Big Rapids, Mich. – The Ferris State University men's ice hockey team skated to a 3-2 victory over the nationally #20 ranked Western Michigan Broncos on Saturday (Oct. 7) at Ewigleben Ice Arena in the Bulldogs' 2017 home opener.
Ferris State freshman forward Coale Norris netted the game winner while falling to the ice for his first collegiate goal to boost the Bulldogs past the Broncos for the first time since 2011.
Senior forward Drew Dorantes opened the scoring at 4:58 of the first period for a 1-0 Bulldog lead when he drove the net and knocked a rebound off the end boards past Bronco goaltender Ben Blacker. Senior forward Mitch Maloney and junior forward Corey Mackin each earned their first assist of the year on the goal.
The Bulldogs took a 2-0 lead on a breakaway goal by Maloney at 8:33 of the second period, when he went high over the blocker side of Blacker. Drew Dorantes earned his second point of the night with an assist, with fellow senior and brother Tyler Dorantes also earning an assist on the goal.
Ferris State's 2-0 lead lasted 15 seconds when Ethen Frank scored from Lawton Courtnall on a rush down the left-wing wall to cut the Bulldog lead to 2-1.
At 7:37 of the third period, Norris was on a rush and got tripped up. As Norris flew towards the goal, he whacked a shot that rolled past a sliding Blacker and inside the far post for a 3-1 FSU advantage and the eventual game-winning goal. Freshman forward Lucas Finner earned his second assist of the season on the goal with junior forward Trevor Recktenwald earning his first assist of the year.
The Broncos had a late charge and scored 10 seconds into a five-minute power play as Colt Conrad netted his second of the year. Corey Schueneman and Hugh McGing each earned assists on WMU's final goal of the night that made it a 3-2 game in FSU's favor.
Ferris State junior goaltender Darren Smith made a few key late saves and strong penalty-killing by the Bulldog defensive unit salted out the remaining time.
Smith earned the win to move to 1-0-0 and made 37 saves on 39 shots on goal. Blacker made 22 saves in a loss for the Broncos.
Ferris State was outshot 39-25 for the game, but the first 40 minutes of play the shots were nearly even at 24-22 for Western Michigan.
On the power play, the Broncos went 1-of-9 while the Bulldogs finished 0-of-4.
With the win, Ferris State improved to 1-1-0 on the season and gets set to begin Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) play when they take on the Northern Michigan Wildcats at home this coming Friday and Saturday (Oct. 13-14) inside the Ewigleben Ice Arena. Puck drop both nights is set for 7:07 p.m. (ET).
Tickets for next weekend's first league home action are on sale now and can be purchased thru the FSU Athletics Ticket Office or online at StarTickets.com. Call (231) 591-2888 for more information or visit FerrisStateBulldogs.com.