Saturday, March 29, 2008

Michigan v. Clarkson: Game 2 from Albany


MICHIGAN IS HEADING TO THE FROZEN FOUR! Billy Sauer’s incredible goaltending allows the Wolverines to keep their 2 goal lead. Michigan fans are going nuts as the band plays “The Victors” and the Michigan players mob Billy Sauer at the net. Michigan will go to the Frozen Four for the 23rd time, more than any other school. I will wrap things up shortly.


Billy Sauer is playing out of his mind, making save after save to deny the 6 on 3 attack by Clarkson, as they have pulled Leggio in favor of another attacker. He continues to dive all over the place and denies Clarkson any chance to place the puck in the back of the net.


Steve Kampfer gets called for tripping in front of the Michigan net, but it couldn’t have come at a better time. He bails out Billy Sauer, who nearly gives up a shorthanded goal.


Things are getting crazy in Albany, with the Clarkson attack becoming more frantic. Thankfully, Clarkson’s Tim Marks just got called for slashing with 3:50 left in the period. This is a real backbreaker for the Golden Knights


The linesman has called another penalty, this time on Brandon DeFazio for interference. As I just finish typing this, Chris D’Alvise gets called for a slash, giving Michigan a 5 v. 3 advantage. This is a big momentum gain for Michigan as they can add another goal.


At the beginning of the third period, we were handed a ballot for the 2008 Ice Hockey Championship All-East Regional. Here is how we filled ours out (we promise it’s not too biased):

F- Kevin Porter, Michigan

F-Chad Kolarik, Michigan

F- Matt Beca, Clarkson

D-Mark Mitera, Michigan

D- Travis Anderson, Niagara

G- Billy Sauer, Michigan

MOP: Kevin Porter, Michigan


The announcer, who has a heavy New York accent, has just announced the final of the Wisconsin-Denver game, with Wisconsin winning 6-2. Thankfully, this is not Michigan’s fate, as they were sent to Albany instead of Madison.


The penalty fest continues as Matt Beca is called for roughing. Michigan will have the man advantage once Naurato returns to the ice.


Unfortunately, Brandon Naurato gets called for slashing about a minute into the Michigan power play. It was a silly decision by Naurato right in front of the ref and we will play 4 on 4 hockey. Billy Sauer stands on his head shortly after to keep the 2 goal advantage.


Chris D’Alvise will be called for high sticking, sending the Wolverines back on the power play. The Wolverines are 1-3 on the PP tonight.


GOAL MICHIGAN! The third period starts out with a bang as Porter puts in a backhand goal from beautiful passing from Chad Kolarik and Max Pacioretty. The first line continues to dominate and Kevin Porter now has 5 goals in this regional. With the majority of the third period remaining, the Wolverines can enjoy a 2 goal cushion.


The final minute of play sees the Wolverines take advantage of Clarkson getting caught out of position twice with Kolarik getting stuffed by David Leggio twice, the first on a one on none with the goalie only to beat, the second on a 2 on 0 with Porter hitting Kolarik for the shot. David Leggio just kept Clarkson in this game by himself and a one goal lead going into the 3rd is very dangerous for the Wolverines. Shots after 2: Clarkson 17, Michigan 14


Another great penalty kill by the Wolverines, Billy had a couple nice saves, and Clarkson is now 0-6 on the power play. The Wolverines are starting to get frustrated by the amount of time they are spending on the penalty kill and it can be seen in their offense.


Both teams saw the penalties go by the wayside, but immediately afterwards, Tristin Llewellyn is hit with a penalty which, was in this humble man’s opinion, a terrible call. This ref unit has worked its way out of the Frozen Four, unless the NCAA wants to see its refs get ripped for terrible officiating on national television. The NCAA chose a terrible set of refs for this weekend and hopefully, they wake up before they cost the Wolverines the game with another horrible call.


Chad Langlais has been hit with a cross-checking penalty, which the ref declined to call but the linesman made from VERY FAR AWAY. Clarkson has followed the penalty with a great attack and a couple good scoring chances, before Nick Dodge is hit with a penalty on his takedown of Tim Miller.


The Wolverines kill off another penalty, pushing Clarkson to 0-4 on the power play tonight. The game has turned into a grind fest with a lot of shoving and very little offense.


