GAME 1 – WEST DIVISION SEMIFINALS
April 2, 2021 – 7:30 p.m.
Mason City Multipurpose Arena – Mason City, Iowa
ALEXANDRIA BLIZZARD (17-20-1-2)
@ NORTH IOWA BULLS (27-11-1-1)
LIVE STATS: CLICK HERE
BULLS vs. ALEXANDRIA ALL-TIME: 40-9-3
TONIGHT’S PROMOTIONS: North Iowa opens the 2021 Fraser Cup West Division Playoffs with several new division championship items available at Brutus’s Locker Room Sponsored by Christie Door Company. For a schedule of upcoming promotions, click here.
#DECADEOFDOMINANCE: The Bulls’ first decade on the ice has a mere few days or weeks remaining, but the team has lived up to its 10th Anniversary moniker. With 365 regular- season wins (and postseason add-ons that push the total well past the 400 mark), eight division championships, three NA3HL titles and three national championships, no team has posted the resume or built the reputation of success that North Iowa has over the same time frame.
A YEAR IN THE MAKING: While this game marks the return of playoff hockey to the River City and the debut of playoff hockey at the Mason City Multipurpose Arena, this game was supposed to happen 54 weeks ago – North Iowa ran away with the West Division championship in the final weeks of the 2019-20 race, while Alexandria held off a late charge from the Willmar WarHawks to land the fourth seed in the division. The NA3HL season was officially suspended March 12, the night before the two teams were scheduled to start their series, and the playoffs were officially cancelled the following afternoon. The Bulls also swept Alexandria in the 2019 West Division Finals, after the Blizzard upset Granite City in a three-game thriller, but the two teams had not faced each other in the postseason prior to that year.
DEEP BLUE: If there’s one thing North Iowa has had on its side during the 2020-21 campaign, it’s scoring depth – seven different Bulls players wrapped up the regular season with 30 or more points, the only team in the West with more than two 3-point scorers for the season. Carson Jones wrapped up the season with 41 points, the top mark among West Division skaters. Cal Nauss’s 28 assists led the way for North Iowa, the first defenseman to lead the Bulls in that department. Alexandria’s Caleb Strong posted 34 points this season to lead Alexandria, including eight against the Bulls, while Brayden Uttech’s eight points against the Blizzard led North Iowa in a 19-point season.
SEE YOU ON THE OTHER SIDE: The winner of this series faces the winner of Willmar and Granite City’s series on the other side of the West Division bracket. Each series is a best-of-3 affair, with the Lumberjacks taking seven of their 10 regular-season meetings and three of their last five. This season marks the WarHawks’ first playoff appearance since 2018, surging to a 22-win season after starting with losses in eight of their first 10 games.
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