First Place at Stake as Wilderness Hosts Windigo

Who:  Minnesota Wilderness vs. Wisconsin Windigo

When: April 6 and 7; 7:15 p.m. each night

Where: Northwoods Credit Union Arena, Cloquet, MN

The lead: The Minnesota Wilderness seeks to keep the Wisconsin Windigo from clinching first place in the Midwest Division with a Thursday/Friday home series.

Media:  All of the action can be seen on

Records:  Wisconsin: 36-17-3; Minnesota: 32-17-7

Midwest Division standings

Team Points Games played
1 Wisconsin (x) 75 56
2 Minnesota (x) 71 56
3 Chippewa 64 56
4 Kenai River 63 56
5 Fairbanks 61 58
6 Anchorage 59 56
7 Janesville 55 58
8 Springfield 51 56

X=clinched playoff spot

Last weekend:

In its home regular season finale, Wisconsin swept its 2-game series vs. Springfield. The Windigo captured the opener Friday, 6-2 and won game 2 in a shootout, 3-2.

The Wilderness split a pair of road games at Janesville.  The Jets were victorious in game 1, 6-1, while the Wilderness bounced back with a 3-0 victory in game 2.

Shutout Trio:  Isak Posch’s shutout Saturday is his fourth of the season, and the team’s third overall vs. Janesville. The three Jet shutouts were all completed with different netminders.  Konrad Kausch posted the first on Dec. 10, while Niklas Erickson held off the Jets for the second on March 25.  Posch made 22 saves when he kept the Jets scoreless on April 1. 

Playoff Bound: When the Wilderness begin post-season play on the weekend of April 21-22, it will mark the 8th time in the team’s 10 seasons in the NAHL that it has reached the Robertson Cup playoffs. Of those eight appearances, Minnesota has reached the second round five times. Of those five appearances, the Wilderness has advanced to the league semi-finals and finals once in its history.

Thoreson/Marx Norén Record Watch:  Forwards Gunnar Thoreson and Kevin Marx Norén have both begun to set new franchise records this season and have a shot at breaking others. Thoreson is now the team’s leader in career games played, while Marx Norén last weekend set a new single-season power play goal mark.  Below is a look at other records they are in reach of in the final four regular season games.

Player Category Record (current record holder) Player Total (w/Wilderness)
Thoreson Career Points 112 (Luke Dow) 107
Thoreson Career Assists 82 (Luke Dow) 72
Marx Norén Single-season goals 31 (Darian Romanko) 29
Marx Norén Single-season game-winning goals 8 (Jakob Romo) 6

PPG League Leader: By scoring three power-play goals last weekend, Marx Norén not only set a new team record, he also became the overall NAHL leader in PPGs for this season. The forward from Knivsta, Sweden, has 14 with the man-advantage—one more than his closest rival.  Marx Norén is also tied for 5th in two other goal categories: Goals with 30, and game-winners with 6.

 Season series: In the previous eight contests between Wisconsin and Minnesota, the team from America’s dairyland has dominated. After the Wilderness claimed game 1, 4-0 at home, the series has been all Windigo, with results listed below:

Game # Date Score Location
2 Oct. 8 3-2 (OT) Cloquet, MN
3 Jan. 13 3-0 Eagle River, WI
4 Jan. 14 4-3 Eagle River, WI
5 Feb. 3 5-2 Cloquet, MN
6 Feb. 4 4-3 (SO) Cloquet, MN
7 Feb. 17 3-0 Eagle River, WI
8 Feb. 18 6-5 (OT) Eagle River, WI

Windigo Could Clinch: Wisconsin could claim the Midwest Division’s regular season title this weekend with just one regulation victory. To have a chance at winning the division, the Wilderness will need to gain at least one point on the Windigo in the division standings this weekend.

 Windigo Notes – Fisher Catches 2nd Star: The Windigo’s top rookie scorer had his biggest game of the season last Friday.  Drew Fisher posted one goal and three assists on March 31 vs. Springfield for his first career 4-point game. For his efforts, Fisher was awarded the Midwest Division’s 2nd Star of the Week.  The forward from Woodbury, MN, leads all Windigo first year players with 29 points (10 goals, 19 assists).