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Date/Time: Friday (Oct. 24) at Kalamazoo, Mich. - 7:35 p.m. (EDT); Saturday (Oct. 25) at Big Rapids - 7:05 p.m. (EDT)
Gametracker Links: Friday; Saturday
Radio Broadcast: WWBR-100.9 FM with play-by-play announcer Bill Beckwith. Listen
Live Video Webcast: B2 Networks
FSU Hockey At A Glance: The Ferris State University men's ice hockey team opens Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) play this weekend (Oct. 24-25) with a home-and-home series against the Western Michigan Broncos. This Friday's (Oct. 24) series opener between the two West Michigan schools will be held at WMU's Lawson Ice Arena in Kalamazoo, Mich., with opening faceoff set for 7:35 p.m. (EDT). FSU and WMU will square off again on Saturday (Oct. 25) at Ferris' Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids, Mich. A 7:05 p.m. (EDT) start time is slated for the series finale.
2008-09 Bulldog Hockey Ticket Information: Tickets for all 2008-09 Bulldog home hockey games can be purchased by contacting the FSU Athletics Ticket Office at (231) 591-2888. The FSU Athletics Ticket Office's normal hours of operation are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (ET) weekdays. Single-game tickets may also be purchased by contacting Star Tickets Plus at 1-800-585-3737 or online at Star Tickets Plus' website: www.starticketsplus.com. Tickets are also available at all Meijer store locations in West Michigan.
The Records: Ferris State is currently 1-2-1 overall and 0-0-0 in the CCHA this 2008-09 season after producing a 0-1-1 mark last weekend (Oct. 17-18) in a two-game non-league series versus Robert Morris at the Clearview Arena in Pittsburgh, Pa. The Bulldogs dropped last Friday's (Oct. 17) series opener by a 6-3 score, but managed a 4-4 overtime tie in Saturday's (Oct. 18) rematch with the Colonials. FSU is presently 0-1-1 on the road and 1-1-0 in home outings this season to date. Ferris State concluded the 2007-08 season with an 18-16-5 overall record and placed fifth in the final CCHA regular-season standings at 12-12-4 (28 points).
Western Michigan sports a 1-3-0 overall record and is 0-0-0 in the CCHA to date as a result of dropping a non-league series to Minnesota-Duluth last weekend (Oct. 17-18) at the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center in Duluth, Minn. The Broncos dropped a 5-2 decision to the Bulldogs last Friday (Oct. 17) before suffering a 6-5 overtime loss in Saturday’s (Oct. 18) rematch. WMU’s lone win this campaign was a 4-2 season-opening non-league home win over Niagara (Oct. 10). Western Michigan registered an 8-27-3 overall record with a 12th-place 4-22-2 CCHA ledger for the 2007-08 campaign.
The All-Time Series: Ferris State and Western Michigan will meet for the 118th and 119th times this weekend in a series which the Broncos lead 65-45-7. A season ago, Ferris State registered a 4-1-1 record against Western Michigan as the Bulldogs went 2-1-1 in the four regular-season meetings between the two teams. The Bulldogs won the first home-and-home series (11/30-12/1) with a 4-0 home victory and a 3-2 road decision at Kalamazoo. Ferris would then suffer a 4-3 road loss to the Broncos (1/25) before skating to a 3-3 overtime tie in the regular-season series finale (1/26) at Big Rapids. The Bulldogs then swept Western Michigan in a best-of-three opening CCHA Tournament series (3/7-8) at Big Rapids, winning 4-3 in overtime before claiming a 6-3 decision over the Broncos. FSU is 17-37-3 on the road, 27-24-4 at home, and 1-4-0 at neutral sites against Western Michigan. The Bulldogs are averaging 3.54 goals per game (414 total) in the all-time series while Western Michigan has averaged 4.15 goals an outing (486 total) for a 0.61 goals per contest differential. Ferris State is 23-16-2 (.585) versus WMU in the last 41 meetings -- 9-10-0 on the road, 13-5-2 at home, and 1-1-0 at neutral sites. Ferris is 6-12-2 all-time in October encounters, which includes a 3-7-0 road ledger and a 3-4-2 home mark.
