Series Preview: North Dakota vs. Western Michigan

This weekend the top-ranked University of North Dakota travels to Kalamazoo, Michigan, to take on the Western Michigan Broncos in an important two-game conference series. There are three weeks remaining in the season. This is the first meeting of the between the two teams.

Series History

All-time, UND leads the series against the Broncos 9-1-0 (.900). In Grand Forks, UND leads the series 3-1-0 (.750). In Kalamazoo, UND leads the series 4-0-0 (1.000). At neutral sites, UND leads the series 2-0-0 (1.000). Under head coach Dave Hakstol, UND leads the series 5-1-0 (.833). In the last 10 against the Broncos, UND leads 9-1-0 (.900). Last season, UND had a 4-0-1 record against the Broncos.

Tale of the tape

#1North Dakota (20-6-3, 11-5-2-0 NCHC) vs. Western Michigan Broncos (12-12-4, 5-9-4-3 NCHC).
Date: February 20-21, 2015
Game Time: Friday 7:37 p.m. CT, Saturday 7:07 p.m. CT
Location: Ralph Engelstad Arena, Grand Forks ND.
Last time out: WMU split with UNO (2-1 W, 1-3 L)
Last time out: UND took four-of-six points from DU (4-2 W, 3-3 T)
WMU Offense: 32nd Nationally
WMU Defense: 34th Nationally
WMU PWR: 23rd
WMU Last 10 games: 5-3-2 (.600)
UND Offense: 7th Nationally
UND Defense: 9th Nationally
UND PWR: 2nd
UND Last 10 games: 7-2-1 (.750)
TV: Friday:  CBS Sports Network, DirecTV 221, DISH Network 158
Live Streaming: None
TV: Saturday:  None
Live Streaming: NCHC.TV

Key Players to watch

North Dakota – Forwards: Drake Caggiula (13g-16a—29pts), Michael Parks (11g-18a—29pts), Mark MacMillan (15g-8a—23pts), Nick Schmaltz (4g-17a—21pts), Brendan O’Donnell (10g-5a—15pts), Luke Johnson (6g-12a—18pts), Defense: Jordan Schmaltz (3g-20a—23pts), Paul LaDue (3g-12a—15pts), Nick Mattson (2g-9a—11pts), Tucker Poolman (6g-4a—10pts), Keaton Thompson (1g-7a—8pts), Gage Ausmus (2g-2a—4pts). Goalies: Zane McIntyre (20-6-2, 2.00 GAA, .930 SV%), Cam Johnson (0-0-0, 5.54 GAA, .765SV%).

UND Injuries: None reported.

Western Michigan – Forward: Colton Hargrove (12g-10a—22pts), Sheldon Dries (11g-11a—22pts), Justin Kovacs (4g-17a—21pts), Frederik Tiffels (8g-8a—16pts), Will Kessel (5g-10a—16pts). Defense: Kenney Morrison (5g-9a—14pts), Chris Dienes (1g-12a—13pts), Taylor Fleming (2g-9a—11pts). Goalies: Lukas Hafner (10-8-4, 2.28 GAA, .919 SV%), Frank Slubowski (2-4-4, 3.18 GAA, .908 SV%).

WMU Injuries Nolan LaPorte (9g-11a—20pts) lower-body injury.

Special teams

Western Michigan University – The Broncos penalty kill is ranked 36th in the nation (106/131, 80.9%). The Broncos power play is ranked 5th in the nation (25/108 23.1%).

North Dakota – UND’s penalty kill is ranked 23rd in the nation (100/118, 84.7%). UND’s power play is ranked 20th in the nation (26/119, 21.8%).