The Minnesota Whitecaps will play an outdoor exhibition scrimmage against Team Korea on January 20 as part of this weekend's Hockey Day Minnesota festivities in Stillwater.
This unique opportunity came to fruition on two fronts. The Minnesota Wild, as part of their ongoing commitment to growing women's hockey, arranged the one hour of ice time, while Team Korea's head coach Sarah Murray has deep Minnesota roots as an alumnus of Shattuck St. Mary's and the University of Minnesota Duluth.
These two teams have met before. The Korean women have spent a portion of the previous two winters training in Minnesota, playing a series of exhibitions against local teams like SSM and the Minnesota Elite Black in preparation for the Division II World Championships, the Asian Winter Games, and, of course, the PyeongChang Olympics. With Team Korea set to make their Olympic debut and the Whitecaps roster loaded with Olympic hopefuls, this will be a good chance for both teams to test their talent against less-than-familiar opponents.
While the scrimmage won’t be aired on Fox Sports North like other Hockey Day Minnesota games, it’s attracted some notice both in and outside of the region, and the Whitecaps’ exposure base is growing. According to Whitecaps co-coach Laura Halldorson, the Minnesota Wild advertised the event earlier this week and a reporter from the New York Times was in town earlier in the season when the team played the Minnesota Golden Gophers and the University of Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs. Halldorson is hopeful about the possibility of Fox Sports North airing some game footage later in the weekend: “Our hope is that there will be some clips on FSN, create some exposure.”
The Minnesota Whitecaps will face Team Korea at 6:00 PM CST on Friday, January 20 at Lowell Park in Stillwater, Minnesota.