Richfield, MN – The Minotauros get their first look at the newest member of the Central Division the Minnesota Magicians. The Magicians spent the last two seasons in the Midwest Division, but were moved to the Central this summer. The Tauros fell out of first place last weekend for the first time since taking the top spot at the NAHL Showcase in September. The Magicians sit in fifth with a record of 10-12-3.
The Tauros offense has cooled off of late and this weekend will be without leading scorer Johnny Walker, who is skating with the USHL’s Chicago Steel this weekend. The Tauros have just 22 goals over the last 10 games, going 4-5-1 over that stretch. Derek Frentz (6g5a) and Jack Murphy (8g 4a) have four goals each in the last ten games for the Tauros. In net Lucas Murray (2.33gaa .908sv%) and Jon Flakne (2.50gaa .905sv%) have continued to split time.
Alex Lambacher (6g 14a) leads the Magician offense with 20 points in 21 games. Mitch Slattery (5g 11a) has two goals and seven helpers since being acquired from the Minnesota Wilderness. Another player acquired via trade is former Bobcat goaltender David Fessenden (3.58gaa .854sv%) who may make his first appearance for the Magicians this weekend. Will Ulrich (2.84gaa .916sv%) has played 15 of the Magicians 21 games thus far and posted strong numbers.
The Tauros are 5-1-0 all-time against the Magicians. This weekend may be the most important of the season thus far for the Tauros as the division has bunched up at the top. Austin is now in first with 33 points, the Tauros are in second with 31, and the Blizzard are in third with 29. Brookings is off on Friday and hosts the Bobcats on Saturday night, while the Bruins host the Wilderness Friday before heading to Wisconsin to play the Coulee Region Chill.
Tauro Alumni Update: Two Tauros had the game winning goals in the only two games in the USHL last night. Johnny Walker had the game winner in a shootout for Chicago over the Youngstown Phantoms. Casey Johnson had an assist and a fight in regulation before completing the Gordie Howe hat trick by scoring the game winner for the Dubuque Fighting Saints in their win over the Madison Capitols.
Teddy Bear Toss: Next Friday’s home game against the Bismarck Bobcats will be the Tauros annual Teddy Bear Toss Game. Fans are encouraged to bring a new or gently used stuffed animal and when the Tauros score throw it on the ice. The plush toys will then be donated to the Minot Police Department and Minot Domestic Violence Crisis Center to give to children.
Watch and Listen: Friday’s game starts at 7:15 and Saturday’s at 7:00. Both will be on fasthockey.com (ppv video) as well as prostyleproduction.com (free audio). The Planet Pizza Pregame Show will begin 15 minutes before puck drop on both nights.