By ERICK LEHMAN, Staff Reporter
For the second time this season, the University of Michigan-Dearborn hockey team had a game cut short.
On Friday, the Wolverines’ series opener vs. Oakland was called with just over seven minutes remaining in the second period due to poor ice conditions.
“It’s very unfortunate that this occurred again this year, but we’ve really got to take internal review on our ice procedures and look at how we can rectify this situation going into the future,” Athletic Director Matt Beaudry said after the cancellation. “The optimum level for the ice is about one inch. We had issues this week with our zamboni which didn’t allow us to really maintenance the ice at the requirement that was necessary.”
Earlier in the season against John Carroll University, the game was cut short with the Wolverines holding onto a 3-0 lead.
The Wolverines had a 2-1 lead Friday after a quick start.
“We played well. For the most part we dominated,” head coach Chris Haltinner said. “It’s unfortunate that the game got cancelled with the situation we’re in. We need to win seven in a row now (to make nationals). It’s tough, not easy against the teams we’re playing.”
Last season when UM-Dearborn was set to be the home team at Clark Park against Oakland, the Grizzlies were still in contention for nationals, while the Wolverines were not. That game was cancelled due to ice conditions, and the Wolverines forfeited their point to help the division team out to make a national run.
“We told them since they were in the nationals ranking, we would take the forfeit. The conditions were bad, we took the forfeit, and they got the win for it,” senior forward Jeremy Klotz said. “You’d think they’re out of the rankings, we have a chance to go, they’d do the same for us, especially when they wear our socks.”
Adding to the frustrations for the Wolverines Friday was that Oakland brought different socks, so the team did not have matching uniforms, an ACHA violation.
Haltinner lent the Grizzlies team the Wolverines usual home socks as they wore the outdoor game specialty uniforms.
The chances of rescheduling the game seem very slim, as both teams have tight schedules the rest of the season. UM-Dearborn fell to Oakland, 6-3, Saturday. If the third game isn’t resumed, the Wolverines ensured a winning regular-season record against the Grizzlies for the first time in program history.
Haltinner doesn’t believe the game will be rescheduled.
“Zero (confidence in this game getting rescheduled). I’m not going to play them before Davenport, not going to play them before Kent State,” Haltinner said. “I’ll play them after Eastern, but realistically, do I want to do that? I don’t know. It’s tough now.”