Spartans Top No. 5 Badgers in OT, 5-4
March 14, 2014
EAST LANSING - Lee Reimer's power-play goal 46 seconds into overtime gave the Michigan State hockey team a 5-4 victory over No. 5 Wisconsin on Friday night at Munn Ice Arena. Matt Berry scored twice for the Spartans, while Greg Wolfe had three assists.
"It was obviously a really good win for our team," said MSU head coach Tom Anastos. "I thought we did a lot of good things and I also thought there were some mistakes that we had to overcome. Overall, the effort was pretty strong and it was nice to see the power play have success tonight."
After giving up a goal 1:58 into the game, the Spartans (11-16-7, 5-8-6-4) scored three straight to grab a 3-1 lead. The Badgers (21-10-2, 12-6-1-0) came back with two goals in the middle stanza, while Villiam Haag and the Badgers' Chase Drake traded goals in the third to make to make it 4-4.
With 23 seconds to go in the third, UW's Tyler Barnes was called for slashing, giving MSU its third power play of the game. Having converted on its previous two man-advantage opportunities, MSU's power-play unit again came through. Wolfe and Brent Darnell worked to get the puck to Reimer just off the left side of the net, near the bottom of the circle. Reimer didn't hesitate and got off a shot that eluded the blocker of UW goaltender Joel Rumpel and hit the back of the net to give the Spartans the win.
"We have not won many games this year as a result of our special teams," said Anastos. "Tonight, our special teams contributed. We stayed out of the box and to be 3-for-3 on the power play is outstanding."
UW grabbed the lead just 1:58 into the game when Joe LaBate redirected a shot by defenseman Chase Drake past MSU goaltender Jake Hildebrand. However, the Spartans bounced back with two goals in less than five minutes to take the lead, 2-1.
Justin Hoomaian tied it as just before the midway point of the period, scoring his first-career goal. Hoomaian and Dean Chelios jumped on a rebound in the slot and it was Hoomaian that touched the puck last, sweeping it into the net.
Berry made it 2-1 Spartans at the 14:33 mark, getting the Spartans' first power-play goal of the game. After hitting the post earlier in the power play, Matt DeBlouw ripped another attempt toward the net from the point, only this time it was a perfectly placed pass to Berry on the left post. Berry directed the puck past Rumple from just outside the crease on the left side.
MSU outshot the Badgers, 16-9, in the opening period.
"I thought our first period was really good," said Anastos. "It didn't start the way we wanted, but I thought we could have had a few in that first period. We had some good chances that didn't go in."
Berry got his second of the game less than five minutes into the second period, converting on a breakaway to give MSU a 3-1 lead. Haag found Berry streaking down the center of the ice in the neutral zone and Berry did the rest, eventually beating Rumpel with a low shot.
Wisconsin got back in the game with a pair of goals later in the period. Nic Kerdiles scored at 13:12 and just over four minutes later, Barnes took a pass from Mark Zengerle in the slot and sent a wrister past Hildebrand to tie it, 3-3.
Haag gave MSU a 4-3 lead 2:27 into the third with a power-play goal, burying a perfect pass from Mike Ferrantino.
Drake tied the game for a third time at the 11:41 mark of the third as his shot from the right side beat Hildebrand to make it 4-4.
MSU held Wisconsin scoreless on its only power-play attempt and finished the game with a 32-31 advantage in shots on goal.
The two teams will meet in the final game of the regular season tomorrow at 4 p.m. Michigan State will honor its senior class with a ceremony prior to the game, beginning at approximately 3:45.
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