Bobcats Return Home for Brave the Shave Weekend against Blizzard
Matchup: Bismarck Bobcats (25-25-2) vs Brookings Blizzard (26-20-5)
Games: Friday, March 17, 7:15pm; Saturday, March 18, 7:15pm
Venue: VFW Sports Center, Bismarck, N.D.
Season Series: Bobcats lead Blizzard 5-2-1
All-Time Series: Bobcats lead Blizzard 33-15-5
Radio: SuperTalk 1270 AM, SuperTalk1270.com and the radioPup smartphone app (Bismarck market), 6:50pm both nights
Internet TV: HockeyTV.com, 6:50pm both nights
BISMARCK, ND – As the playoff race tightens across the Central Division, the Bismarck Bobcats will have their second-to-last home weekend of the 2016-17 regular season when the Brookings Blizzard come to town for two games—starting Friday at the VFW Sports Center.
The series will also be the Cats’ eighth annual Brave the Shave weekend, where the Bobcats will partner with Touchstone Energy Cooperatives, along with Hardee’s and Great Clips, for Saturday’s game to raise money and awareness for the fight against pediatric cancer for kids in the region.
“It’s one of the most special weekends of every season for our organization, hands down,” beamed Bobcats head coach and general manager Layne Sedevie, who will join seven Bobcat players in the annual head-shaving ceremony to stand in solidarity with the children who are fighting cancer. “To be able to stand with those kids, fighting this horrible disease, and show them our support and do our part to raise money for their fight is really meaningful for us.”
For the seventh straight season, the Cats will wear special edition Brave the Shave jerseys that will be auctioned off following Saturday’s game with the proceeds going to kids around North Dakota battling childhood cancer.
On the ice, the Bobcats (25-25-2. 52 pts) sit five points behind the third-place Blizzard (26-20-5, 57 pts) and just two points back of Aberdeen (25-23-4, 54 pts) for the fourth and final playoff spot in the Central Division playoff picture.
“There are four [standings] points out there right now, and we’re still on the wrong side of the bubble,” analyzed Bobcats rookie center Matt Barry, who hit 50 points on the season with a two-point night Saturday in Austin, “so we need all of those points. Friday’s a must-win for us, then we have to look at Saturday the same way after that.”
Barry’s 50 points (19g, 31a) are second on the Cats only to Tobias Fladeby, whose 24 goals and 27 helpers have him one point off the division’s scoring lead. In net, Severi Isokangas has put together a 10-5-1 mark since joining the Bobcats in January with a 2.60 GAA—third-lowest among Central Division goalies—and a .907 SV%.
The division’s top scorer is Brookings center Paul Kotter, tied with Austin’s Justin Misiak, with 52 points (23g, 29a). Blizzard netminder Josh Boyko, a Top Prospects Tournament selection a month ago, leads the division with 22 wins to go with a 2.89 GAA and a .917 SV%.
Tickets are now on sale for both games of Brave the Shave Weekend: fans can buy and print tickets online 24 hours a day at BismarckBobcats.com or charge by phone during normal business hours at 222-3300.
Friday’s St. Patrick’s Day clash will be broadcast locally on the radio home of Bobcat Hockey, Super Talk 1270 AM, and worldwide on HockeyTV.com–the web television partner of the North American Hockey League–with pregame coverage starting at 6:50pm.
Pro-rated season tickets are now on sale for the Bobcats’ landmark platinum anniversary campaign fans can get more information or reserve their seats for all of Season Twenty now by calling 222-3300.