Hockey Tops American International, 5-4
Nov. 1, 2013
EAST LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan State hockey team defeated American International, 5-4, on Friday night at Munn Ice Arena in the first of two games between the teams. The Spartans built a 5-1 lead, but three Yellow Jacket goals in the final 11:16 of the third period closed the gap and made it a one-goal game.
"For the first two-and-a-half periods, we liked most of our game and then we started to get away from it. We took some penalties and that changed the momentum," said Spartan head coach Tom Anastos. "We won the game, which is a good thing. But we have to clean some things up that we don't feel too good about."
"We created some good chances and had some three-on-twos and some two-on-ones," said Anastos. "We also had 47 shots on goal and a lot more attempts. Those are all very positive aspects for us."
MSU built a 2-0 lead in the first period with goals from Mike Ferrantino and Stenglein.
Ferrantino scored at the 4:46 mark of the first, converting on a two-on-one with Dean Chelios. Travis Walsh knocked the puck ahead to Chelios in the neutral zone, starting the odd-man rush. Chelios headed down the right side and then slid a pass over to Ferrantino, who sent the puck past AIC goaltender Ty Reichenbach.
The Spartans made it 2-0 on the power play at the 9:33 mark as Stenglein got his first-career goal. Stenglein took a cross-ice pass from Jake Chelios near the top of the right circle where he ripped a shot into the upper-left corner of the net.
"Jake made a great pass across and Lee (Reimer) was in front," said Stenglein. "I just sent it toward the net and the goalie didn't react until it was in. All the credit goes to Reimer in front for the screen."
The power-play goal was the second of the season for the Spartans.
The Yellow Jackets (1-2) cut the Spartan lead in half with 46 seconds to play in the period as Blake Peake beat Jake Hildebrand.
Haag responded for the Spartans just over three minutes into the second period. He took the puck from RJ Boyd along the right side in the neutral zone and slowed down after crossing the blue line. Haag then fired a slap shot past Reichenbach to make it 3-1.
The theme of firsts continued on the next Spartan goal. Reimer got his first of the season - also the first Spartan shorthanded goal of the year. A hard forecheck on the penalty kill by Wolfe and Reimer forced the puck loose in front of the net. Reimer swatted at the puck and it eventually bounced in.
Wolfe and Reimer teamed up again at the 5:32 mark of the third period to make the score 5-1. Wolfe took a pass from Reimer in the high slot, spun around and fired it along the ice to beat Reichenbach for his team-leading fourth goal of the season.
The four-goal lead didn't stand long as AIC scored twice in a 2:32-span to make it 5-3. Sean Federow scored on the power play at the 8:44 mark and Jake Williams then beat Hildebrand at the 11:16 mark.
Trailing by just two goals, AIC continued to apply pressure and two Spartan penalties in the final 1:17 gave the Yellow Jackets the opportunity to get closer. With a five-on-three advantage, AIC pulled Reichenbach for the extra attacker and Alex MacMillan scored with six seconds to play, making it a 5-4 game.
Hildebrand finished with 18 saves for the Spartans, while Reichenbach turned away 42 of 47 shots.
In addition to Wolfe and Reimer, Boyd also finished with two points as he picked up two assists.
The two teams will meet again on Sunday at 1 p.m. at Munn Arena.
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