Northern Michigan University, Michigan Tech set hockey games for today and Monday after previously scheduled games called off

Northern Michigan University forward Mikey Colella, right, skates with the puck as Ferris State’s Connor Fedorek defends on Dec. 16 at the Berry Events Center in Marquette. (Photo courtesy Shannon Stieg)

MARQUETTE — This may be the ultimate in last-minute scheduling switches.

Northern Michigan and Michigan Tech universities announced late Friday afternoon that they will play a two-game home-and-home nonconference hockey series today and Monday.

When NMU had this weekend’s WCHA series at Alabama-Huntsville postponed on Wednesday, there was no one else in the league for them to play.

That is, until mid-morning Friday, when the MTU program first announced that that night’s opening game of its league series against Lake Superior State would be delayed one hour to allow coronavirus testing results to come in. It was the usual two-game series with the second game scheduled Saturday night.

Then hours later, the Huskies program said that not only was the entire series postponed, but they had rescheduled a series with NMU instead. Northern made its announcement simultaneously.

This new series won’t count in the league standings as their previously scheduled series for Feb. 26-27 is their only one played in the WCHA. This year’s eight league teams play one two-game series against each other for 14 league games total.

Today’s game will start at 4:07 p.m. at Tech’s MacInnes Student Ice Arena in Houghton, with the 5:07 p.m. Monday return matchup at Northern’s Berry Events Center in Marquette.

What’s still up in the air is how the two Upper Peninsula schools will reschedule this weekend’s original games.

Both are in a tough spot as the league’s open weekend at the end of the regular season, March 5-6, has already been spoken for by the Huskies and Huntsville.

Tech plays at Minnesota State-Mankato, a makeup for a Jan. 8-9 series, while the Alabama school goes to Bemidji State after their series last weekend was also postponed.

A league schedule site, www.wcha.com/ men/schedule/index.php, mentions after the March makeup series that “Additional Make-Up Games will be scheduled the weekend of 3/5 through 3/7” but with no other details.

NMU mentioned in its announcement for the Northern-Tech series that fans can follow every game online at flohockey.tv, on the web at nmuwildcats.com, or on social media at @NMU_Wildcats and @NMUHockey.

With these postponements, there is only one series that counts in the WCHA this weekend — Ferris State at Minnesota State played this afternoon and Sunday. The Bowling Green State-Bemidji series, that the Beavers swept 2-1 Thursday and 3-1 Friday, was a nonconference series added into the schedule after Alaska-Fairbanks and Alaska-Anchorage suspended their seasons in the past few months.

Northern’s next series following this weekend will be at home against Ferris State at 7:07 p.m. Friday and 6:07 p.m. next Saturday.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.


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