Perhaps more surprising is the offensive output the Mavs have generated, scoring 14 goals in those four games. Even more interested is the Friday-Saturday dichotomy of the season. The Mavericks dominated on both Friday night games outscoring opponents 10-3, including one against a top-15 Northern Michigan team. UNO has lost two one-goal games on Saturday night.
One thing this team has proven, which I tweeted (@bbrashaw) during last Friday’s game, they are not going to lose too many games that they score four or more goals.
This brings us to this weekend, where the Mavericks open their final season of WCHA play against Bemidji State. This holiday weekend has a very spooky element to it, though. After making the NCAA tournament in 2010, Bemidji has been a sub-500 team the last two years.
The Beavers, picked 11th in the conference this season, play a frustrating brand of hockey that doesn’t lend to many chances for opponents, and the Mavericks have been a very specific victim of the Beaver trap. The Mavericks have won just one game of the last 10 games against Bemidji, going 1-6-3 in that stretch, including a playoff series sweep despite UNO being the No. 3 seed.
Goals expect to be at a premium in this series, but the Mavericks have more game action under their belt so far this season. The Beavers have played just two regular season games, splitting 0-2, 5-0 with Lake Superior State.
- UNO Coach Dean Blais has elected to start John Faulkner (2-0, 1.5 GAA) in goal on Fridays and Anthony Stolarz (0-2, 2.5 GAA) on Saturdays. Will the rotation continue, or is Blais looking for a leader?
- The Mavericks have out-shot their opponent in every game so far this year and lead in shots on goal at a 145-80 clip.
- UNO has only allowed one goal on 15 power-play chances this year, and that was to Army in game one. They have killed their last 13. However UNO isn’t stellar with the power-play, just 2-for-15 so far.
- Two of UNO’s three scoring leaders (yes it’s early in the season) are defensemen. Bryce Aneloski (1-4-5) and Andrej Sustr (2-2-4) both appear at the top of the scoring leaders board, which is encouraging because the Mavs will need offense from the blue liners this year.