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Michigan hockey sweeps Western Michigan in home-and-home series

Freshmen took center stage in this steely series sweep.

2022 NCAA Division I Men’s Ice Hockey Championship Photo by Damian Strohmeyer/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

Not to be overshadowed by the action on the gridiron this weekend, the Michigan Wolverines hockey team completed a home-and-home sweep of the No. 14 Western Michigan Broncos in thrilling fashion.

Here is how it all went down.

Game 1

The Broncos started with as good of a result as you can get by scoring on their first shot of the night. However, it wouldn’t take longer than one minute and six seconds for freshman Jackson Hallum to light the lamp in response.

In the second period, Adam Fantilli and T.J. Hughes would score back-to-back to give Michigan a 3-1 lead. The Broncos wouldn’t go away, scoring two straight goals before Mackie Samoskevich would reclaim the lead for Michigan in the final minute of the period.

WMU would knot things up at 4-4 on a power play goal early in the final period. Assistant captain Nolan Moyle would score the game’s final goal midway through the third period, and Erik Portillo shut down the Broncos the remainder of the way to solidify the 5-4 victory at Yost Ice Arena.

Game 2

In the second game, the Wolverines were the ones who got off to a hot start. More specifically, freshman Rutger McGroarty scored on two straight power play opportunities to give Michigan the early 2-0 lead. WMU found its footing in the last two minutes of the period and found the net on a power play opportunity.

The teams would trade goals in the sixth and seventh minutes of the second to give us a 3-2 game going into another Michigan power play. Fantilli would capitalize for the Wolverines in the 15th minute to give Michigan a two-score advantage going into the final period of regulation.

Once again, Michigan and Western Michigan would trade goals in the early stages of the period — one of which was another power play goal by McGroarty to polish off the hat trick — giving the Maize and Blue a 5-3 lead. However, WMU put up two unanswered and forced the game into overtime.

But the extra period wouldn’t last too long, as defensemen Luke Hughes capped the series sweep off with an unassisted goal four minutes into overtime.

This was a gritty series by the young and extremely talented Wolverines against a Western Michigan Broncos team that simply refused to be put away. Michigan will be on the road for two straight games for the first time this season next Friday and Saturday as it travels to State College to take on Penn State.