Dec. 3, 2011
East Lansing, Mich. -- - Dean Chelios, Lee Reimer, and Greg Wolfe all finished with a goal and an assist as Michigan State completed a sweep of Bowling Green, 4-1, on Saturday at Munn Ice Arena. MSU improves to 10-5-1 on the season, and is now 6-4-0 in the CCHA.
"I thought Bowling Green really brought a good game tonight, and made things more difficult for us - and their goaltender [Andrew Hammond] was really, really good," said head coach Tom Anastos. "Now, we get to focus on Michigan - which is a big series. They say that all games count the same, and they do - but some certainly mean more. That series next weekend is a pair of those games."
Once again, the Spartans took the early lead. MSU had Andrew Hammond scrambling in front, as the puck remained loose. Jake Chelios had a chance in front, but the puck squirted over to the left side. Wolfe put the backhander on net, and it slid beneath the blocker hand of Hammond for Wolfe's fifth of the season.
The Falcons tied the score with just over five minutes remaining in the first period. Adam Berkle chipped the puck out of the right corner to Cameron Sinclair in the low slot, and Sinclair's offering knuckled, fluttering over the glove-hand shoulder of Yanakeff.
The second period, for the first 15 minutes, was mostly a showcase for Andrew Hammond, who kept his team in the games by smothering scoring chances and handling goalmouth scrums.
Dean Chelios gave MSU a 2-1 lead at 15:48. Torey Krug initiated the play from the left point, but his shot sailed to the left of the cage. Brent Darnell dug it out from the corner, and threw it into the slot for Chelios, who buried his second goal in as many nights. That sent the teams into the locker rooms with MSU clinging to a slight 2-1 advantage.
The Spartans kept chipping away, slowly padding their lead in the third period. Lee Reimer took a sharp-angle shot on Hammond that snuck through at 3:44, with assists going to Wolfe and Mike Merrifield. At 13:33, Daultan Leveille had a nice individual effort that pushed MSU's lead to three, racing in with a defender on his hip and finding space beneath Hammond's blocker hand.
Hammond was a difference-maker for Bowling Green, finishing with 29 saves. Yanakeff, who had a much quieter night, recorded 20 stops.
The Spartans will return to action with a home-and-home series next weekend against archrival Michigan. The teams will play Friday in Ann Arbor at 7:30, then on Saturday at Munn at 6:30 p.m.
NOTES: MSU recorded its 10th victory of the season. It is the earliest MSU has owned 10 victories since the 2007-08 season, when win No. 10 came on Dec. 1 vs. LSSU ... MSU is now 8-1-1 in its last 10 games since a 2-4-0 start ... Dean Chelios returned to the lineup last weekend against Minnesota, and has a point per game over the last four contests - an assist in each game last weekend, and a goal in each game vs. Bowling Green ... Greg Wolfe's first-period score was his first goal since Oct. 28 vs. Robert Morris ...