Alabama-Huntsville Skates Past Bulldogs To Earn Season-Opening Series Split

MIke Embach and the Bulldogs fall to Alabama-Huntsville 4-2 in weekend series finale.  (Photo by Chuck Edgeworth)
MIke Embach and the Bulldogs fall to Alabama-Huntsville 4-2 in weekend series finale. (Photo by Chuck Edgeworth)

Alabama-Huntsville salvaged a season-opening series split with the Ferris State University men's ice hockey team as the Chargers accounted for the game's first two goals and also the last two to record a 4-2 decision over the Bulldogs this Friday (Oct. 8) night at UAH's Von Braun Center in Huntsville, Ala.

With the non-league loss, Ferris State evens its 2010-11 season record to 1-1-0 while Alabama-Huntsville also has the identical overall mark to date.  The Bulldogs skated to a 4-1 victory over the Chargers in Thursday's (Oct. 7) season opener.

The Chargers didn't waste any time getting on the scoreboard as the host team scored just 42 seconds into the contest on a Nickolas Gatt power-play lamplighter.  A goal by Mac Roy just under the midway point in the first period put Alabama-Huntsville up by a 2-0 margin.

Ferris State, which outshot the Chargers 32-24 in the contest, came out in the second period by scoring back-to-back goals to tie the game at 2-2 with 6:01 remaining in the frame.  Junior center Jordie Johnston (Rosetown, Saskatchewan) netted his first goal of the season during a Bulldog power-play situation at 5:05 into the period.  A pair of junior defensemen, Chad Billins (Marysville) and Derek Graham (Schoolcraft) assisted on FSU's first score.  Ferris State then was able to get the puck past UAH goaltender Clarke Saunders for a second time when senior center Nate Hennig (Macomb) tallied for the Bulldogs with 6:01 to go in the second.  Hennig, who was making his season debut, converted on a pass from freshman left wing Andy Huff (Howell) as the rookie forward earned his first collegiate point with the assist in his initial appearance of the 2010-11 campaign. 

The score would remained deadlocked for almost the remainder of the second period before Alabama-Huntsville's Curtis deBruyn capitalized on a power-play chance with a score to give the Chargers a 3-2 lead following 40 minutes of action.

Alabama-Huntsville proceeded to account for the third period's lone score with an insurance power-play lamplighter off the stick of Mac Roy, which represented his second goal of the night en route to being selected the game's first star.

Clarke Saunders was able to even up his season record at 1-1-0 for Alabama-Huntsville as a result of making 30 saves for the game, which featured 12 first-period stops and 10 saves in the third.  Junior goaltender Taylor Nelson (Regina, Saskatchewan) received the starting assignment for Ferris State and responded with a 20-saves in his season debut.

In power plays, Ferris State made good on one of three opportunities while the Chargers were successful in three of five extra-man advantage situations.

Ferris State will continue non-league play on the ice next weekend, Oct. 15-16, as the Bulldogs open the home portion of their 2010-11 schedule taking on the St. Lawrence Saints.  Both outings will get underway at 7:05 p.m. (EDT) at FSU's Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids, Mich.  For tickets, please contact the FSU Athletics Ticket Office at (231) 591-2888 or by ordering online at