News, notes and analysis from Neil Koepke on Saturday's tie and shootout win vs. Minnesota.
Brent Darnell scored a pair of goals in the tie.
Jake Hildebrand stops 34 shots in the win.
Neil Koepke's news and notes on the upcoming series at Ohio State.
Spartans and Eagles face off at 7 p.m.
Photos of Brent Darnell
2013-14 (Junior): Produced eight points (2g, 6a) in 31 games ... Scored the tying goal in a 3-1 comeback win vs. Boston University (10/26) ... Scored the third goal in a 3-0 win vs. Michigan in the Great Lakes Invitational at Comerica Park (12/28) ... Assisted on game-winning goals in consecutive games vs. Michigan (3/8) and Wisconsin (3/14): assisted on Mackenzie MacEachern's third-period goal in a 4-3 vs. Michigan and then had two helpers in a 5-4 win vs. Wisconsin, including on Lee Reimer's OT-winner ... Had an assist and was a season-high plus-2 in a win over AIC (11/3) ... Earned Academic All-Big Ten honors.
2012-13 (Sophomore): Tied for third on the team in goals with 10 and his 21 points ranked fifth ... Played in 40 of 42 games ... His four power-play goals ranked in a tie for first on the team and his 103 shots on goal were good for second ... Had a career-best three points (1g, 2a) in a win over Michigan (11/10) ... Scored both MSU goals, including a power-play marker, against Notre Dame (12/7) ... Posted an MSU season-high nine shots, picking up a goal and an assist against Niagara (10/20) ... Scored goals in consecutive games at Alaska (2/23) and vs. Western Michigan (3/1) ... Academic All-Big Ten selection.
2011-12 (Freshman): Skated primarily in the center between classmate Tanner Sorenson and Dean Chelios ... Tallied his first career point on Torey Krug's first-period goal at Northern Michigan (11/18) ... Scored his first career goal against Minnesota in the first period in MSU's 4-3 win (11/25) ... That goal kicked off a stretch of points in five straight games from Nov. 25-Dec. 9, netting two goals and five assists in that span ... Had the primary assist on Daultan Leveille's game-tying goal against Minnesota (11/26) ... Had back-to-back multiple point games to earn CCHA Rookie of the Week honors on Dec. 5 for his performance in MSU's sweep of Bowling Green. Scored a third-period goal and tallied the primary assist on Dean Chelios' game-winner (12/2), then had two assists in the second game of the series against the Falcons (12/3) ... Scored a third-period power play goal at Michigan in a tough 4-3 loss (12/9) ... Assisted on Chris Forfar's first period marker in a 5-5 tie with Northern Michigan (1/13) ... Recorded a second period score at Ferris State (1/28)... Scored a pair of goals just 25 seconds apart in the first period in MSU's 3-2 overtime victory over Alaska (2/17)...
Prior to MSU: Spent two years with the Sioux Falls Stampede of the United States Hockey League (USHL) ... Helped Sioux Falls to the Conference finals in 2010-11 ... Ranked eighth on the team in points (30) and ranked fifth in assists (22) ... Over two seasons, had 35 points on 15 goals and 35 assists in 96 games ... Played high school hockey at Detroit Catholic Central before moving to Sioux Falls, earning First Team All-State honors in 2008 and 2009 ... Part of the USA Select 17 Team which played in Slovakia in 2008 ... Played In the Compuware organization (2004-06).
Personal: Born March 23, 1992 in Detroit, Mich. .... Son of Patricia and William Darnell ... Has one brother, Brad ... A graduate of O'Gorman High School in Sioux Falls, S.D., but attended Detroit Catholic Central prior to moving to Sioux Falls ... Enjoys video games, watching sports, and playing golf ... Lists Pavel Datsyuk as his favorite NHL player, because "he does everything well and never takes a night off" ... Lists his parents as his idols, for all the sacrifices they have made.