Minnesota Wilderness

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Minnesota Wilderness
MinnesotaWilderness.png
CityCloquet, Minnesota, United States
LeagueNAHL
DivisionCentral
Founded2003
Home arenaNorthwoods Credit Union Arena
ColorsGreen, black, and white
              
General managerDavid Boitz (2013–14)
Head coachDave Boitz (2018–19)
Franchise history
Junior A/Tier III franchise
2000–2004Northwest Wisconsin Knights
2004–2010Wisconsin Mustangs
2010–2012Wisconsin Wilderness
2012–2013Minnesota Wilderness
Tier II NAHL franchise
2003–2006Texarkana Bandits
2006–2012St. Louis Bandits
2013–presentMinnesota Wilderness

The Minnesota Wilderness are an American Tier II junior ice hockey team based in Cloquet, Minnesota, and play in the North American Hockey League (NAHL). The organization formerly fielded teams in the Canada-based Junior A Superior International Junior Hockey League for three seasons and in the American-based Tier III Minnesota Junior Hockey League.

Prior to the 2013–14 season, the Wilderness' owners bought the franchise rights to the St. Louis Bandits of the Tier II North American Hockey League and began play for that season.

History[edit]

The organization was founded in 2000 as the Northwest Wisconsin Knights as a Junior B team in the Minnesota Junior Hockey League (MnJHL). In 2004, the Knights changed their name to the Wisconsin Mustangs. In 2006, their league was promoted to Tier III Junior A status by USA Hockey.

2011 Wilderness

From 2001 until 2003, the Knights had an interleague relationship with the Superior International Junior Hockey League (SIJHL) of Hockey Canada. The 2009–10 season saw them back in an interlock with the SIJHL.

Mustangs' Logo

On May 17, 2010, the Mustangs announced they were officially leaving the MnJHL, their players were released to a dispersal draft.[1] Soon after they applied for entry into the SIJHL. After a couple months, they were allowed entry. The team dropped the Mustangs logo, colors, and name as the organization entered the new league and became the Wisconsin Wilderness.

On September 17, 2010, the Wilderness played their first ever game as a full member of the SIJHL, on the road, against the Sioux Lookout Flyers. The Wilderness took the game 3–2 to record their first ever win as a full member of the league. On September 24, 2010, the Wilderness became the first American-based full membership SIJHL team to host a regular season game in the United States. The Wilderness defeated the Fort Frances Lakers 4–3. In 2011, the Wilderness won the league championship.

In the summer of 2012, the team relocated to Cloquet, Minnesota, and changed their name to the Minnesota Wilderness.

On May 4, 2013, the Wilderness became the first American team in history to win the Dudley Hewitt Cup by defeating the St. Michael's Buzzers 4–3 in overtime in the Central Canada final. They also became the first American team to compete directly for the Royal Bank Cup, the Canadian National Junior A championship.

After winning the Dudley Hewitt Cup, the Wilderness announced that the 2013 Royal Bank Cup would be their final foray in Canadian junior hockey as they joined the North American Hockey League (NAHL) at the beginning of the 2013–14 season. At the Royal Bank Cup, Minnesota finished fourth in the round-robin with a 1–3 record. In the semifinal, they surrendered a 4–2 third period lead to the Alberta Junior Hockey League's Brooks Bandits to lose 5–4 in overtime. Their loss to Brooks ended their hopes of a national championship and was their final game as members of the Superior International Junior Hockey League.

In 2013, the Wilderness bought the franchise rights of the dormant St. Louis Bandits franchise to obtain entry into the NAHL.

Season-by-season records[edit]

Season GP W L T OTL Pts GF GA Finish Playoffs
2000–01 36 26 9 1 53 192 120 3rd, MnJHL
2001–02 42 30 10 2 62 227 160 2nd, MnJHL
2002–03 42 29 10 3 61 221 132 3rd, MnJHL
2003–04 40 14 25 1 3 32 152 194 5th, MnJHL
2004–05 48 11 34 1 2 25 151 267 6th, MnJHL
2005–06 48 21 23 3 1 46 180 196 4th, MnJHL
2006–07 40 25 12 3 0 53 176 130 3rd, MnJHL Lost Semifinal
2007–08 48 38 5 5 81 268 122 2nd, MnJHL Lost Quarterfinal
2008–09 48 29 17 2 60 219 172 4th, MnJHL Lost Semifinal
2009–10 50 28 18 4 60 189 148 4th, MnJHL Lost Semifinal
2010–11 56 45 6 5 95 264 122 1st, SIJHL Won Super Series, 1-1 (2-1 SO) (Lakers)
Won Semi-final, 4-0 (North Stars)
Won Final, 4-0 (Ice Dogs)
4th of 4 DHC Round Robin (0-2-1)
2011–12 56 49 6 1 99 259 97 1st, SIJHL Lost Super Series, 1-1 (5-6 SO) (Lakers)
Won Semi-final, 4-0 (North Stars)
Won Final, 4-3 (Lakers)
4th of 4 DHC Round Robin (1-0-2)
2012–13 56 51 3 2 104 282 85 1st, SIJHL Won Semi-final, 4-0 (Iron Rangers)
Won Final, 4-2 (Lakers)
1st of 4 DHC Round Robin (2-0-1)
Won DHC Final, 4-3 OT (Buzzers)
4th of 5 RBC Round Robin (1-3-0)
Lost RBC Semi-final, 4-5 OT (Bandits)
North American Hockey League (NAHL)
2013–14 60 37 14 9 83 159 115 2nd, Midwest Lost Div. Semifinals, 2–3 vs. Wenatchee Wild
2014–15 60 39 15 6 84 209 152 2nd, Midwest Won First Round, 3–2 vs. Coulee Region Chill
Won Quarterfinals, 3–0 vs. Fairbanks Ice Dogs
Won Semifinals, 2–0 vs. Janesville Jets
Won Finals, 2–0 vs. Austin Bruins
Robertson Cup Champions
2015–16 60 34 18 7 76 183 161 3rd, Midwest Won Div. Semifinals, 3–1 vs. Janesville Jets
Lost Div. Finals, 2–3 vs. Fairbanks Ice Dogs
2016–17 60 32 22 6 70 188 179 2nd, Central Won Div. Semifinals, 3–2 vs. Brookings Blizzard
Lost Div. Finals, 2–3 vs. Aberdeen Wings
2017–18 60 33 21 6 72 184 181 3rd, Central Lost Div. Semifinals, 1–3 vs. Austin Bruins

Interleague records[edit]

Season GP W L T OTL Pts GF GA League
2001–02 24 6 14 4 0 16 77 118 SIJHL
2002–03 20 6 14 0 0 12 76 113 SIJHL
2009–10 20 4 15 1 9 56 90 SIJHL

References[edit]

External links[edit]