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Wilderness streak is at 8

The Minnesota Wilderness swept a home-and-home series with the Chippewa Steel last weekend, extending the team's win streak to eight games.

A 4-3 win in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin on Saturday, and Friday's 4-0 win in Cloquet also meant the Wilderness (9-3-2) own a nine-game point scoring streak after starting the season winless through five games.

It's the longest winning streak for the franchise since it won 10 straight in 2013-14.

Nash Jacobsma scored twice while Peteris Purmalis and Ashton Dahms both posted a goal and assist Saturday night to lead Minnesota, which got 30 saves from goaltender Adam Prokop to earn his second victory of the season. The Wilderness opened the game 3-1, before Chippewa tied it in the third period.

Dahms scored the game-winner with 13 minutes, 39 seconds left in the final period.

Special teams again paid dividends for Minnesota, as the Wilderness converted on two of four chances and scored once on a four-on-four situation.

Dahms, of Lakeville, Minnesota, now leads the Wilderness with 10 goals and 16 points in only nine games. Chippewa outshot Minnesota 34-26.

On Friday, Harper Searles completed his first Junior A hat trick by scoring three third-period goals, while Nick Erickson earned the shutout in net, denying all 27 Steel shots. Peteris Purmalis also contributed three assists, including one on a Dahms goal.

The sweep means the Wilderness is now all alone in first place in the Midwest Division after entering the series tied with Chippewa for the top spot.

The same two squads will tangle again this weekend in another home/home series. The Steel (8-5) will play host at 7 p.m. Friday, and the Wilderness will be the home team at 7:15 p.m. Saturday with a special game at the Iron Trail Motors Event Center in Virginia.

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