Men’s and women’s hockey to play first home game

Andrew Neururer
Sports Editor

It’s hockey season at Minnesota State University, Mankato. The women’s hockey team began its season last weekend in New York and the men’s team will be playing its first game of the year this Saturday.

The No. 3 men’s hockey team will take on Mount Royal Saturday in Mankato.

Last year, Minnesota State opened its season out with a game against Mount Royal as well, taking the game with ease 7-3.

Minnesota State features a lot of returning players this season, losing three seniors in Max Coatta, Alec Vanko and Ryan Schwalbe and junior goaltender Mathias Israelsson. As much as it hurts to lose seniors and their veteran presence, Coatta was the only one who really played all that much.

The Mavericks will see similar production from last year, if not more from its players. 

Marc Michaelis and Parker Toumie will be looking to get off to hot starts this season. 

Last year, Michaelis had a team-high 19 goals and added 23 assists. That was good for 42 points – the most on the team.

Just two points behind him was Toumie was 40 points. He led the team in assists with 26 and added 14 goals himself. 

Other players lie Charlie Gerard, Jared Spooner, Connor Mackey, Ian Scheid and many more are going to be looking to expand of last season. The Mavericks had eight players reach over 20 points, with senior Nick Rivera just missing the cut with 19 points.

Losing Israelsson in the crease will hurt MSU, as he was 8-1 in games he was in front of the net, the Mavericks will have Dryden McKay back in action. As a freshman he was dominant, finishing with a record of 24-7-2. He saved 92.7 percent of his shots as well. Last year he was awarded the CHN National Rookie of the Year award.

As guys hockey is starting up, the women’s hockey team will be looking to find similar success this weekend as they did against the Minnesota Golden Gophers. This game will not come easy, as the Gophers are ranked No. 2 in hockey right now.

Last week the women’s team had two shutout games against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

In the first two games, junior Mariah Gardner finished with three goals and one assists. She will play a large role in how far the women’s team will be able to go.

Freshman Kelsey King added four assists in her first weekend playing collegiate hockey, tying Gardner for a team-high four points.

Other players to register a goal were sophomore Claire Butorac, freshman Charlotte Akervik, freshman Kennedy Bobyck and junior Brittyn Fleming.

The Mavericks used two goaltenders against RPI, freshman Calla Frank and sophomore Abigail Levy. They combined for 27 saves, both shutting out the Engineers.

Header photo courtesy of MSU Athletics.

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