November 16, 2011

Hockey Notes: #6 Ferris State at Alaska

THIS WEEK:
Click Here For Complete Game Notes (PDF)

vs. Alaska
Friday and Saturday (Nov. 18-19) – 11:35 p.m. (EDT)
Carlson Center
Fairbanks, Alaska

Live Game Statistics:
http://livestats.prestosports.com/ferrisstate/

Listen Live:  The Bulldogs Sports Network will carry a live audio feed from the Alaska series. Alaska's Bruce Cech will provide the play-by-play. Fans can listen to both games at:
http://client.stretchinternet.com/client/ferris.portal#
http://socialstreamingplayer.crystalmedianetworks.com/radio/kcbfam

The Opening Faceoff:
 The Ferris State University men's ice hockey team will faceoff against the Alaska Nanooks this weekend (Nov. 18-19) in a Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) road series. The two-game series gets underway this Friday (Nov. 18) at the Carlson Center in Fairbanks, Alaska, and will conclude on Saturday (Nov. 19). Both contests have 11:35 p.m. (EDT) slated start times. The two games represent the first of four matchups in the 2011-12 regular season between the two teams.

2011-12 Bulldog Hockey Ticket Information: Tickets for all 2011-12 Bulldog home regular-season hockey games can be purchased by contacting the FSU Athletics Ticket Office at (231) 591-2888. The FSU Athletics Ticket Office's normal hours of operation are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (ET) weekdays. The ticket office will also offer extended hours until 7 p.m. (ET) on Wednesday's throughout the season and be open on hockey home game Saturday's at 12 p.m. (ET).

Single-game tickets may also be purchased by contacting Star Tickets at 1-800-585-3737 or online at Star Tickets website: www.startickets.com. Tickets are also available at all Meijer store locations in West Michigan and at the Student Services Office in the FSU Rankin Student Center.

Media Coverage: A live video and audio webcast will be available for all 2011-12 FSU men's ice hockey home games through Stretch Internet for a charge of $7.95 on FSU's Athletics Website at www. FerrisStateBulldogs.com. Live internet statistics will also be available for all Bulldog home contests with a live audio stream for all home and away games.

The Records: Ferris State is presently 9-2-1 overall and 5-2-1-(0) in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) this season. FSU is currently listed in fourth place with 16 points among the CCHA schools, right behind a tie for second with Lake Superior State and Ohio State, who each have 17 points. Notre Dame won a rare Tuesday night game against Western Michigan, giving them the first place spot, with 20 points. The Bulldogs walked away with four out of a possible six points this past weekend after defeating LSSU in a 5-1 contest on Friday (Nov. 11) at the Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids. In Saturday's (Nov. 12) contest, the Bulldogs battled to a 1-1 overtime tie before the Lakers picked up the extra point with the shootout win.

Alaska currently holds a 3-7-2 overall record and is 0-6-2 in conference play. Last weekend (Nov. 11-12), the Nanooks lost to the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in a 5-4 decision on Friday, before falling in a 3-2 overtime decision on Saturday night. Both contests were played in South Bend, Ind. Alaska will be looking for its first conference win this weekend.

The Coaches: Ferris State - Bob Daniels (Michigan State, 1982), 20th season, 317-352-75 (.476) – (22-27-3 vs. Alaska – 10-20-1 away, 12-7-2 home and 0-1-0 neutral). Daniels has the distinction of being the all-time winningest coach in Ferris State history. He was honored as the 2002-03 CCHA Coach of the Year and the Inside College Hockey (INCH) Coach of the Year, but the crowing highlight of his coaching career was being chosen as the recipient of the 2003 Spencer Penrose Award as the ACHA's Division I National Hockey Coach of the Year. He was among three finalists for both the 2007-08 and 2009-10 CCHA Coach of the Year Awards.

Alaska- Dallas Ferguson  (Alaska, 1996), 3rd season, 80-93-30 (.467) - (8-4-5 vs. Ferris State). Dallas Ferguson became the eighth head coach of his alma mater on May 15, 2008, following four years of service as an assistant coach for the Blue and Gold. Ferguson has guided the program to new heights in his first three seasons at the helm. After leading the team to a fourth place finish in the CCHA and capturing the league's Coach of the Year award in 2008-09, he took the Nanooks to the NCAA tournament for the first time in program history in 2009-10.

Scouting the Nanooks: The Nanooks have yet to capture a CCHA win after losing and earning a tie in two series' this season against Ohio State and Notre Dame. They were also swept at home two weekends ago by Miami (Ohio). Alaska is off to its slowest start in conference play since the 2007-08 season, when they went 0-5-1 before capturing their first conference win on Nov. 30. Two Nanooks lead their team with nine points apiece. Sophomore forwards Colton Beck and Cody Kunyk each have four goals and five assists thus far in the 2011-12 campaign. Senior goaltender Scott Greenham has played 10 games between the pipes this season for a record of 2-6-2. He totes a .886 save percentage and a 2.77 goals against average. Junior Steve Thompson has played in two outings as goalie with a record of 1-1-0. He has averaged 2.41 goals against and has a .914 save percentage on the season.

