An exciting night at the Enmax Centrium, as is always the case when the Calgary Hitmen come calling. Even more excitement was brought on by the special ‘one night only’ jersey fundraiser in conjunction with Finning Canada. Thanks to the amazing generosity of Rebels fans, $26,250 was raised for KidSport in Red Deer… well above the goal of $20,000!
Just four defenceman dressed for the Rebels for this game due to the loss of Aaron Borejko to injury.
Calgary would strike first in this game as Trevor Cheek would get the visitors on the board with his 17th goal of the season. Jimmy Bubnick collected the lone assist on the goal just 2:40 into the first period. 1-0 Hitmen.
The Hitmen would go up 2-0 at the 8:11 mark of the period. Cody Sylvester would follow up on the play and cash in of a rebound from Jimmy Bubnick’s shot. Danny Gayle also with an assist on the goal. And Calgary kept it coming. Danny Gayle, after a great pass from Greg Chase, would put it home past a sprawled out Deven Dubyk for a 3-0 lead at 12:07. Bolton Pouliot then took over for Dubyk in net for the Rebels.
Following a Rebels timeout, the Calgary Hitmen blew their lead open to 4-0. Jimmy Bubnick with his 23rd of the season from Calder Brooks and Kenton Helgeson. The strong contingent of Hitmen fans in the building were enjoying what they saw. Hometown Rebels fans, not so much.
The Rebels would calm things down a bit after that but the early damage was done. 4-0 Hitmen after the first periods. Shots 13-6 in favour of Calgary.
Back-to-back penalties just three seconds apart early in the second period gave the Rebels a 5-on-3 powerplay and a golden opportunity to finally get on the board… and they would take advantage. John Persson parked himself in front the Calgary net and would find the loose puck to score his 19th goal of the season on Chris Driedger. Colten Mayor and Charles Inglis with the assists. Rebels cut their deficit to 4-1.
The Rebels would get themselves right back in the game late in the second period. Alex Petrovic would wind and fire from the point, it would deflect off of a Calgary defender and past Driedger. For Petrovic, the goal was his 5th of the season from Persson and Inglis at 15:34. 4-2 would be the score heading into the the third period. Hitmen led on the shot clock 19-17 (11-6 for the Rebels in the period).
Great action to start the third period as both teams came out skating at full speed. After scoring chances at both ends, Trevor Cheek found himself alone in the Rebels slot with the puck on his stick. He unleashed an absolute rocket past Bolton Pouliot, no chance for the Rebels goaltender to make the save. Jimmy Bubnick earned the lone assist on the goal, his fourth point of the game. 5-2 Hitmen 5:04 into the third period.
Bubnick would earn his fifth point of the night with the final goal of this hockey game, a shorthanded empty netter from his own blue line at 17:59. The Hitmen win this one 6-2, their 15th win in the last 17 games overall. FInal shots on goal were 28-24 for the Rebels.
Molson Cup Three Stars
1. Cheek CH
2. Persson RD
3. Bubnick CH
Next up… the Rebels host the Prince Albert Raiders at the Enmax Centrium on Wednesday night. Game time is 7pm. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster.