CHIPPEWA FALLS, WI- The Chippewa Steel started their weekend with a Thursday night game against the Janesville Jets. This will be the first of three games for the Steel as they travel to Austin, MN to take on the Bruins Friday and Saturday night. The Jets also have a three-game weekend ahead of them as they return to Janesville for a home series with the Minnesota Wilderness.
Grant Boldt started in goal for the Steel, his first home start since the end of December. Jackson Decker and Luke Farthing also got the start on defense along with the Dorfman-Moberg-Vaughan line. Both teams came out hot to start the first period. Grant Boldt held his own between the pipes fending off a fast-paced Jets offense. Jacob Dirks was the first to find the back of the cage on the power play which gave the Steel their first lead of the night. Connor Szmul added an assist on the first period’s only goal.
The Janesville Jets began to come alive in the second period. A late power play goal by the Jets evened things out on the scoreboard. The Steel continued to fire shots towards the Jets’ net minder but were unable to get a shot to find the back of the cage. It was Janesville again in the final seconds of the second period scoring to take the lead heading into the third.
The Steel rallied back scoring three unanswered goals to start the third period. It was Luke Farthing scoring the tying goal of the period, his tenth season goal against the Janesville Jets. Not long after Connor Szmul found the back of the net scoring his 20th goal on the year. Spencer Oyler also added a goal to the mix, his seventh season goal making it a 5-2 game. The Jets were able to answer late in the third period to keep the Jets in the game but were answered quickly by a Jackson Decker empty-net goal. Decker’s goal gave the Steel a two-goal advantage and ended the game with a final score of 5-3.
The Steel will be back at home next weekend for a series with the St. Cloud Blizzard. Friday night’s game is College Night as well as $2 Beer Night presented by Leinenkugels. Saturday’s game promotion is Family Four Pack Night presented by Pepsi. For tickets visit chippewasteelhockey.com or call 715-861-2131.
The Chippewa Steel are members of the NAHL which is the oldest and largest junior hockey league of its kind in the United States and one of only two USA Hockey-certified leagues that operate under the non pay-to-play model. The NAHL is also one of the best at advancing players to NCAA and professional hockey. Notable Alumni of the NAHL include Ryan Suter (MIN), Patrick Kane (CHI) and Phil Kessel (ARI) All league games are viewable via HockeyTV. For more information, visit chippewasteelhockey.com.