Mavericks Travel To No. 2/1 St. Cloud State
Fredrik Olofsson (left) and Ryan Galt battle for the puck during action with St. Cloud State last season at Baxter Arena. The Mavericks visit the No. 2/1 Huskies this weekend.
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Mavericks Travel To No. 2/1 St. Cloud State

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This Week
The Omaha hockey team wraps up the first half of the 2018-19 season this weekend, visiting No. 2/1 St. Cloud State on Friday and Saturday, Dec. 7-8.  Friday's game begins at 7:07 p.m., and Saturday's game starts at 6:07 p.m. from the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center in St. Cloud, Minn.

The Teams
Omaha is 4-8-2 overall and 2-3-1-0/1 in the NCHC, good for sixth place.  The Mavericks tied Colorado College, 3-3, and earned a shootout win before losing to the Tigers, 6-3, last weekend in Omaha.  All time, the Mavericks are 10-20-2 against the St. Cloud State including a mark of 4-13-1 in St. Cloud.  Last year, UNO was 0-4-0 against the Huskies.  The Mavericks are 1-4-1 on the road this year and 4-5-1 in the last 10 games.

St. Cloud State is 11-1-2 overall and 4-0-2-0/1 in the NCHC, putting it in first place.  The Huskies are coming off a pair of ties at Miami last weekend.  In the opener, SCSU earned the extra standings point with a shootout win.  The next night, it surrendered the extra point with a loss in the 3-on-3 overtime.  The Huskies are 6-0-0 at home this season and 7-1-2 in their last 10 games.

Last Time Out
Mason Morelli had a goal, an assist and the deciding goal in a shootout in a 3-3 tie with Colorado College last Friday in the series opener at Baxter Arena.  Fredrik Olofsson also had a goal and an assist, and Taylor Ward added three assists as the Mavericks came from behind late in the third period and then earned the extra standings point on Morelli's goal in the first round of the shootout.  Evan Weninger made 34 saves.

The following night, the Mavericks spotted the Tigers a 4-0 lead in the first period and never recovered en route to a 6-3 loss.  Morelli, Riley Alferd and Ward all scored for the Mavericks.  Weninger allowed four goals on 16 shots in the first period and took the loss.  Matej Tomek played the final two periods, making 16 saves and allowing two goals.

The Coaches
Mike Gabinet is in his second season as head coach of the Mavericks, posting a 21-25-4 record all-time at his alma mater.  The 2004 graduate of Omaha served as an associate head coach during the 2016-17 season before being elevated to the head coach position last season.

Gabinet returned to Omaha after four seasons at NAIT in Edmonton, Alberta, the last as its head coach.  That season, he led the Ooks to a 36-0-0 record and the ACAC Championship.  He was named the conference Coach of the Year and became the first rookie head coach in Canadian college hockey to guide his team to an undefeated record.

Gabinet, a standout defenseman for the Mavericks from 2000-04, is assisted by Dave Noel-Bernier (Omaha, 2001) and Paul Jerrard (Lake Superior State, 1987).

Brett Larson is in his first season as head coach at St. Cloud State.  The 2004 graduate of Minnesota Duluth and former assistant at UMD is 11-1-2 in his short career at SCSU.  He is assisted by Mike Gibbons (Bemidji State, 1981) and Nick Oliver (St. Cloud State, 2015).

Media
Both games can be heard live on 1180 The Zone 2.  Dave Ahlers will have the play-by-play, and Terry Leahy provides analysis.  Coverage begins 30 minutes before game time with the First National Bank Pre-Game Show.  

Both games will be televised in Minnesota with Friday's game appearing on Fox Sports North+ and Saturday's game appearing on FSN.

Live video of both games is available on NCHC.tv, and audio and stat links are available at OMavs.com.

Up Next
The Mavericks return to action following the Christmas break by hosting Alaska Anchorage on Saturday and Monday, Dec. 29 and 31.  Saturday's game begins at 7:07 p.m., and Monday's game starts at 12:07 p.m. from Baxter Arena.
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