Posted: Nov 30, 2013
Post Game: Cencer
Big Rapids, Mich. - Nationally sixth-ranked Ferris State began an eight-game road stretch by taking three of a possible four weekend points as the Bulldogs skated to a 1-1 overtime tie against Northern Michigan in Saturday's (Nov. 30) Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) series' finale at the Berry Events Center in Marquette.
The overtime deadlock pushed the Bulldogs' nation-leading unbeaten streak to 11 consecutive games as the Bulldogs are now 9-0-2 and have not lost since Oct. 18. FSU also held onto first place in the WCHA standings as the Bulldogs own a current 11-2-2 overall record along with a 8-0-2 league record.
FSU won Friday's (Nov. 29) series opener versus the Wildcats by a 4-1 score in Marquette and received another solid performance in net from junior goaltender CJ Motte, who remains the nation's winningest goaltender and is still unbeaten on the season at 11-0-2 on the year after Saturday's tie.
Following a scoreless first period, the Bulldogs opened the scoring midway thru the second period at the 9:50 mark. FSU tallied a power-play goal from sophomore forward Matt Robertson, who tallied his six goal of the year, including one for the fifth consecutive game. Freshman Kyle Schempp and sophomore Brandon Anselmini picked up the helpers on the Bulldogs' lone goal of the night.
However, Northern Michigan answered less than five minutes later as the Wildcats also responded with a power-play goal following a Bulldog tripping penalty. Jake Johnson recorded his second goal of the season for NMU with assists credited to Dominik Shine and Sami Salminen at 14:17 of the second period.
That would be all the scoring either team could muster, though, as the two teams finished the third period still tied 1-1 and neither team could manage to score in the five-minute overtime session.
Motte made 23 saves overall for the Bulldogs, including 11 in the second period and seven more in the third frame. Meanwhile, NMU's Mathias Dahlstrom was also unbeatable in net most of the night with 20 saves. His total included nine in the opening stanza to go with six in the second, four in the third and the lone shot on net in overtime.
Northern Michigan held a narrow 24-21 edge in total shots for the night and both teams recorded a single power-play goal. FSU was one-of-four with the man-advantage while NMU finished with a one-for-six showing.
Ferris State racked up seven penalties for 25 minutes in Saturday's series' finale with the Wildcats called four times for eight minutes in the box.
The Bulldogs' penalty total included three key penalties in the third period. One of them resulted in a five-minute major penalty with the Wildcats owning the man-advantage for nearly all of the overtime session, but the Bulldogs' penalty-kill unit was up to the task and killed it off to preserve the tie.
Ferris State entered Saturday's series finale leading the country in the RPI and pairwise rankings, which help determine the NCAA Tournament field at the end of the season.
With the tie, the Bulldogs now own a current 5-1-1 mark in road action to date this season.
This year mared the fourth consecutive season in which the Bulldogs have traveled to Marquette to face the Wildcats on the Olympic ice sheet at the Berry Events Center. FSU has now recorded three wins and two ties over the last six matchups versus NMU in Marquette dating back to the 2011-12 campaign. The Wildcats will return to Big Rapids for two games later this season.
Ferris State currently owns a seven-point lead atop the WCHA standings following this weekend's action and still has yet to drop a conference contest in its debut season in the conference.
The Bulldogs will play one final WCHA league series in the 2013 calendar year as they visit Lake Superior State next weekend (Dec. 6-7) for a two-game league set in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. Friday's series' opener begins at 7:37 p.m. (ET) with the finale on Saturday slated for a 7:07 p.m. (ET) puck drop.
FSU will then visit Michigan and Michigan State in back-to-back non-league road contests on Dec. 11 and Dec. 14, respectively, before the holiday break