THIS WEEK IN BULLDOG HOCKEY:
Complete Game Notes (PDF)
The Opening Faceoff: The Ferris State University men's ice hockey team will host the Ohio State Buckeyes this weekend (Jan. 11-12) inside the Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids with the puck for both Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) contests set to drop at 7:05 p.m. (ET). Both teams head into the weekend in a tie for fourth place in the league standings to date.
Media Coverage: Both games will be carried live by the Bulldog Sports Network and Sunny 97.3 FM with Dominic Hennig calling the play-by-play action and Dan Kowalski offering color commentary. The broadcast is accessible online at FerrisStateBulldogs.com. A live pay-per-view video webcast will also be available in addition to live internet statistics. All links will be made available on the online home of Bulldog Athletics.
The Records: Ferris State is currently 9-8-3 overall and 7-6-1 in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) this season. The Bulldogs have won their last two outings and are coming off a 3-0 shutout over the Michigan State Spartans last Saturday (Jan. 5). FSU currently has 22 points and is tied for fourth place with Ohio State in the CCHA standings to date, but only eight points out of first place.
Ohio State holds an overall record of 7-8-5 along with a 6-3-3 (1) record in the CCHA this season. The Buckeyes played in the Pittsburgh College Hockey Invitational over the holiday break and fell to Miami (Ohio) by a score of 1-0 on Friday (Dec. 28) before dropping a 5-4 decison to Penn State on Saturday (Dec. 29). The last conference victories for the Buckeyes came in a sweep over Michigan State on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 with 1-0 and 3-1 decisions.
The Coaches: Ferris State - Bob Daniels (Michigan State, 1982), 21st season, 343-370-82 (.483) – (24-28-4 vs. Ohio State – 12-21-2 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 Spencer Penrose Award winner as the American Collegiate Hockey Association's (ACHA) Division I National Hockey Coach of the Year in both 2003 and 2012 in addition to claiming CCHA Coach of the Year honors both times. He was among three finalists for both the 2007-08 and 2009-10 CCHA Coach of the Year Awards. Daniels led the Bulldogs to their first-ever appearance at the Frozen Four and second-ever CCHA Regular-Season Championship title last season.
Ohio State - Mark Osiecki (Wisconsin, 1994), 3rd season. Mark Osiecki, a winner on every level, was named head coach of the Ohio State men's hockey program April 24, 2010, and is entering his third year at the helm of the Buckeyes. Osiecki was an assistant at Wisconsin the six years prior to coming to Ohio State and spent seven seasons as the head coach and general manager of the Green Bay Gamblers (USHL). Osiecki has been a part of NCAA (both as a player and coach), junior hockey, international and professional championship teams. He coached at the international level and was on the staff of the United States team when they captured gold at the 2010 World Junior Championship in Saskatchewan and also was part of the to USA bench for this year's winter World Championship in Ufa, Russia. Osiecki played six years of professional hockey for the Calgary Flames, Ottawa Senators, Winnipeg Jets, and Minnesota North Stars.
Historic Season: Ferris State won its second CCHA regular-season championship and finished as the national runner-up a year ago. The Bulldogs claimed the NCAA Midwest Regional title with two victories in Green Bay, Wis., and then topped Union (N.Y.) in the program's first-ever Frozen Four national semifinal game at the Tampa Bay Times Forum. FSU suffered a 4-1 loss to Boston College in the national championship game on April 7 in Tampa to finish the most historic campaign in school history with a 26-12-1 overall record.
All-Time Series Notes: Ohio State holds a 58-46-15 all-time series advantage. The Bulldogs are 30-23-4 when having home ice and 15-32-11 in Columbus. FSU is 0-1-0 when facing off on neutral ice ...... Last season, the Bulldogs posted a 1-0-1 mark against the Buckeyes with a 4-3 win in Columbus followed by a 3-3 overtime tie (Jan. 20-21). The Bulldogs won the second-night shootout to take five of a possible six points against Ohio State last season ...... In 2010-11, the Bulldogs went 2-1-1 with the Buckeyes with a win both in Big Rapids and Columbus along with a shootout victory at Ohio State ... Overall, FSU has posted a 3-1-2 mark against OSU over the last two years.
Quick Notes: This weekend will mark the final two meetings in regular-season action between the Bulldogs and the Buckeyes before FSU departs for the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) and OSU moves to the Big Ten for hockey next campaign ....... Senior forward Kyle Bonis had a pair of goals against the Buckeyes a year ago with a single goal each night. He also had one of FSU's two shootout goals in the victory ..... . Current sophomore defenseman Simon Denis also earned three points versus Ohio State last year with an assist on Friday and two assists on Saturday ..... Sophomore goaltender CJ Motte was in net for the entire 60 minutes in the second matchup last season and totaled 31 saves.
