It was March 13, 2010
That they came to bury Michigan, all dressed in maize and blue
The words were said, the prayers were read and everybody cried
But when they closed the coffin there was someone else inside
Oh they came to bury Michigan, but Michigan wasn't dead
And when the game was over it was someone else instead
Twenty Michigan Wolverines put on the skates of black
And as the students sang The Victors
To the Joe, we're headed back!
Well, well, well. The Michigan Wolverines are headed back to the Joe! Playing on the road without their starting goalie and without their captain, Michigan won two games in a row in East Lansing for the first time since 1975.
I didn't get to see Friday's game, which is a shame because it sounds like it was complete and utter domination. Michigan scored four times in the first 20:21 to build a lead that the Spartans couldn't come close to overcoming.
Hagelin and Wohlberg each scored breakaway (or partial breakaway) goals and then Louie Caporusso scored what a lot of people described as arguably the best goal of the season--and what a beauty it was! Steve Kampfer put one through a Chris Brown screen to give the Wolverines a 4-0 lead. FYS would score a fluky goal before the Wolverines took advantage of a miscue by Ann Arborite Drew Palmisano and finished out the scoring. The pair of goals gave Caporusso 10 in his last 10.
Tonight started off the same way. Rust and Treais scored 21 seconds apart to chase Palmisano and give Michigan a 2-0 lead. The Spartans came back with 3 power play goals in the last five minutes of first period, including one with just 0.7 seconds left in the first period. The first two were on a 5 on 3 (and subsequent 5 on 4) when Chad Langlais and Tristin Llewellyn took penalties a minute apart. Llewellyn went back into the box at 19:39 and the Spartans scored again 20 seconds later.
Ben Winnett tied the game back up with a PPG of his own on a really nice shot, and Chris Brown jammed a puck in during a goalmouth scramble to put the Wolverines ahead for good.
The Wolverines outshot FYS 44-21 on the night, including an incredible 16-1 margin in the second period.
In a small bit of karma, Corey Tropp did not play in Game 2 after stepping on a puck in warmups. Fiddlesticks!
The line of the night came from one of my buddies after Palmisano got pulled. I gave him the old "Did you know Drew Palmisano is from Ann Arbor?" text, to which he replied, "Now he's from the MSU bench!"
There's a really cool video up on MGoBlue of the team celebrating in the locker room after the game. Red commented that the Wolverines have been to the Joe something like 20 straight years, but they've never had to battle in a situation like that.
They should be really proud of themselves. In a season of completely uninspired hockey at points, they got it together and took out the CCHA's #2 team on their home ice. Our fans should be proud as well. The chanting was audible and it by and large embarrassed the Michigan State fans that were there. The Spartans love to reminisce about taking over Crisler back at the end of the Ellerbe-era, but the Wolverine fans took over Munn during a playoff series. Great work, everyone who was there.
Now it's on to the Joe where we will take on the Miami University RedHawks, who knocked out OSU 2-1 tonight. We've also climbed up the Pairwise rankings to the bubble. To be safely in, we still need to win this thing, but who knows, maybe there's a scenario that exists where we could still get in as an at-large. It's enough to make me really wish we hadn't blown a few of those games earlier in the season, though.