Notes, quotes and analysis from Neil Koepke on Saturday's regular-season finale.
Junior goaltender garners his first Big Ten weekly honor.
Notes, quotes and analysis from Neil Koepke on Friday's win at Michigan.
Neil Koepke previews Sunday's exhibition game against the USNTDP U-18 team.
Neil Koepke analyzes the Spartans’series finale at North Dakota.
2016-17 (Junior): Finished the season with a 3.62 GAA and .883 save percentage in 25 games, including 24 starts … Three of his five wins came on the road (at Ferris State, Nov. 12; at North Dakota, Nov. 25; at Michigan, Jan. 20) … Recorded his first-career shutout by making 24 saves in a 3-0 win at Michigan on Jan. 20, earning Big Ten Second Star of the Week honors … Became the first MSU goaltender since Jeff Lerg in January 2008 to blank the Wolverines at Yost Ice Arena ... Stopped 32 pucks in a 1-1 tie and shootout win at No. 5 Minnesota in the regular-season finale ... Made 41 and a career-high 46 saves, respectively, at Penn State, Jan. 13-14 ... Recorded 40 saves vs. No. 11 Minnesota on Dec. 9 ... Made 30 stops, including 13 in the third period, in the Spartans’ 4-3 win at No. 5 North Dakota on Nov. 25 ... Stopped 32 shots in a 2-2 tie at North Dakota, Nov. 26 ... Made 22 stops in a 3-2 overtime win over Michigan Tech at home on Nov. 4 ... Picked up his first collegiate victory with a 21-save effort in a 6-2 win over Princeton on Oct. 28.
2015-16 (Sophomore): Came off the bench 7:22 into the first period vs. Michigan Tech (11/22) and made 34 saves in a 4-4 tie in what was his first collegiate game ... Stopped all eight shots he faced in playing the final period at Penn State (12/4) ... Made his first collegiate start at Penn State (12/5).
2014-15 (Freshman): Did not see any action in the regular season ... Played the final two periods of a 4-1 exhibition win over the U.S.N.T.D.P U-18 team (1/9), stopping 12 of 13 shots.
Prior to MSU: Posted a 22-9-1 mark with a 2.64 GAA and .900 save percentage in 38 games for the USANTDP U-18 team in 2013-14 ... Was a part of the U.S. National Under-18 team that won the gold medal at the World Championship in Lappeenranta, Finland, going 2-0-0 with a perfect 1.000 save percentage ... Appeared in 35 games for the U.S. National Under-17 Team in 2012-13, posting a 4.04 GAA and .890 save percentage ... Led the U.S. to first place at the 2012 Four Nations Tournament in Monthey, Switzerland, going 3-0 with a 2.25 GAA and .912 save percentage ... Went 1-0-1 with a 2.42 GAA and .896 save percentage at the 2013 Five Nations Tournament win Jarvenpaa, Finland ... Played midget hockey for the Washington Little Capitals of the Tier I Elite League in 2011-12, posting a 2.71 GAA ... Participated in the 2013 CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game along with Josh Jacobs and Dylan Pavelek in September 2013 in Pittsburgh ... Graduated from Ann Arbor Pioneer High School.
Personal: Son of Mike and Irene ... Born March 29, 1996 in Columbus, Georgia ... Father, Mike, attended the U.S. Military Academy ... Lists the Winnipeg Jets as his favorite NHL team and Carey Price as his favorite player ... His father is his biggest hockey influence ... Names Cal Ripken Jr. as his idol because he "had a great career with character and integrity."