Michigan State Review: The Bulldogs shutout the Spartans in their lone game last Saturday (Jan. 5) by a score of 3-0. After a scoreless first period, junior forward Garrett Thompson netted two goals just four minutes apart in the second period before completing a hat trick when he scored the Bulldogs' final goal of the evening on the Spartans' empty net with 33.6 remaining in the third. Sophomore goaltender CJ Motte earned his third shutout of the season by making 23 saves. The Bulldogs led the shots by a count of 31-23 overall. FSU will meet back up with MSU in a home-and-home series when they visit East Lansing next Friday (Jan. 18) before the Spartans are back in Big Rapids for the last time in CCHA regular-season play on Saturday (Jan. 19).
National Attention: Ferris State is not ranked this week in the USCHO.com Division I National Poll, but is listed second among teams receiving votes. FSU has also been listed among others receiving votes in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine poll most of the season. Ferris State was ranked for 37 consecutive weeks dating back to early last season prior to last week.
Hat Trick For Thompson: Junior wing Garrett Thompson's hat trick last Saturday (Jan. 5) against Michigan State came nearly a year to the day in which a Bulldog player last recorded three goals in a contest. A year ago, senior Jordie Johnson notched a hat trick in non-league play versus Colgate (1/6/12) at the Ewigleben Ice Arena in a 4-3 Bulldog victory.
Shutting Out UM & MSU: With last Saturday's 3-0 shutout over Michigan State, Bulldog sophomore goaltender CJ Motte became the first netminder in school history to post shutouts over both MSU and Michigan at any point in a career. He accomplished the feat by shutting out both schools this season as the Bulldogs were a 5-0 winner over the Wolverines on Nov. 30 in Big Rapids. Overall, Ferris State has now posted four shutout victories all-time against both Michigan and Michigan State. The only other Bulldog netminder to post two shutouts against either team was Pat Nagle, who shutout the Spartans twice in 2010, but did not shutout Michigan.
Hobey Baker Nominee: Ferris State men's ice hockey fans can vote now for Bulldog senior left wing Kyle Bonis, who was announced this week as one of 77 nominees for the 2013 Hobey Baker Award. Awarded annually to college hockey's top player, the Hobey Baker's highly popular fan-voting phase is available on the Hobey Baker website: www.hobeybakeraward.com. This first phase of fan balloting will run now through March 10, 2013.
CCHA Players Of The Week: FSU sophomore defenseman Simon Denis picked up last week's (Jan. 2) Gladiator Defenseman of the Week honor while freshman defenseman Brandon Anselmini was the Gongshow Rookie of the Week in the CCHA. Denis had a goal and added an assist in a 5-3 loss to No. 11 Cornell at the Florida College Hockey Classic (Dec. 28) and added an assist in a 6-2 win over Minnesota Duluth at the event (Dec. 29). He also had three shots on goal and finished +3 on the weekend. Meanwhile, Anselmini had two assists in the loss to No.11 Cornell and scored a goal in the win over Minnesota Duluth. He finished the weekend +1 with two blocks and three shots on goal.
Florida College Hockey Classic Win: The Bulldogs have currently won their last two outings to date as FSU posted a 6-2 victory over Minnesota-Duluth in a "Battle of the Bulldogs" matchup at the Florida College Hockey Classic on Dec. 29 prior to the win over Michigan State last Saturday. The triumph marked Ferris State's first-ever triumph over UMD. Freshman Charles Williams made his first collegiate start in net and played the entire 60 minutes while making 23 saves. Six different Bulldog players also scored goals in the victory at Estero, Fla.
CCHA Player Of Week: Ferris State junior forward Andy Huff picked up the CCHA Postgame® Offensive Player of the Week honor from the CCHA following FSU's series versus Mercyhurst (Oct. 19-20) earlier this year. Meanwhile, senior Kyle Bonis claimed the same distinction after the Bulldogs' sweep against Bowling Green State (Nov. 16-17).
Team Captain: Senior left wing Kyle Bonis is serving as the Bulldogs' team captain in the 2012-13 campaign. He is the 42nd individual in the program's history to sport the captain's 'C' on his jersey. Senior center Travis Ouellette and junior defenseman Scott Czarnowczan are serving as the Bulldogs' assistant captains.
TV Exposure: Ferris State will have increased regular-season television exposure this season. The Bulldogs will be featured at least six times this season, including contests on three different networks. The preseason nationally-ranked Bulldogs' televised contests include games on Fox Sports Detroit, Comcast and CBS College Sports Network. The slate is highlighted by a Feb. 16 home game versus Bowling Green State at the Ewigleben Ice Arena, which will be part of Fox Sports Detroit's "Hockey Day In Michigan" coverage.
