Minot, ND – As has become tradition the Minotauros come out of the NAHL Christmas break with a set of games against the Bismarck Bobcats. The teams are locked in a battle for second place in the Central Division with the Tauros three points back of the Cats. A strong showing coming out of the break with this weekend’s set and Tuesday night’s New Years Eve battle in Bismarck could see the Tauros pull ahead by as many as three points, while a poor performance could have them as far as nine points back.
The Tauros have been led by Nik Armstrong-Kingkade who with 18 goals and 30 total points is on pace for 40 goals and 67 points for the season which would both be new Tauros single season records. Ville Immonen is second on the team with 24 points including 17 assists, he is also on pace to set a new Tauro record with 39 helpers. Sam Skinner leads the Tauros blue line with 17 points which puts him 12th among all NAHL defensemen, despite having played at least two fewer games than everyone ahead of him and all but two of the top 20 scoring defensemen. The result is a deep attack that ranks fourth in the league scoring 3.93 goals per game. Ben Garrity has posted a .920 SV% over his last 10 appearances bringing his season SV% to .905 while taking the lion’s share of the workload in net.
The Bobcats have cooled off of late going 2-4-2 over their last eight games. The loss of Lars Christian Rodne to the Norwegian national team and Carl Fish to injury certainly have not helped the Cats as both were top five in scoring on the Cats prior to becoming unavailable. Grant Johnson leads the Cats with 27 goals and 17 assists. Austin Jouppi has done the most damage against the Tauros with four goals and two assists over the first five meetings of the season. For the Cats Ryan Ullan and Andrew Miller have split the crease to post a combined .917 SV% and 2.08 GAA.
The two game set on the weekend opens in Bismarck on Friday before shifting back to Minot on Saturday night. Tickets for Saturday’s game are available by clicking here, or through the “Tickets” tab atop this page. Saturday night’s game is also the December “Skate with the Tauros.” Bring your skates and join the Tauros on the ice after the game.