By Jim den Hollander
It came as no real surprise the Ducks wrapped up play at its first Showcase of the season with a tough loss against the Minnesota Blue Ox.
The Ducks have improved each time on the ice, but playing in a tough division and wrapping up a four-game weekend with a battle against perhaps the division’s best team, the 9-2 final score defeat didn’t come as a huge shock.
The Blue Ox carried a 3-0 lead out of the first period before Adam Chaudhri (‘04/Allen, TX) collected his first goal as a junior early in the second on a feed from Jacob Cartland (‘02/Mukwonago, WI) to get the Ducks on the board.
Blue Ox responded with another pair before Caden Glamkowski (‘04/St. Charles, IL) added a second for the Ducks, his 11th of the season, from Jayden Tkaczuk (‘02/Chanahon, IL) and Dillon Collings (‘02/Golden, CO) who last played with the team in the 2020-21 season.
The Ox added one more in the second period and widened the gap with three more in the final frame.
The Ducks finished the Showcase winless and continue to home ice this coming weekend with a 1-14-0-0 regular season record.
The record is certainly not what the team what hoping for at the beginning of the season, but while the team is having its struggles, there are players who have made their presence felt in a big way.
It’s hard to miss Caden Glamkowski, on a pace for one of the best offensive seasons in the team’s history. The Illinois rookie has hit the 20-point mark (11g, 9a) in 15 games, one more than Jayden Tkaczuk had as the team’s leading scorer last season. Glamkowski collected points in all four games at the Showcase and has been kept off the sheet just twice in the team’s first 15 matches.
Tkaczuk also has been making up for lost time. He has three goals and nine assists in just 11 games with the team so far while rookie Jake Cartland has 15 points (6g, 9a) and the 14 points (4g, 10a) is five more than he collected playing in 23 games last season.
The gap between those players and the rest of the pack is wide, but 16 Ducks’ players have collected at least a point and the supporting cast is becoming more of an offensive factor.
The Ducks began preparing for another busy weekend against the only two teams the Ducks have not played yet in the Midwest-West Division.
After a Friday night contest against the always tough Wisconsin Rapids Riverkings (7:30 p.m.) the Ducks will complete an all-Wisconsin weekend with matches against the Hudson Havoc on Saturday (7:30 p.m.) and Sunday (1:30 p.m.). The homestand will be the fifth of the season for the Ducks who will not play at home again until 2022.