Televised Contests: FSU's other major televised contests include games on Dec. 15 at Michigan State (Comcast), Jan. 18 at MSU (FSD), Jan. 25 at Notre Dame (CBS) along with March 1 at Michigan (CBS) and March 2 at Michigan (FSD). A majority of FSU home contests will also be televised locally by Ferris Television and carried live on the Bulldog Sports Network at FerrisStateBulldogs.com along with tape-delay coverage locally via Charter Cable. Additional television coverage from regional stations is also expected both at home and on the road.
Fixture Behind The Bench: Head coach Bob Daniels, who was named the National Coach of the Year for the second time in 2011-12, is midst his 21st year behind the Bulldogs' bench in 2012-13 and now owns a school-record 343 career victories.
Tremendous Run: The Bulldogs claimed the school's second CCHA regular-season championship in the last 10 years in 2011-12, won the NCAA Division I Midwest Regional title and reached the national championship game at the NCAA Frozen Four.
First Trip To Frozen Four: Ferris State's best season in school history came to a close in the national championship game at the 2012 Frozen Four in Tampa, Fla., with a 26-12-5 overall record. It included a first-ever trip to the Frozen Four and a national runner-up finish. The title game appearance marked the first time in school history any Bulldog team had ever competed in a national championship game.
Successful Stretch: FSU won or tied 19 of its final 23 games of the season and had a nation leading 15-game unbeaten streak in 2011-12 along with a number one national ranking in both polls for two weeks in February. FSU's 26 wins were the second-most in school history.
Not Any Easier: The Bulldogs are following up the school's most memorable campaign in history with a 34-game schedule in 2012-13 that includes four games apiece versus league in-state rivals Michigan, Michigan State and Western Michigan; at least 15 games against teams that were included in last year's 16-team NCAA Tournament field; and 20 contests involving teams that were featured in last season's final Top 20 national rankings.
Special Holiday Trip: Ferris State's holiday trip to the Florida College Hockey Classic in Estero featured a rematch of last year's NCAA Division I Midwest Regional Championship game as the Bulldogs took on Cornell in the opener on Dec. 28. Returning NCAA Tournament qualifiers Maine and Minnesota-Duluth were the other two teams in the tournament.
Nice Anniversary Season: FSU's 35th season of Division I hockey began on Oct. 12-13 as the Bulldogs ventured to New York to square off for the second consecutive year against Rensselaer, which is guided by Bulldog alum and former assistant coach Seth Appert. He directed RPI to its first-ever win over the Bulldogs in the season opener.
Early Season Homestand: FSU's Nov. 2-3 weekend series' with Miami completed a six-game homestand for the Bulldogs. FSU celebrated its historic national runner-up finish from a year ago by hoisting new banners inside the facility versus Mercyhurst (Oct. 19-20) before hosting Alaska to open league play (Oct. 26-27). Ferris State completed a stretch of seven of nine league contests on the road prior to the holiday break.
Preseason All-CCHA: A pair of Ferris State University men's ice hockey players earned 2012-13 All-CCHA Preseason Honorable Mention accolades. Bulldog senior forward Kyle Bonis (Lindsay, Ontario) along with junior defenseman Scott Czarnowczan (Macomb) were among the student-athletes receiving preseason recognition as the ninth annual preseason all-conference teams were announced by the league office.
Bonis, who was named to the 2012 Frozen Four All-Tournament Team as the Bulldogs reached the national championship game, placed third among FSU's scoring leaders a season ago with 30 points. He had a squad second-best 19 goals and added 11 assists in playing all 43 contests. Bonis' totals included three game-winning goals and four power-play markers. Meanwhile, Czarnowczan registered two goals and 19 assists for 21 points on the blueline. He also appeared in 43 games and finished with a team second-best 77 blocks. He was the recipient of the team's Plus/Minus Award for finishing with a squad-leading +17 figure for the season.
Back In The Mix: A total of 18 letterwinners return for the Bulldogs in 2012-13 off of last year's national finalist team. While the Bulldogs lost eight players, including two All-Americans in goaltender Taylor Nelson and defenseman Chad Billins, FSU did ink a talented recruiting class featuring eight newcomers and all have seen action this season.
Worth Noting: Ferris State was highly-successful at home last season as the Bulldogs won their initial five contests inside the Ewigleben Ice Arena and posted a 6-1-1 mark prior to the holiday break. FSU finished with a 15-4-2 home record in 2011-12.
On The Internet: Ferris State University Athletics' official web site can be found at FerrisStateBulldogs.com. The site features information on all of FSU's varsity athletics programs including rosters, statistics, video, news and more.
2012-13 Bulldog Hockey Ticket Information: Tickets for all 2012-13 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 Wednesdays 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.
Purchase In Advance: This season, fans can help the Bulldogs "Celebrate The Legacy" and catch the final year of CCHA action by purchasing tickets in advance for any home contest during the 2012-13 campaign. Fans will be able to save on single-game tickets by purchasing in advance rather than waiting until gameday. The Bulldogs sold out four of their final five home contests inside the Ewigleben Ice Arena last year. FSU will become a member of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) after the 2012-13 season.
