| Bemidji State (11-19-4) at #9/10 North Dakota (17-11-4)
|Date / Time|| Friday, Feb. 28, 2014 • 7:07 p.m. (CT)
Saturday, March 1, 2014 • 7:07 p.m. (CT)
Sunday, March 2, 2014 • 7:07 p.m. (CT) (if needed)
|Location||Grand Forks, N.D.|
|Arena||Ralph Engelstand Arena (200' x 85')|
|Live Stats|| UNDsports.com
|Web Video|| UNDsports.com
*Click on the PDF link for a complete version of game notes
North Dakota plays at Ralph Engelstad Arena for the final time this season, hosting Bemidji State in a best-of-three series for the first round of the WCHA playoffs, Feb. 28-March 2. All three games are scheduled for 7:07 p.m. start times.
During the regular season, UND went undefeated against Bemidji State (3-0-1), sweeping BSU in Bemidji, Nov. 1-2, and tying and winning in Grand Forks, Jan. 24-25. Additionally, it will be the first time this season that Michelle Karvinen and Susanna Tapani will be play against Bemidji State, as they were with Team Finland during both regular-season series.
Live stats and a live audio stream for this weekend’s games will be available at UNDsports.com. A video stream will also be provided at UNDsports.com, in part of the UND Insider subscription.
All three game will air locally in the Grand Forks area on 1440 KKXL-AM.
Receive real-time updates during all UND women’s hockey games by following @UNDWHockey. Additional coverage can be found at @UNDSports and @rladue.
Fans can also follow the action via live chat at UNDSports.com, hosted by UND Media Relations assistant director Ross LaDue.
After dropping to No. 10 in the Pairwise (as of Feb. 24), North Dakota’s hopes of gaining a third-consecutive bid to the NCAA tournament all-but-rest on winning the WCHA Final Face-Off.
Senior Michelle Karvinen was named the best forward by the Directorate at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games, becoming the first non-Canadian to earn the award.
Karvinen led all players at the tournament with five goals and seven points. She tied with Jenni Hiirikoski for the highest plus/minus rating on Team Finland with a +4 rating. She led Finland with a .313 shooting percentage, scoring five goals on 16 shots and averaged 24:19 of ice time through six games, the third most on Finland.
Senior Michelle Karvinen, sophomore Tanja Eisenschmid, freshmen Susanna Tapani and former student-athletes Jocelyne Lamoureux, Monique Lamoureux and Susanne Fellner, just finished competing at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.
The Lamoureuxs helped Team USA to another silver-medal finish. Karvinen and Tapani led Finland to a fifth-place finish after being knocked out of the medal round by Sweden. Eisenschmid and Fellner skated with Germany to a seventh-place finish.
Last Time Out
North Dakota’s offensive woes continued last weekend against Ohio State, as the Buckeyes kept UND to just one goal on the weekend, handing UND its second-straight sweep of the season. North Dakota outshot OSU, 32-20, on Friday, but could not find a way to get on the board suffering a 2-0 defeat. On Saturday, Amy Menke scored the lone goal for UND to get on the board first, but OSU rallied to down UND, 3-1.
Friday’s game heralded the return of forward Michelle Karvinen after an eight-game absence do to the Olympics. UND dominated the game, outshooting OSU, 32-20, but unfortunately would be unable to get anything past Ohio State netminder Lisa Steffes. UND goalie Shelby Amsley-Benzie made 18 saves in the contest, conceding only one goal on the power play. The Buckeyes would score an empty-net goal to secure a 2-0 win.
On Saturday, North Dakota would finally break through the Ohio State defense and take its first lead of the weekend. Amy Menke scored on OSU’s Chelsea Knapp halfway through the first period giving UND a 1-0 lead. However, Ohio State would score five minutes later to tie the game. After a scoreless second period, the Buckeyes scored twice in the third period to claim the 3-1 win.
About Bemidji State
The Beavers (11-19-4, 8-17-3-2 WCHA) took five of six points from WCHA rival St. Cloud State University in their final regular season series on Feb. 21-22. The five points were the most that BSU has posted in a series since Nov. 15-16 when it swept Minnesota State.
Bemidji State finished the regular season in sixth place in the WCHA. It is the sixth time in 14 seasons that BSU has finished in sixth place in the conference.
Kaitlyn Tougas tallied a goal and an assist in last Saturday’s win over SCSU. It was her fourth multi-point game of the season and the eighth of her career. The sophomore forward leads Bemidji State in points and assists and is tied for the team lead in goals (8-13=21 pts).
