BIG RAPIDS, Mich. — The problems that bit Ferris State on Friday disappeared on Saturday. Goaltender Mike Brown stopped 21 of 23 shots in route to a 5-2 victory over Western Michigan at Ewigleben Ice Arena.
“I felt we played a good game yesterday but we made some key mistakes,” Ferris State coach Bob Daniels said. “Tonight we played a lot better but we have a lot to work on.”
Trevor Large opened the scoring for Ferris State in the first period. Brett Smith chipped the puck up to Large, who came in on an odd-man rush. Large elected to shoot and roofed the puck over goaltender Mike Mantua to make it 1-0 at 16:42.
The second period featured two quick goals by Ferris State. Mark Bomersback knocked in a rebound at 2:21 to make it 2-0. Mike Kinnie followed up 30 seconds later with a nice wrist shot over the blocker of Mantua to take a 3-0 lead.
Bronco head coach Jim Culhane called time out to settle his team down. That move paid off as Western Michigan got on the board when Brett Walton tallied his second goal of the season on the power play. Jim McNamara passed the puck up to Walton, who broke in on a two on one opportunity. Walton beat Brown with a shot to the stick side at 6:48 to bring the Broncos within two.
Nick Scheible answered with a goal of his own at 12:40 to restore the three-goal Bulldog lead, off a slapshot that powered its way through the Bronco goaltender.
Lucas Drake brought the Broncos within two goals again off a broken play. With Ferris State reeling in its own zone, the puck bounced straight to Drake, who put it past Brown to make it 4-2 at 12:21.
But Brett Smith completed the scoring at 15:42 for Ferris. Greg Rallo centered the puck to Smith, who buried it past the sprawling goaltender for the 5-2 final.
Overall, Daniels was happy with his team’s effort. “We really need to work on our defense in the zone and our power play. We went zero for four tonight and zero for six yesterday. The good thing is that we were able to roll four lines pretty steady tonight.”
Culhane was pleased with the split as well. “The win last night was huge for our program,” he said. “I know we were really working for the sweep, though. Home ice makes such a difference. It gives you that shot in the arm, that shot of adrenaline that you need at key times. It was obvious when you look at the game last night and the game tonight that it was a huge factor.”
Ferris State travels to Colgate for two nonconference games next weekend, while Western Michigan hosts CCHA member Nebraska-Omaha.