Bemidji State hosts Lake Superior State to open WCHA home slate

Bemidji State hosts Lake Superior State to open WCHA home slate
Thursday, November 7, 2019
Bemidji State hosts Lake Superior State to open WCHA home slate

BEMIDJI, Minn. -- The Bemidji State University men’s ice hockey returns to Sanford Center after nearly a month to open the home portion of its 2019-20 Western Collegiate Hockey Association schedule this weekend when it hosts Lake Superior State University (4-6-0; 2-0-0-0 WCHA). The Beavers and Lakers hit the ice to open the series at 7:07 p.m. Friday with the second game of the series set for a 6;07 p.m. start.

Tickets for both games of the series are still available and begin at just $12. In addition, veterans or active military who show an ID at the ticket window will be eligible for a buy one, get one free ticket special in recognition of Veteran's Day.

Bemidji State notables:
Bemidji State picked up its first victory of the year in the WCHA opener at Alaska Friday, 4-0. The Nanooks bounced back to earn a 3-1 victory Saturday to split the series. The Beavers move to 1-3-2 overall and are 1-1-0-0 in league play.

The 4-0 win marked the first time BSU has shut out an opponent on the road in nearly a year. BSU’s last road shutout came at Alaska Anchorage (2-0)--364 days before, Nov. 2, 2018.

Hampus Sjödahl scored the first goal of his senior season in the second period Friday. The tally stood as the first for the senior since March 2, 2018. He has eight points (4g-4a) in 70 games as a Beaver.

Sjödahl’s short-handed goal was BSU’s first shorty since Feb. 9, 2019--nearly 13 games.

Junior defender Brad Johnson posted the first multi-goal game of his career Friday. He now has eight career points (5g-3a).

Aaron Miller logged a pair of assists Friday increasing his team-leading scoring total to six points (1g-5a), which includes a team-best five helpers.

The two-assist night mark the fourth of Miller’s career and the second this season. He also posted two assists in a 4-4 tie with St. Cloud State in the season-opener, Oct. 11.

Zach Driscoll turned aside 39 shots Friday establishing a new career high. He previously made 33 saves versus Michigan Tech Jan. 18, 2019 and while he was a member of St. Cloud State versus North Dakota Nov. 18, 2016.

Friday marked Driscoll’s fifth collegiate shutout and fourth in a BSU uniform. His last clean sheet came Feb. 16, 2019.

Freshman Elias Rosén recorded the first point of his collegiate career Friday. He followed that up with his first goal as a Beaver Saturday. He has two points (1g-1a) in five games to lead all BSU newcomers.

Junior Charlie Combs scored his first goal of the season Friday ending the longest stretch of games without a goal in his career. A year ago, Combs and Aaron Miller led the Beavers with 11 goals each.

Combs leads all current Beavers with 25 career goals. He has 43 points on 25 goals and 18 assists in 80 games.

BSU’s junior class leads its scoring push netting 13 points (4g-9a), its sophomores have four goals and eight assists for 12 points. It’s seniors have seven (3g-5a) and freshman four points (2g-2a).

BSU was 0-for-8 on the power play versus UAF and is 1-for-17 (.059) for the season. BSU was 20-for-143 (.140) last year and 16-for-108 (.148) in WCHA play. 

BSU has just one power-play goal in its last 11 games, stretching back to 2018-19. Since  Feb. 16 the Beavers’ unit is 1-for-34.  

BSU’s penalty-kill unit held UAF without a goal in three opportunities. BSU has allowed just two power-play goals in 16 opponent opportunities this season. At .875 overall, BSU is 17th among NCAA Division I teams across the country.

BSU head coach Tom Serratore ranks second on BSU’s all-time coaching wins list to legendary R.H. “Bob” Peters who posted a 702-293-49 from 1966 to 2001. Serratore is 298-287-95 now in his 20th season.

BSU has played extra time in three of its first six games of the season. The Beavers are 0-1-2 in those games.

BSU returns to Sanford Center to host Lake Superior State for a two-game WCHA series this weekend. The Beavers and Lakers have met on 57 previous occasions. The Lakers own a 31-26-4 advantage in the all-time series and a 15-11-3 mark on the Beavers’ home ice.

LSSU has won five of the last six meetings between the teams, which includes sweeping BSU in its last visit to Sanford Center, Feb. 2-3, 2018 (2-0 and 2-0)

With that said, BSU has ultimate bragging rights defeating LSSU for NAIA national titles in 1968, 1969 and 1970.

Senior Adam Brady and sophomore Nick Cardelli have each experienced tremendous scoring success versus LSSU. Brady leads the team with four points (4a) in eight games versus the Lakers, while Cardelli has a team-best three goals in four career appearances versus Lake Superior State.

A return to Sanford Center will be good for BSU. On the road this season, the Beavers are 1-3-0. Last season Bemidji State was 9-6-2 on home ice netting 2.76 goals per game while allowing 1.71.

Both Adam Brady and Elias Rosén enter the series riding two-game point streaks, while Aaron Miller has three assists in BSU’s last three games.