St. Louis Jr. Blues at Granite City Lumberjacks
VENUE: Armadillo Deck Sports Arena, Sauk Rapids, Minn.
GAME TIMES: October 25 at 7:30 pm, October 26 at 7:30 pm (all times Central)
WHERE TO FOLLOW: All Jr. Blues games are streamed live and in high definition on HockeyTV.com (subscription required). On Twitter, follow @JrBluesHockey and follow @stljrblues on Instagram for live updates, and search “St. Louis Jr. Blues” on Youtube for highlights.
A QUICK RECAP: Despite a valiant effort in both games, the Jr. Blues were swept at home by North Iowa, falling Saturday 4-2 and losing a 3-2 decision on Sunday afternoon.
START ME UP: In their first weekends as Jr. Blues, forwards Pavel Kopytin and Evan Ross made instant impacts, both scoring goals. Ross’ strip-and-score goal from Sunday was named #2 on the most recent edition of the NA3HL’s Plays of the Week. Goaltender Will Oliver stopped 32 of 35 shots Sunday in his full-roster debut with the Junior Notes.
ROAD WARRIORS: This weekend begins four straight series away from Affton for the Jr. Blues, broken up only by a bye weekend next week and the Thanksgiving break. It includes the two longest regular road trips they will play this year: this current road trip, at 1,248 miles round-trip, and the trip to New Ulm, which clocks in at 1,124 miles round-trip.
SCOUTING THE LUMBERJACKS: Brad Willner’s club have responded to their shock elimination in last year’s West Division semi-finals at the hands of Alexandria by once again putting together a strong team to challenge once again for a Fraser Cup berth. They enter the weekend with a 7-2-0 record, eight points back of North Iowa in the West, having just split a home-and-home series with Rochester. Veteran leadership has always been a hallmark of the Lumberjacks, and this year is no different: returners Carson Simon, Blake Spetz and Bailey Sommers all lead the ‘Jacks in scoring, each with 12 points.
JUNIOR NOTES: You’ll hear a familiar voice on the HockeyTV broadcast this weekend from Granite City: Kevin Gier of the Jr. Blues has been asked to provide commentary by the ‘Jacks this weekend, as their regular announcer cannot make these games due to other commitments.