WCHA Weekend Preview: Oct. 28 - 29, 2016
Series news and notes for the upcoming weekend of WCHA hockey
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No. 9 Minnesota State and Ferris State meet for the first time since the Bulldogs earned the Broadmoor Trophy with a 2-1 victory in the 2016 WCHA Final Five championship game.

- 8 WCHA games this weekend can be viewed live (or archived) via WCHA.tv.

- The full WCHA weekly release can be found online here.

All rankings listed by USCHO.com poll first, followed by USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine poll


WCHA

Alaska Anchorage (0-0-0-0, 0 pts. WCHA / 1-3-0) at No. 20 Bemidji State (4-0-0-0, 12 pts. WCHA / 4-2-0)
Sanford Center; Bemidji, Minn. Fri., Oct. 28 and Sat., Oct. 29 (both 7:07 p.m. CT)
WATCH LIVE ON WCHA.TV

- No. 20 Bemidji State returns home to face an Alaska Anchorage team that is playing its first WCHA games of the season, and its first contests in the Lower 48.

- The Beavers dropped a pair of tightly-contested, one-goal decisions at No. 1 North Dakota last weekend, while the Seawolves have been idle since defeating Canisius, 1-0 on Oct. 15.

- BSU leads the all-time series, 9-1-4, and have a 13-game unbeaten streak. UAA's only win in the series came in the teams' first meeting, back on Nov. 12, 2010.

- UAA had two named to the Brice Alaska Goal Rush all-tourney team, as D Chase Van Allen and G Oliver Mantha were honored. Mantha recorded a 22-save shutout over Canisius.

- The Seawolves are 19-of-21 on the penalty kill, ranking third in the WCHA at 90 percent.

- BSU G Michael Bitzer leads the country with two shutouts, while ranking second for wins (4), eighth in goals-against average (1.68), and ninth in save percentage (.935) and saves (145).

- The Beavers have either been tied or skated with the lead for 312:31 of their 360:00 of action this season (86.8 percent). BSU has been ahead for 236:29 (65.7 percent).


Alaska (1-1-0-0, 3 pts. WCHA/ 2-4-0) at Lake Superior State (2-0-0-0, 6 pts. WCHA / 4-0-0)
Taffy Abel Arena; Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. Fri., Oct. 28 at 7:37 p.m. ET and Sat., Oct. 29 at 7:07 p.m. ET
WATCH LIVE ON WCHA.TV

- Lake Superior State brings its season-opening four-game winning streak back home for the ninth annual "Pink in the Rink" weekend. The Lakers will host Alaska, which makes its first trip of the season to the Lower 48.

- At 4-0-0, LSSU joins No. 1 North Dakota (5-0-0) as the only two remaining unbeaten and untied teams in men's D-I college hockey.

- The Lakers swept UAH in Huntsville last weekend, while the Nanooks split with No. 9 Minnesota State thanks to a 4-2 win in Saturday's series finale.

- LSSU leads the all-time series, 34-21-16, including a commanding 25-9-1 record at home. The series is tied 4-4-0 in the WCHA era, after the Lakers swept last year's series in Fairbanks.

- Brandon Morley leads UAF and is tied for fourth in the WCHA with five assists.

- The Nanooks have scored at least one power-play goal in five of six games.

- LSSU is one of only three NCAA teams (and two in the WCHA) to rank in the top-15 nationally for scoring offense (first at 6.00 goals per game), scoring defense (12th at 2.25 goals allowed per game), power-play efficiency (fourth at 28.0 pct.) and penalty-kill rate (seventh at 92.0 pct.).

- Four Lakers: Owen Headrick (1g-6a=7pts), J.T. Henke (3-4=7), Mitch Hults (2-5=7) and freshman Brayden Gelsinger (3-4=7) are all tied for eighth nationally by averaging 1.75 points per game.


Ferris State (0-3-1-1, 2 pts. WCHA / 0-6-1) at No. 9 Minnesota State (3-1-0, 9 pts. WCHA / 5-1-0)
Verizon Wireless Center; Mankato, Minn. Fri., Oct. 28 and Sat., Oct. 29 (both 7:07 p.m. CT)
WATCH LIVE ON WCHA.TV

- No. 9 Minnesota State and Ferris State meet for the first time since the Bulldogs' ended the Mavericks' season and earned the Broadmoor Trophy with a 2-1 victory in the 2016 WCHA Final Five championship game.

- While still searching for their first win, the Bulldogs earned their first league points with a tie and shootout win last Saturday against Northern Michigan. The Mavericks split at Alaska, with the loss in the series finale snapping their season-opening, five-game winning streak.

- MSU leads the all-time series, 14-5-2, including a 9-2-0 margin in the WCHA era. However, both FSU wins came last season (in three games).

- FSU redshirt freshman F Craig Pefley leads all NCAA rookies with seven assists and 85 face-offs won.

