Tag Archives: Topeka Pilots

Jr. Blues and Pilots Split Final Series

Topeka, Kansas – The Springfield Jr. Blues ended the 2018 calendar year in Topeka, KS for their 4th and final series against the Pilots this season. It would prove to be a weekend filled with the unexpected, and would leave the Jr. Blues in the 4th and final playoff spot with a 12-14-2-1 record.

Friday December 21st: Jr. Blues 5 – Pilots 2

Friday proved to follow the trend of road teams winning in this season’s series as the Jr. Blues jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the 1st period and never looked back. Nick Techel scored his 8th goal of the season to open the offense for the Jr. Blues and just three minutes later Ben Schmidling would continue his solid play of late with his 12th goal.

Despite a 2nd period tally by the Pilots, the Jr. Blues would score three 3rd period goals to ground the Pilots 5-2. Caden Villegas, who just recently returned from a call up to the USHL’s Central Illinois Flying Aces, scored his 3rd of the season 1:36 into the final frame. Brandon Puricelli would add his 19th goal with just under five minutes left in regulation, and Aaron Swanson would score his first goal with Springfield to seal the deal.

Jack Williams made 24 saves in his 9th win of the season and third win against Topeka. In addition to his goal, Ben Schmidling added two assists and Max Brainin had three assists in Springfield’s most dominant performance since November 17th against Topeka.

Saturday December 22nd: Jr. Blues 0 – Pilots 7

Saturday showed that the NAHL has enough parody to shock everyone. After a dominant performance on Friday, the Jr. Blues came out looking for the sweep of Topeka and two much needed points. But McLean Dorr and the Pilots would have very different ideas.

Topeka opened up the scoring 2:45 into the game and would add a second momentum changing goal just :20 later to lead 2-0 three minutes into the 1st period. From there, five different Topeka players would score on both Williams and backup Caleb Hannon to shutout the Jr. Blues 7-0. It’s the first time this season that Springfield has been held off the score sheet, and the third game against Topeka that has seen one of the teams left without any goals (October 6th and November 17th).

Williams took the loss in the game, his 9th of the season, while stopping 8 shots. Hannon, who took over in the 1st period and played all of the 2nd period, made 9 saves.

By the Numbers:

  • After 8 games played against each other, Springfield and Topeka each have 4 wins. Each Friday game was won by the road team, and each Saturday game was won by the home team.
  • While Friday’s proved to be closer, hard fought games, Saturday’s showed to be a chance for the home team to flex their offensive muscles. Despite more goal being scored during the opening games than the second games (26 on FRI and 24 on SAT), the home teams outscored the visitors on Saturday’s 22-2.
  • Brandon Puricelli scored his 19th goal and added his 12th assist during Friday night’s contest for a total of 31 points on the season. In 28 games played this season Puricelli  has already eclipsed his point total from last year (24 in 27 games).
  • Max Brainin had three assists on Friday and has 18 assists and 28 points overall on the season.
  • Ben Schmidling had one goal and two assists on Friday and now has 27 points on the season.

Up Next:

The boys are off for the Holidays, but will be home at the Nelson Center on January 4th and 5th to face off against the Minnesota Magicians. Make sure to check out our Facebook, Twitter, and website for more information on upcoming events, player news, and more!

Weekend Preview vs. Topeka Pilots

Springfield, Illinois- The Springfield Jr. Blues are headed west this weekend to take on the Topeka Pilots in a inter-divisional matchup. The Jr. Blues are currently in 4th place in the Midwest division with a 9-11-2-1 record.

Tale of the Tape:

Topeka Pilots: 12-10-1-1, 3rd in South Division

The Pilots have visited Springfield twice already this season, the two teams splitting the four games played. Topeka is led by forward Dallas Tulik (13 goals, 9 assists) and defenseman Max Finner (3 goals, 13 assists). Emil Gransoe has provided stability in net for the Pilots with 9 wins this season, two against the Jr. Blues.

There are a few familiar faces on the Topeka bench this season. Former Jr. Blues forwards Brendan Schultz, Kyler Yeo, and Kaiden Scott are all on the Pilots roster after playing in Springfield last season.

Springfield Jr. Blues: 9-11-2-1, T-4th in Midwest Division

The Jr. Blues were cooled off last weekend by the Janesville Jets. They had previously won four of six before being swept by their division rival. Springfield is led offensively by Brandon Puricelli (15 goals, 10 assists) who is 3rd in the league in goals, and Max Brainin (9 goals, 11 assists). Jack Williams has played well of late winning four of his last six starts, including November 17th against the Pilots.

The only Friday wins this season for Springfield have come on the road against Janesville in October and in Fairbanks earlier this month. They look to continue to be strong on the road this weekend in Topeka.