Tristin Llewellyn has received a two-minute minor for cross-checking with 13:43 left in the period, the Wolverines go back on the penalty kill, where they are 3 for 3 on the night in successfully killing the Golden Knight’s power play. The penalty was a result of a scrum in front of Billy Sauer as Clarkson had a great attempt at a goal.


Not much going on in Albany as both teams have skated full bore for the first five minutes of the 2nd period, and have created a combined total of zero good scoring chances. The closest for Michigan was a 2-1 for Tim Miller and Danny Fardig which resulted in Fardig having an open net, but whiffing on the attempt. Clarkson’s closest was a slap shot set up for Detroit Red Wings prospect Bryan Rufenach, but he whiffed on his attempt.


The first period has come to a close here in Albany, with Michigan leading 1-0 thanks to Palushaj’s wraparound goal. The shots on goal are tied at 10. Billy Sauer has made some great saves to keep the Wolverines in the game. The play is much more physical than it was last night as the Golden Knights look to slow down the powerful Michigan offense. They remind Tony, Andrew, and I of Michigan State’s trap style. We also agree that Clarkson fans are as obnoxious as all get-out. Michigan will be on the PK once play resumes.


25 seconds from the end of the period, Kampfer goes back into the box for holding. The penalty seemed to come out of frustration, as the play since the Michigan goal has been in the Michigan zone.


A questionable tripping call comes to Steve Kampfer, putting Clarkson back on the power play. Fan rain down “Worst Ref Ever” onto the referee tonight. Keep in mind that these are the same fans that have put up with Shegos all year.


GOAL MICHIGAN! Freshman Aaron Palushai took the puck from behind the net and made a nice wraparound goal, catching Leggio out of position and putting the Blue ahead 1-0 on the power play. Assists were awarded to Mark Mitera and Kevin Porter and the goal came about 15 minutes into the first. Just like last night, Michigan scores first, which will hopefully give them some momentum to carry to the end of the period.


Michigan just had their best scoring opportunity turned away by Leggio. Chad Kolarik got the puck near the Clarkson net, made a nifty move to go high, but it was saved by the Clarkson netminder. After the play, Kolarik was interfered with by Clarkson defenseman Phil Paquet, but Chad helped it with a dive. Once the penalty was called, Paquet grabbed Kolarik’s cage and pushed it down. Kolarik was called for “embellishment,” the first time I have heard that called, and Paquet will be penalized 2 minutes for interference and 2 minutes for roughing after the whistle. Michigan will go back on the power play to try and get a goal here in the first.


Billy Sauer just made two great saves to keep this game scoreless, one on a point blank one-timer. This is reminiscent of the CCHA championship round, where Billy had a slow first night and had to play well against Miami in the title game.


Matt Rust gets called for interference to put the Golden Knights on the power play for the first time. Michigan has yet to find the tempo they set up last night and they are looking to keep up the solid penalty kill they maintain in their game versus Niagara.


The first penalty of the night comes as Brandon DeFazio takes a contact to the head penalty. Both teams have been back and forth early in this first period and neither have been able to set up a good scoring chance. Hopefully this power play will give Michigan some momentum early in the game. On a side note, there is a good showing by Clarkson fans and they have not been silent since the puck dropped. We aren’t near the Michigan fans, but they are awfully hard to hear.


Let’s Play Hockey! The puck is dropped and Michigan tries to continue their season. Clarkson gets a quick shot of on Billy Sauer, but he makes the save. Below are the starting lineups for each team. Scooter Vaughn is dressed for this game and will play alongside Mark Mitera on the blue line.

Clarkson -> LW – Chris D’Alavise
D - Steve Zalewski
RW – Matt Beca
D – Grant Clitsome
D – Phil Paquet
G – David Leggio

Michigan -> LW – Max Pacioretty
C – Kevin Porter
RW – Chad Kolarik
D – Mark Mitera
D – Chris Summers
G – Billy Sauer


We have settled in for the East regional final and a set to watch our Wolverines take on the #3 seed Clarkson Golden Knights. These two teams have not played each other since 1962 when Clarkson defeated Michigan in the Frozen Four. Red Berenson was at this game, but was a player instead of a coach. Michigan fans continue to stream in to root on the #1 ranked Wolverines. We won’t be able to blog live again, but will have our posts and final thoughts after the game.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Very Interesting!
Thank You!