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Big Rapids, Mich. - A critical goal only 19 seconds into the final period accounted for the only scoring as the Michigan Tech Huskies remained unbeaten with a 1-0 win over nationally seventh-ranked Ferris State on Friday night (Oct. 24) at FSU's Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids.
The Huskies' Blake Pietila scored early in the final frame following two scoreless periods to account for the lone goal of the night as MTU moved to 3-0-0 overall and in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA). The win came over the Bulldogs in FSU's first league contest of the year as the defending MacNaughton Cup Champions suffered their first home loss since last year's home opener.
Pietila's marker was assisted by Cliff Watson and Riley Sweeney and enabled the Huskies to pull out the win over a FSU team which had won three of four series' matchups a year ago.
The loss dampened yet another impressive performance in net by FSU senior goaltender CJ Motte, who totaled 41 saves on the night in 58:21 of action.
On the opposite end of the ice, MTU's Jamie Phillips won his third game of the year by making 33 saves in playing all 60 minutes.
Overall, Michigan Tech held a 42-33 edge in total shots, which included a game-high 20 shots in the middle period.
The physical contest saw FSU called for 10 penalties totaling 20 minutes in the box with MTU whistled seven times for 14 minutes. However, neither team was able to convert on the power play as FSU finished 0-of-4 and the Huskies went 0-of-6 with the man-advantage.
More than 2,000 fans were on hand for the series' opener with the Ferris State "Dawg Pound" student section drawing its 52nd-straight sellout.
Ferris State will try to earn the split on Saturday (Oct. 25) night as FSU hosts the Huskies in the series' finale beginning at 7:07 p.m. (ET). Tickets for Saturday's contest can be purchased online at StarTickets.com or by calling 1-800-585-3737. The FSU Athletics Ticket Office will also open at noon on Saturday inside the Ewigleben Sports Complex and yet another large crowd is expected for the battle between the two WCHA rivals.
The series' with Michigan Tech is part of a big "Dogs vs. Dogs" weekend with the FSU soccer, volleyball and football teams also facing the Huskies either in Big Rapids or Houghton within a 36-hour span on Friday and Saturday.
Early Third-Period Goal Lifts Visiting Huskies Over FSU In Bulldogs' WCHA Opener
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