Game Preview – 09.29.23 – CGY at SC
HITMEN HEADLINES: The Calgary Hitmen (0-2-0-0) make their first trip outside Alberta this season as they stop in Saskatchewan tonight to face the Swift Current Broncos (0-2-0-0). Game time is 7:00 p.m. at InnovationPlex. Both clubs have been idle since last Saturday when the Hitmen dropped a 5-3 decision in Medicine Hat while the Broncos fell 5-2 in their home opener to Lethbridge.
SWIFT CURRENT: Tonight is the first of five regular season meetings between the two Central Division rivals. The Hitmen went 4-0-0-1 against the Broncos last season outscoring Swift Current by a combined 18-11 despite being outshot 154-152. Oliver Tulk (3g, 4a) led all Hitmen with seven points in the season series while Grayden Siepmann (6a) was next with six. Clarke Caswell (2g, 2a), Matthew Ward (2g, 2a) and Brady Birnie (1g, 3a) paved the way for the Broncos with four points each. Over the last five seasons Calgary is a combined 11-3-1-1 against Swift Current. The two clubs won’t meet again until Dec. 6 back at Scotiabank Saddledome.
2022-23 SERIES RECAP
Sept. 23/22 in SC: Hitmen 2 Broncos 1…The Hitmen never trailed as Ethan Buenaventura made 18 saves to record the win.
Sept. 24/22 in CGY: Broncos 3 Hitmen 2 Shootout…Luke Mistelbacher scored the shootout winner.
Dec. 7/22 in SC: Hitmen 4 Broncos 1…David Adaszynski scored a pair of power play goals for Calgary.
Jan. 13/23 in CGY: Hitmen 6 Broncos 3…Six different Hitmen counted goals.
Mar. 5/23 in CGY: Hitmen 4 Broncos 3…Sean Tschigerl was in on all four goals (2g, 2a) for Calgary.
INSIDE THE SERIES
Shots on Goal: CGY 152 SC 154 Power Plays: CGY 7-26 (26.9%) SC 3-25 (12%)
STREAKING: Rookie forward Ben Kindel (1g, 1a) has points in back-to-back games to start the season. Nine Hitmen have recorded at least one shot on goal through the first two games; London Hoilett (9), Carter MacAdams (7), Carter Yakemchuk (7), Matteo Danis (5), Ben Kindel (5), Maxim Muranov (5), David Adaszynski (4), Carson Wetsch (3) and Keets Fawcett (2).
LET’S GO CAMPING: Four Hitmen headed to NHL camps this month: Tyson Galloway (Calgary), Oliver Tulk (Calgary), Grayden Siepmann (Boston) and Sean Tschigerl (Los Angeles). All four have since returned with Galloway and Tulk arriving earlier this week and Tschigerl rejoining his teammates on Thursday.
ROSTER NOTES: The Hitmen are carrying 24 players with the following age breakdown;
20’s (2): Galloway, Tschigerl
19’s (6): MacAdams, Marinkovic, Muranov, Siepmann, Spizawka, Buenaventura
18’s (9): Adaszynski, Chichkin*, Danis, Garrett*, Hoilett, Moore, Tulk, Yakemchuk, Williams
17’s (3): Fawcett*, Valliant*, Wetsch
16’s (4): Kindel*, Hamilton*, Mayes*, Pisarczyk*
DID YOU KNOW? With the graduation of captain Riley Fiddler-Schultz, defenceman Grayden Siepmann has swapped jersey numbers giving up #8 to move into the #21 vacated by Fiddler-Schultz…The Hitmen have only two players on their roster from Saskatchewan in defenceman Reese Hamilton (Whitewood) and goaltender Alex Garrett (Saskatoon). Hamilton is not the first player from the small town of Whitewood to patrol the Hitmen blueline as former WHL All-Star Brett Carson was also from the community of less than 1,000 people.
PLAYER SPOTLIGHT: During the summer, the Hitmen completed a trade with the Victoria Royals on August 1 which saw the club acquire 19-year-old defenceman Jason Spizawka in exchange for a fourth-round pick in the 2024 WHL Prospects Draft. Spizawka, now in his fourth WHL season, has appeared in 143 games collecting 18 points (2g, 16a). The left-shot rearguard wears number 27.
BIRTHDAY BOYS: Hitmen defenceman Carter Yakemchuk celebrates his 18th birthday today while fellow d-man Dax Williams turned 18 yesterday.
STATS FILE: Forward Ben Kindel scored his first career Western Hockey League goal last Friday in the home opener against the Tigers while defenceman Reese Hamilton and forward Sawyer Mayes each added an assist for their first WHL points. The following night in Medicine Hat defenceman Wyatt Pisarczyk also helped set up a goal for his first career WHL point.
WHL MILESTONES: Defenceman Grayden Siepmann is one game shy of 150. The product of Abbotsford, BC was Calgary’s first-round pick, 13th overall, in the 2019 WHL Prospects Draft. Siepmann is now in his fourth season with the club. Goaltender Ethan Buenaventura is 37 saves away from 1,500. During his Hitmen career he has made 30 or more saves in a game 15 times.
2023 PRE-SEASON RECAP: Calgary went 1-3 during their four-game exhibition schedule. Rookie forward Sawyer Mayes led the team in scoring with four points (4a), while Keets Fawcett (2g,1a) and Matteo Danis (2g,1a) notched three points each.
MAYFAIR DIAGNOSTICS INJURY REPORT: None.
UPCOMING GAMES: Calgary heads home to host their first Sunday Funday of the season on Sunday, Oct. 1, against the Saskatoon Blades. Game time is 2:00 p.m. at Scotiabank Saddledome. This season’s Sunday Funday is presented by Brookfield Residential. In addition to $3 sips and snacks specials all game long, look for family fun entertainment on the west concourse. There are also $6 Hitmen Happy Hour food and drink deals throughout the day and a post-game family skate. Fans can also meet Hitmen Matteo Danis and Tyson Galloway during a post-game autograph session behind Section 211.