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The BG News
BG24 Newscast
September 21, 2023

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Hockey split series on road with CCHA rival Ferris State

The BG hockey team won on the road for the first time in more than a month, splitting its weekend series with Ferris State.

The Falcons won Friday, 2-1 in overtime. It was the first time BG won a road game since a 5-1 win Jan. 8 against Michigan. Ferris State rebounded to win 4-3 Saturday night.

Friday night, Cam Wojtala scored with 1:28 left in the third period to send the game to overtime, and Ryan Carpenter scored the game winner.

Tommy Burke played the best game of his career as a Falcon, stopping 36 of 37 shots, 16 of those saves coming in the first period.

“I felt really good in warm-ups, was really seeing the puck well,” Burke said. “I made a couple of saves early on that got me into the game. They had a lot of pressure on us in the first so it was good to kind of weather that storm.”

Kyle Bonis got Ferris on the board late in the first period with his 16th goal of the season.

Ferris kept up the pressure throughout the game, putting 12 shots on Burke in the second period.

“In their rink, they’re coming hard at us,” Burke said. “They play really aggressive in their own rink.”

Wojtala tied the game late in the third period on a scramble in front of the net.

Bobby Shea took a shot from the high slot that was blocked and kicked out to Brent Tate at the bottom of the left circle. Tate slid the puck over to Wojtala, who tried multiple whacks and fell to his knees before the puck ultimately found the back of the net.

In overtime, Carpenter ended the game with his 13th goal of the season. He deflected Connor Kucera’s shot from the point off Ferris goalie C.J. Motte and scored on the rebound.

“Tate and DeSalvo did great down low to get the puck out to the point,” Carpenter said. “[Kucera] was really poised with the puck and found my stick. Then I just jammed home the rebound.”

Saturday night, Ferris jumped out to a 3-1 lead in the second period before the Falcons came storming back.

The Falcons scored twice in 35 seconds midway though the second period to tie the game at three.

Brent Tate scored on a rebound on a shot from Adam Berkle with 11:25 left in the second period. Thirty-five seconds later, Brett Mohler beat Motte through the five-hole on a three-on-two rush.

“It was kind of a bobbled back-check,” Mohler said. “We picked the puck up and Chad [Sumsion] left me the puck and [Andrew Wallace] went right to the net. If he didn’t do that I don’t think the puck would’ve went in because the goalie was a little too worried about him.”

Garrett Thompson scored the go-ahead goal with 3:38 left in the period. On the power play, he was left alone on the back door and deflected Justin Buzzeo’s pass into a wide-open net.

Ferris scored each of their first three goals on breakaways. Buzzeo got Ferris on the board first midway through the first period. He blew past Shea into the BG zone and took a cross-ice pass from Justin DeMartino and beat Burke.

Bonis scored shorthanded with less than a minute left in the first period. Thompson flipped a pass out of the Bulldogs’ zone, and Bonis out-skated both BG defenders to pick up the puck.

Berkle also scored in the first period on a slick backhand shot from the left circle that beat Motte over his shoulder.

Cory Kane made it 3-1 just 1:32 into the second period. He slipped behind Kucera and took a pass from Eric Alexander, out-skated Rusty Hafner, and beat Burke.

Despite the loss, the Falcons feel they played a better game than the previous night.

“I thought we played better than [Friday] night,” Berkle said. “Some of the bounces just didn’t go our way. We had opportunities to tie it up late.”

Thanks to the one win, the Falcons remained in a position to host a home playoff series. They sit eighth in the standings, five points ahead of Northern Michigan.

“Any time you can get a split on the road it’s big, especially this time of year when points really matter,” Mohler said. “We really needed two wins but we’re happy to get one.”

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