The Gophers were outshot 45-26 in the Friday night home loss to Michigan. Photos by Bryan Singer
MINNEAPOLIS – Minnesota’s special teams continued to find success on Friday night but Michigan came out on top with a 4-2 win in this weekend’s series opener at 3M Arena at Mariucci.
The Gophers (10-12-4 overall, 7-7-3-0 Big Ten) went 2-for-7 on the power play and 5-for-5 on the penalty kill as Rem Pitlick notched his third-straight multi-point game while playing in his 100th career game. The Maroon & Gold have now tallied on the advantage in six-straight games and nine of the last 11 contests while the penalty kill hasn’t surrendered a goal in four-straight games and eight of the last nine contests.
Pitlick and Minnesota jumped out to a first period lead with a goal on the night’s first power play at 4:35 of the opening stanza. The junior forward picked up his 16th goal of the year with assists from Tommy Novak and Tyler Sheehy.
But Michigan (10-10-6, 6-5-4-2) rattled off three-straight goals from Will Lockwood in the first and Garrett Van Wyhe and Michael Pastujov in the second to take a 3-1 lead into the final frame. Pastujov’s tally – the eventual game winner – came moments after Minnesota successfully killed an extended 5-on-3 situation.
Brannon McManus brought Minnesota within one with a power-play goal set up by Pitlick and Novak at 12:34 of the third, but a shorthanded tally from Nicholas Boka soon after halted the comeback permanently.
The Gophers were outshot 45-26 in the loss with Mat Robson making 41 saves to move to 8-8-4 on the year. Hayden Lavigne earned the win for the Wolverines with 24 saves, improving to 6-6-3.
Minnesota closes out a four-game home stand tomorrow night against Michigan at 3M Arena at Mariucci. Tickets are available at GopherSports.com.
Notes: Sheehy and Pitlick have now recorded points in 16 of the last 17 games for Minnesota…Friday’s game marked the sixth contest of the season that Robson made 40 or more saves…Pitlick’s 100th career game gives Minnesota seven active players who have reached the 100-game mark (Sheehy, Pitlick, Gates, Schierhorn, Sadek, Ramsey, Romanko) with Pitlick being the only non-senior to do so (fellow junior Ryan Zuhlsdorf has played in 98 career games after tonight)…Sheehy picked up his 18th power-play point of the season (ranking second in the nation) and is now one point off the national leader…McManus extended his career-best point streak to seven games while the sophomore has goals in five of the last seven games.