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Welcome to Eagles' Nest Notes, the weekly Spirit update and preview. The Spirit enter the week with a record of 24-12-0-2 and 50 points, good for second place in the OHL West Division. The Plymouth Whalers are in first place with 51 points. The battle for the OHL West top spot will take place in Plymouth on Saturday, when the Spirit take in the Whalers at 7:05 PM. The Spirit face-off against the London Knights Sunday at 2:00 PM.

The Plymouth Whalers Saturday, January 6th at 7:05 PM Compuware Sports Arena, Plymouth

Listen live on 97.3 JOE FM, or call the Whalers at 734.453.8400 for ticket information

The Plymouth Whalers are a point ahead of the Spirit in the OHL West Division with 51 points and a record of 24-10-1-2. The Whalers will square off against the London Knights on Friday before hosting the Spirit on Saturday. Plymouth has a record of 3-1-0-0 against Saginaw this season; 26-7-1-0 overall since 2002. The Spirit, in the team's five year history in Saginaw, have only beaten the Whalers twice in Plymouth.

Whalers Center Evan Brophey is ranked third in the league in scoring with 65 points; 17 goals and 48 assists. The Whalers have been a constant hindrance in the Spirit's race for supremacy in the OHL West with a strong offense featuring Brophey, James Neal (18 goals and 21 assists), Tom Sestito (23 goals and 13 assists) and Dan Collins (13 goals and 19 assists). D-men Steve Ward (10 goals and 15 assists, plus-6) and Ryan McGinnis (2 goals and 15 assists, plus-14) are holding down Plymouth's blue line, while Jeremy Smith (0.922 saves percentage in 19 games) and Michal Neuvirth (0.924 save percentage in 21 games) have only let in a combined total of 97 goals, the lowest in the league.

The London Knights Sunday, January 7th at 2:00 PM The Dow Event Center, Saginaw

For ticket information, please call 989.497.7747 or check out saginawspirit.com

The London Knights grabbed first place in the OHL Western Conference from the Kitchener Rangers over the weekend. With 52 points and a record of 24-9-1-3, the Knights will play in Peterborough on Thursday and Plymouth on Friday. This season the Knights have claimed victory in 2 of the 3 match-ups against the Spirit, including a shoot out win at the Dow Event Center on December 2nd. The Spirit have never beaten the Knights in Saginaw; since 2002 London has an overall record of 17-2-0-0 against Saginaw.

The Knights still remain on the top of the league rankings despite losing its three top scorers in Patrick Kane (USA), Sam Gagner (Canada) and Sergei Kostitsyn (Belarus) to the World Juniors tournament. Forwards Adam Perry (24 goals and 17 assists), David Meckler (21 goals and 20 assists) and Robbie Drummond (13 goals and 28 assists) each enter the week with 41 points. D-man Ryan Martinelli (3 goals and 3 assists) leads the team with a plus-18. Netminder Steve Mason has been a constant on the leader boards with a 0.917 save percentage and a 3.20 goals against average.
 
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