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But it was the No.4-ranked Notre Dame that pulled away, scoring three unanswered, including the dagger with 2:18 left in the third period. The sellout crowd of 6,392 fans were mostly left disappointed — there were quite a few Notre Dame fans — with a 3-1 MSU loss.
On Friday and Saturday, MSU Hockey will face off against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, led by a man that MSU head coach Danton Cole knows quite well.
The Spartans came out with another victory on home ice on Friday night after sophomore forward Taro Hirose scored the overtime game to beat Ferris State 3-2.
After starting the Big Ten season, the hockey team continues to keep pace with an even record of 5-5 overall and 1-3 in the Big Ten.
This past weekend, the Spartans split their first set of games with the No. 7 Wisconsin Badgers and gained their first Big Ten victory, giving them a Big Ten record of 1-3 and 5-5 overall on the season.
The Spartans continued to kick the season off with another win at Munn Ice Arena on Friday night, defeating the Western Michigan Broncos 6-4.
MSU officials are hopeful that planned renovations to Munn Ice Arena will eventually take place despite the funding goal for the project not being met thus far.
On Saturday night, the Spartans defeated Bowling Green in a 3-2 victory after losing 4-1 the night before.
After a weekend filled with mostly Spartan victories, here is the roundup for the week.
Walking into Little Caesars Arena for the first time was completely different from the Joe, and is nothing like other arenas.
For seniors forward Dylan Pavelek, goaltender Ed Minney, and sophomore forward Patrick Khodorenko, this is not their first time playing underneath new head coach Danton Cole.
All three players played for USA National Team Development Program during the time under Cole. For Minney, playing under his former coach brings in new opportunities for this team.
Over the summer, defenseman Zach Osburn, forward Taro Hirose and defenseman Mitch Eliot all participated in NHL development camps. As for sophomore forward Patrick Khodorenko, he represented Team U.S.A in the World Junior Summer Showcase.
“It was fun,” Osburn said. “Going into it I was pretty nervous to be with all those really good players and skilled players. It almost was a little intimidating, but when I was there you kinda realize, you know what these guys are good, but I feel pretty good too.”
As stadiums get bigger and other teams get better, MSU's hockey team struggles to draw in fans. The new leadership and eight new freshmen are meant to bring back a great team.
But going back to MSU's former glory may take longer than fans are willing to wait.
A fresh batch of icers are coming. Head coach Danton Cole announced the addition of five Spartans to the incoming 2017-18 recruiting class.
When forward Mason Appleton announced Thursday he was leaving the MSU hockey program for the pros, he realistically left a hole.
Mason Appleton is headed to the pros. Appleton signed with the Winnipeg Jets, the team that drafted him in 2015. His three-year entry level contract has an average annual value of $758,333.
For one last time as a Spartan, Allyssah Fitterer of MSU volleyball and Joe Cox of MSU hockey earned an accolade for their stellar senior seasons.
Two former Spartan associate captains, Thomas Ebbing and Rhett Holland, are headed to the minor leagues after graduating the MSU hockey team.
For the first time under MSU hockey head coach Danton Cole, he has elected his first captain — rising junior forward Mason Appleton.
The MSU hockey team officially concluded its 2016-17 season Saturday as the team hosted its annual awards program at the Kellogg Center.