Tag Archives: Janis Voris

Schmidling Leads Jr. Blues to Split with Steel

Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin – The Springfield Jr. Blues split their weekend series with Chippewa Steel with a heartbreaking overtime loss on Friday, and a 3rd period come from behind victory on Saturday. After 56 regular season games the Jr. Blues sit in 3rd place in the Midwest Division with a 30-21-4-1 record for 65 points. 

Friday could not have started out better for the Jr. Blues as Caden Villegas, Nigel Nelson, Nikita Kozyrev, and Max Brainin all scored in the 1st period to lead 4-0 at the intermission. The next five goals of the game, however, would all be from the Steel. Despite leading 4-2 with less than five minutes to play in the 3rd period, Springfield allowed Chippewa to score twice in the final three minutes of regulation to force overtime.

From there the Steel capitalized on a missed opportunity by the Jr. Blues and scored just past the halfway mark of the extra frame to win 5-4. Jack Williams made 23 stops in the loss which is his second overtime loss of the season.

Saturday began with trepidation as the Steel outshot the Jr. Blues 13-7 in the opening period. Max Brainin would briefly give the Jr. Blues a 1-0 lead just past the halfway point of the 2nd period, but the Steel would answer to tie the game 1-1 heading into the break. The Steel would then take the lead on a goal 1:26 into the 3rd period and controlled the pace of the game for the next 10 minutes. But Ben Schmidling would answer for the Jr. Blues, and in a big way.

Schmidling would tie the game up 2-2 on the power play just over eight minutes into the 3rd period, and would strike again with less than five minutes to play to give the Jr. Blues the 3-2 edge. Janis Voris would seal the deal the rest of the way to earn his 8th win of the season.

Springfield and Chippewa will face off against each other for the final time this weekend in Springfield, it will be the 7th and 8th consecutive games between the two teams. Friday’s contest starts at 7:05 pm and Saturday’s contest begins at 6:05 pm.

Jr. Blues Notes:

  • The loss on Friday was the first loss this season for the Jr. Blues after they were leading heading into the 3rd period. Their record is now 23-0-1-0 when leading after 2 periods.
  • Ben Schmidling now has 32 goals this season, which ranks 3rd in the NAHL behind Carson Briere (41) and Logan Jenuwine (54).
  • With his 4 assists on the weekend, Brandon Puricelli now has 72 points this season. He sits in 6th in goals (27), 4th in assists (45), and 5th in points (72).
  • The Jr. Blues have seen 3 players eclipse the 100 point mark for their NAHL careers this season (Puricelli, Schmidling, Kozyrev), and are poised to accept a 4th player to that club: Max Brainin. Currently, Brainin has 97 career points in 122 games split between the Jr. Blues and the Northeast Generals.
  • Nick Techel’s younger brother, Samuel, dressed for both games this past weekend and recorded no points and finished with a +1 rating.
  • With the Minnesota Magicians sweep of the Janesville Jets, the Jr. Blues sit comfortably in 3rd place five points behind Minnesota and six points ahead of Janesville.
  • The Jr. Blues are 7-2-1-0 in their last 10 games, the 2nd best record in the division in that span (Fairbanks: 8-2-0-0).

Puricelli, Schmidling(s) Lead Jr. Blues to Sweep of Steel

Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin – The Springfield Jr. Blues marched into the Chippewa Area Youth Arena over the weekend for the first time in franchise history and swept the Chippewa Steel. After earning four out of four points, the Jr. Blues now sit in sole possession of 3rd place in the Midwest Division with a 28-20-3-1 record for 60 points.

Friday started out in the right direction for Springfield before Chippewa turned the contest into a nail biter. Ben Schmidling and Max Brainin would each score in the 1st period to give the Jr. Blues a 2-1 lead heading into the intermission. The 2nd period would begin well as Nikita Kozyrev pushed the lead to 3-1 on a feed from Brandon Puricelli and Nick Techel. But the Steel would score twice in the final two minutes of the period and the game was tied 3-3 at the break.

Jack Williams would shut the door the rest of the way as he stopped all 11 shots in the 3rd period despite plenty of opportunities for the Steel. Kozyrev would break the deadlock at the 17:50 mark of the 3rd period and give the Jr. Blues a much needed win, 4-3. It was the 8th time this season that the Steel lost a game in the final 10 minutes of regulation.

