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Series Preview: Fairbanks at Johnstown

            The Johnstown Tomahawks return from the holiday break to welcome the defending Robertson Cup champion Fairbanks Ice Dogs to the War Memorial. This week’s games are the first two meetings between the two teams, separated by 3,137 miles.

            The Tomahawks and Ice Dogs will meet four times this season, with the final two games being played in Fairbanks at the end of February.

The Tomahawks

            The Tomahawks look to close out 2014 with a pair of wins, after taking three of four points from Keystone before the holiday break. The Tomahawks took the first game 5-1 on Dec. 18, before earning a point in a 2-1 shootout loss the following night.

            Luke Lynch had two goals and an assist in the two games, while Trevor Recktenwald had three assists. Ryan Bednard had an impressive weekend, stopping 50 of 52 shots in two games, and 16 of 20 shots in the shootout.

            The Tomahawks offense is led by Joe Drabin and Recktenwald. Both come into this week’s games with 20 points (8G-12A). Cam Bleck leads the team with 9 goals.

            Following the games against Fairbanks, Johnstown welcomes Kenai River to the War Memorial this Friday and Saturday.

The Ice Dogs

            Fairbanks makes the trip to Johnstown, looking to rebound after losing three of its last four games. They split their most recent series against the Minnesota Magicians, losing the first game 4-1, before rebounding with a 4-1 win two nights later.

            The Ice Dogs sit just one point behind the Minnesota Wilderness for first place in the Midwest Division. They also hold a one-point advantage over Coulee Region for second place in the division.

            Fairbanks has four players with 30+ points, with three  of those scorers in the league’s top ten. They are led by Chandler Madry, who is one of only two scorers in the NAHL with 40+ points.

            The Ice Dogs close out the week with a pair of games against Keystone this Friday & Saturday.

 Facts & Notes

· The Tomahawks are 1-0 in their lone Tuesday game. The Tomahawks defeated Michigan 4-1 on New Years Eve last season.

· Last season, the Tomahawks went 4-2-2 against the Midwest Division. All eight games were played against Wenatchee.

· Fairbanks goaltender  Patrick Munson is tied for second in the league with 15 wins.

North Division

            All six North Division teams are in action this week, with match-ups spread over the next five days. Keystone hosts Kenai River tonight and tomorrow, before welcoming Fairbanks to the Ice Mine this weekend. Michigan travels to Janesville for games the next two nights, before the Janesville plays Coulee Region in a home-and-home this weekend. Soo travels to Springfield this Friday and Saturday.

Current Streaks

· Johnstown

· Trevor Recktenwald: Seven points in his last five games (2G-5A)

· Joe Drabin: Three points in his last five games (1G-5A)

· Casey Linkenheld: Five points in his last three games (2G-3A)

· Luke Lynch: Points in four of his last five games (4G-5A)

· Fairbanks

· Chandler Madry: Points in four of his last five games (2G-2A)

· Jacob Hetz: Five points in his last five games (2G-3A)

· Todd Burgess: Assists in three straight games

· Patrick Munson: 3-1-1 in his last five games