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Lancers hit road to face Dubuque, Chicago

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When: Friday at Dubuque, 7:35 p.m.; Saturday at Chicago, 7:05 p.m.

Radio: 1290 KKAR

Omaha scouting report: At the halfway point of the 64-game season, the 17-15 Lancers are in sixth place in the USHL’s Western Conference. They are one point behind fifth-place Des Moines — which has played three more games than the Lancers — and five points behind Lincoln for the fourth and final playoff berth. … Forward Robbie Baillargeon and defenseman Matias Cleland are tied for the team lead in scoring with 23 points. Baillargeon has scored four goals and dished out four assists in six games with Omaha while Cleland is ranked second among all USHL defensemen in total scoring. … The Lancers are 9-9 in road games this season and have outscored their opponents 53-51 in those 18 games. … Omaha has the USHL’s top-ranked penalty kill unit with a 86.5 percent success rate. In road games, the Lancers are doing even better — 90.8 percent — having given up just six power-play goals.

Dubuque scouting report: The Fighting Saints have the USHL’s best record at 23-6-2 and lead the Eastern Conference with 48 points, seven ahead of second-place Muskegon, which has played three more games. … Dubuque is 16-1 at home — outscoring opponents 83-35 in those games — and began the season winning 21 of its first 25. Since then the Fighting Saints have dropped four of their past six games. … Dubuque has two 40-point scorers — forwards Mike Szmatula (44) and Peter Quenneville (40). Szmatula is tied for second in the league with those 44 points but leads all players with 21 goals and eight power-play goals. The Northeastern recruit has scored 13 points in his past eight games. Quenneville has scored 18 points (eight goals, 10 assists) in the past nine games.

Chicago scouting report: The 13-14-3 Steel are tied for fifth place in the USHL’s Eastern Conference standings with Indiana, three points behind Cedar Rapids, which has played two more games than Chicago. … The Steel are 5-7-1 at home this season and have been outscored 45-31 in those 13 games. … Forward Alex Roos is Chicago’s leading scorer with 26 points (13 goals, 13 assists). ... Special teams haven’t been a strong suit for the Steel thus far, as they are ranked 14th in power plays and 15th in penalty killing.

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