College Hockey Scoreboard from CHN

Monday, January 16, 2012

Michigan tops Ohio State indoors, outdoors

By Bob Miller/Michigan Beat Writer

After a stretch from early November to early December when Michigan simply couldn't win a game, the Wolverines have righted their ship.

Since Dec. 2, Michigan can't lose.

Not indoors. Not outdoors.

Not in Alaska, East Lansing, Detroit, Ann Arbor, Columbus or Cleveland.

The Wolverines have put together a string of nine games without a loss that has pulled them from the depths of the CCHA standings up to third in the conference rundown and a No. 10 ranking in the latest USCHO.com Division I poll.

Michigan's latest victim was second-ranked Ohio State. The Wolverines blanked the Buckeyes 4-0 on goaltender Shawn Hunwick's career-high 46 save shutout performance and then right back two days later with a 4-1 win in the outdoor Frozen Diamond Faceoff at Progressive Field, home ballpark of Major League Baseball's Cleveland Indians.

Although the Wolverines have been getting solid performances from each of their lines, it was the Wolverine's top line of David Wohlberg, Chris Brown and Alex Guptill that did the bulk of the offensive damage against the Buckeyes this past weekend.

In the two-game series against Ohio State, Wohlberg contributed a goals and two assists. Both Brown and Guptill chipped in two goals and two assists apiece.

The addition of Jon Merrill to the Michigan defensive corps has solidified a group that frequently struggled during the first half of the season.

Michigan head coach Red Berenson knows that the improvement is due to all phases of the Wolverines' game.

“It starts with your defensive game,” said Berenson after the outdoor contest. “Our penalty killing's been better, our zone coverage has been better, our defense is playing stronger. And Hunwick is making the saves when we do give up a shot.”

Michigan puts the streak on the line this coming weekend against another CCHA power, Notre Dame, in a pair of games in South Bend at the Fighting Irish's sparkling new arena.

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