Bemidji State suffered a late-season early departure when it was announced that rising junior defenseman Ruslan Pedan signed with HC Sochi of the KHL, forgoing his final year of eligibility.
Pedan, a native of Moscow, Russia, was a key contributor on the Beaver blue line the past three seasons, tallying 9-23-32 in 115 career games played. Last season, in addition to his 3-6-9 scoring line, Pedan posted a team-best +13 +/- rating thanks to his stellar play on the defensive end while logging heavy minutes. He was one of only five players to post a positive +/- on the year, with the next closest teammate registering a +8.
Pedan earned WCHA all-rookie team honors as a freshman, and was named a WCHA scholar-athlete last season.
Combined with the graduation of senior Graeme McCormack, the Beavers return five defensemen from last year's squad, which finished sixth in the WCHA with a 17-16-6 overall record.