Broncos Tame the Wolverines

On Saturday night, in front of a sold out crowd of 4,575 at Lawson Arena, the Broncos hockey team completed the hat trick for "Blackout Saturday". Aided by 2 third period Vince Bellissimo goals, the Broncos came back from a 3-1 deficit to win 4-3. A win that sent a lot of Bronco fans home happy.

The Broncos got on the board at 13:53 of the first period when Brent Walton fed the puck to Jeff Campbell from behind the net. Campbell placed a slap shot from the slot over Al Montoya. Campbell's goal was his third of the weekend and the only goal scored in the first period that was dominated by the Wolverines.

Michigan went into the locker room with an 8-3 shots on goal advantage. Michigan also had 1 power play to Western Michigan's 0 power plays.

The Wolverines came out of their locker room in the second period and got on the board 1:28 into the period John Shouneyia found Michael Woodford speeding down the ice. Woodford put the puck in under the crossbar.

Just under ten minutes later Michigan took the league on an Andrew Ebbett wrister. Standing in front of the crease Ebbett took a pass from David Moss and as he was falling in front of the crease he put the wrister through Mike Mantua's 5-Hole. Ebbett's goal gave the Wolverines a 2-1 lead heading into the locker room.

Michigan again held the advantage in shots on goal for the period by a 14-5 margin. The Wolverines were 0-3 on the power play while the Broncos were 0-2.

In the third period the Wolverines took the crowd out of the game at the 3:02 mark. While on the power play again the Wolverines Brandon Rogers put a wrister over Mantua's shoulder after taking a pass from Shouneyia from inside the left circle.

Less then five minutes later Vince Bellissimo got the crowd back into the game with a soft dump in from outside the blue line that found it's way past Montoya. The goal brought the Broncos back to within one goal and started a chant from the Students of "Osssgggooooood, Osssgggooooood, Osssgggooooood," after the former Detroit Red Wing goalie Chris Osgood. Osgood was known for occasionally allowing in a soft goal or two from center ice.

With the crowd back into the game and getting louder, the adrenaline picked up for the Broncos. Just shy of four minutes after his first goal, Bellissimo streaked down the right side and placed a wrist shot behind Montoya. The goal evened up the game at 3-3 and sent the home crowd into a frenzy. But the best was yet to come.

After Brent Gagnon took a hit from a Wolverine defenseman that knocked him into the, the post and on top of the net's moorings, Dana Lattery made the fans raise the roof on Lawson Arena. With heavy traffic in front of the net, Lattery picked up the puck off of a Brent Walton rebound and placed a backhander behind Montoya. After that the Broncos just played keep away and clock control.

Michigan did put some pressure on Mantua but were forced to play along the boards and a late icing call on Michigan proved to be the final blow for the Wolverines. As the clock ran down it sent the fans into a delirium and the student-athletes dove on top of Mike Mantua in celebration.

For the Wolverines (15-6-1, 9-4-1 CCHA) the loss snapped their four-game winning streak. The Wolverines are off next week and travel to Lake Superior State for a January 23 contest. For the Broncos (9-12-1, 7-7-0 CCHA) the win raised their record over ranked opponents in the last eight seasons to 20-15-9. The Broncos host the Miami RedHawks on Friday, January 17 at Lawson Arena, faceoff is set for 7:05pm.

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