Heading into Saturday’s contest the Jr. Blues needed both points to keep pace with the Janesville Jets. Brandon Puricelli and the Schmidling twins (Ben and David) would ensure that the Jr. Blues would not come away empty handed.

Puricelli opened the scoring on Saturday just under 10 minutes in, but the Steel would score the next two goals in the game to lead 2-1 late in the opening period. That’s when captain Cade Groton would score his 3rd goal of the season to tie the game 2-2 heading into the break. The fire was sparked and the Jr. Blues would take control of the game from that point on.

Lukas Kucera would break the tie just 2:31 into the 2nd period, his 3rd goal of the season. Ben Schmidling would score six minutes later to make it 4-2, and Max Osborne would extend the lead again just three minutes later. After 40 minutes of action the Jr. Blues were on top 5-2.

Two goals by the Steel in the 3rd period were accompanied by a power play strike from Max Brainin and the final score was 6-4. Janis Voris made 25 of 29 saves to earn his 7th victory. Puricelli had four points on the weekend including a Gordie Howe hat trick on Saturday (goal, assist, fight). B. Schmidling had four points as well (2 goals, 2 assists), and D. Schmidling had three points (3 assists). Nikita Kozyrev ended the weekend with three points (2 goals, 1 assist) and Max Brainin now has 47 points on the season after picking up two points (2 goals).

Jr. Blues Notes:

  • Brandon Puricelli has 25 goals and 38 assists for 63 points this season. It’s the highest season point total since Kyle Cook had 70 points in 2011-12.
  • Ben Schmidling is continuing to stay hot as he has 5 goals and 4 assists in his last 7 games. Schmidling is in his 3rd NAHL season (Janesville, Johnstown) and has 98 career points (46 goals, 52 assists).
  • Noah Marino made his Springfield and NAHL debut over the weekend. He picked up his first junior point with his assist on Ben Schmidling’s 2nd period goal on Saturday.
  • Streaking: Techel is currently on an 8 game point streak (2 goals, 8 assists); Puricelli has points in 6 straight games (4 goals, 11 assists); Kozyrev is on a 6 game point streak (8 goals, 4 assists); and D. Schmidling is on a 3 game point streak (4 assists).
  • It was the 4th weekend sweep this season for the Jr. Blues. All four sweeps have been within the division (Minnesota, Fairbanks, Kenai River, and Chippewa). The Jr. Blues have been swept twice (Minnesota and Janesville).
  • With the Fairbanks sweep of Minnesota, the Ice Dogs are now in 1st place with 66 points. The Magicians have 64 points, the Jr. Blues have 60, and the Jets have 59.

Top Prospects Tournament Recap

Attleboro, Massachusetts – The Springfield Jr. Blues sent four players to the 2019 NAHL Top Prospects Tournament, three on the Midwest Division roster and one on the Selects Red roster. Each team played two games starting Monday afternoon and finishing up last night.

Jack Williams was one of two Midwest Division goaltenders on the Selects Red roster alongside Cole Brady. Williams played the first half of Monday’s contest surrendering three goals on 23 shots. He then came in for the second half of yesterday’s morning matchup where he once again stopped 20 of 23 shots. Williams, who is committed to Michigan State University, currently has a 15-11-0-1-1 record on the season for the Jr. Blues with a 2.75 GAA and a .901 save percentage.

Max Brainin, Brandon Puricelli, and Janis Voris represented the Jr. Blues on the Midwest Roster. Brainin had a goal in Monday’s contest, while Puricelli added two assists. Voris stopped 16 of 18 in Monday’s matchup before stopping all 15 shots that he faced yesterday afternoon. Brainin and Puricelli did not make the scoresheet for yesterday’s game, but they’ve made it plenty of times throughout the season. Puricelli leads the Jr. Blues with 21 goals and 27 assists (48 points) and is just outside of the top ten for scoring in the league. Brainin has 13 goals and 26 assists (39) and is 3rd on the Jr. Blues in points. Voris currently sports a 5-2-0-0 record with a 2.61 GAA and a .907 save percentage.

We’d like to congratulate these four young men for their hard work and their commitment to bettering themselves and the Jr. Blues organization. The Top Prospects Tournament is a unique opportunity that not every player gets to experience and they took advantage of the opportunity in front of them. Congratulations Max, Brandon, Janis, and Jack!

