Weekend Preview: Jets vs. Ice Dogs (G26 & G27)

Dec 17, 2021

By Calvin Bush (@calvin_bush24) | Dec 17, 2021 | 1:45 pm

JANESVILLE, WI — A trip to Illinois and an off weekend later, the Jets will have three more weekends of hockey in Janesville, starting with the first of the trio of Alaskan teams, the Fairbanks Ice Dogs, before another break for the holidays.

The series at Springfield was a slight adjustment for the Jets, as they had just played games from the comfort of their own arena for three straight weeks. The first game from the Nelson Center saw the Jets put forth 36 shots but no goals. Jr. Blues goaltender Ethan Roberts extinguished the Jets’ goal scorers, who had been on a hot stretch leading up to that weekend, and helped secure a split series at the least.

Saturday’s contest was a more valiant battle than the previous outing and featured the Jets claw to within a goal three times in the final two periods before eventually falling 6-3 to go on the receiving end of a sweep. While the loss was a lowlight, the Jets peppered Roberts with 50 shots on net that night. Goals from Robby Newton (6), Mack Keryluk (8), and William Gustavsson (11) helped the Jets keep things close before Springfield pulled away in the final minutes of regulation.

Now, following a short break to recuperate and get ready for a big weekend, the Jets will have three consecutive series from the Hangar against the three teams reigning from the Last Frontier, beginning with a long-time division foe in the Fairbanks Ice Dogs, who managed a split back in September in their first series in Janesville.

The team that won three Robertson Cup championships in five years has undoubtedly concocted a formula to keep their chances at another this season comfortably high. Currently riding a six-game winning streak, the Ice Dogs sit atop the Midwest Division standings and have the highest-ranked offense in the NAHL, averaging just over four goals per game. In addition to the potent goal-scoring abilities, both their special teams’ units rank in the top five in the league, with a second-best penalty kill and third-best power play unit.

Forward Alexander Malinowski is the league’s second-highest scorer, with an impressive 14 goals and 23 assists (37 pts) in 29 games played this season. Four other members of the Ice Dogs roster are in the 20-point territory, among them being Colgate University commit Owen Neuharth, who has a team-leading 21 assists in the 2021-22 campaign. Fairbanks netminder Kayden Hargraves is the T-8th best goaltender in the league with a 2.29 GAA and .923 save percentage.

While the team may have had a quiet weekend in Springfield, Jets rookie Cy LeClerc remains one of the top-scoring first-year players in the league; his 30 points (17G-13A) puts him at fourth among rookies in scoring. LeClerc, who just signed his National Letter of Intent with the University of New Hampshire this morning, is the fourth-highest goal scorer among all skaters with his 17 lamplighters. William Gustavsson follows closely behind LeClerc with 21 points to put him at sixth place in rookie scoring.

Along with LeClerc signing his NLI, defenseman AJ Casperson made his commitment to play for Long Island University this week, marking the second commitment of the season for Janesville. Casperson ranks third on the team in assists (14) and was recently named to be one of five members of the captaincy group for the Jets this season. Needless to say, it’s been a big month of December for the Texan defenseman.

This weekend, the Jets will be without Jan “Zigi” Lasak, but for a good reason. The smiling Slovakian is currently representing his home country at the World Juniors tournament in Alberta, Canada, and will be playing for Team Slovakia through the New Year.

A pair of big family-focused nights are on tap this weekend, with Friday featuring a $20 gas card giveaway to the first 500 adults in attendance, courtesy of Enbridge, plus free hot cocoa from Wisco Insurance. Saturday night is one of the most prominent and famous promos in hockey, the Teddy Bear Toss. Fans are encouraged to bring a new teddy bear or stuffed animal and toss it onto the ice following the first goal scored by the Jets. All stuffed animals will be collected and donated to the Pediatric Center at MercyHealth. To top it all off, the man from the North Pole, Santa Claus, will be in attendance to take photos and hear any final holiday wishes from fans young and old. Tickets can be purchased on our Facebook page, at any Lions Quick Mart around town, or the door of the arena.

Those looking to tune in can do so from home on HockeyTV or follow live updates on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram.



Record: 10-14-0-1 (7th, Midwest)
Home Record: 6-3-0-1
Goals For/Game: 
3.44 (10th)
Goals Against/Game:
4.04 (24th)
Shots For/Game: 30.28 (17th)
Shots Against/Game:
28.68 (10th)
Power Play: 
19% (14th) 
Penalty Kill: 
68.2%% (29th)
Top Scorers: 
F Cy LeClerc (25GP—17G-13A—30PTS); F Jan Lasak (24GP—12G-10A—22PTS); F William Gustavsson (23GP—11G-10A—21PTS)
Owen Millward (9-5-0-0; 3.35 GAA; .883 SV%); Michael D’Orazio (1-6-0-1; 4.07 GAA; .859 SV%); Ryan Whittaker (0-1-0-0;  6.00 GAA; .778 SV%)
Rostered Commitments: F Robby Newton (University of Wisconsin); F Grayden Daul (University of Wisconsin); F Jonah Aegerter (St. Cloud State); F Cy LeClerc (University of New Hampshire); F Jan Lasak (St. Lawrence University); F Jake Sacratini (American International College); F Ethan Begg (University of Vermont); F Jack Ford (Army-West Point); D AJ Casperson (Long Island University)


Record: 20-8-0-1 (1st, Midwest)
Road Record: 9-2-0-1
Goals For/Game: 4.17 (1st)
Goals Against/Game:
2.66 (4th)
Shots For/Game: 30.79 (14th)
Shots Against/Game:
28.10 (8th)
Power Play: 
26.4% (3rd)
Penalty Kill: 
88% (2nd)
Top Scorers: 
F Alexander Malinowski (29GP—14G-23A—37PTS); F Owen Neuharth (29GP—7G-21A—28PTS); F Tyler Stewart (29GP—11G-16A—27PTS) 
Kayden Hargraves (13-3-0-1; 2.29 GAA; .923 SV%); Tyler Krivtsov (7-4-0-0; 2.68 GAA; .892 SV%)
Rostered Commitments: 
D Brendan Miles (University of Michigan); F Owen Neuharth (Colgate University); F Nick Ostbloom (University of Alaska-Fairbanks)

100+ NCAA commitments since 2009.