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Dec. 29, 1997

Spartans Advance to Great Lakes Final with 3-1 Win Over Michigan Tech

DETROIT -- The Michigan State Spartans hockey team beat Michigan Tech 3-1 Saturday in the first round of the 1997 Great Lakes Invitational at Joe Lewis Arena. Second-ranked MSU capitalized on two of three power plays and held the Huskies to a single goal on four chances to take the win and advance to the tournament's championship game Sunday.

The game got off to a tight start with neither team able to get past the opposing goalie in the opening period. MSU's Chad Albin and MTU's David Weninger dueled it out, holding both teams scoreless for the entire twenty minutes. The shot count was close with MSU edging MTU seven to five. A late first period slashing penalty on Michigan Tech's Devin Hartnell at 18:35 gave MSU the advantage heading into the break.

The Spartans capitalized quickly with a power play goal at :23 of the second. The goal was scored by MSU's Rusty Dolyny and was set up by Shawn Horcoff and Sean Patchell. The game turned chippy as both teams traded roughing penalties until MTU got the advantage on a hooking penalty called on MSU's Chris Bogas at 14:17.

Michigan Tech was able to tie it up 1-1 on the ensuing power play when the Huskies' Devin Hartnell knocked a pass in from Riley Nelson and Bret Meyers at 14:52. Frustrations came to the surface and a scuffle broke out after the tying goal. MSU's Tyler Harlton took roughing and hitting after the whistle calls and MTU's Meyers (roughing) and Riley Nelson (hitting from behind) were whistled as well.

Later in the period, as neither team could knock in the go-ahead goal, another shoving match led to five penalties being handed out at 17:01. The second ended tied 1-1 with MTU holding the shot advantage, 11-9.

At the start of the third, both teams came out shooting and played a more disciplined game. MSU's Jon Gaskins nabbed an even strength goal at 14:55 off a pass from Mike Weaver to put MSU ahead 2-1. Spartan goalie Chad Albin was solid and held MTU scoreless for the remainder of the game. A cross checking penalty against the Huskies gave MSU a power play late in the third (18:56). Shawn Horcoff knocked in the insurance goal off the set up by Dolyny and Brad Hodgins to give the Spartans the 3-2 win and a spot in the Great Lakes Championship game tomorrow at 5:00 p.m. Both teams had ten shots on net in the third and the game ended at 26 shots each.

MSU's game will be televised on FOX SPorts Net. The win pushed MSU's overall record to 15-2-2, MTU now sits at 9-9-2. The two-game semifinal drew 18,345 and was the best turn out for the first day action since 1989. The consolation game will be plated at 1:30 p.m. Sunday and will feature MTU and the loser of the St Lawrence vs. University of Michigan match up.

Scoring Summary
Scoring by period
MSU 0-1-2- 3
MTU 0-1-0- 1
Shots on goal
MSU 7- 9-10 26
MTU 5-11-10 26
MSU/Albin     7- 8- 8  25
MTU/Weninger  5-10-10  23
Power Play
MSU 2-3
MTU 1-4
MSU 11-22
MTU 10-20

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