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NMU Hockey Series Snapshot: Pink is personal for ’Cats Coreau

February 8, 2013 - Matt Wellens


MARQUETTE — “Pink the Rink.”

“The Pink Experience.”

“Pink Wave.”

Whatever you want to call a team’s promotion to help raise awareness for breast cancer, it’s been the “thing to do” as of late in the sporting world from the professional ranks all the way down to the youth levels.

Don’t get me wrong, raising money for breast cancer awareness and research is a great cause and I’m glad sports teams do it.

But let’s be honest with each other — I do love me some honesty.

Teams hold these breast cancer awareness promotions for the same reason they hold "Teddy Bear Tosses" or “Caps for Cancer” games. It’s to get butts in the seats.

Also, some guys just need an excuse to wear pink and show their feminine side once in awhile.

I learned this week Northern Michigan University’s “Pink Wave” is more than just a promotion, though, for at least two Wildcats. Saturday isn’t just an excuse to wear pink, but a reason to honor loved ones.

Two family members of NMU goaltender Jared Coreau, his aunt and mother, have battled breast cancer and won. Their struggle inspired Coreau to get involved this year with NMU’s “Pink Wave” and he recruited teammates Jake Johnson and Kory Kaunisto to help as well.

In addition to Coreau’s family, the mother of NMU women’s basketball sophomore Abbey DeBruin is a breast cancer survivor, giving extra meaning to Saturday for her as well.

“It’s a really big cause for me and I’d just love to see everyone out there to support us,” said DeBruin in the video produced by NMU embedded above.

The Wildcat men’s basketball team will kick off the day Saturday at 11 a.m. while DeBruin and the women’s hoops squad follows at 1 p.m. After a quick conversion of the Berry Events Center, the NMU hockey team will play at 7:35 p.m.

All three games on Saturday are against the Ferris State Bulldogs, including Friday’s 7:35 p.m. hockey game.

The Bulldogs hockey team will be shorthanded against NMU both nights with two players suspended after a rowdy third period against Western Michigan in Game 2 of the series last weekend.

Bulldogs freshman forward Dakota Klecha picked up a major and game disqualification for a contact to the head call while FSU senior forward Matthew Kirzinger was handed a major and game DQ for excessive roughness. The game DQs had both players out for Friday’s game, but the league decided both needed to sit Saturday as well, meaning it’s pink ties for them instead of pink laces.

Neither player has been a major factor statistically for Ferris this season with Kirzinger only appearing in four games with a goal and assist. Klecha has four goals and two assists in 21 games.

What has been a major factor for the Bulldogs this season is their power play, which ranks first in the CCHA. It should be a solid test for NMU’s penalty kill, which has pulled a 180 since the holidays, killing at a rate of 89.2 percent.

Game notes for Northern Michigan can be found here.

Game notes for Ferris State can be found here.

If you can’t be at the Berry, NMU offers a live video stream that costs $7 per game.

The Point 100.3 FM offers a free audio stream on its website as well with Dave Danis on the call.

Give me a follow on Twitter for updates and analysis before, during and after the games this weekend. Should I land in Twitter jail due to too much tweeting, switch over to my Facebook page for updates.



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Blog Photos

Northern Michigan University forwards Stephan Vigier (40) and Erik Higby (26) look on from the Wildcats’ bench during last season’s Pink Wave game against Notre Dame on Nov. 5, 2011. (Journal file photo by Matt Keiser)