For the first time this season, against nationally 5th-ranked Ohio State, the Bulldogs won during a shootout.
Ferris began its series in Columbus with a 4-3 victory over the Ohio State Buckeyes on Jan. 20. The Bulldogs scored all four of their goals by the beginning of the second period, before Ohio State could find the back of Ferris’ net.
Ohio State then scored three goals during the second and third periods. With 7:21 remaining in the game, Ferris junior forward Eric Alexander received a five-minute trip to the penalty box after making head contact with an OSU skater. Alexander was ejected from the game and suspended from playing in the second game of the OSU series. The Ohio State skater was not injured from the hit.
Two minutes later, Ferris freshman defender Jason Binkley was tagged for a two-minute hooking charge.
Ferris had only three players on the ice to defend a one-point lead against Ohio State’s full strength offense late in the third period. Junior Ferris forwards Matthew Kerzinger and Travis Ouellette made two blocks for Ferris to aid in the penalty killing and keep Ohio State from converting on the man-advantage.
“Special teams probably made the biggest difference in the weekend,” Bonis said.
Senior Ferris goalie Taylor Nelson made 11 saves in the third period and 30 saves in the game to hold off the Buckeyes for his 11th win of the season.
In the next game, Jan. 21, the Buckeyes forced the teams to overtime by tying the game 3-3. Neither team could find the back of the net during overtime, which led to a shootout.
Ferris, after securing a league point for the tie, went on to win during the shootout and earned another league point for the win.
“Taking five points out of six against the number five team in the nation is just a great feeling for everybody,” Bonis said. “We trusted our system and that’s why we came out on top.”
Ferris’ skaters Bonis and senior Derek Graham converted in the shootout while freshman goaltender CJ Motte warded off three Ohio State shots in the shootout. Motte improved his record to 4-4-2.
“We’re getting contributions from a number of different people; that’s definitely a positive thing,” Bonis said.
Ferris picked up five league points out of a possible six points. The Bulldogs moved up to fifth place in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association.
The Bulldogs improved their conference record to 9-6-3-1 and Ferris is now 15-8-3 overall. Ferris is 4-0-2 since returning from break.
The Bulldogs were 4-11 on the power play in the series against OSU. Ferris allowed Ohio State to score on only 1-12 of its power play opportunities for the duration of the series.
Ferris will come home to embrace their home fans at the Ewigleben Ice Arena in a two-game series against nationally 16th-ranked Michigan State Jan. 27-28 at 7:05 p.m.
According to U.S. College Hockey Online, Michigan State is ranked third in the nation in penalty killing. MSU kills 89.4 percent of their penalties.
Ferris will rely on their 7th-ranked team defense to combat MSU’s 18th-ranked team offense (USCHO).