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Feels Like the First Time

Bobcat Weekend Preview: Cats Come Home Following Road-Heavy Start
 
Matchups: Bismarck Bobcats (6-8-0, 5th Central) vs. Minot Minotauros (8-4-1, 2nd Central) and Brookings Blizzard (5-5-3, 4th Central)
Games: Thursday, October 30, 7:15pm; Friday, October 31, 7:15pm; Saturday, November 1, 7:15pm
Place: VFW Sports Center, Bismarck, N.D. (Thursday & Saturday); Larson Ice Center, Brookings, S.D. (Friday)
This Year: Bobcats and Minotauros tied 0-0-0; Bobcats and Blizzard tied 0-0-0
All-Time: Bobcats lead Minotauros 26-6-4; Bobcats lead Blizzard 13-7-2
Radio: SuperTalk 1270 AM, 6:45pm, all three nights
Internet TV: http://NAHL.FASTHockey.com, 6:45pm, all three nights
 
BISMARCK, ND – After spending 12 of their first 14 games away from home, the Bismarck Bobcats will open a stretch that features nine of their next 13 contests at the VFW Sports Center as they host the Minot Minotauros Thursday before a two-game home-and-home set with the Brookings Blizzard Friday and Saturday.
 
It will be the first time the Cats will face either Minot or Brookings all season.
 
The Bobcats will be looking to bounce back from a road sweep at the hands of the Austin Bruins last weekend that dropped them two games below .500 nearing the quarter pole of the 2014-15 season.
 
“Every game is important, but in five-team division that is as tightly packed as [the Central] is right now, it gets magnified when you play three against teams you’re close to in the standings,” illustrated Bobcats head coach and general manager Layne Sedevie. “Every game can be a four-point swing. We’ve only had six divisional games so far this season, so we are viewing this weekend as a real measuring stick to see what kind of progress this young group is making.”
 
Right now, the Bobcats sit two points behind the fourth-place Blizzard and five points behind the surging Tauros, who have run off an 8-2-1 record since opening the year with consecutive losses.
 
In net the Cats have been anchored early by Alex Bitsakis, who despite posting a weekend mark of 0-1-0, jumped into second place in the NAHL with a 1.40 GAA while his SV% improved to .952—also second league-wide. The Montreal, Quebec, native has stopped 200 of the 208 shots he has seen since the season-opening NAHL Showcase.
 
Minot is led by newcomer Blake Lizotte, who boasts the Tauros’ high mark in points with 13 (2g, 11a) while goalie Atte Tolvanen ranks eighth in the league with a 2.05 GAA. The Blizzard boast the Central Division’s top two point-getters in Beau Michaud (5-12—17) and former Bobcat tender signee Zach Glienke (8-6—14).
 
Following Thursday’s home contest against the Tauros, the Bobcats will visit Larson Ice Center on Friday before wrapping up the three-game weekend at the VFW Sports Center against Brookings. All three games are scheduled for 7:15pm starts.
 
Tickets are now on sale for Friday and Saturday’s home bouts in person at the Bobcat Box Office, by phone at 222-3300 or fans can buy and print their tickets online at BismarckBobcats.com.
 
Live coverage of Thursday’s weekend lidlifter will begin at 6:45pm locally on SuperTalk 1270, KLXX-AM, the radio home of Bobcat Hockey, and worldwide online at NAHL.FASTHockey.com, the official web television partner of the North American Hockey League.
 
Though the 2014-15 season is now under way, there is still time to order season tickets for the year; fans who want to lock in their seats for the entire campaign should call the Bobcat office at 222-3300 today!