Behind the Mask

Top Line Powers Men’s Hockey to Opening Night Win

It was nearly a perfect start for the men’s hockey team as they received goals from four different players in a 5-3 win over UMass at Munn Arena Friday night.

Mackenzie MacEachern had a goal and two assists and Matt Berry had two goals and an assist to power the offense. Jake Hildebrand had 21 saves. Read More…

Spartans Blank No. 12 Iowa Behind Patton’s First Shutout

After losing four of their last six games, Michigan State field hockey came out strong in their contest against No. 12 Iowa at the Breast Cancer Awareness Game Friday afternoon. Sierra Patton earned her first career shutout as the Spartans defeated the Hawkeyes 2-0 at Ralph Young Field with the annual Izzone Campout taking place just across the street at Munn Field.

The win puts the Spartans at 8-6 and back to .500 in Big Ten play at 3-3. With the way last weekend turned out with losses to both Indiana and Ball State, this game was a big test for the team. Read More…

Weekend Hockey Preview – UMass

Weekend Hockey Preview is back for a new season as the Michigan State Spartans take on the UMass Minutemen Friday at 7 p.m.

Know Thy Enemy

The Minutemen are coming into this weekend’s contest at Munn with a regular season game already under their belts, losing 8-1 to Boston University. Read More…

A Special Homecoming for Josh Jacobs

Just off the banks of the Clinton River, at the corner of Dequindre and Parkingdale roads, lies the Onyx Rochester Ice Arena, the home rink of freshman defenseman Josh Jacobs.

After starting skating at two and playing in house leagues at five, Jacobs became a member of the Rochester Rattlers at age 11. It was the first time he was a member of a travel team. Read More…

Behind the Mask – #7 – 10/15/14

As the Michigan State Spartans men’s hockey team prepare for their home opener against U-Mass, Behind the Mask is ready to get you up to date on the team’s status heading into the game.

Host Jason Ruff along with reporter Brian Bobal discuss MSU’s bye week storylines, as well as updates on other Big Ten teams.

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Tom Anastos Speaks Prior to Home Opener

On Tuesday, Michigan State men’s ice hockey coach Tom Anastos had his first weekly press conference of the season. During the conference, Anastos gave some insight on last week’s practice schedule and the Spartans’ simulated road trip.

Last weekend’s practices (which were open to the public) were very up-tempo and very productive, according to Anastos.

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Field Hockey Gets Swept Out of Indiana

The No. 20 Michigan State Spartans field hockey team lost both of their games down in Indiana this weekend. The Spartans fell to the No. 18 Indiana Hoosiers by a score of 2-1, then lost a second game 2-1 in overtime the next day to the Ball State University Cardinals.

After defeating Rutgers last weekend, the Spartans improved to 2-2 in Big Ten conference play. The Spartans’ next Big 10 game was Saturday against Indiana. Read More…

Areas the Men’s Hockey Team Must Improve on the Ice

Hockey season is upon us, and coach Tom Anastos and his crew have some work to do prior to their first regular season game against Massachusetts on Oct. 17. In his press conference at media day last Wednesday, Anastos talked about several areas in which his team needs to improve.

The most glaring issue facing the Spartans is finding a way to put the puck in the net. Read More…

Men’s Hockey Freshmen Show Promising Start

For four freshmen, this past week was the first time they put on the Spartan uniform.

“It was exciting to put on the Spartan sweater for the first time and get used to the feeling of representing Spartan hockey,” freshman Dylan Pavelek said.

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Anastos: “Can We Turn the Corner?”

It has been a rocky road for Michigan State men’s ice hockey since making an appearance in the NCAA Tournament in 2012. Two subpar seasons have put Michigan State in a re-tooling phase, but coming into this season, coach Tom Anastos was feeling very optimistic about the capabilities of his team when he spoke at Media Day last Wednesday.

“I thought it was our best offseason,” Anastos said. “We challenged the guys when our season was over to go home. We didn’t have guys come back early given the renovations at Munn. We also wanted to get a nice fresh mindset before the season started. Based on our physical testing, it’s been the best in three years.” Read More…

Men’s Hockey Ties Windsor, Falls in Shootout

In Michigan State’s opening exhibition match against the Windsor Lancers, Matt Beaudoin tied the game at two for Windsor with a power-play goal midway through the third period, which eventually forced overtime Tuesday night in front of a crowd of 3,683 at Munn Ice Arena. Nobody scored in the five-minute extra session and Windsor would win the shootout 1-0 on a goal by Spencer Pommells. The game goes in the books as a 2-2 tie.

“That was an ideal exhibition game for us,” said fourth-year head coach Tom Anastos. “It’s an experienced team. It’s an older group. A lot of those players have a lot of high-level hockey experience. As a step to get ready for our first game, I wish we could play one more like that.”

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Behind the Mask – #6 – 10/7/14

Behind the Mask is back for another season of Michigan State hockey. New host Jason Ruff, along with Brian Bobal, are at Munn Ice Arena for the Spartans’ exhibition opener against the Windsor Lancers.

Jason and Brian discuss what their first impressions of the team are period-by-period. They also provide a look ahead to the upcoming regular season, which begins Oct. 17 against UMass.

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Ferrantino Ready to Lead Men’s Hockey

Not long after the Spartans’ season ended in an overtime defeat in the Big Ten playoffs to Ohio State, men’s hockey coach Tom Anastos announced that forward Michael Ferrantino would be the Spartans’ 70th captain in program history.

“It means a lot. Growing up around this program and seeing the guys that have been captain before me, it’s hard for me to put it into words,” Ferrantino said. “Just to be trusted with that honor and that responsibility by your teammates and your coaches means a lot to me.”

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Men’s Hockey Freshmen Ready to Make an Impact

Even though this year’s men’s hockey freshmen class is small with four players, they still have the potential to have a large impact on the ice for the Spartans this season.

“I think it’s a real good freshman class and that’s coming off a real good freshman class from last year,” fourth-year coach Tom Anastos said. “I think that’s what is important, to put some consecutive groups together to build our talent level and the depth on our team. Read More…

Another Slow Start Dooms Michigan State

Despite two late goals by Abby Barker and Jenni Smith, Michigan State dropped its second consecutive contest against top 10 opponents in a 4-2 heartbreaker to No. 4 Maryland Sunday afternoon.

It became the sixth consecutive contest that the Spartans failed to score the first goal. The four goals allowed tied a season-high for Michigan State, who is now 1-2 in Big Ten play and 5-4 overall. Read More…

Michigan State Can’t Complete Comeback Against Penn State

Sophomore Kristin Matula notched her first goal of the season and Sierra Patton made seven saves, but it was not enough as No. 18 Michigan State (5-3) could not complete the comeback against No. 7 Penn State (7-2), as they lost by a score of 2-1 Friday afternoon at Ralph Young Field.

Friday’s game marked the 37th all-time meeting between these two Big Ten schools, with Penn State winning the last five in a row to give them a 27-10 head-to-head record against the Spartans.

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Anastos Speaks at Big Ten Hockey Media Day

Can’t wait for hockey season?

Until the Spartans play their Green and White game to kick off the preseason, here are some MSU related bits from Big Ten Hockey Media Day at Joe Louis Arena.

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Who Will be the Next Big Ten Hockey School?

It is a question that has surrounded fans for the past few years: “Will the Big Ten hockey conference ever expand, and who will step up?”

Wisconsin head coach Mike Eaves re-ignited the conversation in an interview with the Journal Sentinel. In the interview, Eaves expressed his desire to see the six-team conference grow in the near future, and listed Illinois, Indiana and Northwestern as potential additions.

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