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Salmenkangas: Ferris Hockey coaches seek more consistency



BIG RAPIDS – One of Ferris State coach Bob Daniels’ biggest projects during the off season is the situation of the goalkeeper.

This is a major need that the Bulldogs are focusing on for 2020-2021. Of the three line-up keepers, the biggest name is Roni Salmenkangas of Finland, who saw some important minutes but experienced ups and downs.

If he wants to become the number one goalie for next season, the highs of Salmenkangas must outnumber the lows, admits Daniels.

Last season, he played 16 games with a 2-10-0 record. His goals-against average was 4.01 and the save percentage was 872. Both figures need to be improved, admits Daniels.

“I think his best hockey is ahead of him,” said Daniels. “He came to us after playing junior hockey. He was very young and graduated from high school. In some ways. He was thrown into the Wolves more than we expected. When he entered freshman two years ago, he played many more games than we thought. He led our team in the games played.

“Although he was inconsistent, I think this inconsistency is due to two things. # 1, he was very young. # 2, sometimes, maybe our guys didn’t play the best defense in front You add this combination together and it gives some consistency. But day by day, looking at his progress and his skills, we are pretty confident that he will be quite a good goalkeeper, and because of the bumps we “We’ve taken on the team for the past two years and the bumps he’s taken, I think it will be very useful for him in the future.”

The strongest part of the Salmenkangas game, said Daniels, “is technically very solid. He is really coachable and takes things very quickly. He is very open to different ideas. He is also very athletic. The area that needs to improve is consistency and this leads to mental preparation for the game. ”

By stifling loose pucks and avoiding giving rebounds to other teams, “his first year after junior hockey, covering loose rebounds was not so important,” said Daniels. “Obviously, when you get to our level, it is. The first year, he struggled with that. I thought he had come a long way last year. It not only has the ability to suffocate the washers but also to deflect them towards the corner

“Over the time we have had, we have seen some wonderful games come out of him. But the problem is that it was too inconsistent. “

In order for the Bulldogs to return their fortune, Daniels is looking for someone who can constantly keep the other team’s goals at three or less for a game.

“We would like to see our goalkeeper’s savings percentage around .910 to .920. You have to be around a savings percentage of .900,” said Daniels. “It’s a combination of goalies and defense. As a team, we can tighten. But I would be chatting if I did not say that the goalkeeper has not been uniform in the past two seasons.

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