Big Rapids - In a defensive battle of wits, the Ferris State University men's ice hockey team notched its second win of the young season in 2-1 fashion over the Wisconsin Badgers on Saturday (Oct. 24) night to close out a weekend series at FSU's Ewigleben Ice Arena.
The Bulldogs were aided in large part by 29 saves from freshman goaltender Darren Smith, who got his first career collegiate win in his first-ever start as a Bulldog.
Ferris State got on the board first on the power play when freshman defenseman Ryker Killins scored the first goal of his collegiate career. He drove to the net and the puck glanced in off of his skate at six minutes of the second period following a scoreless opening frame.
Junior forward Gerald Mayhew notched his fourth point of the weekend and fourth assist of the season on the opening FSU goal with junior forward Kyle Schempp notching his fifth assist of the season on the play.
The Badgers got their only tally of the night 29 seconds into the third period when Luke Kunin scored on the power play from Grant Besse and Jedd Soleway on a wide-open chance in the middle of the ice. The goal was Kunin's second of the season.
The tie lasted only 19 seconds, though, as the Bulldogs came right back down the ice, with junior forward Chad McDonald outwaiting Wisconsin goaltender Matt Jurusik and flipping a shot off of the sprawling netminder's stick that found the twine.
The Badgers had opportunities down the stretch, including a late power play, and threw shots on Smith, who turned a shot away at the closing horn to preserve a 2-1 victory.
Ferris State went 1-of-4 on the powerplay with Wisconsin going 1-of-5 on the man advantage. The Badgers did not convert on their late power play, during which they pulled the goaltender to get a 6-on-4 man advantage.
Jurusik registered the loss to move to 0-2-2 on the season despite making 37 saves on 39 Ferris State shots.
The victory over the Badgers is Ferris State's first since January 1, 2005, when the Bulldogs won the Badger Hockey Showdown at Wisconsin. The two teams finished in a high-scoring 5-5 overtime deadlock in Friday night's opener during Wisconsin's first-ever trip to Big Rapids.
This win stands as head coach Bob Daniels' 399th victory in his career. Saturday night's triumph came as the Bulldogs wore new "gold" alternate jerseys for the first-time ever.
Ferris State will return to conference play when they hit the road for a two-game set against the Michigan Tech Huskies next weekend on Oct. 30-31. Both puck drops are scheduled for 7:07 pm (ET).