Four Jr. Blues Players Will Participate in Top Prospects

Attleboro, Massachusetts – The NAHL’s Top Prospect Tournament kicks off this afternoon in Attleboro, MA at 1:00 pm EST. The Springfield Jr. Blues have four players at the tournament this year: Max Brainin, Brandon Puricelli, and Janis Voris are on the Midwest Roster, while Jack Williams is on the Selects Red roster.

Williams and the Selects Red play this afternoon in the tournament’s first game at 1:00 pm EST against the South Division roster. His second game will be tomorrow at 10:00 am EST against the Central Division roster.

Brainin, Puricelli, and Voris will start their portion of the tournament this evening at 7:00 pm EST against the Selects Blue roster. Their second tilt will be tomorrow at 4:00 pm EST against the South Division.

You can catch all of the action live on HockeyTV, and make sure to follow our Twitter page for live in game updates. The boys will be back for action this weekend against the Kenai River Brown Bears at the Nelson Center.

Murray Scores First, Jr. Blues Fall 3-2

Richfield, Minnesota – The Springfield Jr. Blues fell to the Minnesota Magicians 3-2 on Saturday night. Ryan Murray and Nikita Kozyrev scored for the Jr. Blues while Janis Voris stopped 24 of 27 shots in just his second loss of the season. The loss drops the Jr. Blues into 4th place in the division, and puts their record for the season at 22-17-3-1.

The Magicians scored the first three goals of the game to give them a 3-0 lead early in the 2nd period. The lead was Minnesota’s first lead of the weekend and proved to be too much for the Jr. Blues to overcome. Kozyrev tallied his 7th of the season with five seconds left in the period to trim the lead to 3-1 heading into the 2nd intermission.

That score would stand until the 14:14 mark of the 3rd period when Ryan Murray would score his first of the season to cut the deficit to just one goal. Despite a flurry of activity late, the Jr. Blues would not be able to complete the comeback and lost by the score of 3-2. Jayden Jensen, Nick Techel, and Max Brainin each had an assist in the game as well.

The loss, accompanied by the Janesville Jets win, pushed the Jr. Blues back down to 4th place in the division. Springfield sits two points behind Janesville for 3rd place, and five points behind the Fairbanks Ice Dogs for 2nd place. The Jr. Blues will head to Janesville, WI this weekend for a third crack at overtaking the Jets for 3rd place.

Groton, Nelson Lead Jr. Blues Past Magicians, 4-1

Richfield, Minnesota – The Springfield Jr. Blues began their weekend series against the Minnesota Magicians with a 4-1 victory on Thursday night. Cade Groton and Nigel Nelson each had a goal and an assist in the victory, while Janis Voris stopped 25 of 26 shots to earn his 5th win of the season.

Springfield opened the scoring 2:31 into the game on the captain Groton’s 2nd goal of the season to give the Jr. Blues a 1-0 lead over division leading Minnesota. The home team would strike on the power play a little more than five minutes later to knot the game up 1-1 heading into the 1st intermission.

From there it would be all Springfield as the Jr. Blues struck gold three times in the 2nd period. Caden Villegas tallied his 5th of the season, and his first since committing to Union College this week, to give the boys in blue a 2-1 lead. Ben Schmidling and Nelson would then score less than 30 seconds apart to give the Jr. Blues a commanding 4-1 lead heading into the 3rd period.

Despite quality scoring chances for both teams in the 3rd period the final score would be 4-1. New faces in Lukas Kuchera and Philip Mass each tallied an assist in their first games wearing the shield. Aaron Swanson had two assists in the victory, Giovanni Carabelli had one assist, and Brandon Puricelli extended his point streak to nine games with an assist.

With the victory the Jr. Blues have now won three in a row against the Magicians and seven of their last ten overall. Springfield’s record is now 21-16-3-1 for 46 points and are tied with the Janesville Jets for 3rd place in the Midwest Division.

A rematch between the two teams is set for tonight at 7:15 pm CST at Richfield Ice Arena in Richfield, MN. Catch all of the action live on HockeyTV, and make sure to follow our Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram for all the latest news and updates.

Jr. Blues Fall 4-2, Win Streak Stopped at 5 Games

Springfield, Illinois – The Springfield Jr. Blues fell to the Janesville Jets 4-2 on Saturday night to halt their win streak. With a rematch this weekend in Janesville, WI, the Jets are just 3 points in front of the Jr. Blues for 3rd place in the Midwest Division. The Jr. Blues record sits at 19-16-2-1 for 41 points and are comfortably 13 points ahead of Kenai River for 4th place.

