The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
April 11, 2011 - 3B
Wolverine seniors stand
By MARK BURNS press conference.
Daily Sports Editor Winnett tallied the Wolver-
ines' first goal against the Bull-
ST. PAUL, Minn. - Two dogs with about five minutes
senior unsung heroes sat in the remaining in the first period
Michigan hockey locker room, - it was just his fifth goal all
dejected after coming one goal season, but the second in just as
shy of winning the program's many games.
loth national title. Even though he hasn't had
Matt Rust, the offensive season Michigan
with his NOTEBOOK coach Red Berenson expected,
arm around Winnett still had a consistent
a teary-eyed Ben Winnett, spot in the lineup.
encompassed the Wolverines' The same could be said for
devastating loss to Minnesota- Rust, who has just five goals and
"Duluth on Saturday in just a few 21 assists on the year.
short words. An integral piece of the Wol-
"Everyone played their verine penalty kill and a face-
hearts out," Rust said. "I don't off specialist, Rust has been the
have much else to say." backbone of Michigan's stel-
While seniors Carl Hagelin lar defensive play the past few
and Louie Caporusso are the weeks.
more visible Wolverines on the He helped the Wolverines kill
team, it was some of the play- eight of the nine Minnesota-
ers behind the scenes - namely Duluth power play opportuni-
Rust and Winnett - who pro- ties.
pelled Michigan to have so Additionally, he won the key
much success late in the year. faceoff that led to Winnett's
Rust and Winnett impacted first-period goal.
the NCAA title game in their "Guys go unnoticed," Capo-
own separate ways. russo said. "A guy like Matt Rust
"If it wasn't for (Winnett), goes unnoticed. Those guys win
I don't know if we would have championships. They're in the
been in the final game," Capo- shadows ... they played unbe-
russo said in the post-game lievable."
SILVER LINING: Berenson
didn't mince words when talk-
ing about the officiating of the
National Championship game.
"Every time a player falls
down, it shouldn't be a penalty,
not in NCAA championship
hockey," Berenson said follow-
ing the loss.
They're in the
Prior to the game, Berenson
and the Michigan coaching staff
said that if the Wolverines could
kill off three penalties then
they'd be perfectly fine against
The Bulldogs boast the loth
best power-play unit in the
country, so Michigan didn't
want to be in the sin-bin the
But that wasn't the case, as
the Wolverines were whistled
out, penalty kill steps up
for nine penalties to Minnesota-
Yet, even though they were
in the box for almost a third of
the game, the Wolverines killed
off all but one of the Bulldogs'
power plays - a testament to
the strength of a team that has
placed heightened emphasis on
defense in the past three weeks.
"We were dialed in," Beren-
Michigan assistant coach
Billy Powers prepared Michi-
gan for Minnesota-Duluth's
potent power play prior to Sat-
urday's game, with the Wol-
verines' penalty killers playing
aggressive and limiting the
Bulldogs' time to work the puck
And while the Wolverines
lost the biggest game of the sea-
son, there is still a small silver
lining to be taken away from the
Xcel Energy Center.
"We showed a lot of charac-
ter, guys blocking shots," senior
forward Carl Hagelin said. JAKE FROMM/Daily
"Overall, great PK this week- Senior forward Matt Rustfights for the puck in Michigan's 3-2 overtime loss to
end." Minnesota-Duluth on Saturday.
NOTES: The Wolverines had goaltender Shawn Hunwick, 2-1 in National Championship
three team members named Winnett and freshman defen- games and 5-9 in the Frozen
to the 2011 men's Frozen Four seman Jon Merrill ... Michigan Four during his 27-year career
All-Tournament team: senior coach Red Berenson is now in Ann Arbor.
From Page 1B
The Wolverines got out to
an early lead when senior for-
ward Ben Winnett scored his
fifth goal of the season - and
second goal of the Frozen Four
- five minutes into the first
period, but Minnesota-Duluth
sustained pressure on Michi-
gan defenders and senior net-
minder Shawn Hunwick all
The Bulldogs tied the game
at one just under two minutes
into the second period and
then took the 2-1 lead eight
minutes later on the power
play. But led by a strong class of
seniors, Michigan kept confi-
dence high on the bench. It had
been down in plenty of games
this season, even in the NCAA
regional semifinal against
Near the end of the second
period, junior defenseman
Greg Pateryn slapped a shot
from the blue line in front of
Kenny Reiter. In front of the
net, sophomore forward Jeff
Rohrkemper got a hold of the
puck and back-handed it to
beat Reiter on the right side to
tie the game at two.
"I think the top players just
about neutralize each other
throughout the game, and it's
an unexpected or unsung hero
that ends up scoring a goal ...
Rohorkemper's goal was a fluky
goal, but it was a huge goal."
From Page 1B
found a different guy to step up at
the right time.
Saturday night, Pateryn was
that guy. The junior defenseman
finished the game plus-1 with an
assist, and was responsible for
sending the game to overtime.
With less than 10 minutes to
go in the third period, Pateryn
and the Wolverines found them-
selves where they had been
nearly all game - on the penalty
kill. A boarding call brought the
Bulldogs' vaunted power-play
unit back on the ice for the ninth
and final time. Of Minnesota-
Duluth's 14 goals in the NCAA
Tournament, 11 of them came on
the power play.
The power play moved the
puck around until it came to a
Bulldog all alone, two feet from
the crease. Senior goalie Shawn
Hunwick made the save, but the
r V _,
7. _ . , p
_t_ _ .:
From Page 1B
Michigan to the national title game.
