Michigan was outscored 9-8 over the weekend, but still managed a split with Ohio State at Yost Ice Arena.
Friday night, the line of Brandon Kaleniecki, Andrew Ebbett and Chad Kolarik combined for three goals and three assists in a 7-5 loss. Ebbett notched two of the tallies.
"If you score five goals against that team, you should win," U-M head coach Red Berenson said. "We gave up some soft goals, and that was a big factor in this game. You can't give up some of those goals. It's goalkeeping, it's defensive awareness, too many outnumbered rushes against us. We didn't play a good mental game, and we didn't play a good physical game. They did. They came out jumping and took advantage of turnovers and loose pucks. They were the hungrier team."
The Wolverines had leads of 2-1, 3-2 and 4-3, but could not hold on in the third period when they were outscored 4-1.
Jack Johnson and David Rohlfs also scored for Michigan while Billy Sauer and Noah Ruden (pictured above) combined for 25 saves.
"It's frustrating, but we should have finished the deal and not given up when we had the lead," said Rohlfs. "We just gave the game away."
Michigan rebounded Saturday night as Kaleniecki and Travis Turnbull scored third-period goals and Ruden made a career-high 39 saves in a 3-2 victory.
Tim Miller scored Michigan's other goal.
"We have been doing the same thing for three months, playing great one period and terrible the next," said Ruden. "So I think as seniors, we're just fed up with it to the point that we just have to do everything we can to change that. We only have eight games left in the regular season in our careers at Michigan, so if we seem upset it's just because when we go out, we're hoping the young guys will pick it up. They did today. I don't think we had a very good first period, but when the time came, we crunched down and had a pretty good third period and came out on top."
The Wolverines (16-10-3, 11-7-3 CCHA) conclude their season series with Western Michigan in Kalamazoo on Tuesday. The came will be broadcast by Comcast Local and commence at 7:35 p.m.
Ruden photo by Eric Bronson, © Wolverine Photo