Wilderness Prepare for Playoff Matchup Against Bismarck, Showcasing Local Talent

CLOQUET, Minn.– With the regular season wrapped up, the Minnesota Wilderness have their sights set on a first round playoff matchup against a familiar foe.

The Wilderness finished the season 25-27 and will now take on the Bismarck Bobcats in the Robertson Cup Playoffs. Both teams faced off against each other just last weekend in Cloquet where the Wilderness swept the Bobcats. The two teams split the season series, each winning four games against one another.

Defenseman Grant Docter, the team’s leading scorer with 18 goals, is hoping to keep the team’s defense rolling after only giving up 2 goals total in their last two.

“Our defense is pretty good but it can always get better and defense wins games. And now in the playoffs it’s going to be hard to score goals so making sure we’re hard to score goals against is going to be really huge for us,” said Docter.

Wilderness coaches say they’re preparing like any other game and hope to keep their momentum going into their first round matchup.

“We’re feeling good. We are playing a very familiar team, a really talented team but we like the way we’re playing going in. So we’re going to go to Bismarck and hopefully play well,” said Wilderness General Manager Dave Boitz. “We know they are, they know who we are and both teams I’m sure will be very prepared for their opponent.”

As they hope to make a playoff run, the Wilderness will be showcasing a lot of local talent on the ice.

9 Wilderness players played their high school hockey right here in the Northland, including Forward Gavin Rasmussen, who spent his high school career playing for Cloquet-Esko-Carlton and is tied for second on the team in points this season.  He’s ready to show off the hockey talent of the Northland.

“Growing up in Cloquet, I know the ice really well,” said Rasmussen. “It’s extremely awesome. We got a lot of good guys from the area and to be able to continue to play on one team and all of us being able to showcase that it’s pretty special.”

The Wilderness will be on the road for game one in Bismarck, puck drop on Friday is set for 8:15 p.m.

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