Jan. 15, 2012
Site: Cleveland, Ohio (Progressive Field)
Event: The Frozen Diamond Faceoff
Score: #15 Michigan 4, #2 Ohio State 1
Records: U-M (14-8-4, 8-6-4-1 CCHA), OSU (14-6-3, 10-5-3-1 CCHA)
Next U-M Game: Friday, Jan. 20 -- at Notre Dame (South Bend, Ind.), 7:35 p.m.
CLEVELAND, Ohio -- The University of Michigan ice hockey team (No. 15 USCHO/No. 15 USA Today) finished a weekend sweep of the Ohio State Buckeyes (No. 2 USCHO/No. 2 USA Today) outdoors at Progressive Field, posting a 4-1 victory Sunday evening (Jan. 15) in The Frozen Diamond Faceoff. The Wolverines scored twice in each of the first two periods and allowed just one goal to the Buckeyes in the second period. The announced crowd of 25,831 fans watched the outdoor affair played at the home of the Cleveland Indians.
Junior Chris Brown (Flower Mound, Texas) scored once and tallied two assists, senior forward David Wohlberg (South Lyon, Mich.) and freshman Alex Guptill (Newmarket, Ontario) each had 1-1-2 lines, and sophomore Kevin Clare (New Rochelle, N.Y.) chipped in two helpers. U-M is 7-0-2 in its past nine games dating back to a 1-0 overtime win at Alaska on Dec. 3.
Michigan swept the weekend series with its second commanding win over highly ranked Ohio State. The Wolverines won the opener Friday night (Jan. 13) in Columbus, 4-0, behind a career-high 46 saves from goaltender Shawn Hunwick (Sterling Heights, Mich.). Hunwick made 31 saves for his second straight victory against the Buckeyes tonight.
Michigan gained a 1-0 advantage on the ninth goal of the season by Brown. The initial shot by Clare hit Brown, who found the puck at his feet, wheeled around and slid it in five-hole at 7:31 of the first period. Clare and Guptill assisted on the goal by Brown.
Guptill added to the Michigan lead with a back-hander to the glove side that beat OSU goaltender Cal Heeter. The goal at 13:33 came six minutes after Brown's tally and gave U-M a 2-0 advantage in the contest. Heeter kicked aside the shot by sophomore defensemen Mac Bennett (Narragansett, R.I.) to the right side of his net, but Brown was in position for the rebound and threaded a perfect backhand pass to Guptill, who flicked the puck into the upper corner of the net.
Ohio State trimmed the deficit to 2-1 as Chris Crane scored on a rebound just 50 seconds into the second period. The goal by Crane came one second after a Michigan penalty from the first period expired. Max McCormick and Brandon Martell assisted on the goal for the Buckeyes. Hunwick made 60 saves in the first four-plus periods against the Buckeyes in the series, before OSU registered its only goal of the game.
Michigan stormed back in the middle of the second period with a pair of goals 27 seconds apart. The Wolverines' first tally was a one-timer by sophomore forward Derek DeBlois (Narragansett, R.I.) past Heeter at 9:47. The goal came on a Buckeyes giveaway, where Wohlberg blocked an attempted clearing pass and crossed it to DeBlois, who one-timed it into the goal. The second goal came as Wohlberg charged the net on the right side and beat Heeter on the short side at 10:15. Brown picked up his third point in the contest with an assist on Wohlberg's tally. The second goal of the period ran Heeter from the game.
After scoring two goals in each of the first two periods, Michigan played a defensive style game in the third frame to keep Ohio State scoreless. The Wolverines outshot the Buckeyes, 42-32, and won 30 of the 57 faceoffs in the contest.
This is the third straight year and the fourth time that U-M has played in an outdoor hockey game. The Wolverines improved to 2-1-1 all-time in outdoor games with the victory against the Buckeyes. Michigan tied in-state rival Michigan State in the Cold War during the 2001 season at Spartan Stadium and lost 3-2 to Wisconsin on a last-minute goal in the Camp Randall Classic during the 2009 season. Last season, the Wolverines posted a commanding 5-0 victory over Michigan State in the Big Chill at the Big House played before a Guinness Book of World Records crowd of 113,411 fans at Michigan Stadium.
Michigan continues its road swing with a two-game series at Notre Dame this upcoming weekend. The puck will drop on Friday (Jan. 20) and Saturday (Jan. 21) at 7:35 p.m. at the Compton Family Ice Arena in South Bend, Ind.
Contact: Rob Tillotson (734) 763-4423