By JERAMY STOVER, Sports Editor
After being swept by No. 4 Davenport two weeks ago, the University of Michigan-Dearborn hockey team had to quickly regroup as they had another tough opponent this past weekend in No. 8 Adrian.
On Thursday, UM-Dearborn headed to Adrian for the first game of the series, looking to pick up an impressive road victory.
Adrian got on the board first when Brad Kobryn scored in the first period with Chris Derochie picking up an assist. It took until a period later for UM-Dearborn to respond when Kevin Bechard got one past the Bulldogs goalie to even the game up at one.
In the third period Adrian ran away with the game, scoring three goals in the final period, protecting their home ice in the series with a 4-1 win.
Nate Ferris made 23 saves on the night for UM-Dearborn. Andrew Palushaj and Ryan Urso each picked up an assist on Bechard’s goal.
Friday night, the two teams met at the UM-Dearborn Fieldhouse to wrap up the series.
Adrian struck first again when Marcus Peters rifled a slap shot from the blue line past Ferris to give the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead. But right before the first period could end, Andrew Spiegel tied the game up with a shorthanded goal with 5.7 seconds left in the period.
The second period is where the game was ultimately won as Adrian scored four goals to the Wolverines’ one. The Wolverines scored between the four Adrian goals when Kyle Schnettler netted his first collegiate goal, ripping a shot from the blue line that found its way through traffic and into the back of the net.
The third period was entertaining itself. UM-Dearborn scored just a minute and a half into the period when Nick LeBurn scored top-shelf on the powerplay to pull his team to within two goals. But just three minutes later Adrian regained their three goal lead when Marcel Kottek scored on the powerplay.
The Bulldogs would go on to win 7-4 and complete the series sweep.
UM-Dearborn (2-4, 0-4 Great Lakes Collegiate Hockey League) head coach Chris Haltinner said he thought his team played well but the luck went more in Adrian’s favor.
“They’re a good hockey team but I don’t think the score dictated what we did. I think we played well but they got the bounces and we didn’t,” Haltinner said.
Adrian (6-0, 2-0) scored four of their seven goals on the powerplay, taking advantage of UM-Dearborn’s disciplinary mistakes.
Wolverines captain Urso said the penalties were an issue but when his team is playing at full strength, they’re as good as any team out there.
“It’s always a good rivalry with those guys, obviously penalty trouble definitely got us, they have a good powerplay and that’s something we definitely need to correct and be more disciplined, not let them get under our skin,” Urso said. “When we’re five-on-five getting opportunities for ourselves on the powerplay, we’re as good as any team in the country and we just need to trust that process and keep our heads a little bit more and we’ll get back on track.”
Tyler Groat was the fifth goal scorer for UM-Dearborn and also picked up an assist on the night. Ferris started the game and recorded 15 saves before being replaced by Thomas Proudlock after Adrian’s fourth goal. The Wolverines outshot the Bulldogs on the night 44 to 31.
Haltinner said he isn’t disappointed after being swept by both Davenport and Adrian. He has confidence that his team will get it going in sooner than later.
“They’re good hockey teams, it’s not disappointing at all. I think our guys are playing good hockey and I think right now the bounces aren’t going our way; we just got to give it time and we’ll get it going,” Haltinner said. “I think our team is good, I think last year we played some maybe lighter competition going in and this year we jumped right into it so we’ll come around. It’s early in the season. You take it with a grain of salt, it’s learning, you learn more from losing than you do winning, so we’re working hard and we’ll be all right- I’m not worried about it.”
Next up for UM-Dearborn is a home series with No. 16 Illinois. The first game of that series is Friday at 7:30 p.m.