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No. 5 Penn State Men’s Hockey Falls 5-4 In Shootout Loss To No. 17 Michigan State

No. 5 Penn State men’s hockey (17-6-1, 7-6-1 Big Ten) dropped the second game of a two-game series to No. 17 Michigan State (14-11-1, 8-7-1 Big Ten). The Spartans used a big second period to claw their way back into the game before winning in the shootout.

Jagger Joshua registered his second hat trick of the season to lead Michigan State to the sweep over the fifth-ranked Nittany Lions.

How It Happened

Needing a win to avoid the sweep after a 3-2 overtime loss on Friday night, head coach Guy Gadowsky stuck with his regular starting goaltender Liam Souliere in game two.

The Nittany Lions came out firing in the early parts of this one. Kevin Wall beat Dylan St. Cyr from the low slot to give Penn State a 1-0 lead just six minutes into the first period. Connor MacEachern got the lone assist on the goal, his 11th this season.

The Spartans were given the game’s first power play at the 13-minute mark of the first period after Ben Schoen was called for hooking. Despite spending the majority of the power play in the offensive zone, Michigan State failed to beat Souliere as the junior goaltender made a series of great saves to preserve Penn State’s one-goal lead.

With just 1:47 remaining in the first period, Michigan State was called for too many men on the ice for the second night in a row, giving Penn State its first power play opportunity of the game.

The first period came to an end with Penn State leading Michigan State 1-0. The Nittany Lions began the second period with 13 seconds of power play time. Shots were 14-8 in favor of the Spartans in the first period.

Michigan State killed off the remainder of the penalty to open the second period.

Forward Chase McLane was whistled for interference at the 1:53 mark of the second. Michigan State found the back of the net on the power play to tie the game at one early in the second period.

Just minutes later, Penn State retook the lead thanks to a power play goal by Tyler Paquette. The Spartans challenged the goal, believing the puck was hit in with a high stick but the call stood, giving the Nittany Lions their one-goal lead back.

After an extended period of neutral zone hockey, Simon Mack beat St. Cyr for his second goal of the season to give Penn State a 3-1 lead. Ture Linden and Danny Dzhaniyev were both credited with assists on the goal.

A hooking penalty by Connor McMenamin proved costly for the Nittany Lions, as Jagger Joshua found the back of the net to bring the Spartans within one.

Michigan State would go right back to the power play, thanks to a tripping penalty committed by Dzhaniyev. This time, however, Penn State would get the kill, sending the game back to even strength for the final 90 seconds of the second period.

Despite killing off the penalty, Penn State failed to escape the second period with the lead. Joshua found the back of the net on the backdoor for the second time in the period to tie the game at three. The second period would end moments later with the game tied at three and the Spartans leading in shots 27-22.

Dzhaniyev opened the scoring in the third period, burying the puck past St. Cyr off of a beautiful pass by Ashton Calder.

Joshua would answer just 11 seconds later with a goal of his own, completing the hat trick with 16:06 remaining in regulation.

Penn State was given the first power play of the final period after David Gucciardi was called for high sticking on Ben Schoen just six minutes into the third. Michigan State would kill the penalty with ease.

The Nittany Lions did find the back of the net at the 12:42 mark of the third period but the goal was quickly waved off due to a high stick. However, there was a penalty on the play, giving Penn State its second power play of the third period. Michigan State’s success on the penalty kill would continue as it killed yet another Penn State power play.

Neither team would score again in regulation and for the second straight night, Penn State and Michigan State would play for the extra two points in overtime.

Penn State was sent to the power play after Joshua was called for slashing late in the overtime period. The game would end in a tie. A shootout was needed to determine a winner.

Michigan State went 3-3 on shootout attempts in the shootout to get the extra point. Penn State leaves the game with two points and the series with three points.

Takeaways

  • Jagger Joshua was excellent for the Spartans on Saturday night. The Dearborn, Michigan native entered Saturday’s contest with just five goals on the season but the senior scored twice in the second period to tie the game at the time. Joshua added a third in the final period to complete the hat trick, the second of the season for Joshua.
  • For the second night in a row, special teams played a big role in the outcome of this game. The two teams combined to go 3-9 on the power play. A penalty-filled second period by the Nittany Lions allowed the Spartans to get back in the game, leading to their victory in the shootout.
  • Penn State blew another two-goal lead on Saturday night. After allowing three unanswered goals in game one, the Nittany Lions allowed two backdoor goals to Jagger Joshua in the second period before opening the scoring in the third period just to allow a goal 11 seconds later.

What’s Next?

Penn State will return to Pegula to host the Notre Dame Fighting Irish for a two-game series starting at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, January 20. The Nittany Lions split a two-game series with Notre Dame in early December.

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About the Author

Devon Craley

Devon is a junior studying sports journalism. He has the genuine misfortune of being a Philadelphia sports fan...IYKYK. Send your hot takes and preferably your freezing cold takes on Twitter to @devon3134. Devon is also your friendly, neighborhood State College movie nerd.

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