Henson and Special Teams Lead Jr Reign to Win

by Sebastian Abdon Ibarra

The Ontario Jr Reign (18-5-0-1) shutout the Bakersfield Roughnecks (10-6-1-1) by a score of 2-0 on Friday night at Ontario Center Ice Arena. The Jr Reign put on a defensive clinic on Friday night led by outstanding team defense and goalie play from Josh Henson. 

The Roughnecks and Jr Reign have played each other very competitively so far this season, two of their three meetings this year have been tight games where goals are hard to come by. 

A lot of that can be attributed to the excellent play both teams receive from their goalies. It would be Henson who would get the better of Connor Dumesnil and the Roughnecks this time with a 23-save shutout, his second of the year and good for win number 10 of the season. It was good to see the second-year Ontario netminder come out on top of a goalie battle after his 31-save performance that ended in a loss the first time these two teams met this season. 

Good special teams play has become somewhat of a calling card for the Jr Reign this season. It played a huge part in their franchise-record 12-game winning streak where it seemed like every night they were converting a couple of power plays and were perfect on the PK. 

It came up big again Friday night as the OJR killed three Roughneck power plays in the first 27 minutes of the game to keep the game scoreless. It would stay that way until the third period when the Jr Reign received their first power play opportunity of the game. Eamon Julian got back in the goal-scoring column with his fourth of the year off a deflection in front of the net from a Kaedin Larocque-Wolfe shot. 

Tristen Friedman would add an insurance goal late into the third period, but a one-goal lead would be all Henson would need to get Ontario the victory to keep sole possession of first in the Pacific. 

Join us tomorrow at 8:25 p.m. for the final game of this two-game series against the Roughnecks at Ontario Center Ice Arena.  Don't miss out—secure your tickets today!

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