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Laker Hockey Set for a Holiday Weekend Series at Home Against Bemidji State

Laker Hockey Set for a Holiday Weekend Series at Home Against Bemidji State

FOR STARTERS                                                                                                                    

• Lake Superior State will host the Bemidji State Beavers for a weekend series on Friday, Nov. 29 at 7:07 p.m. and Saturday, Nov. 30 at 5:07 p.m. for a Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) matchup at the Taffy Abel Arena in Sault Ste. Marie.
• Last weekend, the Lakers split a road series at No. 17 Bowling Green, losing the opening game 5-0 but responding with a 3-1 win in the series closer to record their first road win of the season.
• LSSU's record sits at 5-11-0 overall and 3-5-0-0- in WCHA play after opening the season against some of the NCAA's stiffest competition including two games against No. 2 Denver, a pair of road games against the Michigan Wolverines as well as a road series against the No. 4/5 Notre Dame Fighting Irish. The Lakers opened conference play with two wins against Ferris State on Nov. 1 and 2.
• Lakers Head Coach Damon Whitten is in his sixth season behind the bench in Sault Ste. Marie. Whitten has led the team to a 71-115-19 record, including 23 wins in 2018-19.
• Lake Superior is coming off of the program's best season in 23 years, posting a 23-12-2 overall record and finishing fourth in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA).

LAST WEEKEND RECAP                                                                                                            

• In the first game of last weekend's series against the Falcons, the Lakers were shutout in the game and Laker goaltender Mareks Mitens made 27 saves in the loss.
• The Lakers would bounce back in Saturday's game as the team's 3-1 victory snapped a five game losing streak. Pete Veillette would strike first in the game on the power play as he scored his fourth goal of the season. With the goal, Veillette has now surpassed his previous season point total to set a new career high in points (9).
• Veillette's goal was assisted by Hampus Eriksson and Max Humitz. The assist was Eriksson's 11th of the season who is tied for first among all WCHA players in the category. The Swedish forward tied his previous career high in assists (11).
• The secondary assist on the play was credited to Max Humitz, which was his 40th career assist.
• Alex Ambrosio would net the game winning goal in the third period for the Lakers. Ambrosio's third goal of the season added to the career highs he has set this season in goals (3) and points (5).
• The goal was assisted by junior defenseman Will Riedell, who recorded his fifth assist of the season and freshman forward Dustin Manz, who recorded his fourth career assist.
• The win was clinched at 19:47 of the third period when Humitz sent the puck into the empty net to register his 50th career goal as a Laker which happened to be his 90th career point. Humitz is the Lakers scoring leader as his eight goals and 14 points ranks first on the team. In both categories, Humitz is tied for third among all WCHA players.
• Humitz leads all current Lakers in career points with 90 (50G, 40A) in 124 career games, which also ranks first among his teammates. The Livonia, Mich. native leads all WCHA players in shots on goal this season with 60.
• Mitchell Oliver earned his fifth assist of the season on the play, which is tied for first among Laker defenseman.
• Mitens would earn his fifth win of the season in the game as he stopped 29 shots by the Bowling Green Falcons for the victory. During the series, Mitens would record his 1,000th career save as a Laker.
• Mitens leads all WCHA netminders with 348 saves this season and minutes played this season (834:34). No goaltender in the league has faced as many shots as Mitens has this season (396).

LAKERS VS. BEMIDJI STATE                                                                                        

• The Lakers and Bemidji State Beavers will meet for the second time this season. The teams met earlier in the month on the weekend on Nov. 8 and 9 in Bemidji, Minn with the Beavers winning both games.
• Last season, the teams faced off against each other in best-of-three WCHA Quarterfinals that the Lakers would win in two games. LSSU and Bemidji State met a total of four times last season with the Lakers winning the season series by a measure of three games to one.
• In the all-time series between the two teams, the Lakers hold the advantage by an overall record of 33-28-14 against the Beavers. The Lakers have posted a 17-14-3 record on home ice.
• Against Bemidji State, Max Humitz leads the teams with seven goals in 12 games, while Collin Saccoman also has recorded six points (2G, 4A) against the Beavers. Last season, Ashton Calder had four assists against Bemidji in four games played.
• In his two starts against Bemidji, Mareks Mitens posted a shutout, which came during his rookie season in 2017-18, and a loss this season.
• The Lakers have won five of the last eight meetings against Bemidji State.
• Against Bemidji this season, six Lakers have recorded a point: Humitz, Eriksson, Ambrosio, Yuki Miura, and Bryan Basilico.

