Springfield, Illinois – The new year brought new excitement at the Nelson Center as the Springfield Jr. Blues took four points from the Minnesota Magicians to move into 4th place in the Midwest Division. The Jr. Blues record sits at 14-14-2-1 for a total of 31 points, three points ahead of Kenai River.
Friday, January 4th: Jr. Blues 3 – 2 Minnesota
The Jr. Blues jumped out to a 3-0 lead over 1st place Minnesota on Friday night thanks to goals from Caden Villegas, Nikita Kozyrev, and Ben Schmidling. Minnesota scored twice late in the 2nd period to make the game interesting, but Jack Williams would shut the door in the 3rd period to earn his 10th win of the season. Aaron Swanson had two assists in the contest and Villegas had a goal and an assist to pace the team offensively.
Saturday, January 5th: Jr. Blues 2 – 1 Minnesota (OT)
In front of a raucous crowd at the Nelson Center, the Jr. Blues came from behind in the 3rd period to complete the weekend sweep. Max Osborne scored four minutes into the 3rd period to tie the game up, and he would get an assist on Nikita Kozyrev’s overtime game winning goal just 1:51 into the extra frame. Janis Voris, making his Jr. Blues debut in net, stopped 20 of 21 shots to earn his first victory. Osborne and Kozyrev each finished with two points, and Aaron Swanson and Brandon Puricelli each had one assist.
The Jr. Blues will be heading to Alaska on Wednesday as they prepare to take on the Fairbanks Ice Dogs this weekend. It’s the third series between the two teams this season with Springfield holding a 3-1 advantage through four games. After a two game set in Fairbanks, the Jr. Blues will stay in Alaska for a three game series in Kenai against the Brown Bears. Through four games played against each other, each team has two victories. The boys will be back in town for a pair of games against the Janesville Jets on January 25th and 26th
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