Ferris State Claims 3-2 Shootout Victory Over #1 Miami

Video Highlights
Post Game Press Conference - FSU Head Coach Bob Daniels
Post Game Press Conference - FSU Forward Kyle Bonis

The Ferris State University men's ice hockey team has definitely raised some eyebrows across the country as the Bulldogs turned in their best series performance this season to date with a 3-2 shootout victory over the nationally number-one ranked Miami (Ohio) RedHawks this Saturday (Nov. 6) evening following a 1-1 overtime tie in a Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) contest at FSU's Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids, Mich.

With the tie and shootout win, Ferris State earned five of a potential six CCHA points against the top-ranked RedHawks.  The Bulldogs, who posted a 3-2 triumph in Friday's (Nov. 5) series opener, improve to 5-3-2 overall and 2-2-2-2 in the CCHA with the tie and shootout decision.

Ferris State captured its second shootout win of this season as sophomore left wing Kyle Bonis (Lindsay, Ontario) fired a shot between the low blocker of Miami goaltender Connor Knapp for the deciding goal.  Miami had a final opportunity to tie the shootout but Ferris State senior goaltender Pat Nagle (Bloomfield) made the key stop on Alden Hirschfeld's right-handed shot to perserve the win.

The Bulldogs, who went first in the shootout, scored on their first attempt as junior defenseman Derek Graham (Schoolcraft) shot was initially stopped by Connor Knapp but trickled into the RedHawks' goal to give the hosts a 1-0 lead.  Nagle made back-to-back saves on Miami's first two shootout chances while the Ferris State was unsuccessful on its next two as Knapp made both stops.  The RedHawks were down to their final chance in the three-round shootout and converted when Andy Miele scored five hole on Nagle to force another round.  Junior center Jordie Johnston (Rosetown, Saskatchewan) put the Bulldogs ahead 2-1 with a goal as his shot sailed above Knapp's right shoulder into the net.  However, Miami countered again as Pat Cannone skated in on Nagle before firing a shot into the upper right side of the Ferris net to even the shootout at 2-2 which would set up Bonis' key lamplighter.   

The contest was scoreless through the opening eight-plus minutes before Miami got on the board first, potting a tally by Pat Cannone at the 8:56 mark.  Alden Hirschfeld's shot from inside the right circle hit off Nagle's chest and bounced to Cannone, who on his rush to net was able to score his fourth goal of the season.

Ferris State knotted the score at 1:51 into the second period when freshman center Cory Kane (Irvine, Calif.) recorded his second goal of the year.  Kyle Bonis fed a pass out to Kane while proceeding to fall down in the left side corner and the Bulldog freshman skater one-timed a shot from above the left circle dot to beat Connor Knapp for the equalizer.  Junior right wing Aaron Schmit (Grafton, Wis.) also picked up a helper on the Kane goal.  Kane would go on to garner third star of the game accolades.  FSU netted the game-tying goal in the second frame despite being outshot 18-3 in the period.

Neither team was able to breakthrough on the scoreboard the remainder of the way as Miami totaled six shots apiece in the third and overtime periods while Ferris State had five third-period shots and three more in the extra session.  Miami, which picked up one point with the tie, managed to outshoot the Bulldogs by 18 shots (37-19) for the contest.

Pat Nagle (5-2-2) received first star of the game recognition and deservingly so as he accumulated a season-high 36 saves, including a spectacular one late in the overtime period to ensure the tie.  Connor Knapp (1-1-3) turned aside 18 shots for Miami in the contest.

Ferris State is on the road in CCHA action next weekend, Nov. 12-13, for a pair of outings against the Lake Superior State Lakers in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.  A 7:05 p.m. (EDT) opening faceoff is set for both contests at LSSU's Taffy Abel Arena.

NOTES: Eight of the last nine games between the Bulldogs and RedHawks have been decided by one goal or less and FSU is 2-2-3 in those eight encounters . . . Pat Nagle's 36 saves represents a season high, eclipsing his 28 stops against Michigan (Oct. 29) . . .  Ferris State has won three consecutive league shootouts against Miami to date, which began last season (Nov. 13-14) with a 1-0 win following a 2-2 tie and then a 2-1 decision in a CCHA-record 22-skater shootout after a 1-1 overtime deadlock in the series finale . . .  The Bulldogs are now 4-1-2 in home encounters this season following this evening's tie . . . FSU is currently 2-0 in league shootouts this campaign as the Bulldogs posted a 2-0 home win over fourth-ranked Michigan (Oct. 29) in their initial shootout of the 2010-11 season.