KALAMAZOO, Mich. — In a near-carbon-copy of Friday’s game, Western Michigan sophomore Jeff Campbell capped off a three-point effort with the game-winning goal, while Canisius’ Brad Kenny scored twice to keep the game close before the Broncos escaped with a 4-3 victory and a series sweep.
Canisius received another stellar effort in goal Saturday, this time from freshman Bryan Worosz, who finished with 32 saves. CC senior Chris Duggan, as well as WMU forward Mike Bishai, also contributed a goal and an assist on the evening.
WMU head coach Jim Culhane, again, praised Canisius for their hard work.
“We found a way to win,” Culhane said. “Again, their goaltending is tremendous. Both kids, last night and tonight, played very well. We outshot them two-to-one, and their goaltending let them hang around and stay in the game.”
Despite the wide shot edge — similar to Friday — Canisius was able to keep the game close to the end. Shots finished in favor of the Broncos, 36-20.
“I told [Canisius coach] Brian [Cavanaugh] that he should be very proud of his team, and I think they worked tremendously hard both nights,” Culhane said. “It doesn’t matter if you have the best skilled players in the world, but as long as you are willing to work hard, you’re going to give yourself a chance to win.”
Cavanaugh had something to get off his chest following the game.
“I thought we played pretty hard, especially considering the fact that we were down most of the game,” he said.
“I wasn’t real pleased with the officiating. I watched the videotape of last nights game, and I didn’t think some of the calls that were made, the tripping call in the first period [of Saturday's game] to put us down two men, wasn’t a strong call. And tonight we get three things in the third period when we killed two penalties when it was four-on-four.
“I’m not trying to blast the officials, but I feel when you come in here and you get CCHA officials with a CCHA team, you have to overcome that adversity.”
WMU sophomore defenseman Rob Yamashita scored his first goal of the season by taking a rebound off a shot from sophomore Nic Boileau at 8:25 of the first period and burying it past Worosz to give the Broncos a 1-0 lead.
Bishai skated across the slot from the blue line to beat Worosz with a nice deke to give WMU a two-goal advantage at 9:54 of the first period.
Canisius answered at 13:40 of the first period when Kenny beat WMU goaltender Jeff Reynaert with a top-shelf backhand on the breakaway to cut the Bronco lead in half, 2-1.
The Griffins evened the score midway through the second period at 9:28 on the power play after Kenny scored his second goal of the evening, his third of the season, by beating Reynaert backdoor with a one-timer off a pass from Paul Dusza.
Junior defenseman Dave Cousineau gave the Broncos the lead at 11:24 of the second period when he pulled Worosz out of the net to beat the goaltender, stick side, to give WMU a 3-2 lead.
Canisius evened the score again in the second period at 12:29 when senior forward Todd Houston wrapped the puck around the net after taking a pass from Rob Martin to tie the game at three goals each.
Like Friday night, WMU had a goal blown off because of a man in the crease. This time, it was Jeremy Cheyne at 17:44 of the second period, who had his goal dismissed because forward Lucas Drake was in the crease.
Campbell iced the game at 16:35 of the third period by backhanding a shot in front of a goal-mouth scramble past Worosz to give the Broncos a 4-3 victory.
“I guess the puck just squirted back to the point to Ryan Crane,” said Campbell, “and Crane made a heads-up play to see me down in front of the net alone, passed it down there towards the net, and I picked it up and made a move on the goalie, and fortunately I found the back of the net.
“It’s a big goal for me and a big confidence boost, and it’s a big win for the team.”
Next weekend, the Broncos (7-4-3), again, host a MAAC opponent in Sacred Heart at Lawson Arena for a two-game set. Canisius (5-5-2) is on the road at Connecticut and Quinnipiac in MAAC play.