Metro opens NA3HL playoffs expecting ‘tough battle’ from West Michigan

FRASER, Mich. – What’s done is done.

The Metro Jets swept the Wooster Oilers in a home-and-home series last weekend, culminating with a 5-2 win at Fraser Hockeyland Saturday night that made history.

The two wins pushed the Jets’ record to a perfect 47-0-0, a new USA Hockey junior hockey record.

Those 47 wins are now in the past, though, as the Jets get set to play the West Michigan Wolves in the opening round of the NA3HL’s East Division playoffs.

A best-of-three series, the winner will move on to the division finals next weekend to play the Toledo-Pittsburgh winner for the right to head to Chicago for the Silver Cup National Championship Tournament, an event the Jets have played in two years running, finishing as runners-up a year ago.

First things first, however, with the Wolves this weekend.

“We’ve had the approach all year where each week is a new week,” said Jets coach-GM Justin Quenneville. “We refocus each week, restart, have the ‘everyone is at zeroes’ mindset, but now, that’s actually happening for the playoffs. We’ll be prepared for West Michigan and we’re excited. We’ve come this far and we want to make sure we keep doing things the right way moving forward.

“We’ll have the same mindset and approach we’ve had all year.”

During the regular season, the Jets went 10-0 against West Michigan, outscoring the Wolves 56-9.

But again, that’s all out the window with Game 1 set for Friday night at 7 p.m. in Battle Creek.

“We have to think that everyone has zeroes across the board,” said Jets captain Graham Day. “How we finished in the regular season isn’t going to change how teams play against us. We have to keep our game simple and play Metro hockey.

“We know West Michigan will come out hard. Both teams are going to come out strong to win the series, so it will be a tough battle in the first series of the postseason.”

Game 2 is in Fraser on Saturday at 7 p.m. and if a deciding Game 3 is necessary, it will be back in Fraser on Sunday at 12:15 p.m.

Streaming of the games will be available on www.hockeytv.com.

Photo/Michael Caples/MiHockey