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Cincinnati, Ohio - For the second time in three years, the Ferris State University men's ice hockey team will have an opportunity to play for a berth in the NCAA Frozen Four as the Bulldogs skated to a 1-0 victory over Colgate in regional action on Friday (March 28) evening in Cincinnati, Ohio.
The Bulldogs received the game's only goal from freshman forward Gerald Mayhew just over 10 minutes into the contest and held on the rest of the way to move into the regional title game for the third time in school history.
FSU won the first game of the Midwest Regional at the US Bank Arena and will face fourth-seeded North Dakota in the regional championship game Saturday night at 6:30 p.m. (ET) in Cincinnati. The game will be televised live on ESPNU and the winner moves on to the Frozen Four in Philadelphia. UND was a 5-2 winner of top-seeded Wisconsin in Friday night's second semifinal.
Along with Mayhew's game-winning goal, the Bulldogs also received a stellar performance in net from junior goaltender CJ Motte, who notched 35 save in posting his fifth shutout of the season.
"The game unfolded pretty much how we anticipated from the standpoint where we thought it would be a pretty evenly played game," said FSU head coach Bob Daniels. "Certainly, the goaltenders from both teams played exceedingly well. We're definitely very proud of what C.J. (Motte) accomplished tonight. He got some good support tonight. It's not a surprise it came down to a one-goal difference."
Following a scoreless first 10 minutes, the Bulldogs scored the only goal of the night at 10:01 into the opening period as FSU capitalized on the power-play. Mayhew scored on a rebound try near the net to the right of Colgate netminder Charlie Finn for his eighth goal of the campaign and his fourth in the last three games.
Mayhew's goal was aided by his two linemates in the senior combination of Andy Huff and Cory Kane. Huff picked up his 12th assist of the year while Kane netted his 14th of the season on the Bulldog lamplighter.
From there, the Bulldogs came up with a tremendous defensive effort to earn the victory.
Ferris State was outshot 35-27 for the game, but Motte proved to be tough to beat in net and claimed the first star of the game.
Colgate's Finn earned the second star of the night after making 26 saves, which included 14 in the middle period. Motte had 14 in the first stanza for FSU and came up with 10 in the second and 11 more in the third.
Overall, both teams were called for 10 penalties in the contest totaling 20 minutes in the box. However, FSU held one of the nation's top power-play units in Colgate to an 0-of-4 showing with the man-advantage. The Bulldogs scored once in five tries with the extra skater.
By virtue of scoring the game's only goal, Mayhew was tabbed as the third star of the evening.
Ferris State improved to 29-10-3 overall this season with the win and the 29 victories lead the nation. They also are the second-most seasonal wins in a single-season in FSU history.
In addition, Motte moved to 28-8-3 in net and also holds the most victories for a goaltender in the nation following the opening round of the national tournament.
The victory was Ferris State's third consecutive regional triumph on the heels of a pair of 2-1 wins in the 2012 Midwest Regional in Green Bay over Denver and Cornell. FSU now holds a 5-2 all-time mark in NCAA Tournament action.
The Bulldogs, who are the lone team from the state of Michigan in the NCAA Tournament field, have now reached the Elite Eight in all three of their NCAA appearances. In 2002-03, FSU fell to Minnesota in the regional final before eventually topping Cornell two years ago to reach the Frozen Four where they advanced to the national championship game.
The win evened the season series' between FSU and the Raiders at two wins apiece. The Bulldogs posted a win over Colgate to open the campaign and ended the Raiders' season at 20-14-5 overall with Friday night's victory.
Along with the live television coverage on ESPNU, Saturday's regional title game can be heard live on Sunny 97.3 FM and the Bulldog Sports Network starting with pregame coverage at 6 p.m. (ET).
Note: Friday night's victory will be aired tape-delay later tonight (Friday) at 10:30 p.m. on ESPNU.