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At 41-2, Helena Bighorns look to keep NA3HL hot streak alive on trip to Gillette

Helena Bighorns
Posted at 6:45 PM, Feb 22, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-22 20:45:44-05

HELENA — The Helena Bighorns, who boast a 41-2 record, look to avenge their only losses of the season as they hit the road to Wyoming for a weekend doubleheader with the Gillette Wild, who are riding a small win-streak of their own to wrap up the NA3HL regular season.

"Stay in the moment, each and every day is important, just like we talked on Day 1 in our first player meeting, before training camp begun, we set out a goal," said Bighorns second-year coach Damon Hanson.

"We want to win a championship and we talked about that on Day 1, but the past is the past and the future is the future. Don't look too far ahead. Have to take it one day at a time."

The Wild, at 38-4-1, haven’t lost since the last time they played Helena at Steed Arena on Jan. 19-20. Since the loss, Helena proceeded to win 29 straight games and a major piece of the success the team has had lately is due to goalies such as Alex Lamont and Jesse Schindel, who is undefeated in the net at 14-0 with a goals-against average of 1.38 — which ranks near the top of the NA3HL.

“I think it’s awesome getting to put on this logo every day, play for the team, getting to play two games every weekend in front of this crowd, it’s unreal," Schindel said.

“I think it’s like everyone as one team, every game is a team effort, whether we win or lose. We're putting the puck in the net, defense is playing good in front of us goalies, which makes our job easy," he said.

Meanwhile, defenseman Garrett Bogan has put up over 25 points for the Bighorns in 36 appearances this year.

“The confidence level that we have going in, obviously being the best team in the division going into the playoffs is a huge boost for us and it allows us to play with confidence each and every night," Bogan said. "It also gives us home-ice advantage going into playoffs, so that’s always a good thing because, no one is going to beat us in this barn (Steed Arena).”

Nearly every player on the team has scored double-digit goals or has accrued multiple assists, including Bogan.

"Just play with confidence each and every night and don't be afraid to make mistakes, because they're going to happen. It's just who can make the least amount of mistakes" Bogan said.

After sweeping the Great Falls Americans in a three-game series last week, the Bighorns are now focused on the Wild before a home-and-away doubleheader versus the Bozeman Icedogs to wrap up the regular season.