Thursday, 26 January 2012

Manitoban Leads Hitmen Past Brandon

Another step back for the Brandon Wheat Kings on Wednesday night.

Winnipeg product Brooks Macek had three goals and an assist to lead the Calgary Hitmen to a 7-2 victory over the Wheat Kings.

Victor Rask added a goal and two assists as the Hitmen won for the 11th time in the last 12 games.

“I thought after (Tuesday’s) game, we’d be really good again today but it just wasn’t our night,” said Brandon assistant coach Darren Ritchie on CKLQ’s post-game show, “We had an early power-play, got nothing on it, didn’t generate anything and from there on, we weren’t very good at all.”

The power-play Ritchie speaks of came just past the seven minute mark of the first period, and was Brandon’s second in the early stages of the first period.

“That pretty much dictated the way that we played the rest of the night, just that power-play,” added Ritchie, “We just couldn’t execute, we had no pace to our game and I thought, right from the start, we didn’t have it tonight.”

Alessio Bertaggia and Kevin Sundher scored the goals for Brandon, both coming in the third period with the club already trailing 7-0.

The loss was Brandon’s tenth in their last 13 games, with five of those coming by four or more goals.

“It has to come from the guys in the dressing room. We can sit and talk and have a lot of meeting, but it has to come from the guys in the dressing room,” said Ritchie, “We believe in our guys. We showed (Tuesday) night, the way we played, we know we can do it. We have to find a way as coaches to harness it and keep bringing it night in and night out.”

The loss leaves Brandon just four points ahead of Red Deer for eighth-place and the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

The Wheat Kings will continue their Central Division road trip Friday night when they visit the Edmonton Oil Kings (7:30 p.m., 880 CKLQ or http://www.cklq.com/).

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