UND to play more series in Fargo, consider other locations around the state
With the success of the West Regional in Fargo this past weekend, the University of North Dakota has announced they will be playing regular season games at Scheels Arena starting next season (2015-16). Although the dates have not been announced, the plan is to play the home series against St Cloud State and Alabama-Huntsville in Fargo.
Quinnipiac coach Sam Pecknold, the first opposing coach to take on the Fighting NoDaks in Fargo, said after the game "I got to give it to North Dakota, they have some of the best fans in the country. Obviously [Scheels] Arena is great, it’s really a good venue. Having been on the committee before, it is a battle to keep neutral sites and obviously this was not a neutral site."
UND Coach Hakstol commented, "“It was awesome. Right from walking in the building a couple of hours before the game, right through the end of the final buzzer. What a tremendous atmosphere for our players to have the opportunity to play in. .... Playing in an environment like this in your home state..."
Reached in his office on Thursday, UND SID Jayson Hajdu said, "We've seen it in other sports." The Bills play a home game in Toronto; the Packers have played home games in Milwaukee. The Saints played in San Antonio and Baton Rouge after Katrina. And who could forget the Kansas City-Omaha Kings in the NBA.
"To begin with, we'll start small, with a couple of series in Fargo. We don't want to lose our entire advantage of Ralph Engelstad Arena, but remember, we are the University of North Dakota, not the University of Grand Forks."
When asked if there were plans to expand, he mentioned "With the oil boom in Dickinson, we expect them to have a nice hockey facility there within five years. When they are ready, I can see us playing there. And playing on the reservation might be a way to get the Sioux nickname back."
Happy April 1st.
quotes I didn't make up were from Brad Schlossman's blog
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