Another Friday night, another slow start, another deep hole the Chargers can’t afford to dig.
Ferris State, one of the favorites to challenge Minnesota State atop the WCHA this season, scored four first-period goals en route to a 5-0 win over UAH at the Von Braun Center on Friday night.
It’s the third straight Friday that UAH was blown out in the first game of the series. In the first two series, the Chargers played better the second night and were competitive, and they look to do the same in the rematch Saturday night at 7:07.
But in game one, it was decided early. Dominic Panetta got the Bulldogs on the board with a goal at 1:40.
After that, it appeared the Chargers would not let things snowball this time as they put pressure and shots on goal on Ferris goaltender C.J. Motte, who made 21 saves in his shutout.
Then the penalties came, Ferris State made the most of just about every opportunity.
Anderson White was called for tripping at 13:04. Thirty-six seconds later, Garrett Thompson puts in a rebound on the right side and the Bulldogs lead 2-0.
Jeff Vanderlugt went off for slashing at 15:42. UAH technically killed the penalty, but Kelly Babinski on a breakout scored five seconds after it expired. 3-0 Bulldogs.
Brandon Carlson was sent off for roughing at 18:12. Kyle Schempp converts to make it 4-0 with 20 seconds left in the first period.
For the game, Ferris State scored three power play goals on five opportunities. Meanwhile, UAH went 0-for-2 as it suffered its second straight shutout.
The second period was more even — each team got eight shots on goal — but Scott Czarnowczan tallied the lone goal of the frame for the final 5-0 score.
Ferris State outshot UAH 37-21. Guerriero made 32 saves.
Saturday night, the first 500 fans receive a UAH Chargers puck courtesy of SportsMed. — Michael Napier
Are you frustrated yet? Sure. I can guarantee you that the players are more frustrated. This is a young, young team. Combine that with a new head coach and a new assistant coach and things are just plain different. What I saw tonight was a lot of hard effort that wasn’t always coherent. Coherence will come with time and trust, and I’m quite sure that the Chargers will have that taken care of soon enough.
Penalties killed the chances for a win tonight. Three power play goals and a fourth goal that came six seconds after a penalty expired made all the difference in the world. If this is a slow-down game where the guys aren’t taking as many penalties, maybe things are different. That said, the boys haven’t had their 5-on-5 breakthrough just yet.
Some have said that Carmine Guerriero is the clear #1 goalie based on his first two efforts. While the above paragraph goes to explain why he perhaps wasn’t to blame for tonight’s loss, I think that the greater story there is that Matt Larose is better than some people have given him credit for being. I expect that we’ll see Larose in net tomorrow, and I think that he will benefit if the trend line continues for bad-Friday, good-Saturday.
Rome was not built in a day. — Geof Morris