After conceding a power play equalizer to the visitors very early in the third period at the Munn Ice Arena, the home side struck back exactly two minutes and twenty-three seconds later to reclaim the lead once and for all as improving MICHIGAN STATE defeated visiting PENN STATE 3-2 to complete the school’s very first sweep ever in the new Big Ten Conference.
The Spartans (8-10-3), who have now lost only once in their last six contests as far as the NCAA is concerned, came out flying and found the back of the Nittany Lions net approximately a minute and a half in. Michigan State freshman right wing JOE COX did well to initiate the cycle play behind the Penn State net before in-form left wing MATT BERRY, the homegrown junior from Canton who led the Spartans with both 15 goals and 31 points last season, provided a pass out in front. MICHAEL FERRANTINO, the homegrown sophomore center from Plymouth who notched a goal and two assists for Michigan State against the Nittany Lions in the two-game series at the Munn Ice Arena twelve months ago, quickly made a nice move onto the backhand to shed his marker before effectively squeezing the puck through the five-hole of Penn State freshman goaltender EAMON MCADAM.
It was another rough beginning for the third round choice (# 70 overall) of the New York Islanders at the 2013 National Hockey League Draft this past summer — McAdam has now surrendered a goal within the first five minutes of a game in five of his first seven collegiate starts for the snake-bitten Nittany Lions.
Penn State Canadian legionnaire MIKE WILLIAMSON (26), the freshman defenseman from Leduc, Alberta, who selected by the Vancouver Canucks in the sixth round choice (# 175 overall) of the 2013 National Hockey League Draft last summer but has not been able to command a regular place in the Nittany Lions line-up so far this season, cannot prevent Michigan State center MICHAEL FERRANTINO (20) from scoring the first goal of the Big Ten Conference game at the Munn Ice Arena in East Lansing.
Michigan State completely dominated the first dozen minutes of the game while outshooting their guests 10-3 and might have increased their lead but, critically, the Penn State rookie netminder was able to keep both his nerve as well as the visitors in contention. The Nittany Lions slowly began to generate some pressure of its own over the second half of the opening period, albeit with the aid of a couple of power plays that the Spartans were able to kill off. Finally, with less than thirty seconds remaining until the arrival of the first intermission, Penn State were able to successfully shoot a puck past Michigan State goaltender JAKE HILDEBRAND for the first time in almost four entire periods of Big Ten Conference ice hockey.
Canadian legionnaire LUKE JUHA (19 ga, 4 go, 12 pts, – 3 def rat), the sophomore from Mississauga, Ontario, who leads the entire Nittany Lions squad with eight assists this term, threw a puck to the front of the net from the left faceoff circle hoping for the best and was kindly rewarded. It certainly helped the situation to have Penn State right wing JONATHAN MILLEY (11 ga, 0 go, 2 pts), the monster freshman Canadian legionnaire (6’4″ 245 lbs) imported from Gatineau, Qubec, industriously setting an annoying screen on Hildebrand. In the meantime, TAYLOR HOLSTROM (19 ga, 3 go, 8 pts), the veteran center from Yorba Linda, California, who scored the game-winning goal when the Nittany Lions upended the Spartans 3-2 last year, got his stick on the puck to redirect past the Michigan State backstop.
The 1-1 equalizer was Holstrom’s 12th career strike in 43 NCAA games for the varsity squad of the Pennsylvania State University.
Michigan State reclaimed the advantage seven minutes into the second period, though, when right wing GREG WOLFE, the homegrown senior from Canton who leads the Spartans in scoring this season, made a sharp play behind the net to set up center TANNER SORENSON, the second-leading goal-scorer for Michigan State last term who has missed the majority of this season on account of suspension. The savy Sorenson, a right-handed shot stationed at the left side of the Nittany Lions cage, had little trouble wristing the puck through the five-hole of the still re-positioning McAdam to register his first goal on this 2013/14 campaign. As for the creative Wolfe, the assist marked his fourth point of the weekend series with Penn State.
Once again, the Spartans would have ample opportunity to extend their margin on Saturday night at the Munn Ice Arena. But, again, the typically low-scoring hosts failed to capitalize on favorable circumstances. At one point, with Nittany Lions defenseman DAVID THOMPSON (17 ga, 0 go, 2 pts, – 7 def rat) sitting in the penalty box and the Penn State goaltender McAdam down and far out of position, Michigan State might have done better than to miss an empty net, it should be said.
And so the visitors still had everything to skate for when the Spartans rookie right wing Cox took an costly interference penalty with less than half a minute left in the second period.
Penn State right wing ZACH SAAR (17), the good-sized freshman (6’4″ 235 lbs) from Richland, Michigan, who has succeeded in establishing himself as a regular (17 ga, 2 go, 7 pts) in the line-up for the Nittany Lions this season, seeks to avoid the poke check of Michigan State goal-scorer MICHAEL FERRANTINO (20) during the Big Ten Conference match at the Munn Ice Arena in East Lansing.
