Freshman defenseman Jeff Likens became the Badgers' latest hero Saturday night.
The men's hockey team (3-2-3 WCHA, 8-3-3 overall) swept the College Hockey Showcase with a 2-1 overtime win against No. 14 Michigan State Saturday night, thanks to Likens' clutch tally and the strong play of another freshman, netminder Brian Elliott. Michigan State (8-7-1 overall) did not win a game in the Showcase, the first time that occurred in the matchup's 11-year history. Wisconsin's WCHA cohorts, Minnesota (3-6-1, 6-7-1), also swept through showcase play, beating Michigan 4-2 Saturday.
Likens earned his first goal with the Badgers in overtime care of a fortunate bounce. Likens intended to put the puck in front of the net for sophomore forward Ryan MacMurchy, but the puck bounced off MSU junior goalie Matt Migliaccio's shoulder and into the net. Senior forward Rene Bourque and freshman defenseman Ryan Suter had the assists on the power-play goal.
The Badgers are now 7-0-3 in their last 10 games and have not lost since St. Cloud State handed the team its then-third straight loss on Oct. 18. Wisconsin finished November 5-0-3.
Wisconsin's first goal came midway through the first period when sophomore defender Tom Sawatske had a 3-on-2 odd-man-rush and scored the first goal with help from freshman forwards Andy Brandt and Robbie Earl.
MSU notched the equalizer late in the third period when junior forward Mike Lalonde put the puck past Wisconsin's Elliott off assists from freshman forward Tom Goebel and junior forward Jim Slater.
In the net, Elliott had 29 saves while Migliaccio had 33.
Score by period
Shots on goal by period
UW 1: Tom Sawatske (3) from Andy Brandt and Robbie Earl at 13:59.
MSU 1: Mike Lalonde (11) from Tom Goebel and Jim Slater at 13:48.
UW 2: Jeff Likens (1) from Rene Bourque and Ryan Suter at 1:07.
UW: Brian Elliott (2-0-0) - 29, 61:07, 1 GA
MSU: Matt Migliaccio (4-2-1) - 33, 61:07, 2 GA