A Bronco Sweep

Western Michigan (4-4-0, 2-4-0 CCHA) completed the two game sweep of Niagara (3-6-0, 0-0-0 CHA) at Lawson Ice Arena tonight in front of the 2,454 fans in attendance. The game featured some very physical action including a fight, and a stellar goaltending showcase to fend off Niagara's 43 shots on net.

The star of the game was freshman netminder Daniel Bellissimo, who made 42 saves in the game to hold the Purple Eagles to their lone goal. That goal came as Barret Ehgoetz crashed the crease and stuffed the puck past Bellissimo early in the third period.

Although Bellissimo has been solid in net of late tonight was truly his night to shine with a .977 save percentage – and of course only the one goal against.

The Bronco's special teams could be considered the other star of the night as Brent Walton netted a power play goal in the first period, Brian Bicek netted a short-handed goal in the second and the penalty kill stopped all seven Niagara man advantages (WMU was 1 for 15 on the penalty kill for the weekend).

Bicek would add an even strength goal later in the second with assists to Paul Szczechura and captain Pat Dwyer. Szczechura would add a goal of his own between Bicek's goals as he buried the puck unassisted for his first tally of the season.

Szczechura would end the night with three points (1 goal, 2 assists) and Brent Walton continues his stellar scoring pace with a goal and an assist to bring his season point total to 17 (2.125 points per game) which keeps him among the nation's best.

"My teammates have been finding me," said a humble Walton. "The puck just seems to be going in right now. It's all because of my teammates."

A Brother's Honor:

At 19:58 of the second period Niagara's Ryan Carrigan roughed Daniel Bellissimo behind the net. Older brother Vince Bellissimo was on the ice very near the play when the incident occurred and took exception.

"Emotions are high in the game there," said Culhane of Vince Bellissimo's reaction.

The fans in attendance would the witness a rare fight in college hockey as Vince and Niagara's Jason Williamson dropped the gloves and started swinging early in the third period. Both players were issued game disqualifications for the fight.

First Sweep of the Season:

For the Broncos this was their first series sweep of the season after giving up Saturday night losses to Alaska-Fairbanks and Ohio State that followed Friday night victories.

"I'm happy for the team," said Culhane. "The guys worked hard. It was a battle out there right from the drop of the puck and I thought we played real hard and executed and [the players] did a nice job to get the win."

"It feels great just to be back at .500 because we got off to a slow start there the first couple weekends," added Walton.

The next action for the Broncos is next weekend, Friday and Saturday, as the Broncos host the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame. As the Broncos are now back to the .500 mark overall they will be looking to reach that same mark in conference play against the team that knocked WMU out of the CCHA playoffs last spring.

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