- The Bulldogs are beginning a five-game road swing, with two each at Minnesota State and Bowling Green, and a single contest Nov. 10 at Michigan State.

- MSU is one of only three NCAA teams (and two in the WCHA) to rank in the top-15 nationally for scoring offense (fifth at 4.33 goals per game), scoring defense (sixth at 1.83 goals allowed per game), power-play efficiency (seventh at 25.0 pct.) and penalty-kill rate (13th at 88.9 pct.).

- Mavericks' F Michael Huntebrinker (1g-5a=6pts) has at least one point in five of six games, while fellow senior Jordan Nelson is riding a four-game point streak (1-4=5).


Northern Michigan (1-2-1-0, 4 pts. WCHA / 2-3-1) at/vs. Michigan Tech (1-2-1-1, 5 pts. WCHA / 1-5-2)
Fri., Oct. 28 at John MacInnes Student Ice Arena; Houghton, Mich. (7:07 p.m. ET)
Sat., Oct. 29 at Berry Events Center; Marquette, Mich. (7:07 p.m. ET)
WATCH LIVE ON WCHA.TV

- One of the WCHA's and college hockey's best rivalries resumes this weekend when Northern Michigan and Michigan Tech square-off for a home-and-home series.

- Both teams were on the road last weekend. The Huskies earning a Saturday tie out of a two-game series at No. 11/12 Michigan, while the Wildcats took home four league points with a win and tie at Ferris State.

- NMU has faced MTU more than any other opponent and holds a 69-57-14 lead in the all-time series. Tech won three-of-four last year, with the Wildcats' lone win coming in Marquette.

- NMU's Darien Craighead leads all WCHA freshmen in goals (four) good for a tie for second among NCAA rookies. With two, multi-goal games already, he is the first Wildcat freshman to turn the trick since Phil Fox and future NHL-er Mark Olver did so in 2007-08.

- The Wildcats' six-goal outburst in a 6-4 win at Ferris State last Friday was NMU's first on the road since a Jan. 24, 2013 win at St. Cloud State (6-2).

- MTU outshot Michigan 79-45 in two games last weekend, while six different players scored the Huskies' six goals: Alex Gillies, Alex Smith and Reid Sturos (Friday), and Michael Neville, Chris Leibinger and Thomas Berreta (Saturday).

- Michigan Tech will induct its 1975 NCAA National Championship Team and former hockey players Brent Peterson and Scott White into the school's Sports Hall of Fame on Saturday.


NONCONFERENCE Alabama Huntsville (2-3-1-0, 7 pts. WCHA / 2-5-1) at No. 10 St. Cloud State (0-0-0-0, 0 pts. NCHC / 2-2-0)
Herb Brooks National Hockey Center; St. Cloud, Minn.
Fri., Oct. 28 at 7:37 p.m. CT and Sat., Oct. 29 at 7:07 p.m. CT

- Alabama Huntsville will be on the road for the fourth time in five weekends to open the season, traveling for a nonconference series at No. 10 St. Cloud State of the NCHC.

- The Chargers dropped a pair at home last weekend to Lake Superior State, while the Huskies swept a home-and-home with then-No. 7 Minnesota.

- UAH is 0-11-0 all-time against SCSU, with the first meeting occurring in 1988 and the last coming Nov. 16, 2013. The Chargers last played in St. Cloud on Oct. 19-20, 2012.

- UAH leads the nation with 127 blocked shots. Cam Knight leads all NCAA skaters with 22 blocks, while Brandon Carlson and Brandon Parker are tied for second with 19 blocks apiece.

- Jordan Uhleski has played the most time in goal for the Chargers the past two weekends, and has now posted a 2.73 goals-against average and .905 save percentage in five appearances (two starts).

- Max McHugh leads the WCHA and is tied for fifth nationally with five goals, including a pair last Saturday against Lake Superior State.


Bowling Green (0-2-0-0, 0 pts. WCHA / 0-5-1) at Miami (0-0-0-0, 0 pts. NCHC / 2-1-2)
Goggin Ice Center; Oxford, Ohio Fri., Oct. 28 at 7:35 p.m. ET and Sat., Oct. 29 at 7:05 p.m. ET

- Bowling Green will play its fifth and sixth-straight nonconference games, traveling to Oxford, Ohio for an intra-state rivalry series with NCHC opponent Miami.

- The Falcons lost both ends of a home-and-home series with No. 15/14 Ohio State last weekend, while the RedHawks went 1-0-1 at home against Maine.

- BGSU will be looking to snap a three-game losing streak against Miami, dating back to a 3-2 win at Bowling Green on Oct. 10, 2014. The Falcons lead the all-time series, 61-47-8.

- Senior captain Sean Walker has tallied a point in three of the last four games and leads the Falcons with five overall (3g-2a).

- Freshman F Frederic Letourneau, who has played in five games thus far, notched his first collegiate points last weekend against the Buckeyes by scoring Friday night and tallying an assist Saturday.