Minot, ND – The Minotauros kick off a run of nine games in 18 days tonight by hosting the Bismarck Bobcats on the Pepsi Rink at Maysa Arena. The Tauros trail the Bobcats by nine points for home-ice advantage in the first round of the Robertson Cup Playoffs, but have played two fewer games. Add in the Tauros two remaining contests with the Bobcats (including tonight) and the Tauros are very much within striking distance for the Central Division’s second seed.
The Tauros come in off of a weekend sweep of the St. Cloud Blizzard, over their last 10 games the Tauros have gone 6-3-1. The Tauros offense is posting 3.90 goals-per-game which is second best in the NAHL. Kyler Kleven, who has 53 points, is just three points from passing Miroslav Mucha’s 55 points to set a new Tauros single season record. Sam Skinner has already passed James LaDouce for most points in a season by a Tauro defenseman with 38 points; his 38 points ranks third among all d-men in the NAHL. Nik Armstrong-Kingkade and Kleven lead the Tauros against Bismarck with six goals each while Skinner’s three goals and seven assists are good for a team best 10 points against the Cats. Ben Garrity has played each of the first ten meetings against Bismarck and posted a 5-4-1 record on a 3.27 GAA and .904 SV%
The Cats have been red hot of late. Since being swept by the Tauros in late January the Bobcats have gone 10-1-2. Will Hillman and Grant Johnson pace the Bismarck attack with 42 points each. Jacob Marti has lead the Cats against the Tauros with four goals and seven assists. In goal Andrew Miller has taken roughly 60% of the starts and has been taking the lion’s share of late including eight of the last 11 decisions.
Wednesday’s game is the eleventh of twelve games in the Subway North Dakota Cup. Both teams are currently 5-4-1 against each other so the easiest way for the Tauros to continue to keep the Cup in Minot is to win both games. Tickets for Wednesday’s game are available here, or through the “Tickets” tab atop this page.