Michigan stays hot, beats MSU 4-1 in Duel in the D
Michigan's Johnny Beecher collides into Will Lockwood after Lockwood's goal in the first period.
Michigan continues to be one of the hottest teams in College Hockey in 2020.
The Wolverines defeated Michigan State 4-1 on Monday night at Little Caesars Arena in the Annual Duel in the D game to run their record to 8-1-1 since January 1.
Bloomfield Hills native Will Lockwood led the way offensively for UM (15-12-3 and 10-8-2-1 in the Big Ten) with two goals and an assist, and goaltender Strauss Mann made 31 saves before an announced crowd of 8,455.
“I think a lot of the Michigan guys look forward to this game,” Lockwood told The Detroit News. “It’s special to play in an atmosphere like this, and it was great to get the win.”
Jacob Hayhurst and Nick Blankenburg also scored for Michigan while Jack Slaker had two assists to extend his point streak to six games (4-7-11).
The Wolverines swept the weekend series with their arch rivals, also winning 5-1 on Friday night at East Lansing’s Munn Ice Arena, to move ahead of the Spartans and into third place in the Big Ten standings.
Michigan has also won the last four Duel in the D meetings between the two teams and remain ahead of the Spartans in the Pairwise Rankings, which determines NCAA Tournament berths. Michigan entered Monday No. 20 and Michigan State No. 21.
It would be a long shot for Michigan to get there, but the Frozen Four will be held at Little Caesars Arena April 9-11. The Wolverines last reached the Frozen Four in 2018, but lost in a national semifinal.
Dennis Cesana scored for MSU and John Lethemon stopped 17 shots. The Spartans (14-15- and 10-9-1) have lost five of their last seven.
"I thought we were a lot better than we were on Friday night, couldn't get one more by their guy," MSU coach Danton Cole told the Lansing State Journal. "These guys lay a lot out on the line, and they bounced back a little tonight … They'll be back Friday night,” when Michigan State hosts No. 12 Ohio State in the first game of a weekend series.
"At the same time, it is tough," Cole continued. "This time of the year, getting swept is far from ideal. But we are where we are now, and we'll go from there."
Hayhurst’s power-play goal with 5:14 left in the first period broke a 1-1 tie and proved to be the game winner.
Blankenburg scored and Lockwood got his second goal (empty net) in the third period.
Lockwood’s first goal gave the Wolverines a 1-0 lead 5:07 into the game before Cesana tied it 1:08 later.
Michigan hosts Notre Dame at Yost Ice Arena next Friday and Saturday.