New Head Coach Adam Nightingale stampped one of his first signature wins in the newly renovated Munn Ice Arena Friday night with a grinding 2-1 win over Michigan.
The 339th meeting of No. 12 Michigan State and No. 6 Michigan hockey got off to an intense start with both teams fighting for possession of the puck.
Playing to a crowd of 6,555 fans, both teams had just two shots each seven minutes into the first period. Halfway through the first both teams recorded four shots on goal each.
The Spartans had a couple close opportunities including a shot from Tanner Kelly at the 12:50 mark, but was unable to find the back of the net.
Michigan drew blood first after 15 minutes of even skating thanks to a goal by forward T.J. Hughes. Despite putting up the first point, the Wolverines had seven shots to MSU’s nine.
MSU got its first power play in two weeks after Michigan forward Dylan Duke took a trip to the box on a two-minute call for tripping.
Just a minute later, junior forward Nico Müller slid into Michigan’s goal post, resulting in a tussle between the rivals. Müller and Michigan defenseman Jacob Truscott were both called for roughing, but Müller got an additional slashing penalty to negate the Spartan power play.
Fifth-year defenseman Cole Krygier notched a short-handed goal, his fifth of the season, with less than three minutes left in the period to tie the game 1-1 before both teams headed into the locker room for first intermission.
Both teams had some 4-on-4 action when graduate defenseman Michael Underwood and Michigan’s Mark Estapa were sent to the box for two minutes each, Underwood on a cross-checking call and Estapa for slashing.
Michigan native and freshman forward Tiernan Shoudy put MSU back on top 7:46 into the second period after skating around Michigan defensemen and goaltender Erik Portillo to put a shot in the lower right corner of the net.
The Wolverines started gaining offensive momentum near the end of the period and the Spartans caught a break as the clock hit zero for intermission two.
The third period proved to be the biggest battle of the game on both sides of the ice. Shots were 7-7 with just over three minutes to play.
Michigan pulled Portillo at the 17:22 mark as a final effort to tie up the game. An extra skater wasn’t enough for the Wolverines to put an extra point on the board and MSU held on to knock off No. 6 Michigan, 2-1.
Both teams will head to Yost Ice Arena tomorrow night as the Spartans look to sweep the Wolverines. Puck drop is set for 6:30 p.m. and the game will be televised on the Big Ten Network.
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