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Sunday, March 07, 2010

MTU ends regular season, loses both

By Andy Bourdeau / MTU Beat Writer

Michigan Tech was swept again over the weekend and now have dropped their last seven going into the first round of the playoffs against WCHA and national No. 1 Denver Pioneers.

The North Dakota Fighting Sioux played the Huskies hard and swept them by 5-1 and 3-2 scores. MTU was able to get the first goal both nights, but could not take the momentum of the goals and turn it into a win.

Friday, MTU scored shorthanded in the first when the UND defense turned the puck over right next to the Sioux goal and Malcolm Gwilliam snuck a shot by the netminder. The second and third periods were dominated by UND.

Kevin Genoe played net and faced 48 shots, stopping 43 of them.

Saturday, MTU jumped to the lead again, getting power-play goals from Jordan Baker and Gwilliam. After the second goal, MTU held a 2-0 lead, but gave up a goal late in the second and then two during the first seven minutes of the third.

Josh Robinson played net and looked good, stopping 41 shots on the evening.

MTU lost senior defenseman Mike VanWagner and Anthony Schooley to injury on Friday night, and their playoff availability is in question. Saturday, Baker left with an injury and he, too, is in question for the upcoming weekend. Add Brett Olson, injured against Wisconsin, and MTU is down scoring power with the playoff weekend coming.

“I thought when North Dakota pressured and had sustained pressure, we were tired,” Michigan Tech head coach Jamie Russell said. “And with a short bench, we started making poor decisions and turning the puck over.”

MTU (5-28-1, 4-24-0 WCHA) now heads to Denver for the first round of the WCHA playoffs and the second time in four weeks and hopes for a little better results than the last time.

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