Giants taken out by Hitmen 4-0
By Steve Ewen, The Province
March 6, 2009
Vancouver Giants goalie Tyson Sexsmith has his eye on the puck against the Calgary Hitmen during first-period WHL action at Pacific Coliseum Friday.Photograph by: Nick Procaylo, The ProvinceThe Calgary Hitmen scored four power-play goals and won the first-place showdown with the Vancouver Giants 4-0 Friday.
Brett Sonne, Bostjan Golicic, Kyle Bortis and Michael Stone tallied for the Hitmen (57-9-3-1). Martin Jones made 28 saves for the shutout, the first suffered by the Giants this season.
A raucous crowd of 14,128 was anxious all game for a Vancouver goal, but they Calgary neatly limited the second chances. Vancouver did get some opportunities from its top line of Casey Pierro-Zabotel, Evander Kane and Garry Nunn, but they handle trouble manufacturing any momentum.
Vancouver (55-8-1-3) is now four points behind the Hitmen for top spot overall. Calgary has two games left in the regular season, and Vancouver had five.
“Our penalty killing definitely wasn’t where we want it to be,” said Kane. “They scored all four goals on the power play. It shows you have to be discipline against this group. I can point at myself . . . I took two penalties early on that weren’t necessary. They feed off their power play.”
Giants coach Don Hay added: “You really have to compete hard for 60 minutes. You can’t get frustrated. Because they were doing a good job of keeping us away from the net, we got a little bit frustrated and that frustration didn’t lead to anything good.”
The game marked the return of Vancouver captain Jon Blum from a 10-game absence with a shoulder injury. He didn’t see his usual minutes, but was effective in spurts.
“Shoulder was feeling pretty decent, but the legs weren’t obviously there after three weeks and getting thrown into a game like Calgary,” said Blum. “I wish there was more practice time, but I’ll get back into it next week.”
Calgary was four-for-seven on the power play. Vancouver was zero-for-two.
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