Rowe Nets Overtime Winner at Miami
Oct. 24, 2009
Oxford, Ohio - Andrew Rowe played the role of overtime hero on Saturday, netting the game-winner at 3:19 of the extra period for a stunning 3-2 victory over top-ranked Miami on the road on Saturday evening. The Spartans split a pair of decisions with the No. 1 RedHawks, and move to 4-2-0 on the season. Miami drops its first game of the 2009-10 season and is 4-1-1.
Rowe's game winner was a thing of beauty. He took a pass from Matt Crandell, deked around two Miami defenders, and shot past a third for his second, but biggest, goal of the season. Brock Shelgren had the second assist.
On paper, the series may have looked like it was going to be a high-scoring affair, as both teams entered the weekend averaging better than four goals per game. Instead, fans were treated to a pair of netminding duels. Drew Palmisano made 35 saves for the victory.
Despite Miami's highly-successful penalty kill (90%), Michigan State jumped out to a 2-0 lead with a pair of power-play strikes. The first came midway through the first period, when Corey Tropp picked up a puck from Torey Krug near the wall at the top of the left circle. Tropp did a nice job to stickhandle around a defender, and scored from the left hash mark. Derek Grant had the other man-advantage goal, early in the second period. A tripping call against Trent Vogelhuber carried over 55 seconds to the start of the middle frame. Off a helper from Corey Tropp and Nick Sucharski, Derek Grant scored his fourth goal of the season to stake the visitors to a two-goal lead.
The RedHawks came in waves at the Spartans from the start of the third period, stifling MSU's attack with traffic in the passing lanes in MSU's offensive zone and asserting themselves physically at both ends. The Spartans struggled to set up any offense (just five shots on net in the frame) and at times were scrambling in the defensive end.
Miami broke up the shutout at 10:20 of the final period with a power play goal. With Chris Forfar in the box on a tripping call, MSU had done a nice job of killing the first half of the penalty. Taking a pass from Jarod Palmer, Matt Tomassoni took a slapshot from the left point that found its way through traffic past a screened Palmisano for the blueliner's third goal of the season.
Just three minutes later, Palmer got an equalizer for the home team. He took a pass from Andy Miele after Palmisano had committed at the left post, and Palmer had space on the right side for the goal. It was Palmer's 100th career point.
MSU seemed to settle after the Miami goal, and that despite a late power play thanks to Curtis McKenzie getting whistled for goalkeeper interference at 17:50, the game went to the extra session. That late advantage seemed to rejuvenate the Spartans, who had the only shot of the overtime.
Michigan State wraps up its four-game road swing with a 2-2 record, and now readies for a home-and-home series with Western Michigan next weekend. The teams play Friday in East Lansing, and Saturday in Kalamazoo.
NOTES: The Spartans won in overtime for the first time since the CCHA Tournament consolation game in 2007, a wild 7-6 victory over Lake Superior on March 17, 2007 ... It was MSU's first win over a ranked team since Feb. 14, 2008, over Ohio State (2-1) ... Michigan State has split its last five series in Oxford. Miami has not swept the Spartans at home since the 1999 season ... Drew Palmisano had a season-best 35 saves ... Corey Tropp's point-scoring streak reached six games with his first-period power-play goal, and Grant's was extended with his extra-man goal less than a minute into the second ... Tropp had a two-point night, and has multiple points in five of six games this season. He is averaging 2.0 ppg in this early stretch, and his 12 points leads the country. He ranks second nationally in goals scored (6) ... Derek Grant ranks second nationally in rookie scoring (1.5 ppg) ... MSU's power play ranks eighth nationally (11/41, 26.8%) ...
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