The Coaches: Ferris State – Bob Daniels (Michigan State, 1982), 17th season, 258-304-57 (.463) – (27-25-3 vs. Western Michigan – 10-15-1 Away, 16-9-2 Home, 1-1-0 Neutral). Daniels has the distinction of being the all-time winningest coach in Ferris State history. He was honored as the 2002-03 CCHA Coach of the Year and the Inside College Hockey (INCH) Coach of the Year, but the crowning highlight of his coaching career was being chosen as the recipient of the 2003 Spencer Penrose Award as the ACHA's Division I National Hockey Coach of the Year. He was among three finalists for the 2007-08 CCHA Coach of the Year Award.
Western Michigan – Jim Culhane (Western Michigan, 1987), 10th season, 137-184-34 (.434) – (15-20-1 vs. Ferris State). Culhane, who played at WMU from 1983-87, is the first former Bronco varsity player to serve as the program’s head coach. He went on to play five professional seasons, including a stint with the NHL’s Hartford Whalers in 1989-90.
About Western Michigan: Senior right wing Patrick Galivan (2-2=4) and freshman right wing Greg Squires (2-2=4) are the Broncos’ current top points producers this season. In goal, junior Riley Gill (1-1-0, 3.01 GAA, .909sv%) and sophomore Jerry Kuhn (0-2-0, 4.01 GAA, .907sv%) have both received action. Nationally, WMU ranks tied for sixth in power-play efficiency (25.0%), 17th penalty minutes (19.5 avg.), tied for 24th in scoring offense (3.00 avg.), 35th in scoring margin (-0.75), tied for 37th in penalty kill (82.9%), and tied for 41st in scoring defense (3.75 avg.).
2008-09 CCHA Preseason Polls: Ferris State was chosen sixth in the 2008-09 CCHA Coaches Poll with 84 points and was tabbed the same placing by the media with a 529 points total. Both the preseason CCHA Coaches and Media Polls were announced Sept. 30, 2008 during the CCHA's annual media day event at Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, Mich. Notre Dame (128 points) was the favorite in the coaches poll and second (915 points) in the media poll as the Fighting Irish finished national runner up for the 2007-08 national championship. Michigan, which captured both the 2007-08 CCHA Regular Season and CCHA Tournament titles, earned a league-best 945 points with 43 first-place votes in the media balloting. A record 83 media members ranked the 12 CCHA teams in projected order of finish for the regular season. League coaches ranked the CCHA teams, but were excluded from ranking their own team.
On The Radio: All of Ferris State's 2008-09 Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) contests can be heard live on Big Country WWBR (100.9 FM) with Bill Beckwith providing the play-by-play.
On The Internet: Ferris State University Athletics’ official web site can be found at www.ferris.edu/sports. The site features information on all of FSU’s varsity athletics programs including rosters, statistics, yearbooks and more.
Live Stats: All statistics for the 2008-09 Ferris State men's ice hockey home games along with all Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) contests can be followed via GameTracker on Ferris State's Hockey Website at www.ferris.edu/sports/hockey and then click on 2008-09 Schedule/Results. GameTracker is a service of Online College Sports and is a real time update of the action. If the GameTracker logo is shown for that game then there will be a GameTracker link. For the other CCHA contests, visit http://ccha.cstv.com/ and click on “GT” to access the GameTracker live statistics feature.
Successful Season – Ferris State’s 18 victories (18-15-5 overall) for the 2007-08 season not only exceeds its win total of the previous 2006-07 campaign (14-22-3 overall), but surpasses the 17-win total (17-15-8 overall) in the 2005-06 season which is the Bulldogs’ most successful season since the historic 2002-03 season. Ferris has won at least 10 games per campaign for 30 straight seasons to date. The 1999-00 squad compiled a 21-16-2 overall mark.
Taking The Fifth – Ferris State’s fifth-place CCHA finish last season (12-12-4 CCHA - 28 league points) represented the program’s highest placing since the 2002-03 CCHA regular-season championship season in which the Bulldogs were 22-5-1 in the CCHA (45 league points). Besides the 2002-03 campaign, the 1990-91 squad finished with a third-place 15-12-5 league mark (35 league points). The 2007-08 squad bettered the 2005-06 team’s sixth-place tying 27 league points (10-11-7 CCHA).
