Despite Loss, Bulldogs Raise CCHA Trophy
Daniels | Johnston | Motte
Big Rapids, Mich.- In the final game of the regular season, the nationally top-ranked Ferris State University men's ice hockey team had their nation leading 15-game unbeaten streak snapped on Saturday (Feb. 25) evening as Western Michigan shutout the Bulldogs in a 3-0 contest.
Although unable to score a goal against the Broncos, the Bulldogs had a lot to celebrate as they were able to hoist the CCHA Regular Season Championship trophy in front of the enthusiastic sell out crowd at the Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids.
This is the second time the Ferris State hockey program has been crowed conference champions and the first since the 2002-03 season.
The Bulldogs finished the 2011-12 regular season with a 22-9-5 overall record, and a league topping 16-7-5 record in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA).
WMU finished its regular season with a 17-13-6 overall record and a 14-10-4 conference mark.
The Broncos quickly got the scoring started as Danny DeKeyser tallied a power-play goal to give the Broncos a 1-0 edge at 3:49 into the first period.
Then, 12:46 into the second period, the Broncos struck again as Shane Bershbach scored an even-strength goal. Greg Squires and Dennis Brown were awarded with the assists.
With one minute left in regulation, Western Michigan's DeKeyser scored his second goal of the game on an empty-netter to seal the 3-0 victory.
Freshman goaltender CJ Motte (St. Claire) was in net for the Bulldogs. He stopped 21 shots while making seven saves in each period.
On the other end of the ice, Frank Slubowski earned the shutout for the Broncos as he made 25 saves. The Bulldogs tested him early in the game with 11 shots on goal in the first period.
The Bulldogs went 0-for-5 on the power-play while Western Michigan went 1-for-5 with the man advantage. Both teams had six penalties, serving 12 minutes in the box apiece.
The regular season finale also served as "senior night" in which FSU's eight seniors were honored. Defensemen Chad Billins, Michael Trebish and Brett Wysopal along with forwards Aaron Schmit, Jordie Johnston, Derek Graham, Tommy Hill and goalie Taylor Nelson were recognized.
The Bulldogs have earned a first-round playoff bye and will host a best-of-three second round series March 9-11 at the Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids against an opponent to be determined. All three games of the second round series are tentatively scheduled for 7:05 p.m. For more information on tickets, click here.