History was made at the Joe Louis Arena today but unfortunately for the University of Michigan, they fell on the wrong side of it… twice.
After an impressive 6-2 victory over Miami (OH) Saturday, the Wolverines fell to Notre Dame 3-1 in the final CCHA Championship game as the conference will cease to exist next season.
Michigan though struck first in the opening period as Derek DeBlois notched a shorthanded tally to give the Maize and Blue a 1-0 lead heading into the first intermission. During the second, Notre Dame was able to even the score at one when Anders Lee’s wrist shot from inside the slot beat Steve Racine.
Tied at one heading into the third, Notre Dame took the lead just 23 seconds into the period when Austin Wuthrich recovered the puck when it slipped off Mario Lucia’s stick and shot it into the back of the net.
Michigan had their chances throughout the period but Irish goaltender Steven Summerhays stood tall to keep his team ahead.
Notre Dame eventually got an insurance marker with just over a minute left when Jeff Costello scored on a wide open net as Racine was attempting to get back after skating off for an extra attacker.
With the loss, Michigan for the first time in 23 seasons failed to qualify for the NCAA Tournament. Notre Dame on the other hand will get an automatic bid after winning the CCHA Tournament.
Next season, Michigan will open up play in the newly formed Big Ten hockey conference that will consist of CCHA counterparts Michigan State and Ohio State, the WCHA’s Minnesota and Wisconsin as well as the newly formed squad at Penn State.