With a home-and-home sweep of Bowling Green last weekend, Michigan clinched the CCHA regular season championship for the third time in four years. The Wolverines took a 4-1 win in Ohio Friday night and a 5-4 win Saturday on Senior Night.
"It's been a heck of a ride, but it's not over yet," senior captain Eric Nystrom said. "We came here to win the big one, but we haven't done that yet. Not many teams have done that since they've been here and we want to do that and look back and to leave our stamp on Michigan hockey. We made a mission statement this season and the last words are 'time to join a legacy' and we have as good of a chance as anybody right now. We have the team to do it."
Friday night, Nystrom, Andrew Ebbett, Jeff Tambellini and T.J. Hensick scored to back Al Montoya's 21 saves.
Saturday night, the 10-member senior class - Nystrom, Milan Gajic, Nick Martens, Charlie Henderson, Eric Werner, Brandon Rogers, Mike Woodford, David Moss, Jason Ryznar and Reilly Olson - all dressed and the five Michigan starters were all seniors.
Chad Kolarik scored twice and Ebbett, Gajic and Tambellini added singles for U of M, who got a 22-save performance from Montoya.
"They're a big class," Michigan head coach Red Berenson said of his seniors. "They do so many things on this team. Every time you look down the bench, you're looking to put an experienced player in a situation. The seniors have been able to do that. They haven't led our team in scoring, but they've led out team in a lot of ways, whether it's physical presence, hard work, in the locker room, in practice or in the weight room. There are a lot of things that go on in a team and we've had a terrific group of kids that have stuck together through thick and thin. They're not all the same; they're all different. They're a good group of kids."
The Wolverines (26-7-3, 23-3-2 CCHA) host Notre Dame this weekend in a first-round CCHA playoff matchup. Games are Friday and Saturday at 7:35 p.m. and Sunday if necessary.