THIS WEEKEND’S GAME:
FRIDAY – North Iowa @ Alexandria, 7:10 p.m.
SATURDAY – Alexandria @ North Iowa, 7:30 p.m
ALEXANDRIA BLIZZARD, 10-5-2-1 (ROSTER, STATS)
@ NORTH IOWA BULLS, 18-3-2-0 (ROSTER, STATS)
COVERAGE: HockeyTV (video/$), Mixlr (audio/free, Saturday only)
BULLS VS. ALEXANDRIA ALL-TIME: 29-6-2
THIS WEEKEND’S PROMOTIONS: Saturday marks the Bulls’ final game at the “Barn” as the Alexandria Blizzard come in for a visit. Saturday’s game is the team’s Naughty and Nice Night, featuring an appearance by the Grinch. Fans can bring their letters to Santa Claus, and fans who bring a non-perishable food donation to the Salvation Army will receive $2 off their admission at the door For a schedule of upcoming promotions, click here.
NUMBER OF THE NIGHT: Saturday’s game is the 782nd and last junior hockey game in the North Iowa Ice Arena, including four United States Hockey League all-star games in 1983, ’85, ’86 and ‘93. This will be the 204th Bulls game in the “Barn” – the North Iowa Outlaws hosted 154 NAHL games in the arena from 2005 to 2010 (including 11 Robertson Cup tournament games in 2009), but the USHL’s North Iowa Huskies hosted the majority of the games in this building from 1983 to 1999. The first junior hockey game in this building was played between the Huskies and the Austin Mavericks on October 15, 1983.
COMING HOME TO SAY GOODBYE: Three former North Iowa Bulls will return to the “Barn” for Saturday’s final game – Ike Taraszewski began last season with North Iowa, and played 11 games for the Bulls before being traded to Alexandria. Two others – Austin McNeil and Evan Sivets – began this season with the Bulls and joined the Blizzard roster early last week. They are set to make their Blizzard debuts this weekend, and all three are expected to play on December 28 when the Blizzard face North Iowa in the Bulls’ first game at the new downtown Mason City Arena.
ANOTHER STAR IN THE SKY: An abbreviated West Division schedule last week helped another North Iowa Bulls player earn another West Division Star of the Week award from the NA3HL. Carter Wagner’s two third-period goals on Friday helped the Bulls put away a 6-3 win over New Ulm, and helped him wrap up the team’s sixth Star of the Week award of the year. Lucas Wahlin, Austin McNeil, Sota Isogai, Cam Fagerlee and Mason Enright have already won Star of the Week awards this year.
ONE MORE THAN SIX: North Iowa’s special teams unit comes into the weekend on a hot streak, posting a power play goal in seven straight games. The latest Bulls player to score on the power play is Callahan Nauss, who scored his first goal as a Bull last weekend. The Bulls got plenty of power play time in their last get-together with Alexandria four weeks ago, going 1-for-7 with the extra man.