Bobcats Rally Comes Up Short in Preseason Finale

BISMARCK, ND – The Bismarck Bobcats got two goals from Casey Kleisinger Saturday but a late surge from the Alexandria Blizzard lifted the visitors to a 3-2 victory at the VFW Sports Center Saturday.

Despite the loss, Bobcats Head Coach Byron Pool praised his team’s night-to-night improvement.

“I was pleased with our guys’ effort, very pleased,” said Pool. “We were definitely better than [Friday, a 3-1 loss], so that’s a step in the right direction.”

Alexandria took the first lead late in the opening period when Alex Altenbernd beat Bismarck goalie Ryan Faragher for the first of three Blizzard power play goals on the night.

Kleisinger started his a one-man rally 2:29 into the second period, firing a George Mallarias feed past Alexandria keeper Chris Kamal to tie the game at one.

The second-year Bobcat followed with a power-play tally with just 47 seconds left in the middle frame to boost the Bobcats to a 2-1 lead heading into the second intermission.

“Casey had a great game here [Saturday],” said Pool of his veteran forward, “the kind of game we’ve come to expect from him. He definitely wanted to come out and redeem himself after getting ejected from [Friday]’s game.”

Alexandria quickly evened the affair, again on the power play, with an unassisted score in traffic by Kyle Clay just 3:30 into the third.

Tommy Westmark, the Blizzard forward whose late second-period goal started Alexandria’s three-score outburst Friday, tallied the game-winner at the tail end of a Blizzard power-play with 1:24 left in the final stanza Saturday for the win.

Faragher finished the night with 22 saves and the loss; Chris Paliafito—who took the net for Alexandria mid-way through the second period—made 8 saves and picked up the win in relief.

The Bobcats now move on to the NAHL Sherwood Showcase where they open the season against Team USA on Wednesday at the Schwan’s Super Rink in Blaine, Minn.

You can watch every Bobcat Hockey game this season–home and away–on B2 Networks and listen on the radio home of the Bobcats, Super Talk 1270, KLXX-AM.

You won\’t want to miss any of the games this season, so order your Season Tickets, Family Packs and Group Night’s today by calling the Bobcat Hockey Office at 701-222-3300 or by e-mailing the office for more information at