Top line boosts Jets during four-game win streak

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Eric Schmoldt
Thursday, October 24, 2013

JANESVILLE--Zach Avolio has never considered himself a point-totaling machine.

The second-year Janesville Jets left wing scored one goal and eight assists in 50 games last year.

But with Janesville’s top line meshing well early, Avolio already has five points through 10 games this season.

The Jets take their four-game winning streak on the road for three games beginning tonight. They play at Coulee Region ahead of a two-game set with the Minnesota Wildnerness on Saturday and Sunday.

“I’ve never worried about points all that much,” he said. “But it makes it a lot easier to get points playing with these guys.”

Those guys are his linemates—center Jordan Himley and right wing Michael Louria.

Louria was named the top star in the North American Hockey League’s North Division for his efforts this past weekend, when he scored three goals and assisted on another in a sweep of Coulee Region. He leads the Jets with seven assists and is tied at the top with six goals.

“We’re just moving pucks, playing simple and creating chances,” Louria said of the Jets’ top line. “It’s easy to play with these guys, too, because they’re great players.

“We all bring something different to the line, and it clicks pretty well.”

Avolio and Himley were roommates last year and picked up the chemistry where they left off. Louria is a first-year player, but has never been shy about scoring points while working his way through the ranks.

The three of them have combined for seven goals and 10 assists over the past three games. It’s helped give the Jets a big lift after the opened the season with a 1-4-1 record.

“The biggest thing is the work ethic; they haven’t stopped, which is nice,” Janesville assistant coach Jason Dobes said. “For a little while, they were like, ‘What do we do?’ But I’m going to give the veterans and captains props, they’ve worked with the younger kids to keep their heads up.

“If you beat yourself up mentally at the beginning of the year, it’s not good.”

Janesville will now be tested with six games in 11 days. After the three-game road trip, they’ll host a three-game series with the Minnesota Magicians next weekend.

“You have to eat right, drink fluids, get your sleep, take care of your body, because these next two weeks are going to be tough,” Dobes said.

At least the Jets have a hot top offensive line and momentum on their side.

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