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Minnesota State Loses Two Key Defensemen Before Final Five

Minnesota State will have to plug some holes in their line-up due to injury.

Matt Christians

Minnesota State more than likely needs a win this afternoon against Bowling Green in the Final Five to keep their hopes of playing in the NCAA tournament alive. They'll have to do so without two regulars on the blue line, however. Shane Frederick of the Mankato Free Press reports that defensemen Carter Foguth and Josh Nelson will both be out with injuries suffered last weekend in Minnesota State's overtime victory over Northern Michigan.

Nelson, a senior defenseman, has struggled with injuries all season. Nelson suffered a hip injury early in the season that required season-ending surgery, but after an appeal for a medical redshirt was denied, Nelson decided to try and play through it rather than end his college career prematurely. Though he was on the ice in a leadership capacity, Nelson's effectiveness was greatly diminished because of the injury.

Foguth's injury looms larger for the Mavericks. Though Foguth only registered two assists in 32 games this season, the freshman has played big minutes for MSU and has been a reliable defensive zone presence.

Frederick reports that Casey Nelson, Josh's younger brother, and Blake Thompson are likely to be added to the line-up as replacements. Nelson has not played in a game since a January 24th loss to Minnesota-Duluth, while Thompson has played just six games for the Mavericks since becoming eligible at the midway point of the season, and has not played since February 1st.