October 22, 2021 – 7:30 p.m.
October 23, 2021 – 7:30 p.m.
Odde Ice Center – Aberdeen, SD
NORTH IOWA BULLS (8-3-0-1)
@ ABERDEEN WINGS (5-5-0-0)
BULLS vs. ABERDEEN ALL-TIME: 1-1-0
IN A NUTSHELL:
After getting stung by a loss to Minot last weekend, it’s off to Aberdeen as the Bulls make their first league visit to South Dakota.
Tied, 1-1-0 (both one-goal games).
LAST TIME OUT:
The Bulls will look to flip the script this weekend, coming off of one of their most lopsided losses on record with a 6-1 defeat against the Minot Minotauros last Saturday night. The start was an ominous one for the Bulls, with Minot putting up three goals in the opening 4:23 – markers from Trevor Stachowiak, Zack Simon and Huston Karpman put Minot up 3-0, and took the crowd out of Saturday’s game early. North Iowa was not able to respond until Simone Dadie’s deflection for a power play goal with one second remaining on a second-period man-advantage. Karpman would score again, this time on the power play, with 1:12 remaining in the second, and a 5-on-3 chance early in the third period ended up in the hands of Cole Mickel, who scored just 32 seconds out of the intermission. Tom Friden’s goal with 8:49 remaining put the Minotauros up by a handful for the first time in the contest, capping off the scoring. Hunter Garvey made 32 saves, seeing his four-game winning streak – and the Bulls’ – come to an end, while Zach Sandy made 32 saves for his first win of the year. Six Minotauros finished with multi-point outings, though none topped Colby Joseph, who picked up three assists.
NEXT HOME GAME:
North Iowa welcomes the Bismarck Bobcats to Mason City for the first time since the spring of 2010 when the Bulls return home on Friday, November 5.
AT LONG LAST:
Dadie’s power play goal with 6:59 remaining in the second period last Saturday marked the first time North Iowa has earned a power play tally against a Central Division team this season, and snapped a skid of 31 straight unsuccessful power play chances. The Italian native earned his first North American points in the Bulls’ 6-5 win over Aberdeen on September 25, posting a goal and two assists – his goal late in the second period would have been the game-winner, if not for Jacob Bosse’s 6-on-5 goal in the game’s final minute.
CARRY THE ONE:
Bulls forward Chris Carroll’s secondary assist on Dadie’s power play goal last Saturday extended his point streak to 10 straight games, including six assists over the four games against the Minotauros. The last North Iowa player with a nine-game point streak or longer was Matt Dahlseide, whose 16-game run wrapped up December 29, 2018 in a 3-1 win at the Rochester Grizzlies.
LEARN FROM IT & MOVE ON:
North Iowa has given up big scoring totals before, and the offense has struggled to gain traction before, but it’s rare when both happen on the same night. The last time the Bulls allowed six or more goals in a game where they scored one or fewer was October 12, 2018 – in that one, the Granite City Lumberjacks posted three goals in the opening 4:03 on the way to a 6-1 victory over the Bulls, with two of the opening three coming on the power play.
NOT JUST A COG IN THE MACHINE:
North Iowa forward Ryan Coughlin may be due for a big night as the Bulls and Wings wind down their first month of Central Division competition – the Charlotte, North Carolina native picked up three assists in North Iowa’s first two games against Aberdeen last month, leading the way in the head-to-head matchup. However, the Bulls’ captain is looking to shake off a recent scoring slump, going without a point in his last five straight games.
Much like the mythological Greek character, Aberdeen’s wings haven’t quite gotten them off the ground in recent games, dropping four of five since opening Central Division play with a 3-2 win at North Iowa on September 24. The Wings are hoping an off weekend last week recharged the batteries a bit – Aberdeen split their most recent weekend with the sixth-place Bismarck Bobcats, charging to a 4-1 win on Friday, October 8 before stumbling to a 3-2 loss the following night. That’s not to say they haven’t been tantalizingly close, though – three of those four losses have come in one-goal games, and Aberdeen held the lead at some point in all four defeats.