Planet Ice Gameday Preview: March 7, 2014

Janesville at Johnstown
Friday March 7th
7:30 p.m.

The Series
Tonight, the Tomahawks meet the Janesville Jets for the first time this season. The teams will play four times this month, with the final two meetings taking place during the last weekend of the season. Johnstown went 3-0-1 in its four meetings against Janesville last season, winning both games played at the War Memorial. Jordan Watt was one of the Tomahawks leading scorers against the Jets, tallying five points (2G-3A) in four meetings. Mitch Hall and Brandon Reinholz each had two points against the Jets.

The Tomahawks
The Tomahawks return home after being swept by the Michigan Warriors last weekend. In the first game, Tanner Barnes got the Tomahawks on the board first, before Michigan scored three unanswered goals in a 3-1 victory. Shane Bednard and Mitch Hall each added assists on the Barnes power-play goal. On Saturday, The teams combined for 13 goals, but the Warriors came out on top with a 9-4 victory. Matthew Meier scored twice and added an assist for the Tomahawks, while Bednard added three assists. TJ Stuntz and Zach Szajner each had five assists for the Warriors. Following this weekend’s games, the Tomahawks travel to Springfield for a pair of games next Friday and Saturday. They return home for the final time this season March 21-23 against the Soo Eagles, before traveling to Wisconsin to take on the Jets in the regular season finale.

The Jets
Janesville comes into tonight’s game after sweeping Springfield at home last weekend. The Jets won the first game 2-0, thanks to a pair of goals by Jordan Himley. The Jets completed the sweep with a 5-3 win on Saturday night. Jordan Himley scored a pair of goals in the win, while Alex Smith added three assists. The Jets return home to take on the Michigan Warriors next Friday and Saturday. They travel to Michigan and Springfield before welcoming the Tomahawks for the regular-season finale.

Division Preview
All six north division teams play divisional games this weekend, as Michigan travels to Soo and Port Huron visits Springfield. Port Huron leads Michigan by six points for the top spot in the division, with the Tomahawks currently in third place with 56 points. Janesville sits in fourth place with 51 points, while Springfield and Soo are tied with 49 points.

Key Stats

  • The Tomahawks and Jets last met on February 9, 2013 in Janesville. The Tomahawks won the game 3-1.
  • The Jets have the sixth-best power-play percentage in the league (17.8%)
  • Both the Tomahawks and Jets are 6-2 in shootouts this season.
  • Shane Bednard has 14 points (4G-10A) in his last 10 games.
  • Alex Okicki is fifth among goaltenders in games played (36), minutes (2039:16), and wins (19)