JANESVILLE, WI — After a tough trio of losses to the Fairbanks Ice Dogs, the Jets wrap up their year’s longest road trip with the eighth and ninth consecutive away games this weekend in Soldotna, Alaska, against the Midwest Division’s top team.
The Kenai River Brown Bears last week hosted and were swept by the Minnesota Magicians, cutting their division lead over Fairbanks to just a single point. Janesville has a four-point cushion in fourth place, but needs to start taking points from top-tier Midwest Division foes if their season’s second half could include a push for home-ice advantage.
Their opportunities to do so in Fairbanks fell short. A 2-0 Jets lead disappeared quickly on Thanksgiving night when the Ice Dogs rallied to a stunning 9-2 victory. Then a 1-0 lead vanished in the third period of Friday night’s game, leaving the Jets without a point in the standings, and another 2-1 defeat Saturday night clinched the sweep for Fairbanks. Rookie Jake Dunlap, who this week celebrated his 18th birthday, joined veterans Luke Wheeler, Nick Nardella, and Jordon Halverson as goal-scorers on the scoresheet, and goaltender Grant Riley showed great resolve, rebounding from a difficult outing on Thursday night to go a combined 64/68 on Friday and Saturday.
The two teams’ last series, their first and only of the season so far, was a three-game set in Soldotna in mid-October, opening the Jets’ first Alaska road trip. Janesville dropped the Friday and Saturday games, but bounced back for a big 6-3 victory on Sunday. In that game, alternate captain and Lake Superior State commit Grant Hindman scored his first NAHL goal and registered two shorthanded assists, a statistic still unmatched in the league this year.
Fri Dec 6 | 10:30pm CT
Sat Dec 7 | 10:30pm CT
Record: 11-14-1-0 (4th, Midwest)
Road Record: 6-9-0-0
Last Ten Games: 6-4-0-0
Goals For/Game: 2.73 (15th)
Goals Against/Game: 3.42 (19th)
Shots For/Game: 28.15 (21st)
Shots Against/Game: 32.31 (14th)
Power Play: 24.6% (6th)
Penalty Kill: 80.0% (12th)
Top Scorers: F Nick Nardella (23GP—8G-16A—24PTS); F Isaac Novak (18GP—10G-9A—19pTS); Multiple Players (12PTS)
Goaltenders: Grant Riley (8-10-1-0, 3.10 GAA, .906 SV%); Max Miller (1-2-0-0, 4.04 GAA, .862 SV%); Edward Makar
Rostered Commitments: F Jake Dunlap (UMass Amherst); D Grant Hindman (Lake Superior State); F Max Itagaki (RPI); F Parker Lindauer (Northern Michigan); F Nick Nardella (Michigan Tech); F Isaac Novak (Wisconsin); D Casey Roepke (Wisconsin); F Charlie Schoen (Arizona State)
KENAI RIVER BROWN BEARS
Record: 17-7-1-2 (1st, Midwest)
Home Record: 11-3-0-1
Last Ten Games: 8-2-0-0
Goals For/Game: 3.70 (4th)
Goals Against/Game: 3.22 (15th)
Shots For/Game: 35.07 (1st)
Shots Against/Game: 36.26 (25th)
Power Play: 24.5% (7th)
Penalty Kill: 77.9% (16th)
Top Scorers: F Zach Krajnik (24GP—8G-25A—33PTS); F Theo Thrun (27GP—15G-14A—29PTS); Multiple Players (22PTS)
Goaltenders: Landon Pavlisin (16-4-0-2, 2.71 GAA, .922 SV%); Danny Fraga (0-0-1-0, 2.86 GAA, .914 SV%)
Rostered Commitments: F Skylar Gutierrez (Alaska-Anchorage); D Bryan Huggins (Lake Superior State); F Zach Krajnik (Alaska-Anchorage); F Porter Schachle (Alaska-Anchorage)