Bemidji State unveils 2012-13 women’s hockey schedule
Thursday, May 31, 2012
Bemidji State unveils 2012-13 women’s hockey schedule

BEMIDJI, Minn. – Seventeen regular-season home contests, 12 games versus 2011-12 NCAA Tournament teams and its third consecutive appearance in the United States Hockey Hall of Fame Face-Off Classic in Eveleth, Minn. highlight the 2012-13 Bemidji State University women’s ice hockey schedule.  Seventh-year head coach Steve Sertich revealed the complete slate today.

The Beavers officially get the 2012-13 campaign--the program’s 15th season of existence--underway Oct. 5-6 when they hit the road for a nonconference trip to Providence, R.I. and Schneider Arena to open the season with Providence College for the second consecutive campaign.  The teams met at Sanford Center a year ago for a series during which BSU held the Friars to just one goal and escaped with a win and a tie.

Bemidji State returns to Sanford Center Oct. 12-13 to get its 28-game Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) slate underway by hosting St. Cloud State University.

An Oct. 19-21 excursion to Madison, Wis. to face 2012 National Runner-up University of Wisconsin kick starts one of BSU’s two four-game road trips of the season.  The Beavers and Badgers open the series with a 7:07 p.m. contest Friday Oct. 19 and will break for a day to accommodate for the Minnesota-Wisconsin football game on campus before concluding the series at 2:07 p.m. Sunday.  The series will also serve as the grand opening weekend for Wisconsin’s new LaBahn Arena.

The Beavers then make their longest road trip of the season Oct. 26-27 when they travel to Columbus, Ohio for a series with the Ohio State University.

November 1, Bemidji State will pack its bags and head to Eveleth, Minn. for a neutral-site exhibition battle versus the Minnesota Whitecaps in the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Face-Off Classic.  It marks the Beavers’ fourth appearance in the game held in the heart of the Iron Range at the hallowed Hippodrome.

BSU hosts University of Maine Nov. 9-10 to open a four-game homestand.  The match up marks the second straight season the teams have met and just the fourth and fifth occasions the teams heave gone head to head. It also draws to a close the Beavers’ 2012-13 nonconference season.

Nov. 17-18, the Beavers open a string of 22 consecutive WCHA contests to wrap up the regular season.  First on the docket is a Sanford Center series versus 2012 NCAA Tournament participant University of North Dakota--the same Fighting Sioux team that bumped the Beavers from the first round of the WCHA playoffs in March.

Bemidji State hits the road for a series at Minnesota State University, Mankato Nov. 23-24 before the Beavers’ second four-game homestand of the season.  BSU opens play in December (Dec. 1-2) with a two-game set versus University of Minnesota Duluth. Dec. 7-8, the Beavers welcome defending National Champion University of Minnesota to Sanford Center for a two-game WCHA set to conclude play for the 2012 calendar year.

After a four-week hiatus for the holidays, BSU jumps back into action Jan. 4-5 with a two-game road series at St. Cloud State.

Jan. 11-12 BSU welcomes Minnesota State to Sanford Center, before a trip to Duluth, Minn. to wrap up the season series with the Bulldogs at AMSOIL Arena Jan. 18-19.

BSU’s only bye week of the season comes just prior to the Beavers hosting Ohio State Feb. 1-2. Road games follow at North Dakota (Feb. 8-9) and Minnesota (Feb. 15-16) before Bemidji State wraps up the regular season hosting Wisconsin for a pair.

The best-of-three, first round of the WCHA Playoffs will be played on campus sites March 1-3. First-round winners advance to the WCHA Final Face-Off at Ridder Arena in Minneapolis, Minn. March 8-9, where an automatic bid to the NCAA awaits the 2013 champion.

Bemidji State completed the 2011-12 campaign with an overall record of 17-17-3 mark to establish a new program record for wins in a season.  The Beavers also posted an 11-15-2 mark in WCHA play to finish sixth the final league standings and earn a berth into the WCHA Playoffs.

Sertich returns 21 players to his roster for 2012-13, which includes seven of the team’s top 10 scorers in 2011-12.  Seniors Sadie Lundquist (F, Cloquet, Minn.), Emily Erickson (F., Coleraine, Minn.) and Erika Wheelhouse (D, Crookston, Minn.) headline the group of returning players. Lundquist posting a team-best 35 points (12g-23a) as a junior, while Erickson ranked among the WCHA’s top 15 players in scoring averaging more than one point per game (1.08) in league play and Wheelhouse totalled a career-high 24 points (8g-16a) with 18 points (5g-13a) coming in conference play to rank among the league’s top 10-scoring defensemen.