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FSU Hockey At A Glance: The Ferris State University men’s ice hockey team visits the nationally-ranked University of Michigan Wolverines this weekend (Jan. 26-27) in a two-game Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) series at UM's Yost Ice Arena in Ann Arbor, Mich. Opening faceoff for this Friday's (Jan. 26) series opener is 8:05 p.m. (EST) while Saturday's (Jan. 27) game will drop the puck at 7:35 p.m. (EST).
Television Broadcast: This Friday’s contest will be televised live on College Sports Television (CSTV) – (DirecTV channel 610 and Dish Network channel 152) with Matt McConnell handling the play-by-play duties and Troy Ward providing the commentary. This Saturday’s game will be televised live on FSN Detroit (DirecTV channel 636 and Dish Network channel 430). Matt Shepard will call the action with Fred Pletsch serving as analyst. Shireen Saski will be the rinkside reporter.
The Records: Ferris State is 7-16-3 overall and 4-12-2 in the CCHA following Tuesday’s (Jan. 23) 5-2 league loss to Western Michigan at WMU’s Lawson Ice Arena in Kalamazoo, Mich. Prior to that outing, Ferris split a league home series with Nebraska-Omaha last weekend (Jan. 19-20) at FSU's Ewigleben Ice Arena in Big Rapids, Mich. The Bulldogs are 3-3-0 in their last six contests and have compiled a 3-8-1 road record this season.
Michigan improved to 17-9-0 overall and 12-6-0 in the CCHA with a league series sweep of Alaska last weekend (Jan. 19-20) at UA’s Carlson Center in Fairbanks, Alaska. The Wolverines, who have won four of their last five outings to date, recorded a 6-2 victory over the Nanooks in last Friday’s (Jan. 19) opener and then won a 5-2 decision in Saturday’s (Jan. 20) rematch. UM has a 10-5-0 home record this season, which includes a 7-4-0 CCHA ledger. The Wolverines are ranked 11th by USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine this week while both the Inside College Hockey.com (INCH) and U.S. College Hockey Online/CSTV polls have UM listed 12th.
The Coaches: Ferris State – Bob Daniels (Michigan State, 1982), 15th season, 232-280-51 (.457) – (10-30-2 vs. Michigan). 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 American Hockey Coaches Association's (AHCA) Division I National Hockey Coach of the Year.
Michigan – Gordon “Red” Berenson (Michigan, 1962), 23rd season, 602-287-63 (.665) – (52-21-2 vs. Ferris State). Berenson is UM’s all-time winningest coach and currently ranks eighth on NCAA Hockey’s all-time coaching victories list.
The Series: Michigan has a 56-26-3 lead over Ferris State in their all-time series which began in the 1981-82 season. The Wolverines recorded a two-game series sweep at Ferris State earlier this campaign (11/17-18), winning 3-2 and 5-1. The Bulldogs are 4-7-1 in their last 11 encounters against Michigan and have dropped the last four meetings to date. Ferris State has compiled a 10-32-0 road mark and suffered a pair of losses (6-4 and 3-2) to UM in the CCHA Tournament Quarterfinals a season ago (3/10-11/06). Eight of the last 12 meetings have been decided by one goal or less with Ferris producing a 4-3-1 record in those contests. The Bulldogs are 6-17-1 all-time versus the Wolverines in January games, which includes a 2-11-0 away ledger.
2006-07 CCHA Preseason Polls: Ferris State was selected to finish ninth (55 points) in the 2006-07 CCHA Coaches Poll and seventh in the media poll (437 points), which was announced Sept. 27, 2006 during the CCHA's annual media day event at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, Mich. Michigan State (177 points) was the favorite in the coaches poll while Michigan (845 points) claimed top honors in the media balloting, finishing one point ahead of second-place Michigan State (844 points). A total of 77 media members ranked the 12 CCHA teams in projected order of finish for the regular season. League coaches ranked the CCHA teams, excluding their own school. Michigan was chosen as the favorite to win the CCHA regular-season championship title in league's media poll and was tabbed second in the CCHA Coaches Poll.
On The Radio: All of Ferris State's 2006-07 Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) contests can be heard live on Big Country WWBR (100.9 FM) with Bill Beckwith handling the play-by-play duties.
