#1/2 Michigan vs. Michigan Tech Preview

The No. 1-ranked Michigan ice hockey team has a chance to win its first GLI title since the 1996 team raised the banner inside Joe Louis Arena. How do the Wolverines match up with Michigan Tech, who upset No. 5 Michigan State to earn the right to face the top-ranked Wolverines in the tournaments final.

Michigan is one step closer to snapping an 11-year drought in the Great Lakes Invitational after dispatching of Providence by the score of 6-0 yesterday afternoon. All that stands in the way between the No. 1-ranked Wolverines and the tournament title; the Michigan Tech Huskies. How do the Wolverines match up with the Huskies, who upset No. 5 Michigan State in the second semifinal game last night?

Series Notes
Records: Michigan (17-2-0, 11-1-0 CCHA), Michigan Tech (7-8-2, 5-6-1 WCHA)
Series vs. Michigan Tech: Michigan leads 116-90-4
Season Series: First Meeting
Series at the GLI: Michigan leads 18-10-0
Series in GLI Championship: Michigan Tech leads 6-2-0
Last Meeting: 4-1 Michigan (2006 GLI)

U-M Offense vs. Michigan Tech Defense
F – Kevin Porter (19-12-31, +14)
F – Chad Kolarik (12-12-24, +11)
F – Aaron Palushaj (6-16-22, +2)
F – Travis Turnbull (6-4-10, +11)
F – Louie Caporusso (4-6-10, +8)

U-M Goals/Game: 4.2
U-M Shots/Game: 27.5

Michigan Tech Goals Allowed/Game: 2.5
Michigan Tech Shots Allowed/Game: 26.1

Outlook: Michigan Tech has been one of the better defensive teams in the nation. Goalie Michael-Lee Teslak has held them in many games with a goals against average well below 2.00. Teslak sat out last night with a knee injury, however, and it's unlikely that he'll be ready by later on tonight. With Nolan in goal, the edge goes to a Michigan offense that found balance last night despite skating four new lines.
Advantage: Michigan

Michigan Tech Offense vs. U-M Defense
F – Tyler Shelast (9-4-13, -2)
F – Peter Rouleau (5-6-11, -4)
F – Malcolm Gwilliam (3-8-11, +1)
F – Jimmy Kerr (6-4-10, -6)
D – Drew Dobson (1-8-9, -2)

Michigan Tech Goals/Game: 2.2
Michigan Tech Shots/Game: 27.4

U-M Goals Allowed/Game: 1.9
U-M Shots Allowed/Game: 25.6

Outlook: Michigan Tech has had trouble putting the puck in the net all season. Mark Mitera might just be the best defensive defenseman in college hockey. You do the math.
Advantage: Michigan

Billy Sauer
Record: 15-2-0
GAA: 1.94
Save Percentage: .924

Bryan Hogan
Record: 2-0-0
GAA: 2.01
Save Percentage: .920

Michigan Tech
Rob Nolan
Record: 3-4-0
GAA: 3.18
Save Percentage: .874

Outlook: Sauer looked fantastic last night turning aside 50 shots in the Wolverines 6-0 win. Nolan matched the effort by putting together his best game of the year to help the Huskies upset No. 5 Michigan State. Despite that, the Huskies haven't seen the skill that Michigan can bring to the ice while Nolan was in goal. Michigan should have the clear edge in this department as well.
Advantage: Push

U-M Power Play vs. Providence Penalty Kill
U-M Power Play: 22.0% (22-of-100)
U-M Shorthanded Goals Allowed: 1

Michigan Tech PK: 87.5% (63-of-72)
Michigan Tech Shorthanded Goals: 0
Michigan Tech PIM/Game: 15.8

Michigan Tech Power Play vs. U-M Penalty Kill
Michigan Tech Power Play: 18.4% (14-of-76)
Michigan Tech Shorthanded Goals Allowed: 2

U-M PK: 88.8% (95-of-107)
U-M Shorthanded Goals: 5
U-M PIM/Game: 18.2

Outlook: Michigan's special teams have continued to improve over the course of the season. If the Maize and Blue would ever learn to stay out of the box, it would be one of the most dominating teams in recent college hockey. Despite the Wolverines penchant for taking penalties, this edge goes to Michigan to complete the clean sweep.
Advantage: Michigan

Michigan enters the game with a chance to raise the banner inside Joe Louis Arena for the first time since the 1996 Great Lakes Invitational. With the Spartans already out of the way, the Maize and Blue must be licking their chops. After a dominating 6-0 win, the Wolverines come out and finish off the tournament with a hard-fought win over Michigan Tech
5-1 Michigan

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