Kopfstein goal highlights solid performance

By Jim den Hollander



The Dells Ducks kicked off a four-game weekend that will both start and conclude its pre-season exhibition contests Friday afternoon with a 5-1 loss at the hands of the mighty Metro Jets.

Coming off a six-win season, the Ducks are looking for improvements in virtually every area and despite the loss against the perennial USPHL Great Lakes Division Champion Jets, the Ducks showed several positive signs.

Dells Ducks

At this time a year ago, the Ducks played exhibition games against the Wisconsin Rapids Riverkings and lost by a double-digit total.

The team looked confident and not afraid of its opponent. The biggest positive signs were play in its own end and a solid looking transition game. Shot totals were unavailable but while the Ducks were outshot it wasn’t by an extreme margin as was the case so often last season.

The Ducks trailed 3-0 early in the second period when ’05 defenseman Jack Kopfstein slammed home a pass from Dawson Blue for what was the only Ducks’ goal in the contest.

Ducks were scheduled to play another game Friday with a 7 p.m. (EST) puck drop against the Detroit Fighting Irish. Saturday at 6:30 p.m. the Ducks will play the Fighting Irish once again at 6:30 p.m. although the teams could be different as the Irish is mixing players from its USPHL Premier team and a U-18 squad the team is operating this season as well.

The final game of the weekend will be Sunday with an 11:30 a.m. faceoff against the Jets.

Following that, the Ducks will return home and begin preparation for its first USPHL Premier Midwest-West regular season tests Sept. 17-18 vs. the Rum River Mallards.

Jack Kopfstein converted a pass from Dawson Blue for the lone Ducks goal in a 5-1 loss against the Metro Jets in Southgate, Mich. on Friday (Sept. 10) afternoon.

Lightning looking to improve in Badger Conference

By Jim den Hollander



The Badger Lightning varsity squad is coming off a season of quality as opposed to quantity.

Clearly a team used to play with a short bench, the Lightning compiled a 6-11 record last season and has shown a marked improvement in each of the most recent seasons and ironically, despite playing with just two lines, the Lightning was at its best in the final period, outscoring opponents 26-12 through the final 17-minutes.

With the entire lineup eligible to return this season and maybe five additions on the horizon, the team has the possibility of making another leap in its progress. It’s never easy as the Lightning plays in likely the toughest conference in the state and faces perennial frontrunners like the Cap City Cougars on a regular basis.

The Lightning has a full 24-game schedule for the upcoming season beginning with a tournament on home ice against teams still to be determined. Below is the tentative schedule for the Lightning with Badger Conference tests in bold.

November 26-27 – Home Tournament at Pierce Park Pavilion (two games)

Dec. 3 – vs. Rock County Fury @ Monroe SLICE 7 p.m.

Dec. 4 – vs. Wisconsin Valley Union @ Pierce Park Pavilion 6 p.m.

Dec. 6 – vs. Cap City Cougars @ Waunakee Ice Pond 7:15 p.m.

Dec. 10 – vs. Metro Lynx @ Pierce Park Pavilion 7 p.m.

Dec. 13 – vs. Viroqua Blackhawks @ Viroqua Community Arena 7:30 p.m.

Dec. 17 —  vs. Beaver Dam Golden Beavers @ Pierce Park Pavilion 7 p.m.

Dec. 21 – vs. Icebergs @ Pierce Park Pavilion 7 p.m.

Jan. 4, 2022 – vs. Onalaska Hilltoppers @ Onalaska Omni 5 p.m.

Jan. 6 – vs. Medford Raiders @ Simek Recreation Center TBA

Jan. 7 – vs. Rock County Fury @ Pierce Park Pavilion 7 p.m.

Jan. 11 – vs. Cap City Cougars @ Pierce Park Pavilion 7 p.m.

Jan. 13 or 14 – vs. Metro Lynx @ Capitol Ice TBA

Jan. 15 – vs. Brookfield Glacier @ The Ponds of Brookfield 7:30 p.m.

Jan. 18 – vs. Medford Raiders @ Pierce Park Pavilion 7 p.m.

Jan. 25 – vs. Viroqua Blackhawks @ SPARC 7 p.m.

Jan. 27 – vs. Beaver Dam Golden Beavers @ Beaver Dam Family Ice Center TBA

Jan. 28-29 — @ Beaver Dam Tournament – 2 games TBA

Feb. 1 – vs. Warbirds @ Blue Line Family Ice Center (Fond du Lac) 5:30 p.m.

Feb. 4 – vs. Icebergs @ Mandt Community Center (Stoughton) 7:15 p.m.

Feb. 8 – vs. Onalaska Hilltoppers @ Pierce Park Pavilion 7 p.m.

Feb. 11 – vs Black River Falls Tigers @ Pierce Park Pavilion 7 p.m.

RWD Youth hockey holds first registration

By Jim den Hollander



The RWD youth hockey organization, which covers Reedsburg, Wisconsin Dells and Mauston, held its first of two in person registrations at the Lake Delton Ice Arena on Thursday evening.

Like most other organizations, the RWD group has an online method that can be used – available on the organizations website — Reedsburg/ Wisconsin Dells Youth Hockey (rwdhockey.com) – but in person method works out well in particular for first time players as the organization offers equipment fitting and distribution, allowing the newcomers a chance to try the sport without the high costs that are often associated with youth hockey.

RWD will have one more in person registration at RACA in Reedsburg from noon until 2 p.m. on Saturday.

Meet some of the newest hockey stars in the Sauk County area. Whitney Hewitt, 3, tried on some shoulder pads with the help of her father, Nick and RWD Youth Hockey board member Jenny Wagner. Standing behind is sister Rachel Hewitt. Both were signing up for the organizations Learntoskate program which will be starting in November. Below are some more pictures of the pair, including Andy Wagner, husband of Jenny who was also on hand to help out at the Lake Delton Ice Arena on Thursday night.

Sauk Prairie Youth Hockey will also offer in person registration and equipment fitting/distribution Tuesday at SPARC from 6-8 p.m. The first hour will have fittings for anyone in the 6U program and the second hour for the 8U skaters. For more information or to register, parents can go to the organization’s website at Sauk Prairie Youth Hockey Association (saukprairiehockey.com)

Thunderbird Youth Hockey, serving Baraboo and Portage, is doing all its registration online on the organization’s website, Thunderbird Youth Hockey. However, the organization does have in person gear distribution available Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and again Wednesday (Sept. 15) from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.