Ice Dogs

The Fairbanks Ice Dogs gather near center Ice following their loss to the Janesville Jets Friday night. 

Sometimes you can play better in a loss than you do in a win. While the Fairbanks Ice Dogs were sloppy in a victory Thursday night, they had more energy from the onset on Friday.

Unfortunately, it didn’t result in the same victory they earned the night before.

Credit Fairbanks for fighting back in the third period, but the game was decided in the second period as the Janesville Jets ended up with the 4-2 win over the Dogs. The loss was the first in four games for Fairbanks, who now sit at 12-5-0-1 and remain atop the Midwest Division.

After going up 3-0 in Thursday’s game, the Jets cut it to 3-2 before the Dogs added two insurance goals. Fairbanks head coach Trevor Stewart and second year player Jake Hale both acknowledged the Dogs’ effort could’ve been better. Friday, however, it was a scoreless affair early with the Dogs outplaying the Jets. The effort in the third period was better than Janesville’s, too, but it was the second period that sunk things for Fairbanks.

“It’s nice that we were able to make a game of it at the end,” said Stewart. “That fourth goal really hurt us. Our mistakes seemed to be magnified tonight. Janesville did a good job. They seemed much more prepared and on top of pucks. I thought we had a really nice start to the game, but we couldn’t find that goal and Janesville was able to gain some momentum from that and that’s the result.”

The Dogs outshot Janesville 11-9 in the first period, but both teams were held scoreless through one. Both teams had seven shots a piece in the second period, but it was the Jets who seized control.

Just over a minute into the second period, Ethan Begg scored unassisted to put the Jets on the board. A little over three minutes later, Cy LeClerc made it a 2-0 game on the assist from AJ Casperson and Jan Lasak. With 1:57 left in the period, William Gustavsson made it 3-0 and dampened the Dipper’s spirits.

The Jets added their last goal 4:19 into the third period when LeClerc passed the puck to Jack Ford who put it in the back of the net.

Again, credit the Dogs for never giving up. Cameron Ricotta erased the zero on the board for Fairbanks when McCabe Dvorak and Jacob Conrad found him for the first Dogs’ goal of the night at 10:55 in the third. Nic Ostbloom scored five minutes later on an assist from Hale and Tyler Stewart to make the score more respectable.

In the end, though, it wasn’t enough to earn the win.

The Dogs faced off with the Jets one last time this week with a Saturday night game. That game ended after press time and can be read about in Monday’s paper.

Contact sports editor Hart Pisani at hpisani@newsminer.com or 459-7530.

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