The Michigan State Spartans’ hockey team was 0-4 against its biggest rival, the Michigan Wolverines, in the regular season. The playoffs didn’t change anything. MSU was outscored by a total of 12-1 over the weekend.
MSU captain Dennis Cesana was able to score on Michigan 4:36 into the first period of the first game. Unfortunately for the Spartans, that was all they would score. Adam Goodsir ended up in the penalty box for hooking and Jagger Joshua went off for cross-checking, giving the Wolverines a five-on-three advantage. Matty Beniers scored a power-play goal for Michigan, tying the game.
Michigan’s Luke Hughes put the Wolverines ahead 2-1 in the second period. Nearly five minutes later, Luke Morgan made it 3-1. Early in the third period, freshman Mackie Samoskevich scored the final goal, making it a final score of 4-1.
Michigan outshot Michigan State 28-24, but even though the shot totals were close, the Spartans somehow ended up in the losing column by a wide margin.
The Wolverines completed the sweep Saturday night with a whopping 8-0 victory. Michigan ended up moving its starting goaltender Erik Portillo for backup Jack Leavy to get him ice time. Leavy faced a total of one shot in the last five minutes of the game.
Michigan State’s first period was a disaster. Just 54 seconds into the game, Thomas Bordeleau put Michigan on the board. Minutes later, Michael Pastujov put UM up 2-0. Dylan Duke put Michigan up 3-0 three minutes later. Senior goaltender Drew DeRidder had given up three goals on four shots, so he was pulled and replaced with sophomore Pierce Charleson.
After Michigan’s Mark Estapa went off for cross-checking halfway through, the Spartans had an opportunity to get a goal back. Unsurprisingly, Michigan sophomore forward scored a short-handed goal, putting the Wolverines up 4-0.
Less than three minutes into the second period, Johnny Beecher scored on a five-hole shot to put Michigan up 5-0.
While the first period was bad, the second was far worse. Senior defenseman Christian Krygier was whistled for a slew-footing penalty, which is a five-minute major. In those five minutes, Michigan scored three more goals. Samoskevich, Beecher and senior Nick Blankenburg all ended up with goals.
As mentioned, Michigan pulled Portillo to give ice time to the backup, something that’s rarely ever done. Reminiscent of Michigan State football’s game against Ohio State, MSU didn’t stand a chance in this series.
The Spartans have yet to win a game in the Big Ten Tournament, haven’t finished higher than sixth (of seven) in the standings under head coach Danton Cole and won just one game in the calendar year 2022. Michigan State finished the season with an overall record of 12-23-1 and an early playoff exit. Meanwhile, No. 2-seed Michigan will go on to face No. 3-seed Notre Dame this weekend.