FAIRBANKS- Fresh off a road sweep of NAHL South Division foes, the Fairbanks Ice Dogs are back in the friendly confines of the Big Dipper Ice Arena for a 5-game home stand. The Dogs, who ascended to first place in the Midwest Division while on the road, open a 3-game series on Thursday against the Springfield Jr. Blues, who currently hold fourth place in the Midwest.
It’s a tight divisional race early in the season. The Dogs lead the Kenai River Brown Bears by just two points, Chippewa by three and the Jr. Blues by eight. The Minnesota Magicians and Janesville Jets share the NA Midwest cellar with 13 points, just 10 back of the Dogs.
“These are our only three home games with Springfield in the regular season,” said Ice Dogs Head Coach Trevor Stewart. “It’s important that we protect home ice and stack head to head points when we have the opportunity against a divisional opponent.”
The Dogs completed a rampage of the South Division with a pair of wins over the New Mexico Ice Wolves last weekend, winning 2-1 on Friday and 8-3 on Saturday. Fairbanks native Nick Ostbloom scored his first goal as an Ice Dog in Friday’s win, while veteran Parker Brown marked a first period hat trick on Saturday night.
Saturday’s 5-point performance (1-4-5) for Oliver Kjaer rocketed the ‘Great Dane’ to second on the Ice Dogs season scoring list with 16 points. Jack Johnston continues to lead the Dogs with 17 points off 8 goals and 9 assists this season.
Tickets for this weekend’s series are on sale now at Gene’s Chrysler, Play it Again Sports, Fort Wainwright, Eielson, the Ice Dogs office, and as always online.