It ends, not with a bang, but with a whimper. Regardless, thank you for a great UM career Red, and good luck to the young men with the rest of their careers.
Michigan Hockey 16-17, Game #35: Penn State 4, Michigan 1
(James Coller) Thank you, Red
FIRST: Michigan produced a 12(5) in the first period. That's...ok-ish. Its not great, but at least they are getting a couple good looks. They have not gone in, though...something that happened last weekend. Also, given their defensive play in the first period (spoiler alert), they're definitely going to need to create A LOT more offense. They cannot get into an end-to-end game with Penn State, but if this keeps up, they're going to have to try. Then, it could get really ugly.
SECOND: So, this could be Fool's Gold, similar to the third period of the second Minnesota game from two weekends ago...but Michigan had an 18(10). That's not good...its great. I will take that in any/every period. Penn State was up 4-0 very early in the second, though. Michigan almost had a couple of even strength goals. One was overturned as Kile took a Winborg-induced rebound and lifted it over Jones, but on review, it was determined a Michigan skater was about 5 inches offside. The second was a tremendous strip from Kile who quickly hit Shuart in the low slot but he could not get a shot off. If both of those go in, its 4-3 and the period corsi makes sense.
- THIRD: Michigan turned up the heat to start the third period. Jones almost gave away a goal by miscovering the puck, but Marody hit the post. Later, Dancs walked into the slot and Jones made a great save to deflect his shot high. Michigan really needed those to go in to change the game and make PSU extend themselves to open up their defense. Alas, they did not go in and PSU could be content to repulse attack after attack. We talked last week about Michigan needing to limit PSU's quality looks and then convert on their own few quality chances. After the first period (and giving up too many good look goals), Michigan was forced to have to score on every one of their golden chances and they did not. That is hockey (and sports). They are high percentage chances, not guarnateed chances. When those don't go in for a team that does not get a lot of them, it is borderline impossible to win. When you have to be perfect in all aspects of the game...and you are not...you're just not the better team. That is what happened tonight. Michigan had a 23(6) in the third.
FIRST: The defense was bad. Two of the three goals resulted from terrible defensive play. The second goal was a nice rush from PSU but two M defenders covered the same guy and the winger got a great centering pass through the low slot and Sucese was right at the back post to tap it into the net. Also, just as the period was closing, M had a awful DZTO at their blue line that enabled PSU to rush in on a 2v1 and Goodwin placed a shot neatly below Nagelvoort's blocker. Nagelvoort has by no means been amazing, but he has not been able to clean everything up like he did last Saturday. Looking at the numbers shows Michigan give up a 19(8). That's a lot of chances...and a lot of good chances. The next couple periods could be tough to get through.
SECOND: Michigan gave up a 15(5) against PSU in the second period. I will take that every time from this team. Nagelvoort made a couple nice stops, but the defense was a little better. It also probably had a bit to do with PSU being up enough that they didn't want to overextend themselves and give away free goals. Even on the goal, its hard to fault skaters going for a shot block and potentially getting in the goalie's line of sight.
- THIRD: Being up by 3 goals and having another game tomorrow (and potentially a third the following night), Penn State conserved energy and mostly sat on their lead and allowed Michigan to come at them. Therefore, Michigan's defense didn't have much to do. This game was won for Penn State in the first period. Penn State had a 15(3) in the third.
FIRST: Michigan took one penalty and Penn State scored on it at the very end. It really was just a smooth play to create and open shooter in front of the net. Biro skated behind the net and stopped like he was going to reverse. Folkes was right behind him and he popped out and spun around as he crossed the goalline and positioned himself in the crease. Biro hit him in the stick blade and Folkes one-timed it behind Nagelvoort as Zach left his post, assuming Biro was reversing. Very nice play. Will be interesting to see Adam's GBGA on this one. Michigan did not get a power play.
SECOND: There was one penalty in the second and it was against Penn State. Michigan took advantage of their lone opportunity and broke the shut out! Yay! The puck was batted around in front and was lifted into Sanchez's chest and he batted/bumped it over a prone Jones (rhyme intended) and into the net. Scrappy goal, but that's how it is down low.
- THIRD: Michigan took one penalty in the third. PSU didn't try to do too much with their man advanatge and didn't really come close to scoring. Michigan drew a couple of power plays late in the third but never really mustered much of a threat. That's pretty much it. M finished 1/3 and PSU finished 1/2.
FIRST: So...Nagelvoort maybe had a chance on the third goal? But not really. He got square to the shooter but the puck went under his blocker. He was visably upset that he didn't stop it, but it was a bad DZTO and became and OMR...I'm not blaming a goalie for that. You save that and you're just awesome. The previous two goals he had zero shot at stopping. He's played well and let in three. Ugh. 10 saves in the first period.
SECOND: So, we can kinda put the fourth(this is getting high) goal on Zach. It was a faceoff won back to the point and fired at the net; however, TWO Michigan skaters stood to block the shot and it somehow went between them. Nagelvoort reached with his glove and deflected it into the post and behind the line. So, I guess he was kinda screened...but it appears he saw it late and got a glove on it. He was frustrated after that one. He also made about 2-3 more saves that coulda/shoulda been goals. So...whatever, I guess. He's playing fine, not amazing, getting no bounces or offensvie help. <Insert Shruggie Here>
- THIRD: Nagelvoort had a boring final period in a Michigan uniform. Michigan made some early pushes and Penn State was comfortable to just sit back. He's had a great senior season and its been awesome to watch him develop. He's still a draft pick and hopefully he'll get a chance at the next level!
ODD MAN RUSHES
FIRST: Michigan gave up 1 clear OMR. It was a 2v1 after a great stretch pass. Nagelvoort made a tremendous 5 hole save. There were a couple other 'almosts' and one bad DZTO that became an OMR but I'm not calling it because it originated at the defensive blue line.
SECOND: There were a couple more OMRs for Penn State in the second. The first was a 2v1 that the defenseman broke up, not allowing an attempt on net. The next was a 3v1 that PSU set up perfectly with two passes and Nagelvoort made an amazing save. OMRs are a thing, tonight.
- THIRD: There were no OMRs in the third. But PSU was also not that aggressive...as they did not need to be, given the score.
FINAL CORSI SCORE
I had: Michigan 53(21), Penn State 49(16)
www.collegehockeynews.com had: Michigan 52, Penn State 47