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Sunday, October 12, 2008

Bulldogs split series with Canisius

By Tom Morelli/Ferris State Beat Writer

With the political season upon us, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Ferris State University flip-flopped in their season opening performance against Canisius over the weekend.

The Bulldogs lost their first game by a 5-2 margin, only to win the following night by the very same score.

Ferris State led twice in the first period of Friday night’s game thanks to goals by Justin Lewandoski and Blair Riley, but Canisius quickly evened-up matters with a pair of goals on the power play.

In the following stanza, the Golden Griffins extended their lead by scoring three goals within a 13-minutes span.

Cory Conacher scored the game-winning for Canisius at the four-minute mark, which came on the penalty kill.

Just past the midway point, Dave Kostuch finished off a pass from Josh Heidinger to give the Golden Griffins an insurance goal.

With 17:24 elapsed, Conacher beat Bulldogs’ goaltender Pat Nagle for another shorthanded goal.

Special teams were a key part of the win for Canisius, as they scored on two of seven opportunities with the man-advantage, and killed off all six of their penalties.

Golden Griffins’ netminder Andrew Loewen had a busy night, stopping an astounding 50 of 52 shots.

On the other end of the ice, Nagle finished with 19 saves.

Ferris State reversed their fortunes on Saturday night, scoring five goals from five different players.

Canisius was first to score, with Vincent Scarsella sneaking the puck past freshman goaltender Taylor Nelson while on the power play late in the first period.

The Bulldogs answered back two minutes later on the power-play, as senior Brendan Connolly passed to Casey Haines, who made it a 1-1 tie after 20 minutes of play.

Riley gave Ferris State their first lead of the game with 8:12 gone by in the middle stanza, scoring a power-play goal with the help of Justin Menke and captain Cody Chupp.

The Bulldogs continued to dominate the Golden Griffins with the extra-man, as Menke and Zach Redmond fed the puck to Chupp, who made it a 3-1 game.

Canisius drew closer with a power-play goal by Jason Weeks just 39 seconds into the final period, but Ferris State’s Mike Embach made it a two-goal margin six minutes later.

Connolly finished-off the Bulldogs’ high-scoring night with an unassisted shorthanded goal at the 14:28 mark.

Ferris State’s power-play unit was much improved, scoring four times on nine tries.

Once again, the Bulldogs remained active on the offensive end, yielding 46 shots to the Golden Griffins’ 23.

Nelson stopped 21 shots, 11 of which came in the third period.

Ferris State (1-1-0 overall) travels to Robert Morris for another non-conference series this Friday and Saturday before beginning their CCHA schedule against Western Michigan the following week.

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