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Ferris State, the first nationally-ranked team in the 10-year history of the UConn Classic, started out slowly but netted three third-period goals to shut out homestanding Connecticut 5-0 in the consolation game of the tournament.
Ferris, which had been upset by Alabama-Huntsville the night before, dominated play but had difficulty getting the puck past UConn goaltender Jason Carey, who saved 56 of 61 Bulldog shots.
Ferris coach Bob Daniels seemed pleased with his team’s effort. “Really, I thought that we played a strong game the whole way through. We had a hard time scoring goals, but they started going in for us late. It certainly was a lot better game than we had yesterday. We were disappointed with our outcome yesterday.”
Chris Kunitz stepped up his play in the consolation, assisting on Jeff Legue’s goal in the first period and Troy Milam’s in the second before scoring two of his own to start off the third period. Kunitz’s performance earned him All-Tournament honors.
Brett Smith closed out the scoring for Ferris with just :30 left in the game.
The game against Alabama-Huntsville was still on Daniels’s mind after the consolation.
“I think Alabama-Huntsville deserves some credit, because they were a big reason that we didn’t play so well. I don’t know that we were slow yesterday as much as much as that over the holidays we forgot how to compete and how hard you have to play to win at this level. I think it’s a reminder to us of how strong we have to play.”
Ferris State traveled home on Tuesday but will turn around and play at Niagara for two games starting on Friday. UConn will travel to Mercyhurst for a two-game conference set on Friday.