The Janesville Jets made quick work of the Chippewa Steel on Wednesday night.
Tommy Middleton and Nick Leyer scored two goals each, and Owen Millward stopped 38 of 39 shots to lead the Jets to an 8-1 NAHL win at the Janesville Ice Arena.
Janesville, which moved back into first place in the Midwest Division with the win, led 2-0 less than 10 minutes into the game and 3-0 after one period.
“I really like the progression in our game tonight,” Janesville coach Parker Burgess said. “We took the next step, which is good to see, and that’s not letting a team get back into the game when we get ahead early. We’ve had games before where we’ve been up 3-0, but then we have a lull and stop doing the things that got us the lead, and all of a sudden it’s 3-2. That wasn’t the case tonight.”
Janesville jumped on the visitors right away. Middleton got the party started with his sixth goal of the season at 1:26 of the first. Leyer made it 2-0 at 9:10, and Carter Hottmann’s goal with 45 seconds left in the opening period pushed the lead to 3-0.
The Jets took advantage of a 5-on-3 advantage early in the second period to go up 4-0. Middleton tallied his second of the game, whistling a shot past goalie Berk Berkeliev at 5:03 mark.
Chippewa got its only goal of the game on a power-play at 10:33 of the second, but the Jets’ Justin Engelkes answered with his first goal of the season at 12:06 of the second. The goal was actually Engelkes’ first one in almost two years.
“It’s a big weight off my shoulders,” Engelkes said of the goal. “I think someone posted on Twitter that it’s my first one since March 28 of 2019. I’ve been through a lot of injuries, so it’s nice to get that off my back.”
Cal Mell and Leyer added third-period goals to complete the rout.
Janesville now has 38 points in the Midwest Division, with the Minnesota Magicians one-point behind. Janesville hosts the Magicians in a two-game series Friday and Saturday at the Ice Arena.
JANESVILLE 8, CHIPPEWA 1
Chippewa 0 1 0—1
Janesville 3 3 2—8
J—Tommy Middleton (Cade Destefani, Nick Leyer) 1:26. J—Leyer (Destefani, Jaxson Ezman) 9:10. J—Carter Hottmann (Max Itagaki) 19:15
J—Middleton (Will Troutwine, Hottmann), pp, 5:03. C—Jack Brown (Kylar Fenton), pp, 10:33. J—Justin Engelkes (Hottmann, Itagaki) 12:06. J—Ezman (Matthew Romer, Cal Mell), pp, 17:07
J—Mell (Shane Ott) 7:08. J—Leyer (Spencer Kring) 13:27
Saves—Berk Berkeliev (C) 12, Grant Boldt (C) 10, Owen Millward (J) 38