Western scores 4 unanswered goals to beat NMU


Courtesy of NMU Athletics

KALAMAZOO, Mich. – The Northern Michigan University hockey team was defeated by No. 10-ranked Western Michigan University, 4-2, on Friday (Nov. 30) night from Lawson Ice Arena. The Wildcats jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the second period before the Broncos answered with four goals, including three on special teams.

With the loss, NMU is now 5-7-3 overall and 2-6-3-1 in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association. Western moves to 7-3-1 and 4-2-1-1 in the CCHA.

Junior forward Jake Johnson opened the game’s scoring 58 seconds into the second period as he tipped in junior defenseman Wade Epp’s shot from the blue line. It was Johnson’s second in the last three games and third of his career. Also assisting on the goal was junior forward Stephan Vigier.

Sophomore forward Ryan Daugherty added to the lead with his team-leading sixth of the season three minutes later (3:52). Assisting on the goal was sophomore forward Reed Seckel and senior defenseman Kyle Follmer.

WMU pulled to within one 6:06 into the second as Chase Balisy scored a shorthanded tally. Junior goaltender Jared Coreau mishandled the puck behind the net and Balisy buried his fourth of the season, unassisted.

The Broncos evened up the game before the end of the second (16:16) as Kenny Morrison found the back of the net on the power play.

Dane Walters gave the Broncos the lead with a 5-on-3 power-play goal midway through the third period for the 3-2 lead.

Northern pulled Coreau for the extra attacker late in the game and WMU capitalized as Balisy scored added an empty net goal.

Coreau finished the game with 35 saves as the ‘Cats were outshot 39-12. Frank Slubowski had 10 saves for the Broncos.

NMU was 0-for-3 on the power play while WMU was 2-for-5. The ‘Cats took six minor penalties while the Broncos had four.

The two teams wrap up the CCHA series at 7:05 p.m. on Saturday.

Game Notes: The last time NMU won in Kalamazoo was Jan. 31, 2008…. The last time NMU defeated WMU was Dec. 3, 2010…It was the eighth time this season Coreau had over 30 saves…Coreau has 69 saves in the last two games….

Follmer has 59 career points and Vigier has 49.