Despite having her four-game point streak snapped at SCSU, Tess Dusik has scored five points in BSU’s last five games and is second on the squad with 14 points (7g, 7a).
Goaltender Jessica Havel made the most out of her first start since Dec. 8 as she shut out the Huskies last Saturday, 3-0. Havel made 38 saves to record her third career shutout and fifth career victory.
Shot blocking has been a critical part of Bemidji State’s success this season. BSU is first in the country in blocks with 674 with defensemen Alex Ehlert (104, 1st), Allie Duellman (95, 3rd), Ivana Bilic (83, 6th) all ranked among the top 10.
What the scoreboard reads after the second period has proved to be the result almost without fail this season. When leading after two periods, BSU is 6-0-1 compared to a 0-15-1 mark when trailing.
A number of UND players have stepped up to contribute with the absence of UND’s Olympians.
In the last 10 games played, defenseman Sam LaShomb has recorded a +7 plus/minus rating and has contributed one goal and two assists on offense. Forward Josefine Jakobsen has led UND in that time frame with four goals and four assists.
Additionally in those 10 games, goalie Shelby Amsley-Benzie has posted a 2-3-0 record team leading .908 save percentage and a 2.45 goals-against average.
North Dakota is undefeated (8-0-1) when both Danish players, Michelle Karvinen and Josefine Jakobsen, record a point in the same game. In those eight games, the two have combined for a total of 17 goals and 16 assists.
If You Ain’t First, You’re Last
North Dakota has a 14-5-3 record when scoring the first goal of the game. On the flip side, UND is 3-6-0 when the opponent scores first.
Junior forward Josefine Jakobsen is tied for second in the nation with five game-winning goals and freshman forward Susanna Tapani is tied for 21st with three game-winning goals. Jakobsen has scored game winners against Lindenwood (Oct. 4), and two against both Minnesota Duluth (Oct. 12 & Feb. 8) and St. Cloud State (Oct. 26 & Jan. 18), while Tapani scored the GW against Minnesota (Nov. 17), Minnesota State (Dec. 14) and Wisconsin (Jan. 11).
A total of eight UND players have scored game-winning goals this season: Jakobsen (5), Tapani, (3), Meghan Dufault (2), Andrea Dalen (2), Michelle Karvinen (2), Amy Menke (1), Lisa Marvin (1) and Tanja Eisenschmid (1).
Sophomore goaltender Shelby Amsley-Benzie leads the nation with a .976 third-period save percentage. She has stopped 122 of 125 shots she’s faced in the third period this season. The three goals against is the fewest given up by a starting goaltender in the nation.
North Dakota’s D-corps has created 17 goals and 41 assists. The 58 points is 12th in the nation for most points by a team’s defense. Additionally, the UND defense is ninth in the nation in goals (17) and is fourth in shots on goal with 333 (10.41 per game).
Gracen Hirscy is 11th among defensemen in the nation with 86 shots on goal, and Halli Krzyzaniak is tied for 16th with 78 shots on goal.
Hirschy is 21st among the nation’s defensemen with a +19 plus/minus rating. Sam LaShomb is tied for 22nd with a +18 rating, while Krzyzaniak is tied for 43rd with a +11 rating.
UND’s freshmen have accounted for 73 points (24g, 49a) this season. The class is second in the nation in freshman points (73), assists (49), first in shots on goal (395) and is tied for fifth in power-play points (17).
Susanna Tapani leads the UND class with seven goals and 12 assists. With 19 points through 20 games, her 0.95 points per game average is third best among the nation’s freshmen.
Warroad’s own Layla Marvin and Lisa Marvin have worked together on three goals this season. Lisa has assisted on two of Layla’s goals this year, one against Lindenwood (Nov. 4) and against Bemidji State (Jan. 24). The two then both assisted on the game-winning goal by Tanja Eisenschmid against Bemidji State on Jan. 25.
UND has won two of four shootouts this season, beating Minnesota Duluth (Nov. 13) and Bemidji State (Jan. 24). Prior to the 2012-13 season, UND had gone 0-8 before beating Wisconsin, 2-1 in four rounds, on Jan. 15, 2012. North Dakota is now 4-12 all-time in WCHA shootouts.
UND has posted a record of 7-2-2 in games played on Fridays this season.
A total of 19-of-21 skaters that have seen action this year have scored a goal for UND this season.