FAIRBANKS- The Fairbanks Ice Dogs travel to the Kenai Peninsula this weekend for their first series against in-state rival Kenai Rivier of the season, a 3-game set in Soldotna. Both teams are coming off a bye weekend, with just three points separating them in the standings through 20 games this season.
The Ice Dogs were extremely active in the community over their bye week, spending time on Eielson Air Force base. Base officials hosted the team, allowing the Ice Dogs to tour hangers, take part in security dog demonstrations, and handle Air Force weaponry. Perhaps the most special moments came when the team inspected an Air Force plane named in its honor. The plane is complete with an Ice Dogs wall, so all aboard know who to cheer for in the NAHL.
The Dogs also spent time at Ben Eielson Jr/Sr High School for their annual volleyball match against the Ravens, and helped open a new skating facility on base. The military is such a huge part of the Ice Dogs fan base. It’s important that the team not only recognizes that, but also the sacrifice the men, women and their families make for our country.
Back to this weekend’s series, where the Ice Dogs come in locked in a tie with Springfield for fourth place in the NAHL Midwest Division with 21 points on the season. The Brown Bears sit two points back in fifth place. After beginning the season on a tear, Kenai River has tapered off, going 2-7-0-1 in their last 10 games, and is in the midst of a 3-game skid heading into this weekend’s match up.
The Ice Dogs are 6-2-1-1 in their last 10 games. Rookie Jonny Sorenson leads the team with 19 points off 6 goals and 13 assists. The 6-1, 175 pound left hander ranks third among NAHL rookies in scoring, and his 13 helpers are tied for tops among league rookies.
This weekend’s games will mark the first of 12 between the Ice Dogs and Brown Bears this season. The games will come in bunches, as they will play three games this weekend, followed by three games in Fairbanks Nov. 29 – Dec. 1. The intrastate season series does not again resume until the final six games of the season in late March.
This weekends series can be viewed live via pay per view through HockeyTV. The games will be show at the Finish Line Restaurant, located near the LaQuinta Inn and Suites near Fairbanks International Airport.
Also, be sure to get tickets for the following series, as your Ice Dogs host the Brown Bears for a three game set at the Dip. Tickets are available at Play it Again Sports, Gene’s Chrysler, Fairbanks Community Museum, Ft. Wainwright ASYMCA, Eielson Community Center, the Ice Dogs office, and as always online at fairbanksicedogs.com.