There were less than twenty seconds left on the Penn State power play at the start of the third period, but it was still plenty enough time for the Nittany Lions’ leading goal-scorer to haul his side level. Redshirt sophomore center ERIC SCHEID (19 ga, 9 go, 14 pts), the transfer who netted six goals in thirty NCAA games as a freshman for the University of Alaska – Anchorage two seasons ago, took a cross-ice pass from the Penn State defenseman Juha and snapped a tight angle shot from the right circle past the Michigan State custodian Hildebrand. The Nittany Lions work with the man advantage so far (14 for 72, 19.4 %), which ranks a respectable third out of the six teams that comprise the new Big Ten Conference, has certainly been one of the brighter aspects for head coach GUY GADOWSKY’s charges.
The visitors would not maintain equilibrium very long, however, and Michigan State went right back to the lead for the third and final time only two minutes and twenty-three seconds later. It was the same Spartans second line which had accounted for all three goals of the Michigan State goals against Penn State on Friday night that stepped forward to manufacture the game-winner on Saturday night, as well, then. Spartans sophomore defenseman R.J. BOYD, the native Floridian who was nabbed by the Florida Panthers in the seventh round (# 183 overall) of the 2010 NHL Draft, might very well have caught the Penn State netminder McAdam scrambling a bit and overplaying his angles.
Canadian legionnaire LEE REIMER, the senior from Landmark, Manitoba, who registered one goal and two assists for Michigan State at the expense of the Nittany Lions on Friday night, outwrestled the much larger Penn State defenseman MARK YANIS (15 ga, 0 go, 3 pts, – 2 def rat) in the crease and easily steered Boyd’s clever pass disguised as a shot into the wide open net.
Yanis, the 19-year-old sophomore from Grosse Pointe Woods, Michigan, who notched a very big goal for the Nittany Lions in that 3-2 triumph over the Spartans at the Munn Ice Arena twelve months ago, delivered an ill-advised hit from behind on Spartans right wing VILLIAM HAAG, the freshman imported from Gothenburg, Sweden, with time winding down in the final frame. The resulting five-minute major penalty swallowed up most of the clock and put shorthanded Penn State in the unusual position of having to pull its goaltender in the face of an opponent operating on the power play. The Nittany Lions were, indeed, able to generated a little bit of pressure after McAdam went to the bench in favor of an extra skater but diligent Michigan State were not about to be denied the first Big Ten Conference sweep in school history.
Michigan State goaltender JAKE HILDEBRAND, the 20-year-old sophomore from Butler, Pennsylvania, who became the very first goaltender in history to record a shutout in a Big Ten Conference men’s ice hockey match, stopped 77 of 79 shots (97.5 %) in the two-game weekend series with visiting Penn State that was witnessed by the two-day total of 12,369 spectators at the Munn Ice Arena in East Lansing, Michigan.
January 18, 2013
Munn Ice Arena – East Lansing, Michigan
Attendance : 5,972
MICHIGAN STATE 3 – PENN STATE 2
01:33 … MSU – Ferrantino (Berry, Cox)
19:32 … PSU – Holstrom (Juha, Bailey)
27:06 … MSU – Sorenson (Wolfe, J. Chelios)
41:18 … PSU – Scheid (Juha, Saar) – ppg
43:41 … MSU – Reimer (Boyd, D. Chelios)
shots-on-goal : Michigan St 32 ( 12 + 11 + 9 ) – Penn St 31 ( 7 + 11 + 13 )
penalty minutes : Penn State 11 (plus game misconduct) – Michigan State 8
MICHIGAN STATE : Hildebrand – J. Chelios, Krygier ; Boyd, Holland ; Walsh, Knudson – Berry, Ferrantino, Cox ; D. Chelios, Reimer, Wolfe ; MacEachern, Ebbing, Haag ; Stenglein, Sorenson, Darnell
PENN STATE : McAdam – Juha, Jensen ; Williamson, Yanis ; Koudys, Thompson – Goodwin, Scheid, Saar ; Bailey, Holstrom, Milley ; Loik, Glen, Brooks ; Olczyk, DeRosa, Richard
Penn State left wing CURTIS LOIK (15), the sophomore Canadian legionnaire from West Vancouver, British Columbia, who has totaled eight goals and fifteen points in 39 NCAA career games for the Nittany Lions to date, absorbs a blow from Michigan State defenseman BROCK KRYGIER, the homegrown redshirt freshman from Novi whose father skated in more than five hundred National Hockey League games for a few different teams, in the crease area during the Big Ten Conference clash at the venerable Munn Ice Arena in East Lansing.