PSU set to begin hockey season
ROSEMONT, Ill.–The Big Ten announced phase I of the 2020-21 men’s ice hockey schedule as Penn State will begin the season on the road at Minnesota on Thursday and Friday. The full schedule will feature 24 conference games for each team, plus an additional four contests per school against Arizona State hosted at Big Ten venues. The 2020-21 schedule will conclude March 18-20, 2021, with the Big Ten Men’s Ice Hockey Tournament.
Big Ten hockey teams will follow the same medical protocols that were developed by the Big Ten Return to Competition Task Force and announced on Sept. 16, including daily antigen testing, enhanced cardiac screening and an enhanced data-driven approach when making decisions about practice and competition. Arizona State has agreed to adhere to the same testing protocols as the Big Ten Conference.
The Nittany Lions begin the 2020-21 slate against the Golden Gophers 271 days after their final contest of 2019-20 also against Minnesota. Penn State secured a 3-2 victory that night, ultimately clinching its first-ever Big Ten regular season championship. The two teams were then scheduled to meet again at Pegula Ice Arena in the Big Ten semifinal prior to the remainder of the 2020 postseason being canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Following the two-game series in Minneapolis, Penn State will travel to Wisconsin for a midweek affair on Nov. 23-24 before returning home to close out the fall semester.
The Nittany Lions open the home portion of their schedule with a mid-week series against Michigan on Dec. 2-3 and close the semester with a Friday-Sunday series versus Arizona State on Dec. 11 and 13.
The Nittany Lions finished the 2019-20 season ranked inside the top-10 for the second time in the past four seasons at No. 8 and begin this season with their highest preseason ranking coming in at No. 9 in both the USCHO.com and USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine polls.
Senior captain Alex Limoges enters the season as the Big Ten career points leader among active players ranking third in the nation with 103 points. That mark is good for seventh on the Penn State all-time points list as he sits 37 points behind Nate Sucese ’20 for the program lead.
Limoges’ 41 career goals are the second-most among active players in the Big Ten entering the season ranking fifth nationally and tied for eighth all-time at Penn State.
Game times and television designations, along with the remainder of the 2020-21 Big Ten men’s ice hockey schedule and further details regarding the 2021 Big Ten Hockey Tournament will be announced at a later date.