Hitmen sweep home-and-home with Rebels

Hitmen 5 Rebels 2

The Calgary Hitmen overmatched the Red Deer Rebels Sunday for the second straight game.

In the back half of a home-and-home in Calgary Sunday, the Hitmen were dominant for the final 40 minutes in a 5-2 victory over the Rebels. Calgary also knocked off the Rebels 5-2 at the Centrium Saturday.

“It was better than the last game, we played right with them. Some stretches in the middle of the game where we got back to some turnovers, I thought it was a better effort (than Saturday),” Rebels assistant coach Ryan Colville said.

“They move pucks well and they have big, strong players. They’re definitely a team if you give them space, they’ll take it.”

Red Deer hung with the Hitmen in the opening frame, outshooting them 7-4 but failed to beat Brayden Peters.

Early in the second, the cracks started to show for the visitors. Dakota Krebs buried his first of the season 62 seconds into the period before Riley Stotts added his 22nd of the year 3:35 later. Stotts has seven goals and two assists in four games against the Rebels this season.

The furious pace of the second continued when Rebels forward Zak Smith cut the deficit 79 seconds after Stotts scored. That was as close as the Rebels got, as Riley Fiddler-Schultz notched his fifth of the campaign to open up a 3-1 lead for the Hitmen 39 seconds after the Smith tally.

“Turnovers kill you. You have to stick with your game all the way through and make sure you’re doing all the right things every shift. One down shift against a team like that, they’ll make you pay,” Colville added.

Orca Wiesblatt and Josh Prokop scored in the opening 70 seconds of the third to put the game out of reach. After the fourth goal, Byron Fancy was pulled from the game. Ethan Anders came in and played just under two minutes, allowing a goal on two shots.

Fancy finished the night with 24 saves.

Late in the third, Jayden Grubbe put a shot off the crossbar, off Peters back and in for his fifth goal of the year.

Peters earned the win and finished the night 23 saves.

Three stars: Riley Stotts (1), Dakota Krebs (2), Jett Woo (3).

The Rebels are back home Wednesday when they host the Brandon Wheat Kings.

Email sports tips to Byron Hackett

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