Falcons drop pair at Ferris, solidify last place

The BG hockey team’s road struggles continued this weekend as the Falcons dropped a pair of games to Ferris State to ensure a last place finish in the CCHA.

A combination of bad luck and too many penalties doomed the Falcons (6-26-2, 4-21-1 CCHA) in Saturday’s contest, with BG hitting three posts in a 5-2 defeat. BG did outshoot the Bulldogs 30-28, but nine penalties, which resulted in two power-play goals, had BG playing shorthanded for most of the game.

“I thought we worked hard and played much better as the game went on, but once again we found ourselves in too many penalty kill situations to be successful,” said BG coach Scott Paluch following Saturday’s game.

“We kind of took over the game five-on-five, even though we were always battling from behind. We were playing well and had ourselves within a shot of tying the game, but we just took too many penalties.”

Kai Kantola (5) and Brandon Svendsen (6) provided the goals for the Falcons, both coming with BG trailing by two.

BG goalie Jimmy Spratt stopped 23 of the 27 FSU (12-19-3, 9-15-2) shots he faced, with the Bulldogs’ Adam Miller adding an empty-netter with 20 seconds left in the game for the 5-2 final.

In the series opener on Friday, Spratt set a career high for saves with 42, but it was not enough as FSU won a tight one 2-1.

The Falcons lone score came from Derek Whitmore (14) on a five-on-three power play. BG was 1-10 with the man-advantage for the game.

Bulldog goalie Derek MacIntyre was solid in net as well, stopping 29 Falcon shots in the win.

“It was another tight battle,” Paluch said. “Despite the 30 shots we weren’t able to create enough offense to be successful. Our ineffectiveness on the power play hurt us again. We just couldn’t get to the offensive plays.”

Mathematically the Falcons assured that they will finish in 12th place, they will now wait to see who finishes fifth and hosts them in the first round of the playoffs.

BG finishes the regular season portion of the schedule this weekend with a home-and-home series against Michigan State.