The little man was the star of
college hockey's biggest stage.
But Rudy didn'tget a champion-
ship ring, and neither did Hun-
It wasn't for lack of goalmouth
heroics. With just over nine min-
utes left in the deadlocked, 2-2
game, Bulldog forward Mike Con-
nolly picked up a loose puck and
waltzed in on Hunwick. The path
was clear, Connolly just needed
to bury it like he had 28 times
already this season. Top shelf,
The puck smacked the netting
of Hunwick's glove.
"He's the one that got us here,"
senior Matt Rust said. "He played
great, made some (really) great
saves (Saturday). It's too bad."
In the postgame press con-
ference, Hunwick credited the
defense with playingsolid defense
in front of him.
But how could he? Hunwick
faced 78 shots in the Frozen Four.
He had to stave off 13 power-
play opportunities against North
Dakota and Minnesota-Duluth -
Michigan was lucky to even be in
striking distance of a title.
He wouldn't leave his team-
mates out to dry. Back in the lock-
er room, not on national television,
the goaltender finally opened up.
"I don't know if we played our
best defense - we came out tenta-
tive," Hunwick said.
Still, it was "we" that choked,
"we" that came up short in the
national championship game.
And fortunately for Beren-
son, the Wolverines and hockey
fans anywhere, that "we" will be
headlined by Hunwick's return
in the fall. No. 31 plans to return
as a fifth-year senior to backstop
Michigan in one final NCAA title
"Every guy in this room that's
returning is going to have a bitter
taste in their mouth all summer
long," Hunwick said. "Losing in
overtime in the national champi-
onship game, you should be pretty
The storybook ending got lost
somewhere in the excitement of
the Frozen Four, but the final twist
may be still to come.
"Being able to win a national
championship on mybirthday
would've been something I'd
always remember," Hunwick con-
tinued. "But I'll always remember
the guys in this room and the run
we went on."
For Hunwick, his legacy lies in
how this - his biggest failure at
Michigan - drives him.
Because while the film crews
shut down, the lights dim and the
madness subsides, this kid, with
tears in his eyes, knows he can be
more than just a good story.
And that's how legends are
- Nesbitt's column faces
its fiercest critic this morning,
when Hunwick sits down in
John U. Bacon's course and
critiques it. He can be reached at
dA tFp OMM/Daily
Senior goaltender Shawn Hunwick makes ose of his 35 sases against the Bulldogs is Saturday's championship tame.
Hunwick, who made 40
saves against North Dakota
on Thursday to lead the Wol-
verines to the NCAA Cham-
pionship, kept the Wolverines
in the game again on Satur-
day. Dubbed "Tiny Jesus" by
Michigan fans for his, at times,
indescribable saves in St. Paul,
Hunwick lived up to the nick-
name and got the Wolverines to
overtime against the Bulldogs.
While Hunwick kept the
Minnesota-Duluth offense and
power play at bay long enough
for the Wolverines to have a
chance on Saturday, sudden-
death overtime was a different
At 3:22 into the extra frame,
Minnesota-Duluth senior Kyle
Schmidt's shot in front of the
net was the game-winner.
When Bulldog forward Travis
Oleksuk got the puck behind
the net on the right side of Hun-
wick, he slid it to Schmidt who
one-timed it to earn a National
Title for Minnesota-Duluth.
"It's a tough loss," Michi-
gan coach Red Berenson said.
"Shawn Hunwick was terrific.
He gave us a chance and it
wasn't to be."
Pateryn added: "We knew
it was going to be a really ugly
"We knew it was going to be
quick. This is what overtime
is sometimes. We knew it was
going to take one shot and it
did, but it wasn't for us."
[ See a multimedia piece about
this story on MichiganDaily.
puck bounced over him and trick-
led onto the goal line. Pateryn
reached back and swept it away.
"I thought it was going in,"
Hunwick said. "I got a glove on
it, but not enough. It looked like it
was going to go off the post and in
or just straight in, and Greg saved
Immediately, senior forwards
Carl Hagelin and Louie Capo-
russo went back down the ice on
a two-on-one, Michigan's last
scoringchance of the contest.
"That play kind of gave us a
little momentum," Pateryn said.
"Obviously it led to that two-on-
one. When Louie and Carl were
going down I really thought that
they were going to bury it."
It was one of a couple poten-
tially momentum-changing plays
Pateryn had. He made the play
to keep the puck in the zone on
Michigan's second goal to tie the
game and early in the third peri-
od, his diving poke check negated
he was also part of a unit fatal flaw. The game-winner
id trouble gettingthe puck came because the Wolverines
the zone against the Bull- were tired and couldn't get the
ggressive forecheck. puck out of the zone. All Pateryn
could do was sit, head down, star-
ing holes through the floor of the
Ve were not But Pateryn has another
chance to be in the same situa-
confident or tion. As a senior, Pateryn - along
with fellow junior Brandon
t as patlent Burlon - will have to lead the
th thepuck. defense corps.
Luckily for Pateryn, he has
some experience in that all ready.
"Particularly in the second-
half of the year, he's just been as
tybe we were a little jit- solid as a rock, somebody who
Michigan coach Red Beren- has played like a senior and not a
d. "(We had) way too many junior, atake charge kind of guy,"
'ers starting in the first assistant coach Billy Powers
. We were not as confident said. "He's on the ice, he wants
as patient with the puck as to make a difference, he wants to
ould have been and that's have the puck. I can't say enough
the tell-tale signs that we about him."
t having as good a game as And if he has to answer the
ded to." tough questions next year, he has
novers were Michigan's experience in that too.
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