Big Rapids, Mich. - A quick early start in front of an energized home crowd fueled the nationally ninth-ranked Ferris State University men's ice hockey squad to a thrilling 4-3 victory over the eighth-ranked Michigan Wolverines in a top 10 showdown on opening night Saturday (Oct. 4) before a sellout crowd of 2,532 fans inside the Ewigleben Ice Arena.
The Bulldogs struck only 27 seconds in the opening frame of the season opener as Ferris State sophomore Kyle Schempp broke free and scored in front of FSU's frenzied "Dawg Pound" student section off assists from junior Matt Robertson and senior Jason Binkley.
Soon after, the Bulldogs tacked on another early goal as sophomore Chad McDonald registered a lamplighter at even-strength off a helper from junior forward Kenny Babinski to make it 2-0 only 1:03 into the contest.
Ferris State increased its edge to three goals late in the opening period when freshman Mitch Maloney recorded his first career goal on the power play go give FSU a 3-0 lead after the opening frame. The goal was assisted by Binkley and senior goaltender CJ Motte.
The Bulldogs' three-goal lead didn't last long in the second period as Michigan notched its first goal of the campaign only 10 seconds into the frame when sophomore forward Tyler Motte tallied his first goal of the year on his brother, FSU goaltender CJ Motte. JT Compher picked up the assist on Motte's goal for the Wolverines.
Ferris State, though, scored a critical and eventual game-winning goal with only 1:04 left in the middle period as McDonald recorded his second goal of the night with a short-handed tally off a Babinski feed.
Michigan fought back in the third period with a pair of goals to trim the Bulldog advantage to a single goal. Travis Lynch scored 3:45 into the period at even-strength off assists from Justin Selman and Zach Werenski.
Then, with only five minutes to play in the game, the Wolverines pulled within 4-3 when Evan Allen found the back of the net off assists from Brennan Serville and Cristoval Nieves.
From there, though, the Bulldogs held on for the victory on the defensive end, which included an impressive late fee from Motte in net for the Bulldogs.
Michigan finished with a 37-31 edge in total shots against the Bulldogs, but Ferris State tallied the game's lone power-play goal as FSU finished one-of-three and UM was held scoreless in two chances with the man-advantage.
Overall, the Wolverines were called for seven penalties totaling 14 minutes in the box with the Bulldogs whistled six times for 12 minutes in the sin bin.
By virtue of his two goals, McDonald claimed the game's first star while Schempp picked up the second and Maloney brought home the third.
Motte made 34 saves in net for the Bulldogs in picking up his 49th career victory while Michigan's Zach Nagelvoort totaled 27 saves in the losing effort for the Wolverines.
Saturday night's sellout was Ferris State's 17th in the last two-plus seasons while the "Dawg Pound" was sold out for the 51st consecutive contest at the Ewigleben Ice Arena. The win also capped off a memorable day for the Bulldogs as three nationally-ranked teams - volleyball, football and hockey - all picked up victories on homecoming as part of an athletics tripleheader on the FSU campus.
Ferris State will host Wilfrid Laurier in exhibition play on Friday (Oct. 10) night with puck drop set for 7:07 p.m. (ET). A special season ticket holder appreciation night will be held in conjunction with the contest.
Tickets for all 2014-15 Ferris State home contests are on sale and can be purchased in advance by calling 1-800-585-3737 or online at StarTickets.com. For more information, please visit FerrisStateBulldogs.com.
#9 Ferris State Beats #8 Michigan Before Home Hockey Sellout Crowd In Season Opener
Oct 04, 2014