The label "Champions" is now associated with four former members of the Ferris State University men's ice hockey program after the foursome helped lead the Bossier-Shreveport (La.) Mudbugs to the 2011 Central Hockey League's (CHL) Ray Miron Presidents' Cup Championship title this past Friday (May 27) evening in Loveland, Colo.
Forward Brett Smith (2000-04), defensemen Simon Mangos (2000-04) and Jim Jorgensen (2004-08) along with goaltender John DeCaro (2001-03), who all skated for the Bulldogs, played key roles in Bossier-Shreveport being crowned 2011 CHL Playoff Champions following a 2-1 victory over the Colorado Eagles in the deciding game seven of the league championship series. The Mudbugs claimed their fourth CHL President's Cup and the organization's first since 2001 with the one-goal decision over the Eagles at the Budweiser Events Center in Loveland.
The Mudbugs prevailed in the CHL Playoff Finals' decisive seventh game behind the contributions of many, which included three Ferris State skaters - Smith, Jorgensen, and DeCaro. Smith and Jorgensen each earned a point in the game with an assist while DeCaro stopped 26 of 27 shots on goal to tie a CHL record with his 11th postseason victory.
Smith, a member of Ferris State's 2002-03 Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) Regular-Season Championship team, recently completed his sixth season with Bossier-Shreveport and his second campaign as the Mudbugs' team captain. He recorded a team third-best 55 points on 20 goals with 35 assists in 57 outings this 2010-11 campaign. in his four years (2000-04) as a Bulldog, Smith tallied 27 goals and 34 assists for 61 points in 153 career games.
Mangos, a three-year member of the Mudbugs, racked up a squad 10th-most 32 points as a result of five goals and 27 assists in 61 contests this season. A 2002-03 Ferris State squad member, Mangos generated 57 career points on 26 goals with 31 assists in 153 outings as a four-year (2000-04) letterwinner.
Jorgensen finished his second season skating for Bossier-Shreveport in the 2010-11 campaign and his third in the professional ranks. In 54 games this campaign, he totaled 17 points on four goals and 13 helpers. Jorgensen chalked up seven goals and 32 assists for 39 points in 114 contests during his four-year (2004-08) Bulldog career.
DeCaro compiled a 20-12-1 record to go with a 2.61 goals-against average and a .899 saves percentage in 35 appearances this season. The 2007 and 2008 CHL's Most Outstanding Goaltender spent his first two seasons (2001-03) in the collegiate ranks with Ferris State before transferring to Alaska-Anchorage. DeCaro, like Smith and Mangos, was a member of the Bulldogs' historic 2002-03 team which produced a school-record 31-10-1 overall mark and made the program's first and only NCAA Tournament appearance.