St. Cloud State announced its 2021-22 men's hockey schedule on Monday, and the reigning NCAA runner-up will open the season heavy local nonconference opponents.

The Huskies, who finished 20-11 in 2020-21 and advanced to the Frozen Four final for the first time before falling 5-0 to Massachusetts, open the season with a home-and-home series on Oct. 2-3 against St. Thomas, which will be making its Division I debut. The Huskies are host to the Tommies at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on Oct. 2. The next day, St. Cloud State visits St. Thomas in a game listed in Mendota Heights, site of the St. Thomas Ice Arena.

St. Cloud State visits Minnesota State Mankato on Oct. 8-9 in a rematch of an NCAA semifinal won 5-4 by the Huskies. The following week, the Huskies have a home-and-home series against the Gophers, Oct. 15 in Minneapolis and Oct. 16 in St. Cloud. On Oct. 22-23, Big Ten regular-season champion Wisconsin visits St. Cloud State.

The Huskies' other nonconference series is a home-and-home matchup against Bemidji State on Dec. 31 in Bemidji and Jan. 1 in St. Cloud.

St. Cloud State opens NCHC play on Nov. 5-6 at Colorado College.

St. Thomas to face Minnesota State in 'Hockey Day Minnesota' in Mankato

There will be a whole lot of purple for "Hockey Day Minnesota'' in Mankato in 2022, and it won't be just from the Minnesota State Mankato Mavericks.

Division I newcomer St. Thomas will meet Minnesota State in the event's marquee men's game in the winter of 2022 at Blakeslee Stadium, the Wild and Bally Sports North announced Monday. Details regarding the date of the game between the Mavericks and Tommies, along with other matchups, will be announced this summer.

Minnesota State is coming off a season in which it went 22-5-1 and advanced to its first Frozen Four. St. Thomas is making the move from NCAA Division III to Division I and last month hired former Miami (Ohio) coach Rico Blasi as its head coach. Both teams will be members of the new CCHA, which begins play this fall.

Mankato was scheduled to be host to "Hockey Day Minnesota'' this year, but the event was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.