BEMIDJI, Minn. - For the eighth-straight week, the Bemidji State University women’s hockey team earned a spot in the USCHO.com national poll. The sixth ranked Beavers maintained their highest ranking in program history, and return home to face unranked St. Cloud State University.
Bemidji State (6-2-2, 3-2-1 WCHA) begins its two-game series at 7:07 p.m. Friday, Oct. 30, followed by the series finale at 4:07 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 31.
Beavers Falter for First Regulation Losses of the Season
Bemidji State saw its eight-game unbeaten streak come to an end this past weekend after the Beavers were swept in two games at No. 2/3 University of Wisconsin. BSU lost 3-0 Friday and 4-0 Saturday, and marks the first time since 2008-09 that the Beavers failed to score a goal in a two-game series. The Beavers were outshot in the series 72-35, and saw goaltender Brittni Mowat make a season-high 42 saves on Saturday.
A Look At The Huskies
St. Cloud State travels to Bemidji, Minn. after hosting No. 7 University of North Dakota this past weekend. The Huskies fell in game one, 3-0, but earned their first point in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association by defeating UND in the shootout, Saturday.
The Huskies enter the weekend with a 2-5-1 record and are 0-5-1 in the WCHA. St. Cloud State has the sixth ranked scoring offense in the WCHA by averaging 2.00 goals per game and the seventh ranked scoring defense by allowing opponents 4.75 goals per game. SCSU has one of the top scoring power plays in the conference and have converted on five of 24 chances (.208) to rank third. However, the Huskies penalty kill has allowed 10 goals in 26 chances (.615), last in the WCHA.
The Huskies’ leading scorer is Molly Illikainen and Brittney Anderson who each have six points on the season. Forward Illikainen, is SCSU’s goals leader with three and scored all three goals against North Dakota Saturday for her first career hat trick. For her effort during the week, Illikainen earned the WCHA’s Co-Offensive Player of the Week honor. Defenseman Anderson, leads the Huskies in assists (6), and is tied for seventh in the nation for assists for a defenseman.
St. Cloud State’s leading goaltender is Katie Fitzgerald who, in seven-games, has compiled a 1-5-1 record and has a goals against average of 4.27 and save percentage of .876.
The Beavers and Huskies have played each other since 1999, and in 71 meetings, Bemidji State leads the all-time series with a record of 32-31-8. Bemidji State won the last meeting 1-0 on Feb. 7, 2015, and in the last four games, BSU is 4-1. The Beavers are currently on a two-game winning streak, and have compiled a 17-13-4 record against the Huskies at home.
Kaitlyn Tougas has the most points against the Huskies among active student-athletes with six points (3g-3a) in 10 games, followed by Ivana Bilic with five points (1g-4a) in 10 games. Junior Brittni Mowat leads the Beavers with a 4-2-1 record against SCSU with a 1.14 goals against average and .952 save percentage.
Of the 16 Division I schools with a .500-or-better record thus far (14 that have played at least five games), five play in the WCHA. Minnesota and Wisconsin (both 8-0-0) are two of the six remaining unbeaten and untied teams (four with at least eight games played), while North Dakota (5-1-2, .750) is tied for ninth nationally for winning percentage, Bemidji State (6-2-2, .700) is tied for 11th and Ohio State (4-4-0, .500) is tied for 14th.
Leading at the Polls
The WCHA continues to have an NCAA-best four teams (tied with the ECAC) in both the USCHO.com and USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine polls. Minnesota remains the unanimous No. 1 in both polls, followed by No. 3 Wisconsin, No. 6 Bemidji State and No. 7/8 North Dakota. Minnesota Duluth is receiving votes in both.
For more information on the Bemidji State hockey program, follow the Beavers on Twitter (@BSUBeavers), like them on Facebook (facebook.com/BSUBeavers) or sign up for the TXTUpdates from BSUBeavers.com text-messaging system through the "Multimedia" pull down menu on the main page of BSUBeavers.com.
Nestled in Northern Minnesota’s wooden region and located on the shore of Lake Bemidji, BSU sponsors 15 varsity athletic programs with NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey membership in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, while its 13 NCAA Division II programs hold membership in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC).