Michigan Falls to Western Michigan in GLI Semis on Late OT Goal
JT Compher

Dec. 27, 2013

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Site: Detroit, Mich. (Comerica Park)
Event: Great Lakes Invitational (Semifinals)
Score: Western Michigan 3, Michigan 2 (OT)
Records: U-M (10-3-2), WMU (8-8-3)
Attendance: 25,449
Next U-M Event: Saturday, Dec. 28 -- vs. Michigan State in GLI Third-Place Game (Detroit, Mich.), 3:30 p.m.

DETROIT, Mich. -- JT Compher (Northbrook, Ill.) and Travis Lynch (White Lake, Mich.) scored for the University of Michigan ice hockey team (No. 3 USA Today, No. 3 USCHO), but Josh Pitt's goal with 0:19 left in overtime gave Western Michigan a 3-2 win over the Wolverines on Friday (Dec. 27) in a semifinal of the 49th Great Lakes Invitational at Comerica Park.

Zach Nagelvoort (Holland, Mich.) made 27 saves in net for the Wolverines, who fell to 28-16 all-time in GLI semifinal contests.

With Michigan trailing 2-1 entering the third period, Lynch evened the game at 5:24, taking advantage of a neutral-zone turnover by the Broncos. Lynch corralled a loose puck at center ice, skated over the blue line, and beat Western Michigan goaltender Lukas Hafner (30 saves) over the shoulder to tie the game.

Michigan had a golden opportunity on a power play late in the third period. With Shane Berschbach in the penalty box for slashing, Cristoval 'Boo' Nieves (Baldwinsville, N.Y.) hit the inside of the post at 13:19 from the left circle on a feed from below the goal line.

In overtime, Pitt split the Michigan defense on a rush from the red line and beat Nagelvoort for the game-winner.

Nagelvoort was sharp early in net for the Wolverines, as Western Michigan controlled play for much of the first 10 minutes of the contest. In the opening minute of play, Nagelvoort stopped a backhander by WMU's Will Kessel. He later skated between the hash marks to glove a loose puck in traffic, as the Broncos outshot Michigan 5-0 in the opening 7:47 of the contest.

The Wolverines generated chances later in the period, starting on their first man advantage of the night. Compher took a flip pass from Tyler Motte (St. Clair, Mich.) in the high slot and put a shot on net at the midway point of the frame, but Hafner made the glove stop to keep the game scoreless.

Compher gave Michigan the lead with his second shorthanded goal of the season at the 6:35 mark. Compher took a flip pass from Kevin Clare (New Rochelle, N.Y.), gloving the puck at the blue line and dropping it at his feet. Skating in alone, he cut to his forehand and flipped the puck over Hafner's pad to give Michigan a 1-0 lead.

Western Michigan responded with two goals in a five-minute span midway through the frame. At 10:11, WMU's Jordan Oesterle fed a wide-open Berschbach in the slot, and he beat Nagelvoort to tie the game at 1-1. Later in the period, a defensive-zone turnover led to a chance for Kessel, who found the top corner at 15:48 to give the Broncos the lead heading into the third period.

Michigan will play Michigan State in the GLI consolation game at 3:30 p.m. Saturday afternoon (Dec. 28) at Comerica Park.

Contact: Jeffrey Weinstein (734) 763-4423

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