By ERICK LEHMAN, Staff Reporter
The University of Michigan-Dearborn ice hockey team’s season came to a much earlier finish than anticipated Friday.
The Wolverines were poised to slide into the national tournament in Cleveland and potentially take down GLCHL-power Adrian beforehand in the conference tournament.
Instead, the Wolverines lost in the first round of the tournament to the fifth-seeded Western Michigan in an exciting, but ultimately disappointing 5-4 loss to end the 2014-2015 season.
Senior captain Jase Paciocco returned after missing a few weeks with a sprained knee to score two goals and hopefully power his Wolverines into the semifinals.
Despite scoring four goals, the Wolverine effort was not enough, which is only the second time the team has scored at least four goals since posting 10 vs. Oakland back on Jan. 4.
UM-Dearborn was able to jump out early, getting goals from Gino Darin, Ryan Kelly, and Paciocco all in the first period.
Paciocco netted his second goal of the night in the second period and the teams were tied at four heading into the final period, where the Broncos were able to score the game winner and advance to the second round of the tourney.
Western Michigan went on to lose to Davenport 3-2 in overtime Saturday.
On Sunday, Adrian took down Davenport. 4-2 to capture the GLCHL tournament championship. The Bulldogs completed the conference sweep as they were crowned conference regular season champs in January.