No Room for Slip-Ups

Bulldogs split against NMU as they ready themselves for their home finale

by Published: Feb 13, 2013

Bench Celebration: The Bulldog bench erupts during the shootout against Western Michigan. Ferris State would split last weekend, Feb. 8-9, on the road at Northern Michigan.  Photo By: Brock Copus | Multimedia Editor

Bench Celebration: The Bulldog bench erupts dur­ing the shootout against Western Michigan. Ferris State would split last week­end, Feb. 8–9, on the road at Northern Michigan. Photo By: Brock Copus | Multimedia Editor

After this past weekend’s split deci­sion against Northern Michigan, the Bulldogs are squarely in fourth place in the CCHA stand­ings with 39 points trail­ing the first-place Miami Redhawks by eight points for the con­fer­ence lead.

Ferris trav­eled to the Upper Peninsula Feb. 8–9, attempt­ing to sweep the Wildcats and move closer to the top of the conference.

An early lead from a power play goal, Feb. 8, by fresh­man defender Brandon Anselmini gave Ferris a 1–0 lead. Ferris extended it to a two-goal lead mid­way through the sec­ond period when Ferris senior left wing Kyle Bonis slammed home a rebounded puck.

The Wildcats would try to come back by scor­ing one in the third to get within a goal of Ferris. Senior cen­ter Travis Ouellette dashed the hopes of the Wildcats, scor­ing an empty net tally in the wan­ing sec­ond of the game, cap­tur­ing Ferris’ first win of the series by a final score of 3–1.

Game two of the series, Feb. 9, would not go as well for the Bulldogs as they failed to man­age a sin­gle goal, falling to the Wildcats by a final score of 3–0.

After a score­less first period, the Wildcats man­aged to score the first goal of the game eight min­utes into the sec­ond period. They then banged in a goal in the final minute of the sec­ond stanza before adding a power play tally in the final period to fin­ish the game and the series.

With only two series left in the 2013 sea­son, the Bulldogs are in the CCHA’s top ech­e­lon of teams. They come back for the final home series of the year against the Bowling Green State Falcons before end­ing their sea­son in Ann Arbor to take on the Michigan Wolverines.

“We just have to worry about our­selves. We have to play our own game, regard­less of who we play. Our men­tal approach will not change sim­ply because of how cru­cial these next few games are,” Bonis said.

The Falcons come to Big Rapids in sev­enth place in the CCHA Standings and are led by sopho­more for­ward Ryan Carpenter who has 12 goals and 25 total points. Carpenter cur­rently stands in fifth place for total points in the conference.

Positioning in the CCHA is becom­ing more impor­tant, as the first three teams con­sist­ing of Miami, Western Michigan and Notre Dame are all sep­a­rated by three points, with Ferris trail­ing Notre Dame by five points in fourth place.

The Bulldogs, hav­ing acquired 39 points this year, have Ohio State University and the Alaska Nanooks nip­ping at their tails. The schools lag behind within two points of Ferris for the fourth spot in the stand­ings. The top six in the CCHA are close, while no other team in the CCHA have met the 30-point mark in the league.

“Every game from here until play­offs is so impor­tant. Anyone can make a move in the stand­ings, and we want it to be us,” Bonis said.

During the series finale Feb. 16, Ferris will give its seniors a final send off. Senior Night looms large as a spe­cial moment for the Bulldogs, as they are applauded for their four hard years of spit, blood, sweat
and tears.