 

Catch all of the action live on HockeyTV, and make sure to follow our Facebook and Twitter pages for live in game updates and player news.

 

Springfield Splits Series with Topeka

Springfield, Illinois – The Springfield Jr. Blues split their weekend series against the Topeka Pilots and now have a 9-9-2-1 record. With 21 points the Jr. Blues are currently tied with the Fairbanks Ice Dogs for 3rd in the Midwest Division. 

The Jr. Blues three game win streak came to an end on Friday at the hands of the Pilots, 2-1. Jonathan Panisa (Irvine, CA) scored the lone Springfield goal in the 1st period, but that would be the only offense Topeka goaltender Emil Gransoe would allow. Jack Williams (St. Louis, MO) stopped 18 of 20 shots in the loss, his 5th loss of the season.

With over 100 boy scouts and girl scouts in attendance, the Jr. Blues exploded offensively on Saturday night by a final score of 6-0. It would turn out to be a night of firsts for many Jr. Blues players as Nikita Kozyrev (Tallin, Estonia), Kyle Gudme (St. Clair, MI), and Sam Sterne (Batavia, IL) would all score their first goals of the season.

Brandon Puricelli (St. Louis, MO) would add two goals of his own and Ryan Reid (Phoenix, AZ) notched his third goal of the season. Panisa had three assists in the game, while Kozyrev and Sterne both had two. Williams stopped all 26 shots sent his way to earn his first shutout of the season and his 6th win.

The Jr. Blues will be at home this weekend to play the second place Janesville Jets at 7:05 pm on Friday night and 6:05 pm on Saturday night. The Jets are currently four points ahead of the Jr. Blues in the division but have played one more game. 

Jr. Blues Blank Topeka to Split Series

Springfield, Illinois – The Springfield Jr. Blues shutout the Topeka Pilots 3-0 on Saturday night to split the weekend series and improve their record to 4-3-1-0. The Jr. Blues still sit in 4th in the Midwest Division but are just one point behind the Janesville Jets and Minnesota Magicians who are tied for 2nd place.

Saturday’s game was offense heavy in the 2nd period again as the Jr. Blues scored three times during the period. Max Brainin (Buffalo Grove, IL) scored 2:47 into the second frame for his first goal of the season, assisted by Nick Techel (Wausau, WI) and Ryan Reid (Phoenix, AZ). Brainin would strike again with a little less than five minutes left in the period to increase the lead to 2-0. Ben Schmidling (St. Joseph, MO) and Max Osborne (Anchorage, AK) assisted on Brainin’s second goal.

But the offense wasn’t through yet. With just :08 left in the period, Ryan Reid scored his second goal of the season from Ben Schmidling and Nick Techel to put the Jr. Blues ahead 3-0 heading into the second intermission.

That would be all the scoring Caleb Hannon (Bufallo, NY) would need, however, as he shut the door on Topeka to earn his first shutout and second win of the season.The 19-year-old Taft School alumni also made a huge save on a penalty shot in the 2nd period that would have tied the game. Hannon improved his Goals Against Average (GAA) to 1.33 which is good for 6th best in the NAHL.

The Jr. Blues travel to Minnesota this weekend to square off with the Magicians on Friday and Saturday. The Magicians have been paced by goaltender Ethan Haider, who has four wins and a 1.67 GAA. The Jr. Blues will look to solve Haider and the Magicians and climb higher in the standings and you can watch the games live on HockeyTV.

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Jr. Blues Rally Late, Come Up Short

Springfield, Illinois – The Springfield Jr. Blues late rally came up short against the Topeka Pilots last night and Topeka won 5-4. The Jr. Blues now sit at 3-3-1-0 and remain in 4th in the Midwest Division.

Springfield opened the scoring on Nick Techel (Wausau, WI) second of the season with :07 left in the 1st period to head into the 1st intermission leading 1-0. The 2nd period saw four unanswered goals by Topeka in 10 minutes to shift momentum completely in their favor.

The 3rd period started similarly to the 2nd as Topeka padded their lead just :20 into the frame to make it 5-1. But the Jr. Blues refused to roll over for the 1st place Pilots as they scored three goals in 1:11 to bring the game within one, 5-4. But that was all the offense the Jr. Blues could muster as Topeka held off the rally to claim the victory.

Brandon Puricelli (St. Louis, MO) extended his point streak to six games, Giovanni Carabelli (Shelby Township, MI) scored his third goal of the year, Jonathan Panisa (Irvine, CA) scored his second goal in a Jr. Blues jersey, and Techel added a second goal in the 3rd period to give him two on the evening and three on the year.

Tonight’s game will be our Scheels Family Night, Scheels will be in attendance to hand out coupons and a Family Fun Pack Giveaway. Doors open at 5:00 p.m. and puck drop is at 6:00 p.m.

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