Spartans dominate Nittany Lions, 5-1
EAST LANSING, Mich. – Senior Alex Limoges scored his team-leading sixth goal of the season, but it wasn’t enough as Penn State dropped a 5-1 decision to Michigan State in Big Ten Conference action on Monday afternoon at Munn Ice Arena.
Penn State sees its four-game win streak snapped and falls to 4-6-0 on the year and 2-6-0-0 in conference action while the Spartans improve to 4-4-2 overall and 3-4-1-2 in league play with the victory.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Michigan State opened the scoring as Jagger Joshua was left all alone coming down the right slot and he received the puck on his backhand and lifted it over the glove of PSU freshman net-minder Liam Souliere for the 1-0 lead at 2:26 of the frame.
The Spartans extended their lead to 2-0 as Gianluca Esteves blasted a one-timer from the left circle over the glove of Souliere at 5:03 of the first period.
Penn State cut the deficit in half in the second period as Limoges finished off a beautiful tic-tac-toe passing play during the man-advantage for the 2-1 score at 6:20. Sophomore Connor MacEachern and senior Tim Doherty picked up the assists on the play.
Just 38 seconds later senior Clayton Phillips took a five-minute major penalty for checking from behind and on the ensuing powerplay Joshua redirected a point shot past Souliere to regain the two-goal margin, 3-1, at 10:20 of the stanza.
Penn State received a five-minute major of their own later in the second period but were unable to capitalize as Michigan State killed it off.
MSU put the game on ice after winning a battle for a loose puck off an offensive zone faceoff and Nicolas Muller found Brody Stevens to the left of the net and he fired it home for the 4-1 score at 14:15 of the third period.
Mitchell Lewandowski then hit the empty net at 17:45 for the 5-1 final.
Souliere falls to 1-3-0 on the year after making 16 saves over 54:41 of game action. Senior Will Holtforster made his collegiate debut for the Nittany Lions but did not face a single shot over the final 2:15 of the contest. MSU goaltender Drew DeRidder improves to 4-4-2 on the year after stopping 36-of-37 shots faced.
The Nittany Lions outshot MSU 37-21 including a 13-3 mark in the third period while going 1-for-3 on the powerplay, MSU went 1-for-2 with the man-advantage.
The Spartans controlled the dot again winning 30-of-57 faceoffs (52.6 percent).
With his fourth powerplay goal of the season, Limoges moves into a tie with four other former Nittany Lions for the all-time program standard for powerplay tallies with 13 for his career. He has now scored a powerplay goal in four of the last five games.
With 47 career goals, Limoges is now just one goal shy of former line mate Liam Folkes ’20 for fifth on the Penn State all-time goals list.
MacEachern has assisted each of Limoges’ man-advantage tallies while Doherty has had a hand in three of the four.
Penn State is now 16-12-4 all-time against Michigan State as the teams have now split their last six series against each other.
Penn State will travel to Ohio State to close out this opening four-game road trip with a pair of games on Friday and Saturday evening.