of their last 14 games while posting a 9-3-1-1 record at the ‘Dome.

Brayden Peters is 7-2 in his last nine appearances with a 1.89 goals against average and .926 save percentage

Milestone Tracker

Mark Kastelic continues to climb the Hitmen record books in his fifth season
Mark Kastelic continues to climb the Hitmen record books in his fifth season

Mark Kastelic is one point behind Ryan Getzlaf for 10th spot on the clubs all-time points list.  Getzlaf tallied 215.  Kastelic eclipsed 100 career assists on Sunday against Red Deer.

Riley Stotts is one assist away from 100.

Jackson van de Leest is five points away from 50.

2019/20 Stats Leaders


Goals: Mark Kastelic (24)

Assists: Stotts (29)

Points: Stotts (51)

Power Play Goals: Stotts (6)

Shots: Focht (150)

Top Goalie: Brayden Peters, 11-9-2, 2.37 GAA, 0.910 SV%

Wheat Kings


Goals: Luka Burzan (27)

Assists: Ben McCartney (32)

Points: McCartney (51)

Power Play Goals: Burzan, Ridly Greig (7)

Shots: Burzan (158)

Top Goalie: Jiri Patera, 16-9-1-2, 2.74 GAA, .917 SV%

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