Beavers travel to Huntsville for rare Wednesday-Friday WCHA series
Tuesday, November 24, 2015
Beavers travel to Huntsville for rare Wednesday-Friday WCHA series

BEMIDJI, Minn. -- The Bemidji State University men's ice hockey team hits the road for a Western Collegiate Hockey Association series at University of Alabama-Huntsville, Nov. 25 and 27. The rare Wednesday-Friday series will get underway at 7:07 p.m. Wednesday with the opening face off for the series finale set for 7:07 p.m. at Von Braun Center in Huntsville, Ala.

The series stands as BSU's second two-game road set of the season, where the Beavers seek thier first victory and are 0-2-1 overall and 0-1-1 in league play away form Sanford Center.

The Beavers own a 43-29-4 lead over the Chargers in one of the most heated rivalries in recent memory. BSU and UAH first met in 1994 NCAA Division II Championship. BSU won that initial series to claim its 11th national title. BSU and UAH also met in the 1996 championship, which the Chargers won, and the 1997 title series, which was won by the Beavers. Later and College Hockey America members (1999-2010), the rivalry continued.

While BSU has won its last three meetings with the Chargers, and seven of its last eight, UAH holds a 19-15-3 edge in series games played at Von Braun Center.

Bemidji State notables:

• Bemidji State went 0-1-1 Nov. 20-21 in a WCHA series versus Lake Superior State. The Beavers dropped a 3-2 series-opener before battling back to earn a 1-1 draw in the finale. BSU moves to 2-6-3 on the season and 1-5-2 in WCHA play.

• In his 15th season as head coach of the Beavers, Tom Serratore has a career record of 229-230-64 (.499) and is 6-8-4 all-time versus LSSU.

• Graeme McCormack led the team with a goal and an assist Friday. Both points came on the man advantage. This season, all nine of his points (4g-5a) have come on the power-play to lead BSU and rank atop the national power-play scoring list.

• McCormack has a team-high 25 blocked shots to and rank fourth in the WCHA and 22nd in the country.

• Gerry Fitzgerald scored his team-leading seventh goal of the season Friday. Eleven games into his sophomore season, he has already matched his freshman goal-scoring output (7g-12a).

• With an assist Friday and a goal Saturday, Markus Gerbrandt has recorded a point in each of BSU’s last four games (2g-3a).

• With an assist in Saturday’s series finale, John Parker snapped a streak of nine games without a point. His last point came on a goal in the season opener versus Minnesota Duluth, Oct. 10.

• With 30 saves in the 1-1 tie Saturday, junior goaltender Reid Mimmack established a new career-high for stops.

• BSU is 0-2-1 on the road in 2015-16. The Beavers average 1.00 goals, while surrendering 2.67 goals per game and has netted only one power-play goal in 12 opportunities (.083).

• The BSU power-play unit was 2-for-4 Friday and 0-for-5 Saturday to move to 14-of-53 (.264) overall to rank fifth in the nation, while posting a  10-of-42 (.270) effort in league play to rank third in the WCHA.

• BSU was held without a power-play goal Saturday, putting an end to a streak of four consecutive games with a goal on the man advantage.  During the streak, BSU was 7-for-22 (.318).

• Through its first 11 games, BSU has allowed four short-handed goals to lead the country. That surpasses BSU’s short-handed goals allowed totals from nine of the 16 seasons played at the NCAA Division I level (since 1999-2000).

• The BSU power-play has been at home at Sanford Center this season. The Beavers are 13-for-41 (.317)  on the man advantage on home ice, while they are 1-for-12 (.083) in three road games.

• BSU successfully killed 6-of-7 LSSU’s power-play opportunities Nov. 20-21. On the season, BSU has surrendered six power-play goals in 48 opponent opportunities. At nearly 90 percent (.875), BSU is 15th in the country.

• Killing 29-of-33 opponent power-play chances in league play, BSU’s unit leads the WCHA at 87.9%.

• BSU has snuffed out 21 of its opponents’ last 23 power-play chances (.913) dating back seven games to Oct. 24.

• In BSU’s six losses this season, it has been out scored 8-0 in the third period. In its two win and two ties, BSU has out scored its opponents 8-2.   

• The Beavers have out shot their opponents in their last six games and in seven of 11 games this season for a 351-267 edge in shots. The Beavers are 2-3-2 when leading on shots on goal this season.

• This season, BSU has out shot its opponents 135-80 (+55) in the second period, however, the Beavers have been out scored 9-7 in the second.

• BSU has not held a lead after two periods of play this season. BSU is 2-3-2 when the games is tied after two and 0-3-1 when trailing to open the third period.

• Eight of BSU’s games this season have been decided by a goal or less. BSU is 1-4-3 in those games.

• BSU is averaging 2.36 goals per game this season. The Beavers are 0-5-2 when scoring two goals or fewer in 2015-16.

• The Beavers now shift their focus to  Alabama-Huntsville. BSU travels to Huntsville, Ala. For a rare Wednesday-Friday series versus the Chargers. BSU is 43-29-4 all-time versus UAH, but trail 19-15-3 in games played on the Chargers’ home ice.

• BSU has won its last three match ups with UAH and seven its last eight dating back to Dec. 12, 2011, including their last two games played at Von Braun Arena.

• Markus Gerbrandt and John Parker led all current Beavers in scoring success versus Alabama-Huntsville. In six games versus the Chargers, both have three goals and three assists. Gerbrandt carries a +6 plus/minus rating, while Parker is +3.

• Goaltender Michael Bitzer is 2-0-0 versus UAH during his career. Each time he has faced the Chargers, he posted a shutout. In two appearances, he has stopped all 42 shots faced in 119:55 between the pipes for a 0.00 goals against average.