SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. — Just 57 seconds was all the Lake Superior State Lakers needed in a 4-1 win over the Ferris State Bulldogs on Friday night in Central Collegiate Hockey Association action.
The Lakers scored three times in the final minute of the second period to give themselves a 3-1 lead heading into the third period and pick up a win in conference action on home ice.
With the Lakers trailing, 1-0, Kellan Lain tied the game at 19:01 before Buddy Robinson scored a pair of goals 44 seconds apart at 19:14 and 19:58 to turn the 1-0 deficit into a 3-1 lead.
Both coaches had similar views of the game and the difference the minute made in the game.
“It was a pretty even hockey game and obviously we had a really great minute there,” said Lakers coach Jim Roque. “That was probably the only difference in the game really. (Ferris State) had some good chances. It was pretty up-and-down. We had the fortunate minute there and we rode that home.”
Added Bulldogs coach Bob Daniels, “I thought we played well enough that we could have won, but maybe not well enough to guarantee a win. It was a pretty even game. The one thing I can point to is the last 59 seconds of the second. Outside of that, if you can take that minute away, we were fine.”
The Bulldogs had an opportunity to pull to within a goal early in the third, only to have a goal called back due to a Bulldogs player being in the crease.
“It would have been great for that goal to stand, without a doubt,” said Daniels. I had probably the worst view of it at our bench. All I was hoping for was that we would get a review out of it. Regardless, I didn’t have the best view of it, so it’s hard for me to know (if the call was correct).”
Nick McParland had the other goal for the Lakers in the win, while goaltender Kevin Murdoch stopped 31 shots.
“He’s played well here and he deserves it with what he went through in the first month here with all the paperwork that had to be re-filed for his eligibility,” said Roque. “He handled it well, and his parents were phenomenal. He just worked hard and believed it would all be taken care of.”
Justin DeMartino scored the lone goal for Ferris State, while goaltender CJ Motte stopped 23 shots.
“He (Motte) played very well; I’ve got no issues with our goaltending at all, and he gave us an opportunity to win tonight,” Daniels said.
Roque credited Ferris State, calling the Bulldogs a tough team to play against, especially when they have a lead.
“They’re a hard team to come back on,” said Roque. “You have to play ahead on them. If you can get ahead of them, they’re a lot easier to play, but when you’re behind, they clamp down pretty good and it gets even tougher.”
The Lakers will be without incumbent starting goaltender Kevin Kapalka for the near future. Roque says there isn’t a time frame on his return yet, as the netminder still hasn’t been on the ice since injuring his shoulder against Michigan State on Oct. 26. He is scheduled for an MRI this week to take a further look at the injury.
“It still bothers him with quick movements in his shoulder,” said Roque. “He’s hoping to get on the ice a little bit this week to see how it goes. It’s his glove hand, that’s the problem.”
The Lakers (5-4-0, 3-2-0 CCHA) and Bulldogs (3-4-2, 2-3-0 CCHA) wrap up their two-game set at Taffy Abel Arena on Saturday night at 7:05 p.m.