Home Improvement – The Robert L. Ewigleben Ice Arena, presently in its 34th season of operation, underwent a 3.3 million dollar renovation project this past summer. Renovations included new rink slabs for both the main and half ice sheets along with new dasher boards and installation of tempered glass panels. Locker room renovations, new lighting along with new heating, ventilation, and air conditioning equipment were installed.
Returning Firepower – Ferris State returns 14 of its top 15 points leaders from last season, including junior right wing Cody Chupp (Big Rapids), who had a career-high and squad-best 30 points (11-19=30) in 39 games a season ago. Overall, the Bulldogs welcome back 88.9% (97-109) of their goal-scoring output and 80.6% (224-278) of their points production from last season.
Lamplighter Louie – Senior right wing Justin Lewandowski (Naperville, Ill.) has notched a team-high three goals in as many games this season after tallying a pair of power-play markers in Friday’s loss. Seventeen of Lewandowski’s 28 career points (17-11=28) in 79 career outings have come on goals with six of those markers coming on the power play.
Shooting Display – Ferris State has outshot its opponent in all four contests (161-98) to date this season and are averaging 40.2 shots per game to the opposition’s 24.5 shots a game average.
Seeing Red – Sophomore defenseman Zach Redmond (Traverse City), a 2007-08 CCHA All-Rookie Team pick and FSU’s 2007-08 Rookie of the Year Award winner, led all Bulldog defensemen in scoring last season with 19 points (6-13=19) in 37 contests. He placed sixth in team scoring and produced the second-highest points total among Ferris’ freshmen a season ago. Redmond, who was drafted in the seventh round of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft with the 184th overall pick by the Atlanta Thrashers, attained honorable mention honors on the 2008-09 CCHA Preseason All-Conference Team as selected by the league’s 12 head coaches.
2008-09 Captains – For the first time in three seasons, Ferris State will have a different skater wearing the captain’s ‘C’ this campaign. Cody Chupp, who was an assistant captain on last season’s squad, replaces three-time team captain Adam Welch. Redmond along with junior left wing Blair Riley (Kamloops, British Columbia) will serve as the Bulldogs’ assistant captains this season.
Impressive Frosh Class – The Bulldogs’ freshman class is ranked 15th in the nation by Inside College Hockey.com (INCH). INCH compiled its 2008 recruiting rankings with extensive input from college and junior coaches along with professional scouts. Individually, goaltender Taylor Nelson (Regina, Saskatchewan) is rated the fourth-best incoming rookie netminder in the 2008 national rankings after sophomore Pat Nagle (Bloomfield) earned a fourth-place listing a season ago.
CCHA Openers – Ferris State is 10-16-3 (.397) in conference openers since the 1979-80 season, which includes a 5-7-2 (.429) home mark. FSU is 2-3-2 against Western Michigan in CCHA openers.
Scoring Leaders – FSU’s current top two points leaders this campaign, senior left wing Brendan Connolly (Canmore, Alberta) and junior left wing Blair Riley (Kamloops, British Columbia) have combined for 28.6%?(4-14) of the team’s goal-scoring output to date this season.
Young Guns Return – Thirteen underclassmen (eight freshmen and five sophomores) accounted for 57.9% (161-278) of the squad’s points production last season and 57.8% (63-109) of the Bulldogs’ goal scoring. Seven of the team’s top 10 points getters were underclassmen.
CCHA Honor Roll – Zach Redmond along with center Justin Menke (Shamrock, Saskatchewan) and goaltender Pat Nagle were all named to the 2007-08 CCHA All-Rookie Honorable Mention Team. Center Aaron Lewicki (Livonia) was FSU’s CCHA Scholar-Athlete of the Year representative and Bob Daniels was among three finalists for the CCHA's Coach of the Year Award.
2008-09 Yearbook Available Online: The 2008-09 Ferris State University Men's Ice Hockey Yearbook is available to view online in a PDF format. The 84-page publication features such information as 2008-09 player rosters, season outlook, player biographies, coaching staff information, 2007-08 season statistics, career and season statistical records, series records, game records, etc. Visit the FSU athletics website at www.ferris.edu/sports to find the publication online.