Springfield, Illinois – The Springfield Jr. Blues headed into Chippewa riding high off of a big win over Janesville on November 23rd, but the momentum they carried into their series with the Steel would be broken with back-to-back losses. With the weekend sweep, the Jr. Blues record falls to 8-15-2-1 for 19 points and are in 5th place in the Midwest Division.
On Friday night the Jr. Blues and the Steel played a closely contested matchup that saw the home team take a 2-0 advantage into the 3rd period. Max Osborne would find the back of the net on the power play just past the halfway mark of the final period to cut the Steel’s lead to 2-1 and give the Jr. Blues an opportunity to tie the game. However, the Steel had other ideas and tallied an insurance marker just five minutes later to make it a 3-1 game and that’s the way it ended.
Alex Proctor got the start in net for Springfield and stopped 29 of 32 shots, he has now appeared in 9 games for the Jr. Blues this season. Caden Villegas picked up the lone assist on Osborne’s goal, the Plano, TX native now has 12 assists.
Saturday night’s contest started out close as neither team was able to score in the opening period. From there, the Steel scored four unanswered goals in the 2nd period to give themselves a comfortable 4-0 lead, which would be the final score. Ryan Wilson got the start in net and stopped 30 of 34 shots.
Jr. Blues Notes:
Zeros – Shutouts have not been plentiful this season, either for or against the Jr. Blues. In 26 games so far the Jr. Blues have recorded two shutouts while being shut out twice as well. Last season the Jr. Blues failed only once to record a goal while silencing opposing offenses four times.
‘Villy the Kid’ – Caden Villegas, a Union College commit, was riding a 7-game point streak into Saturday night’s game but was unable to extend the streak to 8. In the course of his streak that began in Fairbanks three weeks ago, Villegas recorded 4 goals and 6 assists. On the season he has 6 goals and 12 assists, just two points shy of his career best from last season (20).
New Faces – After a rash of injuries, four new players donned the shield this past weekend: Desmond Johnson (Chicago Mission U18), Trevor Scherer (W/B Knights), Leo Bacallao (Janesville Jets), and Luke Anderson (Northstar Christian Academy U18).
The Jr. Blues head south to Topeka, KS for a pair of games with the Pilots. Puck drops both Friday and Saturday at 7:05 pm with all of the action available LIVE on HockeyTV. So far the Jr. Blues and Pilots have played four games against each other, all at the Nelson Center. The Pilots have won three of those matchups with the lone victory for the Jr. Blues coming on the Home Opener in September.