The All-Time Series: Ferris State and Alaska will be facing off for the 58th and 59th times this weekend with the Nanooks holding a 28-26-3 series edge. The Bulldogs hold a 14-8-2 home record and 10-20-1 road mark versus Alaska. Last season, the two teams met four times with the season-edge going to Ferris State by a 3-1 count. FSU split a two-game series at home last December and went on to sweep Alaska in 2-1 and 3-2 decisions while on the road when the teams met again in February. The road sweep was FSU's first against Alaska since the 2002-03 campaign when the CCHA regular-season champion Bulldogs skated to 5-0 and 5-1 victories in Fairbanks.

Top Ten: FSU is currently listed sixth nationally this week in all three collegiate hockey polls: the U.S. College Hockey Online (USCHO),  Inside College Hockey.com (INCH) and USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine poll. The sixth-place national ranking in the USCHO poll matches the program's highest of the year as they were also ranked in the same position on Oct. 24th.  The historic 2002-03 Bulldog hockey team, which registered a school-record 31-10-1 overall mark and the program's first-ever CCHA Regular-Season Championship and NCAA Tournament berth, earned a season-high fourth place national ranking by USCHO late in that memorable season on March 10, 2003. After being ranked eighth in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine poll last week, the Bulldogs jumped to the number six spot with 331 votes. The sixth-place ranking marks the highest the Bulldogs have been ranked in the poll this season.

Top Ten Goalies: Freshman goaltender CJ Motte (St. Claire) is currently at the top of the NCAA Division I Goaltending Leaders list as he has compiled a 3-1-1 record to date. He has allowed only six goals with a 1.18 goals against average in five games played. He has tallied two shutouts and has made 107 saves for a .947 save percentage. Senior goaltender Taylor Nelson (Regina, Saskatchewan) is ranked ninth among goaltending leaders, and holds a 6-1-0 record with two shutouts. He has 13 goals against and owns a 1.86 goals against average.

The Defense: Ferris State is currently third in NCAA Division I Team Defense at 1.58 goals per game. Senior defenseman Chad Billins (Marysville) leads the defense with nine points on one goal and eight assists. Senior Brett Wysopal has heated up in the past two weekends and currently has two goals and five assists heading into the weekend.

Ferris State is also third in the nation on the penalty kill with 57 kills in 62 chances in short handed situations, and holds a 91.9% success rate. FSU is also tied for third for penalty minutes as the Bulldogs haven drawn 89 penalties for a total of 233 minutes, averaging 19:43 minutes in the box each game.

Last Weekend: Last Friday's contest against LSSU featured five different Bulldogs tallying goals. Senior Brett Wysopal and sophomore Cory Kane each had two points in the victory. For the second time this season, junior Kyle Bonis had a three-point game coming from one goal and two assists. Saturday's overtime tie marked the first of the 2011-12 season for the Bulldogs. The last time they were in a shootout situation was February 24, 2011, when Ferris State was victorious in the shootout after a 2-2 tie against Ohio State in Columbus, Ohio.

No Place Like Home: The Bulldogs have compiled a 110-71-25 record (.581) at home since the 2000-01 campaign.  FSU has reached double-figure home win totals in a season on four occasions, which includes 15 victories in the 2002-03 (15-4-1) and 2009-10 (15-3-2) campaigns.

Honorable Mention: Junior forward Kyle Bonis (Lindsay, Ontario) had a goal and two assists in last Friday's 5-1 win over LSSU and scored the Bulldogs lone goal in a 1-1 tie with the Lakers on Saturday. The CCHA named him one of this week's notable performers.

Co-Captains: Senior defensemen Chad Billins (Marysville) and Tommy Hill (Portage) are serving as the Bulldogs' team co-captains in the 2011-12 campaign. They are the 40th and 41st individuals in the program's history to sport the captain's 'C' on their jersey.

Lowe's Senior CLASS Award - Senior defenseman Chad Billins (Marysville) of the Ferris State University men's ice hockey team has been chosen as a candidate for the 2011-12 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award in a recent announcement. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as a NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – classroom, character, community, and competition. The 20 candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists in early February and those 10 individuals will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select the finalist who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of classroom, character, community and competition.

CCHA Preseason Polls:  Ferris State was picked to finish ninth in the 2011-12 CCHA Coaches Preseason Poll with 50 points. The Bulldogs received 425 points in the media poll to place tied for seventh among the 11 conference teams. Points were awarded on a 12-11-10-9, etc., basis. League coaches ranked the CCHA teams, excluding their own school, in the order they predicted the regular season will end.

TV Exposure:  Ferris State will be making a combined three national and regional appearances on television this season. The Bulldogs made their TV debut on Comcast Television, which showcased FSU at Michigan earlier this season (10/27).  The network will also feature FSU's home matchup against Notre Dame at the Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids (2/11). FS Detroit (FSD) will feature the Ferris State at Western Michigan game (2/24). Ferris Television will televise multiple home outings in the first semester including: the Miami series (10/21-22), Lake Superior State (11/11-12), Western Michigan on two occasions (12/2, 2/25) and Notre Dame (Dec. 9).  The second semester scheduled is to be announced.

On The Internet: Ferris State University Athletics' official web site can be found at www.FerrisStateBulldogs.com. The site features information on all of FSU's varsity athletics programs including rosters, statistics, yearbooks and more.

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