The Michigan State Spartans have officially hit rock-bottom for the season, in arguably the two worst games that the team has played thus far.
MSU took a 5-2 loss in Friday’s game against Wisconsin, only to suffer a 3-2 loss on Saturday night. It’s a disappointing result for a team that was in desperate need of good fortune following two crushing defeats to No. 8 Minnesota last weekend at home.
To the Spartans’ credit, senior forward Mitchell Lewandowski is missing from the lineup, which clearly makes a huge impact, as Michigan State is now 1-8 on the season without its leading point-scorer. Junior forward Griffin Loughran was also out this weekend.
Losing to Minnesota may have been a missed opportunity since Michigan State had ample opportunities to come away with a victory in both games at Munn Ice Arena last weekend. Most times against the Badgers, Michigan State looked sloppy and confused. It is the worst 120 minutes I’ve personally seen from MSU in quite some time.
Senior defenseman Dennis Cesana and junior forward Erik Middendorf scored MSU’s lone goals in the first game Friday night, while senior forward Adam Goodsir and senior defenseman Cole Krygier scored MSU’s goals Saturday.
Adam Goodsir wraps around for his first goal of the season to get the Spartans on the board. pic.twitter.com/HjGDagmaae— Michigan State Hockey (@MSU_Hockey) January 16, 2022
Outside of that, the Spartans looked out of sync from the first puck drop at center ice, being outshot and outscored, and taking ridiculous penalties.
Perhaps most frustrating was when the Spartans took a too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty down 4-2 with 2:30 left in the game Friday night, which led to Wisconsin scoring a power-play goal, going up 5-2. Inexcusable mistakes kept Michigan State out of both games against a six-win Wisconsin team.
The Badgers, meanwhile, should feel elated after getting its first sweep of the season, and its first opening period of three goals or more. Wisconsin improves its season win total to eight and move into fifth place in the Big Ten, jumping Michigan State.
Michigan State moves to 11-12-1 on the season, previously being 11-8-1 going into the New Year, but now MSU has fallen from fifth to sixth in the Big Ten with a very tough schedule ahead.
The Spartans are home to host No. 16 Ohio State this coming weekend. The first game Friday night (Jan. 21) begins at 7 p.m. Eastern Time, Saturday night’s game (Jan. 22) starts at 6 p.m. Eastern Time. Both will air on B1G+.