The Wolverine

January 2021

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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JANUARY 2021 THE WOLVERINE 55 BY AUSTIN FOX N ovember ended on a sour note for the Wolverines, with U-M suffering a two-game sweep at the hands of Notre Dame Nov. 27-28 in Ann Arbor. Those struggles carried over into December. The month began positively when Michigan took down Penn State 3-1 Dec. 2 in State College, but that showing was followed by three con- secutive losses — one to the Nittany Lions Dec. 3 and two to No. 4 Min- nesota Dec. 8-9 in Ann Arbor. Once 4-0, Michigan now sits at 5-5 heading into the second wave of its 2020-21 schedule. A month-long break in the action will come to a close when the Wolverines return to the ice Jan. 8 against Michigan State, looking to snap the club's three-game losing streak. "I still like this team," head coach Mel Pearson insisted after a 4-0 loss to the Gophers Dec. 9, the last time Michigan played. "I really like a lot of things about this group, specifi- cally how they continue to compete, even at times they've dug themselves a big hole." Despite the 5-5 start, U-M still ranks among the top teams nation- ally. The Wolverines are listed No. 7 in the land by the latest polls done by USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine and (both last updated Dec. 21), and check in at No. 23 in the PairWise rankings (Dec. 28). MICHIGAN'S TWO-GAME SWEEP AT WISCONSIN HIGHLIGHTS 4-0 START A two-game sweep of then-No. 14 Wisconsin Nov. 19-20 was one of the highlights of the Wolverines' early season success. The consecutive vic- tories against the Badgers occurred directly after the Maize and Blue swept then-No. 15 Arizona State in two contests to open the season, all of which marked a 4-0 start to the 2020-21 campaign for U-M. The first win in Madison occurred Nov. 19 by a final score of 5-2, though the Wolverines trailed 1-0 after the first period. U-M exploded for three goals in the second stanza, the first of which occurred when senior for- ward Michael Pastujov found the back of the net at the 14:38 mark. Freshman forward Brendan Brisson then put U-M on top 2-1 with his first collegiate goal, before sopho- more forward Eric Ciccolini tallied a goal with only four seconds left in the second period to give Michigan a 3-1 lead. The Badgers trimmed the margin to 3-2 early in the third period before sophomore forward Johnny Beecher and Pastujov added goals to seal the Wolverines' 5-2 win. The second game of the series fea- tured significantly less action, with Michigan grinding out a 2-1 triumph in overtime. The two clubs were knotted up at 1-1 heading into the extra session, thanks to sophomore forward Nick Granowicz's goal in the second period. Freshman forward Thomas Borde- leau served as the hero for the Wol- verines when he notched the game- winning dagger with only 27 seconds left in overtime, sending the Maize and Blue back home with a perfect 2-0 record in Madison. ❑ MICHIGAN HOCKEY Wolverines Will Try To Regroup Following A Disappointing December 2020-21 U-M SCHEDULE Date Opponent Result/Time Nov. 14 Arizona State W, 8-1 Nov. 15 Arizona State W, 3-0 Nov. 19 at Wisconsin W, 5-2 Nov. 20 at Wisconsin W, 2-1 (OT) Nov. 27 Notre Dame L, 3-2 Nov. 28 Notre Dame L, 2-1 Dec. 2 at Penn State W, 3-1 Dec. 3 at Penn State L, 9-5 Dec. 8 Minnesota L, 3-1 Dec. 9 Minnesota L, 4-0 Jan. 8 Michigan State TBA Jan. 9 at Michigan State TBA Jan. 15 Ohio State TBA Jan. 16 Ohio State TBA Jan. 21 at Notre Dame 6:30 pm Jan. 22 at Notre Dame 6:30 pm Feb. 3 Penn State TBA Feb. 4 Penn State TBA Feb. 9 Michigan State TBA Feb. 13 Wisconsin TBA Feb. 14 Wisconsin TBA Feb. 19 at Ohio State TBA Feb. 20 at Ohio State TBA Feb. 26 Arizona State TBA Feb. 27 Arizona State TBA Mar. 5 at Minnesota TBA Mar. 6 at Minnesota TBA Mar. 10 at Michigan State TBA Mar. 18-20 Big Ten Tournament TBD Freshman forward Thomas Bordeleau only played in eight of U-M's first 10 games, but was tied for the team lead with 10 points (three goals, seven assists). PHOTO BY LON HORWEDEL

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