Notebook: Falcons starting to score consistently

By March 3, 2016Notebooks
Bowling Green's Pierre-Luc Mercier prepares to make a play against Minnesota State earlier this season. (Photo by Todd Pavlack/

Bowling Green is starting to score consistently.

The Falcons have scored four or more goals in three straight games, including 10 goals in last weekend’s sweep of Ferris State.

BG is tied for second in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association in scoring with an average of 2.67 goals per game. The Falcons have scored three or more goals in seven of their last 11 games.

The Falcons received points from 12 different players against Ferris. Seven Falcons had at least one goal and the production included two defensemen.

“It’s everybody,” BG coach Chris Bergeron said. “It’s not one or two people. It’s the forwards, the (defensemen). We’re doing it by committee, that’s first and foremost.”

The Falcons totaled 71 shots on goal against Ferris and had a number of other quality scoring chances.

In WCHA league games, BG is averaging 2.73 goals per contest, third-best in the league.

“We’re not only a second- and third-effort team, but we’re a second- and third-attempt team,” Bergeron said. “The puck goes on net, and we chase it down. We still have (offensive) zone time. It’s not one and done. You’re not chasing it down or back-checking. That’s when we’re at our best.

“We’ve proven we’ve got players who can make good plays. Not every goal is a greasy, bounce off the leg type goal. We can make plays. When everyone is going, when we’re a second- and third-attempt team, and there’s a bunch of hockey plays being made, that’s when we’re at our best.”

NEXT: BG, 19-11-6 overall and 15-6-5 in the WCHA, visits Alabama-Huntsville (6-20-6, 4-16-6) Friday and Saturday nights at 8:07.

The Falcons are tied with No. 13 Michigan Tech for second place in the league, just two points behind No. 16 Minnesota State entering the final weekend of the regular season.

BG is seeking its first regular-season league championship since 1987 when it was first in the now-defunct Central Collegiate Hockey Association.

The Falcons are in their third year in the WCHA, finishing third last season and tying for third in 2014.

UAH is last in the league and has been eliminated from playoff contention.

SERIES: The Falcons are 9-1 against UAH in WCHA play, including a 3-2 (overtime), 4-3 sweep Nov. 20-21 in the Ice Arena.

BG is 6-2 all-time at UAH. The Falcons swept at UAH last season Oct. 17-18, posting 5-0, 4-1 wins.

POWER PLAY: The Falcon power play was 5 of 10 against UAH in November.

BG is fourth in the WCHA in power-play conversions at 15.2 percent.

UAH is seventh in the league in penalty killing at 82.9 percent and is the third-most penalized team in the league at 13.3 minutes per game.

PENALTY KILL: UAH’s power play also had success against BG in November, going 3 of 11.

The Chargers are ninth in the league in power play conversions at 10.9 percent, while the BG penalty killing is sixth at 85.2 percent. The Falcons are the league’s least-penalized team, averaging just 9.8 minutes per game.

The Falcon penalty killing is 16 of 16 in the last four games, and has killed off 20 straight chances overall.

HOME ICE: The Chargers are 1-1-3 in their last five home games, including 1-1 and 3-3 ties against Minnesota State Feb. 12-13.

BG is 9-7 on the road this season, including a 7-4 mark in league play.

The Falcons need just one win to post at least 10 road victories for the second straight season.

COOP: Senior forward Mark Cooper leads BG with 14 goals and 24 points. The Falcons are 10-0-2 when he scores a goal.

Cooper is tied for sixth in the league in points and tied for second in scoring.

TOUGH TO BEAT: UAH goalie Matt Larose is third in the WCHA with a .926 save percentage. The sophomore is 4-7-4 in 16 games with a 2.44 goals-against average.

Larose faces 32.95 shots every 60 minutes.

TRAVEL: BG was scheduled to leave for UAH via bus Thursday morning at 6 since the team couldn’t get into its hotel rooms until Thursday afternoon at 3. Normally, the Falcons leave Wednesday night and arrive at their destination Thursday morning.

BG will practice in the Von Braun Center Thursday night, Friday morning and Saturday morning.

The arena has a capacity of 6,602

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Kevin Gordon

About Kevin Gordon

Kevin joined after wrapping up a 27-year run as the Falcon hockey beat writer for the Sentinel-Tribune. After providing another two years of the Falcon hockey coverage fans had grown to love over the past three decades, Kevin decided to hang up his notebook and is now enjoying the retired life. Please join us by sending Kevin a tweet and thank him for all the time he's dedicated to BGSU hockey: @KGordonBG.