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Garden State Of Mind: Tomahawks Take on Titans

TOMAHAWKS (32-11-4) at NEW JERSEY TITANS (30-16-2)

Location: Middletown Ice World| Middletown, New Jersey

Game Time: Tonight (7:30 p.m.), Friday (7:30 p.m.), Saturday (7:30 p.m.)

Head to Head Matchup: The Tomahawks currently own the advantage against the Titans this season with a 4-3-0 record. However, Middletown Ice World has been a thorn in the side of the Hawks as they are 1-2 on the season in the Garden State. New Jersey has outscored the Tomahawks 26-18 in their seven meetings with the latest matchup being an 8-1 victory for the Titans.

Bounce Back: Johnstown is looking to bounce back after a disappointing weekend series at Aston with the first-place Rebels. The Tomahawks dropped two close games to the Rebels at the IceWorks Skating Complex. Friday, March 3, the Hawks fell 2-1 in overtime with Josh Norman scoring the lone goal for Johnstown. The next night, despite a two-goal performance from Filips Buncis, the Hawks dropped a 3-2 decision to Aston.

Closing In on History: Tomahawks forwards Dalton Hunter and Donovan Ott are closing in on the single season goal record that was set by Robert Morris freshman Luke Lynch last season when he scored 29 goals. With 25 on the season, Ott is just five goals away from setting the new record. However, linemate Hunter is just six goals away. Moreover, captain Filips Buncis is only six assists away from tying the Tomahawks all-time assists leaders, Casey Linkenheld and Andrew Romano, with 56 helpers in his career.

High-Octane Titans: New Jersey boasts the NAHL’s second highest-scoring offense with 188 goals scored so far this season. Rookie and Sacred Heart University-commit, Jordan Kaplan, paces the New Jersey attack with 19 goals and 24 assists in 41 games. The Titans offense was put on display last weekend against the Northeast Generals. Trailing 6-3 in the third period during a March 3 home game, the Titans rattled off nine goals in the final frame to win the game 12-6. New Jersey came back the next night and soundly defeated Northeast 7-2 at Middletown Ice World.

Playoff Positioning: Johnstown is currently six points ahead of the Titans for second place in the East Division. ­This weekend’s series is very crucial for positioning as second place is guaranteed home-ice advantage for the first round of the Robertson Cup playoffs.

North Division Standings

xAston Rebels                       (40-9-1)            81 points

xJohnstown Tomahawks (32-11-4)          68 points

xNew Jersey Titans             (30-16-2)          62 points

xWB/Scranton Knights      (23-23-4)          50 points

Northeast Generals           (3-44-3)             9 points