It’s snowing in October and winter jackets have taken the place of fall sweaters.
The Bemidji High football team went over to Moorhead on Wednesday night and won 14-6 in a game that was played in the rain in the first half and snow in the second half. The photo from the Fargo Forum looked as though a blizzard hit the area.
It’s hard to accept this brutal cold and snow in October. Just ask the Wayne State football team.
It’s been an eventful few weeks around here between the Bemidji State football team, the Bemidji State women’s hockey team and the Bemidji State men’s hockey team playing especially well.
Let’s start with the Bemidji State football team, which defeated No. 14 Wayne State last weekend in the snow and icy mud at Chet Anderson Stadium. The weather wasn’t the only story as the BSU offense held the ball for an incredible 44 minutes in the 21-10 victory.
That gave BSU its second victory over a nationally ranked opponent this season. This one was more special to the players because they proved that this season’s big games – beating ranked Winona State and taking ranked Mankato to an overtime loss – was not a fluke.
The football team has surprised just about everyone in the NSIC. I’ll count myself in that group.
The Beavers are such a young team and while I expected improvement upon last year’s record, I cannot say I thought I would be talking playoff possibilities this late in the football season. But here we are, and the Beavers still have a shot at reaching the Division II playoffs and still an outside chance at the NSIC title.
BSU is certainly a favorite at Crookston this weekend, but they will not be overlooking the lowly Golden Eagles. A win would likely make next weeks’ game against defending national champion and NSIC leading Minnesota-Duluth a determining factor come playoff selection time. Who would have circled that matchup at the beginning of the season?
Another team I expected to improve in some way was the BSU women’s hockey team.
What I didn’t expect was a nice 1-0 win over No. 4 Wisconsin at Coleraine last Saturday night. It was only the second win in school history over the Badgers.
Being I was out shooting the BSU men’s hockey game and taking care of all the incoming news on the sports desk Saturday night, I was pretty shocked when I saw the box score.
I asked a joking question in the newsroom: “If BSU beats Wisconsin in Coleraine and no one from Bemidji was there to see it…did it really happen?”
Well it did and it was no fluke.
I stopped by The Glas on Sunday to see the 2009-10 Beavers for myself and was pleasantly surprised. This BSU women’s hockey team can skate. They’ve have speed and they played with creativity.
BSU took an early 1-0 lead, but ended up losing to Wisconsin 3-1.
The final two Wisconsin goals could be attributed to BSU breakdowns. There’s no excuse for giving up a goal 15 seconds into a period. The third goal came when BSU was unable to clear the defensive zone due to some bad passing.
Those are mistakes seen in October hockey and the good news those types of mistakes are correctable this time of year.
The biggest stat I took from both games was the shots on goal numbers.
On Friday, BSU was outshot 35-25 and on Saturday BSU was outshot 41-36. That shows the Beavers ability to skate and generate offense.
Want comparable numbers? In the final series with Wisconsin last winter, BSU was outshot 38-10 and 54-16.
BSU head coach Steve Sertich assured me that Wisconsin isn’t having a down year and called the Badgers a legitimate top 10 team.
The confidence among the team is noticeable and I’m curious how the team will respond with this weekend’s home series against Ohio State. BSU finished 1-2 and lost in a shootout last season against the Buckeyes.
Earlier today I was out at BSU men’s hockey practice producing a weekly update video for the Pioneer.
The Beavers are fresh off a sweep of Air Force in the season opening series, no doubt a good start to the season.
I had a good conversation with goalie Dan Bakala, who was the last one to leave the ice at practice Wednesday after an extended session with coach Ted Belisle.
Bakala was obviously happy to win his first two games as a starter but also admitted that he can play much better.
That’s a good sign for Beaver hockey fans.
You can see my interview with Bakala, Ryan Cramer and Tyler Lehrke in my weekly video report here.
After the interview, Bakala (a Calgary native) and I somehow got on the subject of Canadian comedy.
My favorite Canadian comedy show in high school and college was Kids in the Hall…Toronto kid anyone?
Well, it’s late and time to go home. That’s all for today.