BLOOMINGTON, Minn. – Oct. 8, 2019 - The Women's League of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association is launching a new yearly rivalry series during the 2019-20 season. The series will highlight the biggest matchups in the top league in all of NCAA women's hockey.
Over four consecutive weekends of competition the WCHA's seven member institutions will compete in the Opening Faceoff, going head-to-head against their greatest conference opponents as the season gets underway. With a focus on spotlighting behind-the-scenes action surrounding each weekend's series, fans will be given insight into the tradition of competition between rival programs and what those rivalries mean to each team when they are off the ice.
"The talent and competitiveness of the WCHA is second to none," WCHA Commissioner Jennifer Flowers said. "We are looking forward to featuring our student-athletes' perspective on each rivalry. The Opening Faceoff will showcase the teams in a unique way and also will provide fans an inside look at the excitement and personality that comprises the competition within our league."
The 2019 Opening Faceoff begins with Wisconsin traveling to Ohio State on October 11-12. The competition between the two teams has been fierce the last few seasons as the recent series stands at just 4-3-2 in the Badgers' favor since the start of the 2017-18 campaign. The following weekend sees Minnesota Duluth visit Bemidji State at the Sanford Center as the Bulldogs, who have a 8-6-0 record against the Beavers over the past two season, face off against their in-state rival on October 18-19
The weekend of October 25-26 features a Minnesota State and St. Cloud State matchup, with the Huskies holding a 41-33-15 series advantage. As the calendar turns to November, the Badgers make their way to Minneapolis to take on the Golden Gophers and continue the ongoing border battle between Wisconsin and Minnesota. The Gophers lead the series, 50-36-11, but the last time these two teams met on the ice the Badgers emerged as the 2019 NCAA Champions.
Opening Faceoff Matchups
Oct. 11-12 Wisconsin at Ohio State
Oct. 18-19 Minnesota Duluth at Bemidji State
Oct. 25-26 Minnesota State at St. Cloud State
Nov 2-3 Wisconsin at Minnesota