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: “Live Stats” of all 2006-07 Ferris State men's ice hockey home contests will be provided via the internet. Visit http://ccha.cstv.com/ and click on “GT” to access the GameTracker live statistics feature in the Schedules/Results section.
Playmaker Pearson – Senior right wing Zac Pearson (White Lake), who has a squad-best 20 points (7-13=20) in 24 games this season, has seven points (2-5=7) in his last six outings. He recorded three-points (2-1=3) vs. Nebraska-Omaha last Saturday (1/20), which matched his career single-game high. Pearson’s 20 points is six shy of matching his career-best 26 points (6-20=26) in 40 games last season.
Point Streak – Senior left wing Matt Verdone (Summerstown, Ontario) is midst a current and season high five-game point string (3-2=5) which includes a goal apiece in his last three outings. Verdone had personal season-best two-game point streaks seven times a season ago. Verdone’s five points (3-2=5) this month also exceeds his four points (3-1=4) in eight January 2006 encounters.
A Season Comparison – Ferris State is averaging 2.6 goals per game (67 total) in its initial 26 contests this campaign compared to a 3.2 goals average (83 total) during its first 26 games last season. The Bulldogs are allowing 3.3 goals a contest (87 total) after giving up 2.8 (73 total) a season ago.
Big Mac – Junior goaltender Derek MacIntyre (Stanwood) picked up his third straight win in 2007 with a season-best 35-save performance in a 6-3 home league victory over Nebraska-Omaha last Saturday (1/20). MacIntyre, a 2004 eighth-round selection by the San Jose Sharks, has been victorious in the net the last three Saturdays. He had 27 saves in a 5-3 decision at Northern Michigan (1/6) and turned aside 25 shots in a 7-3 triumph at Wayne State (1/13). A 2004-05 CCHA All-Rookie Honorable Mention selection, MacIntyre is 3-0-0 with a 2.84 goals-against average and a .902 save percentage in four January outings compared to a 0-1-0 record with a 5.00 goals-against average and an .800 save percentage in one January 2006 appearance.
Productive Frosh Group – Ferris’ six-member freshmen class has combined for 21.2% (38-179) of the team’s points production and 26.9% (18-67) of the goal-scoring output this season. Centers Cody Chupp (7-6=13) and Aaron Lewicki (5-4=9) are the top points producers.
First Lamplighter – Freshman defenseman Matt Case (Plymouth, Minn.) tallied his first collegiate goal with a third-period power-play marker in Tuesday’s (1/23) tilt at Western Michigan and also picked up an assist in the contest. His two points equaled his output (0-2=2) at Northern Michigan (1/6).
CCHA Scorer Deluxe – Zac Pearson has a team-leading 15 points (5-10=15) in 18 CCHA encounters this season. In 96 career league games, Pearson has 47 points (12-35=47) representing 66.2% (47-71) of his career points output.
Off To The Pros – Sophomore center Dan Riedel (Rochester Hills) left the FSU hockey program last week to pursue a professional career. Riedel, a 2005-06 CCHA All-Rookie Team selection, had 12 points (3-9=12) in 19 games this season. Riedel signed with the Phoenix RoadRunners of the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL) Monday (1/22) and could make his pro debut this Friday (1/26) at Fresno.
Did You Know? – Five of sophomore left wing Brendan Connolly’s (Canmore, Alberta) last six points have been on goals scored. Connolly, who has produced a career-high 13 points (7-6=13) in 25 contests this campaign bettering his seven points (1-6=7) in 36 contests last season, posted a lamplighter versus Nebraska-Omaha last Saturday (1/20). He tallied a pair of second-period markers at Northern Michigan (1/6) and scored a goal in back-to-back outings at Miami (12/2) and versus Lake Superior State (12/8). Connolly ranks second in team CCHA scoring with 10 points (5-5=10) in 18 league games.
Bulldog Hockey To Appear On CCHA All-Access – The Ferris State hockey program will be featured on FSN Detroit's CCHA All-Access Show this Friday (Jan. 26) starting at 2:30 p.m. (EST). The half-hour weekly show will run for 10 consecutive weeks through the conclusion of the current CCHA season, will feature behind the scenes footage of the CCHA-member institutions. Ferris State hockey fans are encouraged watch the unique program, which will also be re-broadcasted this Saturday (Jan. 27) at 11:30 a.m. (EST) and at 7 p.m. (EST).