The last two weekends of NA3HL regular season hockey didn’t end well for the La Crosse Freeze. That doesn’t mean all is lost from an impressive 2017-18 campaign thus far.
Head coach Jon Vaillancourt continues moving forward with the NA3HL Fraser Cup Playoffs starting this Friday night in La Crosse. In his first regular season with the Freeze they took a strong step forward, fighting for the Central Division title late into the season, a feat the organization had yet to do since moving to La Crosse four seasons ago.
When all was said and done Saturday night the Freeze finished with a 34-12-1 (69 points) record, an organization best since their 32-15 record in 2015-16. The 69 points ranks as a tie for 9th across the league.
On the ice it was a great regular season from top to bottom. The Freeze also set franchise records for both goals for and goals against with 240 and 124, respectively.
With the playoffs in sight the regular season is but a memory for Vaillancourt’s squad. Forwards Clayton Lackey and Brady Lindauer, who both set the tone this season offensively en route to setting franchise regular season records for points per game with 1.882 and 1.878, will be two to watch when the puck drops at 7pm against the Wisconsin Whalers.
Speaking of the Whalers, both them and the Freeze are quite familiar with each other when it comes to the playoffs; each of the past three seasons the two teams have faced one another in the first round. Wisconsin prevailed in 2015 but it was La Crosse who moved on to face the North Iowa Bulls the past two seasons. If history proves anything then La Crosse, a #2 seed this year, has the edge as the top seed has won each year.
The boys are looking for a loud Green Island Ice Arena this Friday night! Saturday nights contest will move to Oregon, WI with a third game coming back to Green Island on Sunday, if necessary.