January 14, 2022 – 7:35 p.m.
January 15, 2022 – 8:05 p.m.
Maysa Arena – Minot, ND
NORTH IOWA BULLS (15-11-1-4)
@ MINOT MINOTAUROS (19-14-1-0)
BULLS vs. MINOT ALL-TIME: 3-1-0
IN A NUTSHELL:
North Iowa looks to recapture its October success against the Minotauros in their first meetings in three months.
NEXT HOME GAME:
North Iowa returns home to face the St. Cloud Norsemen on January 27 for their only Thursday night home game of the regular season. That game will help break up a long road stretch for the Bulls, with nine road games out of 11.
The head-to-head series between North Iowa and Minot is tilted in the Bulls’ favor with three wins in four, but the goal count is dead-even at 13 a side. North Iowa won the first three meetings, including a 6-3 victory in the Saturday session at the Minotauros that included a then-career-best 45 saves from Hunter Garvey, but Minot silenced the crowd early with three goals in the opening 4:23 of their 6-1 win in Mason City the following Saturday. Huston Karpman’s six points against the Bulls paces the head-to-head matchup, while David Nesburg and Bulls forward Byron Hartley have also notched three goals against their counterpart’s team.
BONUS INFO, BONUS POINTS, BONUS HOCKEY:
The Bulls come into this game off of some skills-contest history from last weekend, marking only the fourth time in team history that they have played to a shootout in back-to-back games (and the first of those four occasions that did not end in a split). The October 23 shootout finish against Aberdeen also makes it the first time in team history that North Iowa has gone to a shootout in three straight meetings with one team.
THE HOMETOWN KID:
Even though he only appeared in a few shifts for North Iowa in last Saturday’s game, Mason City native and current Mason City Toros forward Nik Howell became the seventh Mason City-born player to appear in a Tier II junior game or higher when he stepped onto the ice in the Bulls’ 5-4 loss to Aberdeen. The last player to come from Mason City to either the USHL or the NAHL was current Minnesota-Duluth Bulldog Kobe Roth, who moved to Warroad, Minnesota as an eighth-grader and went on to play in both leagues for the Minnesota Wilderness and the Des Moines Buccaneers. The list does not include four players with North Iowa roots who played for the Bulls during their decade in the NA3HL.
THE EARLY BIRD:
When the Bulls have needed an early spark, it seems Logan Dombrowsky has been the man to have involved this season – the Stevens Point, Wisconsin native has scored at least one goal in eight games this season, and in four of them, his marker has been the very first of the night. (In fact, the Bulls’ first goal as an NAHL club came off of his stick, halfway through the first period of North Iowa’s September 15 game against the Minnesota Wilderness.) Dombrowsky has also had a point in four of the team’s six earliest goals this season (all coming less than three minutes into the game), and his game-opening goals this past weekend were the team’s earliest and third-earliest of the year.