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The North Wind

The North Wind

The North Wind

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Megan Poe
Opinion Editor

My name is Megan Poe and I’m an English (writing concentration) and Philosophy double major at Northern. My concurrent experience with being published in and interning for literary magazines has landed...

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Dallas WiertellaApril 30, 2024

Hockey team returns from Alaska

After two weeks on the road in Alaska, the No. 19-ranked NMU hockey team is returning home this weekend to host the No. 14-ranked Bowling Green State University Falcons at 7:07 p.m. both Friday, Dec. 5 and Saturday, Dec. 6.

CS_Mens hockey

A Wildcat sweep of the Falcons this weekend would move NMU to third place in the conference. The Falcons are third out of 10 teams in the WCHA at 7-1 with 14 conference points, four more than fourth place NMU who has earned 10 conference points with a 5-3 conference record.

The Wildcats won two of their four games in Alaska the past two weeks, which begin with a 1-0 win over the University of Alaska-Anchorage Friday, Nov. 21 in Anchorage, Alaska. The ’Cats also earned a 4-1 win over the University of Alaska Fairbanks Saturday, Nov. 29. NMU head coach Walt Kyle said he considers the split on the road a success.

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“I wasn’t displeased with the results,” Kyle said. “If you can go .500 on a road trip that is as far as Alaska, you’re doing pretty well. It was a long trip, and we’ll see how the travel effects us moving forward.”

The ’Cats dropped their second straight game in a 3-0 loss to the University of Alaska-Fairbanks Friday, Nov. 28 in Fairbanks, Alaska. The Wildcats responded the following night with a 4-1 win Saturday, Nov. 29 where senior defenseman Jake Baker scored two goals with one assist in the win. The ’Cats sophomore goaltender Mathias Dahlstrom continues to lead the nation with a .952 save percentage and also leads in shutouts with four. Junior forward Darren Nowick leads NMU in scoring with four goals as well as points with 10.

Kyle said the Wildcats’ biggest task will be adjusting to their home environment.

“We need to first get some rest this week and get adjusted with our timezone,” Kyle said. “Getting back into the groove and everything of playing at home is our top priority, then we’ll be focusing on our special teams from there.”

The ’Cats have a 19.5 power-play percentage through their first 12 games and a 91.5 percent penalty kill. For Bowling Green, sophomore forward Kevin Dufour is tied for the most goals in the WCHA with nine, while Dufour also leads the Falcons in points with 11. The Falcons’ junior goaltender Tommy Burke has a .928 save percentage and a 1.98 goals against average.

Kyle said Bowling Green’s roster is stacked with talent.

“They’ve done a great job recruiting,” Kyle said. “They’ve got some good talent they’ve brought in over the years, and they work really hard. This will definitely be a real test for us continuing conference play.”

Last season, the ’Cats and Falcons split their two-game series, with the Wildcats taking the first game 4-1 Friday, Feb. 28 and the Falcons earning the win 3-2 Saturday, March 1 both at Berry Events Center. Chris Bergeron has been behind the bench as Bowling Green’s head coach since 2010. In his five seasons, the Falcons record is 6-4 at Berry Events Center, including two upset series victories in the CCHA playoffs in 2011 and 2012.

“We are looking forward to a very difficult series against Northern Michigan,” Bergeron said. “They’re a very good team, and I think this will be another hard fought series in the WCHA.”

NMU sophomore forward Gerard Hanson said discipline on the offensive side is the key to success this weekend.

“We need to stick to our gameplan and not take as many penalties,” Hanson said. “We’ve been on the penalty kill too much lately, and we have to find ways to score. We’re going to need to get the pucks down low and try to out work Bowling Green, while keeping up the defensive pressure we’ve had so far to keep the play in their zone. It’ll be a tough task, but we’re playing at home so we should be able to find a way to get the win.”

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