The boys are on the road again this week, taking on Ferris State in Big Rapids, Michigan. The blog is tagging along on this one, meeting up at practice on Friday. A pretty big and fun trip for me. I'm writing this from my hotel in Grand Rapids, about an hour south of Big Rapids. The team got in today and made it to Ferris State at about noon. I just got back from the Grand Rapids Griffins game after they destroyed Milwaukee 5-0. It wasn't really even a game. Went to the Red Wings game at Joe Louis on Tuesday, and will go again tomorrow before making the trip north to Ewigleben arena on Ferris State's campus, a rink that makes the Patty Center look like an NHL rink.
Ferris State has been doing quite well thus far this season, currently on a 7 game unbeaten streak, of which 6 of those games have been at home. During that streak, they've averaged 4.3 goals per game and allowing 2.4 per game. That +1.9 goal differential is 3rd best in the last 7 games, next to Minnesota and Boston College. That's pretty good company to be in. Now, the other thing to consider is that the combined records of the 4 teams that they have played is 15-24-7. Read into that what you will.
The Nanooks are coming off of a bye week after an already long trip home from Sault Ste. Marie got a little bit longer after their bus broke down. D'oh! More than 40 hours later, they got home very early Tuesday morning, and a week later they hit the road again. So not really a bye week as it turned out, but a weekend off, which is good for morale anyway.
The Nanooks have had decent success in Big Rapids, splitting with them in the only series early last season. Steve Thompson had a shaky game in net allowing 6 goals in just 24 shots, but the defense didn't help him much either. Offense had 43 shots on goal that night, but was stymied by CJ Motte in goal. Sean Cahill started the next night and got his first win, as Tyler Morley had one of the prettiest dangles in front of the net to get the game winner that you'll ever see. I remember that one like it was yesterday.
Ferris remains the only unbeaten team in conference play with a 5-0-1 conference record. Last week (I know I forgot to recap, my bad) was the first time the Nanooks had lost on Friday and the first time they won on Saturday. Granted, it was also the first games outside of Alaska.
Should be a good series. I'm hoping the 'Nooks can build off of that last win and keep momentum going. Hoping the bye week doesn't hurt those chances.