GENEVA, ILLINOIS — The Chicago Steel host a pair of home games at Fox Valley Ice Arena this weekend when they take on the Sioux Falls Stampede on Friday and Team USA U17 on Saturday. Both games also feature great ticket specials including Raising Cane’s Kids Day for Friday’s LEGOLAND Night and the Steel Family Pack for Saturday’s The Pajama Game. Chicago also has a chance to wrap up a berth in the Clark Cup Playoffs with a pair of wins and some help as the Steel’s playoff magic number is currently at six.
For Raising Cane’s Kids Day on Friday, kids 12 and under can receive a red zone ticket, Steel drawstring backpack and Raising Cane’s kids combo card all for just $10. On Saturday, the Steel Family Pack offers four tickets, hot dogs, sodas and chuck-a-pucks starting at just $48. The Steel Family Pack must be purchased in advance as it is not available on the day of the game.
The Steel (30-17-1-0, 61 pts.) enter the weekend having won three of the last four games overall and 15 of the last 16 at Fox Valley Ice Arena.
Chicago center Nick Abruzzese continues to pace the USHL in scoring as the second-year forward has collected 63 points (21-42-63) in 48 games this season. The Steel head into Friday’s matchup seeking revenge against the Stampede (31-13-3-1, 66 pts.) after the Western Conference foe took the first matchup of the season, a wild 8-6 affair in Sioux Falls on February 8. The game, which was tied five different times during the night, was knotted up 3-3 heading into the third but a five-goal period from the Stampede proved the difference. Abruzzese had a pair of goals in the game while forward Mathieu De St. Phalle pitched in a trio of assists. Stampede forward Andre Lee had a hat trick as part of a four-point night to lead his team.
The goaltenders are expected to be put to the test once again. Chicago’s Justin Robbins is tied for third in the USHL with 21 wins this season. The Quinnipiac University commit holds a 21-11-1-0 record, 3.12 goals against average and .882 save percentage. Sioux Falls netminder Alec Calvaruso holds a 15-4-0-0 record this season with a 2.72 goals against average and .886 save percentage.
Chicago will try to stay perfect against Team USA U17 this season after winning the first three matchups of the season. Abruzzese (2-4-6) and forward Christian Sarlo (2-3-5) have led the way offensively against Team USA U17 while forwards Adam Robbins (0-4-4) and Neil Shea (2-2-4) each hold more than a point-per-game average in the previous matchups. Team USA has spread the love offensively with no player picking up a multi-point game throughout the three matchups. Steel goaltender Reilly Herbst is 2-0-0-0 against Team USA U17 this season with a 2.95 goals against average.
Chicago enters the weekend after splitting a pair of 5-3 games last weekend with the Dubuque Fighting Saints. Dubuque took Friday’s game thanks to four straight goals combined in the second and third periods. Chicago answered back with a Saturday night come-from-behind win thanks to four unanswered goals of its own to close out the game.
Tickets for all Steel home games are on sale now starting at just $10 and stadium seating on the glass is available for just $20. Parking is always free. The Steel offer discounted tickets for groups.
- Four Steel players enter the weekend with current point streaks including forwards Shea (5 games, 2-4-6), Abruzzese (2 games, 0-3-3), and Robert Mastrosimone (2 games, 2-3-5), as well as defenseman Matteo Pietroniro (2 games, 1-1-2).
- Abruzzese is leading the USHL in scoring with 63 points in 48 games this season and has had productive outings against both opponents this weekend. He registered a pair of goals in the only meeting with Sioux Falls and has six points in three games against Team USA U17.
o The University of Harvard commit played in his 100th career USHL game earlier this month and has 99 career points heading into this weekend.
- Chicago will not only count on the players entering the weekend on point streaks but also the hot hands of forwards Gunnarwolfe Fontaine, Josiah Slavin and Cole Quisenberry as well as defenseman John Spetz. Fontaine has 20 points (13-7-20) in his last 18 games, including three points in the last four. Slavin scored twice in Saturday’s win over Dubuque and has 10 points (7-3-10) in 13 games since joining the Steel. Quisenbery has points in seven of his last 10 games (2-5-7). Spetz has registered 11 points (2-9-11) in his last 12 games with points coming in eight of those contests.
- Slavin and Mastrosimone are in the hunt for their 100th career USHL points. Slavin, a Colorado College commit, has 92 points and Mastrosimone, a Boston University commit, has 90 in his career.
MEET THE OPPONENTS:
- Chicago and Sioux Falls (31-13-3-1, 66 pts.) meet for the final time this season.
o Sioux Falls is currently tied for second in the Western Conference with the Waterloo Black Hawks with 66 points this season.
o Forward Jami Krannila leads the Stampede with 42 points (16-26-42) this season including two assists against Chicago in the only meeting of the season.
o Goaltender Alec Calvaruso holds a 15-4-0-0 record this season with a 2.72 goals against average and .886 save percentage. Jaxson Stauber has a 12-7-1-0 record with a 3.15 goals against average and .879 save percentage.
- Chicago and Team USA U17 (22-17-2-3, 49 pts.) also meet for the final time this season in a Saturday night matchup.
o Team USA currently holds the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, just two points behind the fifth place Dubuque Fighting Saints with four games in hand.
o Forward Matthew Beniers leads U17 with 17 points (5-12-17) in 25 games this season.
o Goaltender Drew Commesso has carried the load for U17 this season with a 4-9-0-2 record, 3.70 goals against average and .880 save percentage in 17 games.
For more information, call 855-51-STEEL or visit ChicagoSteelHockeyTeam.com.