For the second consecutive Friday the Wolverines went into the locker room trailing 3 goals to 1. Again, their prospects for a comeback looked bleak as turnovers, mistimed pinches and a red hot goaltender stretched the lead at home, but when the puck dropped to start the third the young Wolverines were a new team.
This season Red Berenson has spoken about getting started right in games. This was not the start they wanted. The Colonials jumped all over Michigan early starting with a 2-on-1 at the tail end of a Michigan power play, Zach Werenski mishandled a puck at the blueline and didn't have the gas to get back on the backcheck.
Late in the second on another 2-on-1 coming from a bad pinch the Colonials had another easy goal and it looked like things were slipping away.
But sometimes it's better to be lucky than good. Red Berenson thinks they were a little of both.
The Cooper Marody line has been Michigan's best this season and they started the comeback when Joe Cecconi blocked a dump-in with Robert Morris attempting a line change. Tony Calderone pushed it down the ice on a 3-on-2 and dropped it off to Marody, who had more than enough time to get set, pick his spot at rip the puck high.
A point blast from Mike Downing and a slick move from Zach Werenski to fake out his man, get the goalie down and beat the goalie to his glove would give them the lead, but it was only fitting that the goal to put it away would come from Tony Calderone and Michigan's third line. Marody took a feed from Shuart at the right faceoff dot, zinged it to the left for a waiting Calderone who one-timed it by Shafer.
Calderone scored three goals a year ago in twenty eight games, he already has three this year in just five games.
The team is undefeated but things are far from perfect. Allowing half a dozen 2-on-1's to reach your goaltender a night and having to score five goals to win is setting up for an inevitable disaster. The blueline must turn down risk taking or they'll find themselves losing games because of it down the stretch.
Up next an early game today at 3:05 to finish the series.