Big Rapids, Mich. - The Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) announced its 2011-12 All-Conference Teams on Wednesday (March 7) and the selections feature a trio of Ferris State University men's ice hockey seniors.
Defenseman Chad Billins (Marysville) and goalie Taylor Nelson (Regina, Saskatchewan) were among six individuals to receive All-CCHA First Team accolades. Meanwhile, the Bulldogs' leading scorer, Jordie Johnston (Rosetown, Saskatchewan), was named to the second team.
The All-CCHA teams were selected by a vote of the league's head coaches and are based on performance in conference games. Coaches are not allowed to vote for their own players. FSU was the only team with two first-team picks and the only school in the conference with three named to either the first or second team.
With their selections, the skaters will be honored during the 2012 CCHA RBC Financial Group Awards Banquet next Thursday, March 15, at the Fox Theatre in Detroit.
Billins earned nine first-place votes after finishing second in conference scoring among defensemen with 25 points. This season, Billins earned a team second-best 29 points, including seven goals and 22 assists. He tallied five power-play goals and two game-winning goals. He finished the regular season campaign with a plus-14 rating and 44 blocked shots.
Earlier this week (March 6), Billins was tabbed as FSU's CCHA Scholar-Athlete representative. He is also a finalist for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award.
Nelson received six first-place votes on his way to a All-CCHA Team selection. Nelson is the second consecutive Bulldog goalie to earn first-team honors, following Pat Nagle in 2011. He posted a 2.08 goals against average and .927 save percentage in league play. Nelson earned a 17-4-3 record on the season, including a 2.03 goals against average and .926 save percentage in all contests. His outstanding 77.1 winning percentage in net this season is tops all-time in program history for a campaign.
To end the regular season, Johnston led the Bulldogs in scoring with 32 points on 17 goals and 15 assists. The senior standout tallied six power-play goals, one short-handed goal and a team-best four game-winners. Johnston scored 24 of his points in league play to earn himself a spot on the second team for the first time.
With their selections, the trio represent the 26th, 27th and 28th times in which a Ferris State skater has achieved either CCHA first or second-team accolades.
The nation's number-two ranked Bulldogs currently have compiled a 22-9-4 overall record. The CCHA Regular-Season Champions posted a 16-7-5-1 record in league play and finsiehd the season with 54 points.
FSU will host Bowling Green State in the CCHA Tournament Second Round this weekend, March 9-11, at the Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids. Opening faceoff on both Friday and Saturday along with Sunday, if necessary, is set for 7:05 p.m. (ET).
Tickets for this weekend's playoff series can be obtained by calling (231) 591-2888 or visit www.FerrisStateBulldogs.com. They are also available online via www.StarTickets.com.