WOMEN’S HOCKEY: Beavers set to ring in New Year at Ohio State

The Beavers will open 2021 with a Western Collegiate Hockey Association series at No. 4 Ohio State this weekend.

121620.S.BP.BSUWHKY Ellie Moser celebration.jpg
Bemidji State junior Ellie Moser (16) celebrates her goal in the third period against St. Cloud State on Dec. 11 at the Sanford Center. (Jillian Gandsey / Bemidji Pioneer)

BEMIDJI -- For the first time this season, the Bemidji State women’s hockey team is set to face a ranked opponent, one that’s been similarly hampered by postponed games.

The Beavers (1-2-1) will ring in the New Year with a Western Collegiate Hockey Association series at No. 4 Ohio State this weekend. The first game is scheduled for 5:07 p.m. on New Year’s Day, with the finale set for the following day at 2:07 p.m.

The series will be the first action the Buckeyes (2-2-0) have seen in more than a month.

OSU split with Minnesota to open the season before splitting with Wisconsin one week later over Thanksgiving weekend. Two additional series against the Gophers and Badgers in December were postponed due to COVID-19 issues within the Ohio State program, and then at UW.

“It’s been a long time for them to play,” BSU head coach Jim Scanlan said. “But they have one of the best lines in all of college hockey. (Emma) Maltais, (Liz) Schepers and (Tatum) Skaggs are just really talented. They play a lot, which is a credit to them because they’re in tremendous shape. It seems like they’re out there every other shift.”


The Buckeyes are coming off one of the program’s best seasons having captured their first WCHA Final Faceoff title with a 1-0 overtime win over Wisconsin last March. The victory clinched the team’s second NCAA Tournament berth in three seasons.

“Their game is kind of the same every year. They’re fast, they’re strong and they run a tight ship over there,” junior forward Ellie Moser said. “It’s just about going over there and causing chaos. We know that we can play with them.”

Prior to their weekend off for Christmas, the Beavers took two of six WCHA points from a series at Minnesota State, including a 2-2 tie/shootout win and a 5-3 defeat.

Typically, BSU would fly to Columbus. But due to the late announcement of the 2021 portion of the WCHA schedule only two weeks ago, the team is journeying almost 1,000 miles by bus.

Facing their first Big Ten opponent of the season means the Beavers are also doing more COVID-19 testing. The team is being tested six times this week to meet Big Ten standards. The Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference members in the WCHA have been testing the NCAA-required minimum of three times per week for games against each other.

Featherstone-Myers-Moser line producing early

The Beavers’ line of Lindsey Featherstone, Graysen Myers and Moser is off to a strong start through the season’s first four games. Each of the trio has registered at least two points, with Moser leading the way with three goals, including one in each of the last three games.

“We’re just a really communicative line with our passes and everything,” Moser said. “Our chemistry off the ice is great. … It’s really nice to see our line producing the way we’ve been.”

Moser was sidelined for nine months after suffering a torn ACL in the final game of the 2018-19 regular season. Now one year removed from her return to the lineup last December , the junior feels enriched by her experience.


“I think this year I’ve really had a lot more confidence than last year,” Moser said. “Coming back from that injury was definitely one of the toughest things I’ve ever gone through. But like I tell people, if I could go back and change it, I wouldn’t. I think it made me a better teammate (and) a better person. I’m really grateful that I got that new perspective.”

Enduring trying times in her return to the ice has given her a new outlook during this challenging year.

“It just gives me greater gratitude for this season especially,” Moser said. “It’s so easy to be negative about all the things that maybe we can’t do or things we’re missing out on. It’s just really great to get out on the ice. I feel like I’m smarter than last year, and a bit more patient. With the help of my teammates, it’s been nice to click in those games and get the puck in the back of the net.”

At a glance

Who: BSU at Ohio State

Where: Columbus, Ohio

When: 5:07 p.m. Friday; 2:07 p.m. Saturday

Radio: Beaver Radio Network/1300AM & 94.3FM

Austin Monteith is the former sports editor at the Bemidji Pioneer. A native of Bloomington, Ill., he is a 2015 graduate of Butler University. Follow him on Twitter at @amonteith92. Contact the Pioneer sports department at
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