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Michigan and Wisconsin Split the Weekend Series

After a lengthy pause, the University of Michigan hockey team resumed play against the University of Wisconsin, on home-ice, for their 2 game series.

First game back

Erik Portillo had his 3rd career start for Michigan in their 5-1 win over Wisconsin Saturday night. This win was not only due to Michigan’s great offensive game, but also Portillo’s 29 saves of 30 shots.

Wisconsin pulls ahead

The game started in Wisconsin’s favor. Not only was Wisconsin leading in shots on goal (11-7), but they also found the back of the net first; Mathieu De St. Phalle caught a pass from Owen Lindmark, and it was 1-0 Wisconsin at 8:59 of the first period.

Michigan struggled to keep up with Wisconsin’s play and could not put any points up at all the entire first period.

The tide turns

Michigan Hockey

The second period started a little differently, with a forecheck by Thomas Borderleau at the blue line causing a Wisconsin turnover. Bordeleua took advantage of this, skating the puck to Wisconsin’s net before sliding it across the crease to Brendan Brisson, who dumped it in the net at 1:48 of the second period.

Bordeleau’s right off the bat goal was just the spark Michigan needed as they started the second period.

Merely 92 seconds later, Matty Beniers, got the go-ahead goal and put a wrist shot right past the Wisconsin net-minder. Kent Johnson and Luke Morgan assisted in giving Michigan a 2-1 lead.

The young Michigan team did not let this pace up either. Johnny Beecher took the puck up the ice through the Wisconsin zone, getting it to the crease, where Eric Ciccolini was ready and waiting to put the rebound in. Cam York also assisted on this to give the Michigan team a 3-1 lead.

York slid the puck over to Luke Morgan, who took it all the way past center ice, lighting the lamp with a wrist shot from the left circle elevating Michigan to a 3 goal lead just before the end of the second period.

Michigan Hockey

Michigan for the win

Heading into the third period, this Michigan team flipped the script on how the results would look after the end of the first. The third saw competitive play until 15:01 when Nick Granowicz deflected a shot attempt by Keaton Pehrson from York, giving them a comfortable, 4 goal lead. York also earned his first career playmaker.

With only 5 minutes left, Wisconsin was not able to catch up. The game resulted in a 5-1 win for Michigan.

Sunday February 14

Sunday’s game started off a lot like the 5-1 win Michigan had over Wisconsin the prior afternoon.

Slight change in roster

Michigan coach, Mel Pearson, changed the starting line-up a bit and put veteran goalie Strauss Mann in, splitting the series for his goaltenders.

Other than the goaltender change, the game started out almost exactly the same as the team’s first meeting this past weekend.

Roman Ahcan slides the puck down to the bottom right of the left circle where Dylan Holloway shoots, scoring the game’s first goal, making it 1-0 Wisconsin at 8:51 of the first.

Close second

At 1:23 of the second period, Michigan’s Ciccolini took a tripping penalty, which the shorthanded team was able to kill. From here, the Michigan team was in pursuit of scoring their first goal.

Owen Power dangled the puck through the slot after getting a pass from Johnson, putting the puck right behind the Wisconsin goaltender. Bordeleau also picked up an assist on the game-tying goal at 7:25 of the second. This assist made it so Bordeleau has at least 1 point in each of his last 10 games.

Jonathon Knight | Michigan Hockey

Pehrson got 2 minutes in the box for tripping, which gave Wisconsin a 1 man advantage. Holloway ends up with a 2 point game as he passes the puck over to Ahcan, who also earned 2 points this game, as he put the puck past Mann. Ty Pelton-Byce also assisted on this power-play goal.

No time wasted

Seconds into the third, Lindmark takes a shot that bounces off Dominick Mersch into the net at 19:32.

Michigan finally pulled their goalie with 3 minutes left for the man advantage. Brisson earns his second point of the series as he takes a shot from the point, making it 3-2 Wisconsin. York and Bordeleau both picked up an assist on this goal.

Final

The game ended with a score of 3-2, Wisconsin as Michigan could not convert any more scoring chances. The two teams split this past weekend’s series. However, overall this season, Michigan came out with a 3-1 record against Wisconsin.

Up Next

Michigan will go on to play the Ohio State Buckeyes in Columbus Friday, February 19 and Saturday, February 20.

Wisconsin has home-ice advantage on Friday, February 19, and Saturday, February 20 as they play the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.

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