Minnesota State is going with the same lineup as it did against RIT last Saturday with one exception. Jason Wiley, who has missed the last seven games with an injury, will return. He'll take Joe Schiller's spot on the fourth line. Schiller, a forward-turned-defenseman who had to move back up front last week, is one of the extra players on the trip, along with Eli Zuck, who played in that fourth-line spot last Friday.
In goal, Phil Cook will start his first WCHA game. It will also be his third consecutive start in goal and his fourth straight Friday-night start.
In today's Free Press, I have a story about the Mavericks beginning the second half of their WCHA schedule. The word around the rink is that the first half was all right but they lost four one-goal games against top-ranked teams, and that has to change against the fifth-ranked Sioux this weekend.
"The first half wasn’t good, but it wasn’t bad,” senior forward Zach Harrison said. “But our second half has to be great. We have to be a lot of games over .500. The second half is going to be important. Our last 14 games are all in conference.”
You can read The Free Press' gameday preview here. In the Grand Forks Herald, you can read a Q&A with freshman Danny Kristo, who is coming off Team USA's thrilling overtime championship win over Canada in the World Junior Tournament. Also, the Sioux are battling injuries. This weekend, they get Darcy Zajac back but Brett Hextall is out. Also, start defenseman Chay Genoway remains out.
I gotta get packed up for the trip north now. No time to get the rest of the WCHA reading and linking in. You might check out Brad Scholssman's North Dakota blog for more. Next time you here from me, I'll be in frigid Grand Forks.
Be sure to check the live blog during the game tonight.