Beaver Fever Friday – Alyssa Watkins – Womens Hockey

Women’s Hockey returns to action for series at cross-state rival No. 6 Minnesota Duluth

BSU Women’s Hockey returns after 27-day holiday break

It has been 27 days since the Bemidji State University Women’s Hockey team’s last competition but the Beavers make a return to action this weekend to begin the second half of the 2022-23 season. The Beavers (4-17-1, 1-15-0 WCHA) will make the trek east to cross-state rival No. 6 University of Minnesota Duluth for a Western Collegiate Hockey Association Series.
The Beavers battle the sixth-ranked Bulldogs (15-6-1, 9-6-1 WCHA) at AMSOIL Arena in Duluth, Minn., with game one slated for Friday, Jan. 13 at 6:00 p.m. Game two will follow Saturday and will begin at 3:00 p.m.

Bemidji State faces its cross-state rival for the first time this season.

The Bemidji State-Minnesota Duluth rivalry dates back to 1999 and spans 106 games.

Minnesota Duluth owns the all-time series record with at 84-22-4 including a 45-11-3 record in Duluth.

The Bulldogs have won the last five meetings against the Beavers including all four games from last season.

Bemidji State’s last win against UMD came on Jan. 22, 2021, a 1-0 overtime victory. The Beavers last win in Duluth came on Feb. 29, 2020 in a four-overtime thriller in the first round of the WCHA Playoffs.

Senior Reece Hunt leads all active skaters with 13 career games versus the Bulldogs and has totaled nine points off four goals and five assists. She is followed by Abby DeLaRosa with 11 career games versus UMD.

Bemidji State looks to turn the page on the first half of its season where the Beavers went 4-17-1 and 1-15-0 in league play. The Beavers sit eighth in the WCHA Standings with three points.

The Beavers will look to win their first road game of the season going 0-10-1 on the road during the first half of the season.

BSU will also attempt to snap a four-game losing skid and last won on Nov. 26 a 4-1 victory over Sacred Heart University at the Nutmeg Classic.

Bemidji State is led on offense by sophomore defenseman Adriana Van De Leest who has totaled seven points (7a) in 19 games.

She is followed by Shelby Breiland who has six points (2g-4a) in 19 games while sophomore Claire Vekich and freshman Raeley Carney pace the team with three goals each.

The Beavers have seen 15 different goal scorers this season including nine with two or more goals.

BSU is seventh in the league with a power-play percentage of .149 (7-47) and eighth on the penalty kill with a percentage of .806 (54-67).

Bemidji State has had the second-lowest power play opportunities in the WCHA this season while the second-most penalty kills.

The Beavers lead the WCHA with 339 blocked shots and average 15.41 per game. Sophomore Taylor Larson paces the team and is eighth in the league with 34. She is followed closely by Abby DeLaRosa who is 10th in the league with 31.