SCOUTING THE BEAVERS                                                                                            

• Bemidji State is led by Tom Serratore, who entered his 19th season as the hesd coach of the Beavers this season. Serratore posted his 298th career win earlier this season, making him the second-winningest head coach in Beavers program history. 
• The Beavers have played 12 games so far, including two non-conference series against St. Cloud and North Dakota. Since then, the Bemidji has played four straight WCHA series inlcuding a home matchup against the Lakers on Nov. 8 and 9.  Bemidji State holds a 6-4-2 overall record and a 6-2-0-0 WCHA record heading into this weekend's series against the Lakers. The Beavers head into this weekend as winners of five of the last six games. 
• Senior Adam Brady and sophomore Nick Cardelli have had success in putting up points against Lake Superior State. Brady leads the team with seven points on three goals and four assists in 10 games versus the Lakers, while Cardelli has a team-best five goals in six career appearances versus Lake Superior State.
• Brady leads the Beavers in scoring with seven goals and 14 points this season and enters the weekend riding an eight game point streak (5G, 6A).
• Zach Driscoll has played the bulk of minutes for the Beavers this season and started 10 games total this season.  His record sits at 6-3-1 and his 1.59 goals against average ranks fifth nationally, while his .936 save percentage places him 10th.
• Bemidji's penalty kill has been solid this season, as the team has allowed two power play goals in 36 total opportunities for a success rate of 94.4%, which ranks third among all NCAA teams.  
• The Beavers power play is running at a 18.9% as the team has seven power play goal in 37 opportunities this season.
• Entering the 2019-20 season, Bemidji State was picked to finish third in the WCHA in the Mankato Free Press WCHA Coaches Poll and fifth in the WCHA Preseason Media Poll.

CONFERENCE PLAY AHEAD                                                                                                    

• Following this weekend's series, the Lakers will continue with Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) games through the next stretch of play.
• The remainder of the fall semester will see the Lakers alternate between a home and away series with the team traveling to No. 1 ranked Minnesota State next weekend and then hosting the Bowling Green Falcons at home on the weekend of Dec. 13 and 14. 

BALANCED ATTACK                                                                              

• The Lakers have three players among the top 18 scorers in the WCHA and two players in the top eight. The Laker offense has been evenly distributed this season as 19 players have recorded at least a point, 13 players with four or more points, six players with nine or more points and three players recording eleven or more points. 
• 15 different players have scored a goal for Lake Superior this season and all five game winning goals have been scored by different players. 
• In the Lakers first weekend of conference play, 10 different players notched at least a point in the series with eight players recording two or more points during the pair of games. 
•13 Lakers notched at least one point against Merrimack, 10 players had two or more points, four players had three points and one had five points. Nine different players recorded at least one point in the Lakers Oct. 26 game against Notre Dame.
•Last season the Lakers had 13 players record 10 or more points with nine of those players returning this season. Eight players registered at least 22 points and five of them are returning members of the 2019-20 squad. 
• The Lakers also return one of three 30-plus point scorers from 2018-19 in Max Humitz (33 points). 
• 13 different players netted the game winning goal for the Lakers in 2018-19 - with 10 of those players returning to the lineup this year. 

