BISMARCK, N.D.–The Bobcats had taken a step in the right direction in their series opener at St. Cloud: a 5-3 win on the road, their first victory outside the Dakotas in the 2021-22 season. A 7-1 knockdown loss the next night erased all momentum.
Thus, a two-step plan came into effect for the Cats’ home-and-home with Aberdeen. Step one: take the right step with a road win. Step two: stay consistent by sweeping the series.
A Nico Chmelevski injury occurring in practice during the week kept him out of the lineup, forcing head coach Layne Sedevie to break apart his top line for the series. This sent center Jake McLean to line three, joining Ben Troumbly and Drew Holt on the wings. Troumbly got the scoring started in the first period, McLean broke a tie in the second, and added an insurance goal in the third period of a 5-2 Bobcat victory.
“They were my best line,” head coach Layne Sedevie said. “I could not get them on the ice enough. They made plays and big plays for us. You never know how chemistry is going to work.”
The trio combined for three goals and eight points in the win.
While the third line, which remained intact, produced just one goal, the Bobcats scored right away and allowed their defensive play to prevail. Owen Michaels tucked a wraparound home at 1:23 elapsed time of the first period, extending his career-best point streak to five games. Much like Friday, the Bobcats never trailed. Quinn Rudrud banked in his team-leading 12th goal of the season. Aberdeen’s Ronan Walsh answered on a quick wrist shot in the third period, but the Cats’ defense won the day in a close game. Jake McLean and Blaise Miller’s empty net goals sealed a 4-1 win.
This sweep is the Bobcats’ third of the season, and the first one not played entirely at home.
The Bobcats led for 97 minutes and 46 seconds, and did not trail once throughout the weekend.
Oskar Spinnars Nordin made 51 saves on 54 shots. He has been in goal for two of the Bobcats’ three sweeps.
McLean joined the double-digit goal club, becoming the fourth Bobcat to reach the mark. No team in the central division has more than four players with ten goals.
NEXT GAMES UP
Home vs. North Iowa Bulls, Friday and Saturday at 7:15 PM. For tickets, visit the tickets page at the top of our website or call the Bobcat office at 222-3300.