A two-game road trip got off to a sputtering start Saturday, as the Calgary Hitmen dropped a 2-1 decision to the Rebels in a game played in Red Deer.

After Jhett Larson gave the Rebels a 1-0 lead midway through the first period, the Hitmen took it to the home squad in the second period, but couldn’t score.

Oliver Tulk’s 34th goal of the season tied it up at 6:28 of the third.

Calgary killed off a late penalty, but Talon Brigley potted the winner with 30 seconds left to give Red Deer the victory.

The Hitmen outshot the Rebels 35-34 on the night, with Ethan Buenaventura stopping 33 shots.

Calgary is five points back of the final playoff spot held by the Lethbridge Hurricanes with nine games left in the regular season.

The Hitmen conclude their trip with a Sunday matinee in Medicine Hat against the Tigers.

Puck drop is set for 4 p.m.