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WEEKEND PREVIEW: Red Hot B's play 3 in 3

Photo credit: Austin Daily Herald

The Bruins begin an ultra-busy month of November with three games this week, starting Thursday night in Richfield. It has been a perfect road trip so far, as the Bruins followed a sweep in Aberdeen with another in Minot this past weekend. They are now 9-6-1 on the year, and just one point behind the Minotauros for the top spot in the Central Division. Thursday’s contest is the first of ten games in a four week span – 5 on the road, and 5 at home. Here’s your (extended) weekend preview.

 

 

WHAT TO WATCH FOR –

3 in 3: It’s not your average weekend for the Bruins. It all begins Thursday night at Richfield Arena against the Magicians, who are off to a 4-8-2 start – last place in the Central. It will be the Bruins’ first regular season look at them after a 6-3 preseason victory in early September in Edina. Friday and Saturday bring a home-and-home with the Midwest Division’s Coulee Region Chill. The Chill also have only four wins this year, and sit higher in the league standings than only the Kenai River Brown Bears, who have the worst record in the NAHL at 1-15-0.

Carly Show: Kris Carlson’s Twitter handle has been accurate, as he has stolen the show over the last two weekends – earning NAHL Central Division First Star honors two weeks in a row (and three times in the last five). He stopped 98 of 102 pucks (.961 save percentage) between the Aberdeen and Minot sweeps and capped it off with a 26 save shutout on Saturday – his first of the season.

Magicians Coaching Change: Magicians head coach/GM Tom Upton was relieved of his duties on Tuesday of last week, putting team president Scott Meyer into the position on an interim basis. Upton led the team into the final spot of the Midwest Division playoffs last season despite a 21-35-4 record. His team only won four of its 14 games before his departure last week. Meyer previously served as head coach of the team in 2013-14.

Chilly offense: Along with having the second-worst record in the NAHL, Coulee Region’s 24 goals is tied for the lowest mark in the league, with Aberdeen. Not a single player has a double figure point total and only two players (Michael Wilson and Isaac Theisen) have three or more goals.

Road warriors: Since opening weekend in Bismarck, the Bruins have won 6 of their 8 road contests (6 of 7 if the Showcase is excluded). With four more road games surrounding Friday’s stop home, the Bruins will look to continue their solid work away from Riverside. The Bruins had an 18-7-5 road record last season.

No Magic for the Magicians: This, their third season in the NAHL, The Magicians have never beat the Bruins. Prior to an 8-0-0 run last season, the Bruins won all four head-to-heads in the Magicians’ inaugural campaign of 2013-14. Now sharing a division, the two teams will play eight more times in 15-16.

 

THE MATCHUPS –

Central Division Standings:

TEAM

GP

W

L

OTL

PTS

Minot

15

9

4

2

20

Austin

16

9

6

1

19

Bismarck

11

5

6

0

10

Aberdeen

11

5

6

0

10

Brookings

12

5

7

0

10

MN Magicians

13

4

8

1

8

 

Midwest Division Standings:

TEAM

GP

W

L

OTL

PTS

Fairbanks

16

13

2

1

27

MN Wilderness

17

11

5

1

23

Springfield

15

10

3

2

20

Janesville

14

8

4

2

18

Coulee Region

13

4

9

0

8

Kenai River

16

1

15

0

2

 

2014-15 HEAD TO HEAD vs. MAGICIANS (BRUINS WENT 8-0-0)

12/05/14    Austin 7 at MN Magicians 3  

12/12/14    MN Magicians 1 at Austin 2

12/19/14    MN Magicians 1 at Austin 6 

12/20/14    Austin 4 at MN Magicians 1

01/30/15    MN Magicians 3 at Austin 4 OT

01/31/15    Austin 8 at MN Magicians 1 

02/06/15    Austin 6 at MN Magicians 0 

02/07/15    MN Magicians 1 at Austin 3

 

2015-16 HEAD TO HEAD vs. MAGICIANS

11/05/15    @ MN Magicians – 7:00 PM 

01/29/16    @ Austin – 7:05 PM    

01/30/16    @ MN Magicians – 7:00 PM 

02/12/16    @ Austin – 7:05 PM

02/26/16    @ Austin – 7:05 PM

02/27/16    @ MN Magicians – 7:00 PM

03/02/16    @ Austin – 7:05 PM

03/24/16    @ MN Magicians – 7:00 PM 

 

2014-15 HEAD TO HEAD vs. COULEE REGION (BRUINS WENT 3-3-2)

10/31/14    Coulee Region 4 at Austin 0    

11/01/14    Austin 3 at Coulee Region 4 SO

11/07/14    Austin 1 at Coulee Region 4 

11/08/14    Coulee Region 1 at Austin 2 OT

12/13/14    Austin 3 at Coulee Region 4 OT

12/31/14    Coulee Region 4 at Austin 1 

01/16/15    Austin 4 at Coulee Region 1

01/17/15    Coulee Region 3 at Austin 7 

 

2015-16 HEAD TO HEAD vs. COULEE REGION

11/06/15    @ Austin – 7:05 PM 

11/07/15    @ Coulee Region – 7:00 PM    

11/25/15    @ Coulee Region – 7:00 PM    

12/19/15    @ Coulee Region – 7:00 PM       

12/31/15    @ Austin – 7:05 PM

01/22/16    @ Austin – 7:05 PM

02/06/16    @ Austin – 7:05 PM

02/13/16    @ Coulee Region – 7:00 PM

 

HOW TO FOLLOW THE GAMES –

Thursday and Friday’s game will both be available on radio over the air at AM 1480 KAUS and streaming online for free at myaustinminnesota.com. Fans can watch all games on FASTHockey.com. Broadcast coverage begins 10 minutes prior to puck drop. Fans are encouraged to visit B&J Bar and Grill (114 4th Ave NE in Austin), the official home of Bruins away games to catch the action when the Bruins are on the road. Intermission updates for all games posted via @theaustinbruins on Twitter.

Tickets for Friday’s home game against Coulee Region can be pre-purchased at HyVee, Jim’s Marketplace, Games People Play, and the Holiday Inn. $11 for adults and $8 for students and seniors (65+). Friday is Albert Lea Youth Hockey night – all ALHA athletes are invited for a postgame skate. Prizes donated from Albert Lea businesses will be raffled off to the youth players throughout the night. Gates open one hour prior to puck drop.