The wheels have officially fallen off for the Michigan State men’s ice hockey team, as the Spartans have now dropped eight-straight games.
Prior to this weekend, in Michigan State’s previous game against Minnesota at home on Jan. 8, the Spartans had a 3-1 lead midway through the second period. By the end of the game, MSU had lost 6-3. Game one in Minneapolis was a flashback: MSU had gained a 2-0 lead thanks to goals by Christian Krygier and Jeremy Davidson, but lost on four-straight goals by Minnesota.
Saturday’s game yielded a worse outcome. Minnesota’s Ben Brinkman put the Golden Gophers up 1-0 and MSU freshman forward Jesse Tucker tied the game. A couple of goals 90 seconds apart sealed the game for Minnesota, and that’s all she wrote.
Senior goaltender Drew DeRidder was outstanding Saturday night, stopping 32 of 35 shots. However, for most of the night, Michigan State was outplayed and outshot — not able to contend with Minnesota’s pace.
The sweep suffered to Minnesota means that MSU has lost every game it has played against the Golden Gophers this season (0-4). The Spartans also have not won a game since the calendar turned to 2022. Michigan State fell to 11-16-1 on the season, and just 5-13-0-1 in Big Ten Conference play.
Now the Spartans, riding an eight-game losing streak, face Michigan later this week. The Wolverines are currently in second place in the Big Ten, behind only Ohio State.
MSU will head to Ann Arbor on Friday at Michigan’s Yost Ice Arena. The game starts at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Time and airs on B1G+. On Saturday, Michigan State takes on Michigan for the annual “Duel in the D” at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit. Puck drop is at 7 p.m. Eastern Time and airs on Bally Sports Detroit.
When the two teams faced off in November, Michigan took a two-game sweep, with one game in Ann Arbor and one in East Lansing.