Change of Fortune: A year ago, Ohio State led the CCHA standings when Ferris State visited Value City Arena. However, the fortunes for both team's changed after FSU skated away with five of a possible six points. The Buckeyes closed the year after the series with the Bulldogs by posting only one win in their final 16 games (1-11-4). The two games were part of a 15-game unbeaten streak for the Bulldogs in the second half of 2011-12 en route to winning the league regular-season championship.
CCHA Preseason Polls: Ferris State was chosen to finish in the top half of the CCHA again this year in the league's annual preseason polls. The Bulldogs, who advanced to the national championship game at the 2012 Frozen Four, were tabbed to finish fourth by the media and fifth by the coaches from around the conference in 2012-13. Ferris State received three first-place votes from the media and 626 total points. The coaches gave FSU 67 points in the voting format. FSU hopes to build off last season's success this coming year, returning 18 letterwinners, including three of their top five scorers.
Buy Tickets Online: Fans can purchase tickets in advance 24 hours a day, seven days a week thru Star Tickets by calling 1-800-585-3737 or by visiting StarTickets.com. The FSU Athletics Ticket Office's normal operating hours are Monday thru Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (ET) along with extended hours on Wednesday's until 7 p.m. (ET). Please call 231-591-2888 for more information.
MSU Ticket Prices: The Bulldogs will host Michigan State again on Saturday, Jan. 19, with faceoff set for 7:05 p.m. (ET) at the Ewigleben Ice Arena. Tickets for the premium contest are $17 in advance or $19 if bought on gameday and are also currently on sale.
Important Fact: Bulldog junior Garrett Thompson has registered 13 points in his last 10 outings after totaling only three points in the initial 10 contests of the season. Seven of his nine goals this year have also came during the 10-game stretch.
Senior CLASS Award: Ferris State senior wing Kyle Bonis is among 20 candidates for this year's prestigious Senior CLASS Award, which honors men's ice hockey student-athletes who excel both on and off the ice. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition.
Ferris State Notebook
Junior wing Garrett Thompson currently has 16 points on nine goals and seven assists this season. A year ago, he had totaled only seven points with just three goals at the mid-point of the year.
Junior forward Justin DeMartino did not register a point in FSU's first half last season, but presently ranks seventh on the team in scoring with 11 points on four goals and seven assists to date. Junior Cory Kane had four points at this point a year ago, but is now tied for fourth this season in scoring with 12 points to date.
FSU's current 7-6-1 mark in CCHA action is comparable to a year ago when the Bulldogs held an identical 7-6-1 league record at the break before going on to win the program's second CCHA regular-season championship.
The Bulldogs held a 5-5-1 mark against nationally-ranked opponents in the first half of the 2011-12 season, but has currently played only five games versus ranked foes this season to date.
Sophomore CJ Motte had been the goalie of record in all 18 of the Bulldogs' contests in the first half of the year prior to the game against Minnesota-Duluth (Dec. 29). Last season, he split time with All-America goaltender Taylor Nelson in the beginning of the campaign as Nelson was credited as the wining or losing goalie in 10 games during the first half with Motte charged in the other eight outings.
Ferris State played only a single overtime contest in the first half a year ago, but has been involved in four extra period contests to date this season. The Bulldogs have three ties and a victory in the four OT games.
The Bulldogs were 6-1-1 at home inside the Ewigleben Ice Arena thru the holiday break last season. This year, Ferris State is currently 5-2-2 overall to date in home contests.
Ferris State's home attendance was up thru the first half of this season over the championship campaign of a year ago. The Bulldogs averaged 1,796 fans in their first eight home contests in 2011-12 as compared to this year's current nine-game average of 1,954 fans. Overall, the Bulldogs have drawn 17,584 fans at home this season versus 14,370 a season ago in the first half.
Sophomore defenseman Jason Binkley had only three points on three assists at the mid-point a season ago. However, he currently has tallied 12 points this campaign with a squad-high 10 assists and two goals.
FSU's current leading scorer, senior wing Kyle Bonis, has 15 points this campaign on a team-high nine goals and six assists. He also had a strong start last year with 12 points at the break on nine goals and three helpers.
Senior Kyle Bonis is currently tied for fifth nationally this year with five power-play goals to date. Meanwhile, Cory Kane ranks tied for third in the country with two short-handed goals on the year. Also, CJ Motte is tied for fourth in the country with three shutouts to date.
Ferris State's power play is currently tied for fifth in the country (23.9%). FSU is third in the nation in combined special teams at 56.9%.
The Bulldogs had been ranked nationally for 37 consecutive weeks dating back to early last season prior to last week.