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North Star College Cup: Bemidji State's Michael Bitzer named MVP

The Moorhead, MN native stopped 54 of 55 shots on the weekend and the Beavers won the four-team Minnesota in-season tournament for the first time.

North Star College Cup 2015 MVP Michael Bitzer
North Star College Cup 2015 MVP Michael Bitzer
Matt Christians

SAINT PAUL- Bemidji State freshman goaltender Michael Bitzer was named the 2015 North Star College Cup Most Valuable Player.

Bitzer made 26 saves on 27 shots in Saturday's 3-1 championship win against fellow WCHA team and #1 Minnesota State. That total includes stopping Mavericks forward Dylan Margonari on a penalty shot in the 3rd period.

"He's an unbelievable competitor," Beavers head coach Tom Serratore said after Saturday's victory. "He's a tremendous athlete and a tremendous competitior. We're fortunate to have an guy like that. He's a fighter. You want a fighter with you all the time so you saw that this weekend."

A day earlier the Moorhead, MN native made a career-high 28 saves against #7 Minnesota Duluth for his third career shutout.

"It feels great, but my defense right in front of me this weekend blocked a ton of shots," Bitzer said about defeating two top-ten teams. "Not many shots got through so it made it pretty easy on me to make it more of a team effort thing."

The Beavers won the 2nd annual four-team North Star College Cup in its first attempt. With five Division 1 men's college hockey teams one must sit out every year. Bemidji State sat out in 2014's inaugural edition before winning for the first time in 2015.

In the consolation game, Minnesota Duluth defeated Minnesota 2-1 when Bulldogs captain Adam Krause scored the game winner Saturday afternoon with 2:11 remaining in regulation.

North Star College Cup Most Valuable Players

2015 - Michael Bitzer, Bemidji State goaltender

2014 - Adam Wilcox, Minnesota goaltender


Nathan Wells is a college hockey columnist for SB Nation. You can also follow him on Twitter --