ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Michigan (No. 6 USA Today/No. 6 USCHO) moved into first place in the CCHA on Friday (Jan. 21) with a 2-0 whitewash of the Alaska Nanooks (RV USA Today/No. 19 USCHO) at Yost Ice Arena.
Sophomore defenseman Lee Moffie (Wallingford, Conn.) tallied his first game-winning goal of the season in the second period, freshman defenseman Jon Merrill (Brighton, Mich.) provided the insurance marker in the third, and senior goaltender Shawn Hunwick (Sterling Heights, Mich.) turned away each of the 36 shots he faced for his third shutout of the season.
After a scoreless opening period, Alaska had a premium chance to take the lead when Joe Sova emerged from the penalty box with a breakaway. Demonstrating tremendous patience, Hunwick followed Sova’s every move and made a blocker save to keep the game deadlocked.
Michigan eventually broke open the scoring at 11:09 of the second stanza on a three-on-one opportunity. A Nanook turnover in the neutral zone gave senior center Matt Rust (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.) the puck. Rust passed to the right for senior left wing Carl Hagelin (Sodertalje, Sweden), who dropped it back to Moffie at the hash marks, where he snapped a shot that ricocheted off goalie Scott Greenham’s blocker and in for the 1-0 lead.
Merrill padded the U-M lead at 2-0 at 8:40 of the final frame. A pair of matching minors led to four-on-four hockey, where Michigan dominated control of the puck. From the center point, Merrill fired a shot that slipped through traffic and by Greenham’s left pad to double U-M’s lead to 2-0. Senior defenseman Chad Langlais (Spokane, Wash.) and Hagelin had the assists.
The Maize and Blue hosts the Nanooks again at 7:35 p.m. tomorrow (Saturday, Jan. 22) at Yost Ice Arena for part two of the CCHA weekend.