Saturday was our Military Appreciation Night and we had a full house on hand as we looked to sweep the Jets and move into 3rd place in the division. The Janesville Jets had other ideas, however, as they took a 1-0 lead into the 1st intermission on a goal by Austin Koss. Tommy Middleton would extend their lead to 2-0 in the 2nd period as the Jets took control of the game.

Ben Schmidling and Max Brainin scored 1:09 apart late in the 2nd period to tie the game up 2-2 heading into the break. Brandon Puricelli, Nikita Kozyrev, and Blake Finley picked up assists on the goals respectively. However, the Jets would make the most of their opportunities in the 3rd period with goals by Brenden Olson and Carter Hottmann to defeat the Jr. Blues 4-2.

Janes Voris stopped 24 of 28 shots for the Jr. Blues in his first loss since he joined the team earlier this month. Springfield capitalized on their only power play opportunity of the game, and their penalty kill was a clean 2-for-2 on the evening.

Jr. Blues Sweep Brown Bears

Soldotna, Alaska – Janis Voris won his 4th game with the Springfield Jr. Blues on Saturday night in a 2-1 victory over the Kenai River Brown Bears. Nikita Kozyrev stayed hot with his 6th goal of the season, and Aaron Swanson extended his point streak to 7 games. The Jr. Blues are in 4th place with a 18-15-2-1 record and are now only three points behind the Janesville Jets.

Swanson scored his 6th goal with Springfield a quarter of the way through the 2nd period to give the Jr. Blues a 1-0 lead. Just a minute and a half later, Kozyrev would extend the lead to 2-0. The Brown Bears would break up Voris’ shut out bid with :11 left in regulation, and the final score would be 2-1.

Voris stopped 23 of 24 shots in his second consecutive start, and his third start on the road trip. Brandon Puricelli, Jayden Jensen, and Max Brainin each had an assists in the victory.

Jr. Blues Defeat Brown Bears 3-1

Soldotna, Alaska – The Springfield Jr. Blues defeated the Kenai River Brown Bears 3-1 on Friday night in the second game of a three game series. Ben Schmidling and Brandon Puricelli each had two assists and Janis Voris stopped 26 of 27 to earn his 3rd win.

Unlike their start on Thursday, Springfield started strong and never looked back. Sam Sterne scored his 2nd goal of the season 8:02 into the 1st period, and Nikita Kozyrev scored his 5th goal of the season just over a minute later to give the Jr. Blues a 2-0 lead. It would prove to be all the offense they would need to win their 3rd straight game.

Aaron Swanson scored an insurance goal with 6:31 left in the 2nd period to give the Jr. Blues a 3-0 lead and firm control of the game. The Brown Bears would break Voris’s shutout bid on Markus Komul’s power play goal in the 3rd period to cut the deficit to 3-1, but wouldn’t be able to mount any more offense.

Max Brainin tallied his 20th assist of the season on Kozyrev’s goal in the 1st period, he leads the team in that category. Nick Techel also had an assist in the game.

Game three is scheduled for this evening at 7:30 pm AKST (10:30 pm CST) and can be streamed live on HockeyTV!

Swanson, Voris Earn Honorable Mentions

Springfield, Illinois – The Springfield Jr. Blues, proud member of the North American Hockey League (NAHL), are pleased to announce that Aaron Swanson and Jani Voris were named Honorable Mentions for the Midwest Division for their play this past weekend.

Aaron Swanson, 19, was acquired from the Amarillo Bulls in December and has provided an immediate impact. Swanson scored the lone goal on Friday night against Fairbanks and scored the second goal on Saturday. In eight games with the Jr. Blues he has 3 goals and 5 assists. Swanson is in his second NAHL season.

Janis Voris, 17, joined the Jr. Blues after Christmas to solidify the goaltending. In Saturday night’s contest Voris stopped 37 of 40 shots en route to his second win with the team. He has seen action in three games with the Jr. Blues and currently has a 2-0-0-0 record with a 2.97 GAA and a .904 save percentage. Voris, who is from Riga, Latvia, is in his first season in the NAHL.

Congratulations to Aaron and Janis for their outstanding performances!