UM-Flint’s men’s hockey team battled adversity to tie the Saginaw Valley State University Cardinals, 4-4, on Friday, Oct. 25. The tie left the Wolverines’ record at 1-3-1 in the North Conference of the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA).
“We never gave up,” said Cooper Dove, a sophomore civil engineering major from Marysville. “We rolled all four lines and were able to get pucks deep. Our players hit the SVSU defense hard and made them cough the puck up. We executed on those turnovers we forced and took advantage of it.”
The Wolverines opened the scoring on a goal midway through the first period by Matthew Daniels. Ian Crampton drew an assist. After a first period goal by the Cardinals, the game remained tied until late in the second period. First, SVSU scored on a power play then eight seconds later they fired a shot past the UM-Flint goalie giving the Cardinals a 3-1 lead.
With less than a minute left in the second period, the Wolverines drew within one as Andrew Carreras lit the red light with an assist by Robert Temple. UM-Flint continued to scrap and tied the score at three as Trevor Cope scored an unassisted goal 13 minutes into the third period.
“SVSU turned the puck over in the offensive zone,” said Cope, a junior mechanical engineering major. “I got the puck at the top of the circle and drove a shot by the goalie’s low blocker.”
A few minutes later SVSU regained the lead. It then took a little over a minute for Cope to tally his second goal of the night with assists by Brian Knack and Carreras. That power play score tied the contest at 4-4.
“Knack passed me the puck from the corner,” said Cope. “I fired a one-timer from the point and it beat their goalie.” Referring to UM-Flint’s short lineup, he added, “No matter how many guys we dress we are not going to quit.”
With 90 seconds remaining Cope drew a boarding minor. Yet the Wolverines stymied a Cardinal barrage on goal through regular and overtime. UM-Flint goalie Steve Mcguire stopped several dangerous shots to secure the draw. Mcguire ended the match with 30 saves.
“Our whole team performed well,” said McGuire, an Auburn native and a junior at the university. “We made few mistakes with the odd man out but the squad continued to battle back and showed a lot of resiliency.
“We never got too high or too low. The guys just kept grinding away to get the split decision.”
UM-Flint will host Lawrence Tech on Saturday, Nov. 2. Game time is 8 p.m.
The event will be held at Crystal Fieldhouse, located in Burton. Ticket prices are $5 for general admission. For fans 6 to 12 years of age, seniors 62 years and up and students and faculty the price is $3. Admission is free for children five and under.
“After we gave up the late goal the team found a way to get the equalizer,” said Head Coach Michael Schunot. “Our goalie stood tall when we needed him. We obviously wanted a win, but we showed a lot of heart and character drawing the single point.”