Big Rapids, Mich.- The nationally 16th-ranked Ferris State University men's hockey team celebrated last year's historic season and opened its 2012-13 home campaign in impressive fashion by defeating Mercyhurst by a score of 7-3 in non-league play before a crowd of 1,894 fans on Friday night (Oct. 19) inside the Ewigleben Ice Arena.
FSU hoisted new banners prior to the opening faceoff commemorating last year's run to the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) Regular-Season title, the NCAA Midwest Regional crown and a national title game appearance at the Frozen Four. A special ring ceremony took place following the game.
Between the two memorable events, the Bulldogs put together a dominating performance from start to to finish against the Atlantic Hockey Association counterparts.
The Bulldogs struck first at 7:24 of the opening period as junior rightwing Andy Huff notched his first goal of the season with the pass coming from junior center Cory Kane and junior wing Justin DeMartino.
Mercyhurst answered back with 7:55 left on the clock in the opening stanza when Nick Jones tallied a short-handed goal with the assist coming from Ryan Misiak.
The Bulldogs, however, came back to score five goals in the second period to put the game away. Freshman Kenny Babinski scored his first collegiate goal at 5:32 with assists credited to sophomore defenseman Jason Binkley and freshman wing Matt Robertston.
Huff scored his second goal of the night on a power-play at 11:24 to push the lead to 5-1 with both Anselmini and Denis receiving their second assists of the night.
Then, with 5:26 to go in the period, Bonis scored his second goal of the night to give the Bulldogs a 6-1 lead off assists from Binkley and Ouellette.
Furthermore, with only three seconds remaining in the second period, Denis scored his first goal of the season unassisted.
Both goals of the third and final period belonged to the Lakers. Mercyhurst recorded its second goal of the night when Nardo Nagtzaam delivered the puck to Charlie Carkin, who notched it around FSU freshman goaltender Charles Williams at 6:15 into the frame.
The Lakers' Kyle Just registered Mercyhurst's third and final goal of the night with only 30 seconds remaining on the clock as Nagtzaam tallied his second assist.
All three Bulldog goaltenders in uniform saw action in the contest with sophomore goaltender CJ Motte saving 10 out of 11 shots, in two periods of action. Williams saved five out of six shots while playing 12:42 of the third period with junior Rob Granett also seeing his first collegiate regular-season action and saving six out of seven shots.
The Bulldogs held a decisive 48-24 edge in shots for the night. Mercyhurst goaltendersMax Strang made 27 saves in 39:52 of action while Jordan Tibbett played the final 20 minutes and stopped 14 Bulldog scoring chances. FSU finished one-of-two on the power play for the night.
Ferris State improved to 5-0 all-time against the Lakers with the win. Additionally, the victory was FSU's first of the 2012-13 season as FSU improved to 1-1-1 overall. Mercyhurst dropped to 0-2 with the setback.
The two teams will play the series' finale on Saturday night (Oct. 20) with the puck drop set for 7:05 p.m. (ET) inside the Ewigleben Ice Arena. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by calling (231) 591-2888 or visit FerrisStateBulldogs.com for more information. They can also be bought online at www.StarTickets.com.