|(Updated) Hammond's status is day-to-day (2-12-13)|
|Written by Kevin Gordon Sentinel Assistant Sports Editor|
|Tuesday, 12 February 2013 18:38|
(Updated at 9:10am, 02-13-13)
The status of Bowling Green goalie Andrew Hammond is day-to-day, Falcon hockey coach Chris Bergeron said Tuesday.
The senior standout didn’t play last weekend against Michigan State after injuring his knee in practice Feb. 6.
BG, battling for home ice in the first round of the Central Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs, visits Ferris State Friday and Saturday.
Hammond practiced Monday and Tuesday for the first time since the injury, although he didn’t face any shots. The practices allowed Hammond to go through his routine and normal goalie movements on the ice.
A decision on if Hammond plays against Ferris may not be made until Friday.
“He has really gotten leaps and bounds better,” Bergeron said. “We had thought today if he had taken a step backwards, we know it’s a little more severe than we thought. Today seemed fine. We’ll put him back out there (Wednesday) and see how that goes.”
Hammond has started 22 of BG’s 30 games, posting a 2.52 goals-against average and a .917 save percentage.
The Falcons are seventh in the league with 28 points, two ahead of eighth-place Lake Superior, three ahead of ninth-place Michigan and five ahead of 10th-place Northern Michigan in the battle for the final two home-ice berths.
BG, Lake Superior and NMU each have played 22 games, two fewer than Michigan. Lake Superior hosts Alaska this weekend, while Michigan is idle. NMU visits last-place MSU this weekend before visiting BG the following weekend.
“Our mind-set is with six games left in the regular season and we know we’ll be playing in the playoffs, we want to make sure the long-term prognosis (for Hammond) is good,” Bergeron said. “If that means this weekend is in jeopardy, then so be it. We’re not going force him back in there early for the sake of this weekend.”
Ferris is fourth in the league and in the midst of the battle of one of the five first-round byes in the playoffs.
“I’m not saying this weekend isn’t important because it’s of major importance,” Bergeron said. “The last eight games, big picture-wise, are more important than Friday night.”
If Hammond doesn’t play, Tommy Burke will start at Ferris.
Burke played well in last weekend’s home-and-home split against MSU, stopping 32-of-35 shots and helping hold the Spartans to 1-of-8 on the power play.
The freshman has a 2.08 goals-against and a .907 save percentage in 11 games.
“He’s got an opportunity and he’s taking advantage of it, and by doing that, it’s nice to know he’s there,” Bergeron said. “Every top-level team has depth in goal and it’s nice to know we have it as well.”
REWARDED: BG junior forward Chad Sumsion was added to the power play for the MSU series. He assisted on a man-advantage goal in BG’s 2-1 Game 1 win.
“He’s worked hard, persevered, been a great teammate, been a great member of our team for a couple of years,” Bergeron said. “He’s one of those guys it’s nice to see get rewarded.”
Sumsion has played in just 11 games and usually skates on the fourth line, but he played on the power play in junior hockey and earlier in his BG career.
REMATCH: The Falcons lost 4-3 (overtime), 3-1 to Ferris at home in November, although BG held a 66-42 edge in shots in the series.
But Ferris’ power play was 3-of-9, compared to BG’s 1-of-12.
HELLO AGAIN: The series marks the eighth and ninth meetings between the teams since the start of last season.
BG won a best-of-3 CCHA quarterfinal series at Ferris last season after losing twice there during the regular season.
TV: Saturday’s game starts at 5:05 p.m. to accommodate Fox Sports Net Detroit, which will show the game live as part of its Hockey Day in Michigan coverage.
The game also will be carried live by Fox College Sports Central.
|Last Updated on Thursday, 14 February 2013 21:33|
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