By Bob Miller/Michigan Beat Writer
They waited and waited. And waited some more.
After what seemed an interminable delay, Michigan won their first round NCAA Regional opener over Nebraska-Omaha, 3-2, in overtime Friday night in St. Louis as they sat on the ice. Or on the bench. Or stood or kneeled on the ice.
The odd victory was presented to them by a referee's ruling that a shot taken by Greg Pateryn from the right point had deflected under Nebraska-Omaha's goaltender and barely found its way over the goal line.
The peculiar nature of the win partially obscured the fact that the Woverines had rallied from a 2-0 early deficit to gamely come back and tie the game in regulation time on goals by Louie Caporusso and Kevin Lynch. Lynch was also credited with game-winner at 2:35 into overtime.
"I thought their defense was playing us hard," said Lynch of the overtime scenario. "I wasn't sure if it went in or not. I know it went in off of a defenseman. I wasn't sure if it crossed the line. I figured the longer they reviewed the better it was for us. Coach just had us stay focused and keep our heads in the game while we had to wait. I was pretty confident that it was going to go our way."
Michigan advances to play Colorado College, surprise winners over number one-seeded Boston College, late Saturday night for a spot in the Frozen Four.
"We have to put this game behind us between now and when we go to bed, and start refocusing'" Michigan coach Red Berenson warned post-game on Friday. "The whole weekend comes down to tomorrow night. We want to be a Saturday night team."