On repeat: Jets set to take on Magicians again

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Eric Schmoldt
Thursday, November 7, 2013

JANESVILLE--Joe Dibble and Jason Dobes were still watching film from last weekend’s series against the Minnesota Magicians in their office on Wednesday afternoon.

The Janesville Jets coaches get another first-hand look at the team on Friday.

In one of the quirks of scheduling in the North American Hockey League, the Jets and Magicians played three straight days in Janesville over the weekend and now turn around for a two-night series in Richfield, Minn. Friday’s game is at 7:30 p.m., while Saturday’s is at 7:05.

“The biggest thing is remembering the tendencies of that team,” said Dibble, the Jets’ head coach. “And you’ve got to tell the guys to keep their emotions in check.

“It’s not the good hockey that transfers over in all these long series with teams, it’s always, ‘Why is this kid angry?’ or ‘There was a cheap hit here.’”

The Jets (6-9-1, sixth in the NAHL North Division) will run into similar situations later this year when they play back-to-back series against the Soo Eagles in January, and again in March against the Minnesota Wilderness.

“This is the first time I’ve done this, this kind of schedule,” said Jets winger Robin Hoglund, who has three years of junior hockey under his belt. “I actually like it. We can focus on what we have to do, and we learn from their team and see what they do.”

Dibble said the team’s main focus continues to be working on its principles moreso than scouting opponents.

And after falling behind early in games recently, Janesville is focused on having stronger starts to games.

“The first three or four shifts, that’s probably the biggest thing right now,” Hoglund said. “To get going right away off the bat and not spend as much time in our defensive zone.”

The Magicians (8-5-2, fifth in the Midwest Division) took two of three games last weekend at the Janesville Ice Arena.

“We’re going to go through this week of practice the same as we would last week,” Dibble said. “But if they might have made some tweaks throughout the weekend, we watch the video and find those.

“But our big thing has been worrying about ourselves, and making teams change to us, not us change to them. We have to get everybody on the same page on all three levels, and we’re close.”

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