1. What a trip!
If the old mantra, “Win at Home, Split on the Road,” is one that Tom Serratore adheres to, then he and Bemidji State have to be thrilled with what happened in Alaska over the last two weekends. The Beavers swept Alaska Anchorage on Friday and Saturday, which, combined with a win and tie against Alaska a week earlier, means they are coming home with seven points for the league race. Bemidji State scored 18 goals in the four games (10 different goal scorers), including 11 against the Seawolves. Although they have played two more league games than most other teams, the Beavers are right back in the thick of the WCHA race, moving into fourth place in the standings, a point ahead of Ferris State and Northern Michigan, and sit two points behind third-place Michigan Tech.
2. Doing the splits
Minnesota State and Bowling Green each split their series, allowing the Mavericks to maintain their slim, two-point lead over the Falcons atop the standings. After Friday night, those teams were in a tie for first place, after MSU was beaten at home by Northern Michigan and Bowling Green won at Lake Superior State. The tables turned on Saturday, though, as the Mavericks bounced back, and the Lakers won 1-0 in overtime. Both the Mavericks and the Falcons might be glad to be done with those teams for the year and hope they don’t have to face them in the playoffs. MSU went 1-1-2 against Northern this season with each team scoring seven goals; this, despite a 151-63 shot advantage by the Mavericks. Bowling Green also went 1-1-2 against the Lakers, outscoring them 5-4.
3. Rare wins
Alabama Huntsville’s 3-1 victory over Alaska on Saturday was just its second win since Halloween and first league win since that night. Matt Larose stopped 28 shots and had a shutout going until less than 2 minute remained in the game, and Josh Kestner scored twice as the Chargers bounced back from a disappointing loss on Friday in which they led 2-0 and 3-2 only to lose 6-3. Friday’s win was important for the Nanooks, however, as it was just their second win since Nov. 13. Both teams are trying to avoid missing the WCHA playoffs come the end of the season. Alaska is now tied with Alaska Anchorage for eighth place with 12 points, while the Huntsville is four points behind in 10th.