The Michigan State men’s hockey team went on the road looking to return to East Lansing with a 4-4 record, but they could not get the sweep they wanted as they split their series with the University of New Hampshire.
On Friday, the Spartans’ offense started right where it left off against Ferris State.
Goals from Travis Walsh and Michael Ferrantino put the Spartans ahead 2-0 just 10 minutes in.
For Walsh, it was his second goal in as many games and Ferrantino’s goal came on the power play just five minutes later.
The goal was the only shot Michigan State would register on three power-play chances.
A late power-play goal for the Wildcats would cut the Michigan State lead to 2-1 after the first period. The goal would spark the Wildcats in the final two periods and they ended up outshooting Michigan State 29-8 in the final 40 minutes.
New Hampshire would tie the game less than five minutes into the second period on Grayson Downing’s third goal of the season.
With the Wildcats on the power play under 10 minutes later, the Spartans got a huge boost as Mackenzie MacEachern notched a short-handed goal to put Michigan State back on top. The score would stay that way until midway through the third period.
The Spartan lead would expand to two as Ferrantino tallied his second of the game and third on the season at 11:11.
Just one minute later, Tyler Kelleher scored his second goal of the game to cut the lead in half again. That would be all the Wildcats could put behind Jake Hildebrand, who made 42 saves including 18 in the third period. Joe Cox added two assists for Michigan State.
Things were a little different Saturday night. Andrew Poturalski broke the ice and put the Wildcats ahead just 5:40 into the game.
The Spartans bounced back with a pair of goals in the second period.
MacEachern tied the game just 2:06 into the period with his third goal in three games. Ferrantino put the Spartans ahead over nine minutes later with his second power-play goal of the weekend.
After not scoring a power-play goal in four games, the Spartans now have one in three straight games. The power play was a little more productive Saturday night with six shots on goal in five opportunities.
The turning point in the game came 1:45 later.
Two quick goals by the Wildcats flipped the lead again. This time, they would not let it up.
Dan Correale extended the lead to two with a goal under seven minutes into the third period.
With Michigan State’s net empty, Downing would score his second of the weekend to make the score 5-2, where it would stay. The goal marked four unanswered goals for New Hampshire.
Hildebrand made 16 saves for Michigan State (3-5) and Adam Clark made 22 saves for New Hampshire.
The Spartans are back in action Friday night as they welcome Boston College to Munn Ice Arena.
Brian Bobal is the co-host of Behind the Mask for Impact Sports
Photo: Brian Bobal/Impact Sports