Final: A crazy couple of minutes. Miami, who was on the power play, pulled Zatkoff and scored a 6-on-4 goal with 38 seconds left. Michigan killed the ensuing half minute to clinch a CCHA championship.
2:38 left in the third: Michigan has done a good job holding off the inevitable Miami rush. There really hasn’t been too much offensive action on either net since the Wolverines netted their last goal. If the RedHawks can’t pick up some offensive rhythm soon, it’ll be Michigan walking away with the hardware tonight.
10:00 left in the third: The roles have been reversed this period, with the Wolverines controlling the puck for almost the whole ten minutes so far. Michigan has tied up the once-lopsided shots on goal and has racked up several nice possessions in the RedHawk zone.
End of the second period: Michigan is getting outplayed in every way, except on the scoreboard. The RedHawks have posted 21 shots on Sauer, who has been the Wolverines’ saving grace thus far. Without a stellar performance from him, Miami would most likely has a huge lead by now.
5:38 left in the second: There’s been a lot of play in the Michigan zone since its goal a few minutes ago. If the RedHawks continue to attack Sauer like this, it’s only a matter of time before the score is tied.
12:22 left in the second: Up until this point, the RedHawks had really controlled the flow of the second period. They put together a couple really nice, sustained possessions in the Michigan zone and got some nice pucks to the net. But the Wolverines just turned the tide with a huge goal, awakening the mostly Michigan crowd.
In a defensive battle like this, momentum is huge, and Michigan definitely picked some up with that tally.
End of the first period: Miami really picked it up the the last couple of minutes, notching some really good scoring chances. And after a Ryan Jones wraparound almost found the back of the net, the RedHawks are definitely heading into the locker room with all the momentum.
14:00 left in the first: Miami is a little slow out of the gates. The RedHawks have tallied just two shots on goal compared to Michigan’s four. The potent Miami offense has been held at bay all weekend — the RedHawks had to rely on their blueline to pot both of their goals last night.
17:50 left in the first: After last night’s win, Michigan forward Tim Miller said the Wolverines would have to cut down on the opposition’s transition opportunities, because the RedHawks are a great team in transition. Well, in a shorthanded situation, Miami just broke free with the puck on its first transition chance of the night. Sauer made the save, but I’ll track how the Michigan D tries to slow down the RedHawk attack through the rest of the game.
Pregame: Joe Louis Arena is absolutely rocking for tonight’s matchup between the Wolverines and RedHawks. There a ton of people here to watch this game, and it seems the majority of them are wearing maize and blue. But Miami has a nice contingent of fans here, too.
Both teams are coming into the final after squeeking out closer-than-expected games in the semis. Both Miami and Michigan had weaknesses exposed in their wins: Michigan goaltender Billy Sauer let in three of Northern Michigan’s first six shots on goal, and the RedHawks, which have posted gaudy offensive numbers this year, were severally slowed down against Notre Dame defensive scheme.