ANCHORED DOWN                                                                                

• The Lakers returned five of their top six defensemen from last season as well as two goaltenders to provide a solid back end presence for the team heading into the 2019-20 season. 
• Lake State's defense has been active with four d-men recording at least five points through the first 16 games of the season.  
• Leading the Lakers defensively, senior captain Collin Saccoman is first among all WCHA defenseman in goals with six, tied for second among league defensemen in points (6-3-9), and tied for second among WCHA players in blocked shots with 22. Saccoman who was named WCHA Defenseman of the Week earlier this month is tied for second among WCHA players in power play goals with three this season.
• Earlier this season, Saccoman scored five goals in a three game span and notched his first multi-goal game of his career against Notre Dame on Oct. 26. Saccoman is second on the teamin goals, which half of have come on the power play this year.
Will Riedell has posted two goals and five assists this season and recorded his first multi-point game of the season with two assists in the Nov. 15 game against Michigan Tech.
Mitchell Oliver is tied with Riedell for the most assists among Laker defensemen with five this season.
Lukas Kaelble has five points this season with his most recent point coming in the Nov. 16 game against Michigan Tech.
• In the opening weekend of the 2019-20 season, the Lakers defensemen proved to be the same steady force that they were last season with five defensemen all tallying a point against the Warriors and five of them having multi-point weekends. 
• Two game-winning goals this season have been scored by Laker d-men (Nordqvist, Saccoman). 
• Four of the last year's regulars recorded at least 11 points - Will Riedell (11), Nordqvist (18), Kaelble (23) and Saccoman (25). 

BETWEEN THE PIPES                                                                                       

• Mitens would earn his fifth win of the season in the game as he stopped 29 shots by the Bowling Green Falcons for the victory. During the series, Mitens would record his 1,000th career save as a Laker.
• Mitens leads all WCHA netminders with 348 saves this season and minutes played this season (834:34). No goaltender in the league has faced as many shots as Mitens has this season (396).
Roman Bengert got the start in goal for the Lakers in the Oct. 26 game against Notre Dame. The game, which ended in a 6-4 Laker defeat, marked Bengert's his first career start for the Lakers. Bengert would stop a career-high 24 shots in the contest. Bengert would start his second career game on Nov. 9 at Bemidji State.
• Mitens started the first seven straight games this season for the Lakers, which included a home series against Merrimack, a pair of home games against No. 2 Denver, a road series against Michigan and the first game of a two-game series at Notre Dame. Mitens posted a 2-5-0 record through that stretch. 
• In the opening series of the season, goaltender Mareks Mitens was solid in net for the Lakers as he stopped 52 of the 57 shots he faced from the Warriors, including a penalty shot save in the first game. It marked the first time in Mitens' career that he has posted back-to-back wins in a weekend series. 
• Laker netminder Mareks Mitens earned his second set of back-to-back wins this season as he backstopped the team to a pair of wins against Ferris State at home on Nov. 1 & 2. 
Mareks Mitens appeared in 11 games for the Lakers in 2018-19, including a shutout on the road against Minnesota State. 

OTHER INFORMATION                                                                                                                                    

• Tickets for home games are $14 for adults, $10  for seniors and $7 for children (under 17). LSSU students receive free admission and must possess a valid student ID.  For tickets, call or visit the Norris Center Ticket Office at 906-635-2601.
•  The month of November will see the Lakers with a few special promotional nights recognizing important community members and organizations. On Nov. 15, the United Way of the EUP held the annual "Light the Lamp" game. The Michigan Tech series on Nov. 15 & 16 was also Laker Blue, Laker Gold! Weekend where fans wearing Laker blue branded gear will receive $2 off their walk up ticket and there will be specials on Laker Gold Beer. To wrap up the month, the Lakers will be holding a Black Friday Sale for the game on Friday, Nov. 29. The promotion will allow fans to purchase up to six tickets for $18 total. More information on these events can be found on
• Every week Bill Crawford along with head coach Damon Whitten, the assistant coaches and players take a look at the Laker Hockey program.  A review of past games, a look ahead to future action and more information and insight on the team and players.  The show is live from the Antlers restaurant on East Portage Avenue every Tuesday night starting at 6 p.m. and can be heard on WKNW ESPN Radio 1400.
• Every home game and all road games against conference opponents will be available via live stream hosted by FloSports on or at Buffalo Wild Wings in Sault Ste. Marie. Radio PxP from the voice of the Lakers, Bill Crawford, will be heard every game on 99.5 YES FM. 
• Laker Athletics will announce designated games that will include viewing parties at Buffalo Wild Wings. including the game on Friday, Dec. 6 when the Lakers play No. 1 ranked Minnesota State on the road. There will be special deals for any Lake State students that attend the watch party. 
• This season, Laker Hockey introduces Soo Brewing as the official pregame and The Wicked Sister as the official postgame spots.• Follow Laker Hockey on social media all season long for news, updates and behind-the-scenes action. 

Twitter: @HockeyLSSU

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