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.
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.