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Beavers climb to top 5 in polls

A 3-2 victory over No. 1 Miami University was enough to perch the Bemidji State University men's ice hockey team in the top five of both major national polls.

Entering the Subway Holiday Classic ranked sixth, the Beavers have ascended to new heights after handing the No. 1 RedHawks their second loss of the season. BSU moved up to No. 5 in the College Sports poll and are fourth according to USAToday/USA Hockey Magazine.

Bemidji State also suffered a 2-1 overtime loss to the Ohio State University in the classic to finish the weekend 1-1 and move to 11-2-1 on the season.

The No. 4/5 billings stand as a new high-water mark for the program in each poll, superseding its previous high of No. 6 achieved in the Nov. 23 version of both publications.

In addition, BSU received two first place votes in the poll and one in the USAToday publication marking just the second and third times the Beavers have been cast as the nation's top team.

Miami continues to hold down the top spot in both polls despite a loss and a tie last weekend in Grand Forks, N.D. The RedHawks have been No. 1 for nine consecutive weeks.

The Beavers have now made an appearance in every poll of the 2009-10 season finding their way into the top ten in both major polls for the fourth consecutive week.

The Beavers (11-2-1; 6-0-0 CHA) return to the John S. Glas Fieldhouse for a College Hockey America match up with Niagara University (2-8-2; 1-1-1 CHA) this weekend. The Beavers open the series with the Purple Eagles at 7:35 p.m. Friday and will play the second half of the two-game set Saturday at 7:05 p.m.

NIAGARA UNIVERSITY, N.Y. -- Senior captain Chris McKelvie and freshman Aaron McLeod have been named College Hockey America Offensive Player and Rookie of the Week for their roles in the Bemidji State men's ice hockey team's play at the Subway Holiday Classic in Grand Forks, N.D.

McKelvie led Bemidji State with a goal and an assist last weekend as the Beavers posted a 1-1 record in the event.

McKelvie contributed an assist early in the game Friday and netted his second game-winning goal of the season with just 3:19 left in regulation to down the top-ranked Miami University RedHawks.

The win marked the first time the BSU men's hockey program has taken down the No. 1 team in the country.

His two points in the victory stood as his second multi-point game of 2009-10. He finished the weekend with a +2 plus/minus rating.

A two-time offensive player of the week selection in 2009-10, McKelvie also earned the award Oct. 26.

McLeod also netted a goal and an assist over the weekend, standing as one of only two BSU players to record a point in each game of the Subway Holiday Classic.

The freshman assisted on a goal to give the Beavers an early lead over No. 1 Miami en route to a 3-2 victory and added his third goal of 2009-10 in Saturday's 2-1 overtime loss to Ohio State University. He finished the weekend with a +1 plus/minus rating.

The award marks the first conference honor of McLeod's career, the fourth consecutive week and the sixth time this season a BSU newcomer has been named CHA Rookie of the Week.