GVSU DII hockey outscores DePaul 13-2 in two-game series
The Lakers rebounded after a poor offensive output last weekend
After coming off a rough weekend series where the Grand Valley State men’s club hockey team (Division II) only scored two goals against Miami of Ohio, the Lakers had to make apparent changes to its offense.
“We had a pretty tough week of practice with the improvement of offense in mind, but this team wasn’t satisfied after playing Miami,” said GVSU coach Mike Forbes.
Practice made perfect for the Lakers as they dominated visiting DePaul in a two-game series, outscoring the Blue Devils 13-2 to pick up two easy wins to improve their record to 9-4-1.
The Lakers defeated the Blue Devils in a convincing 7-1 blowout Friday, Dec. 9 and came back the next night to deliver a convincing 6-1 win Saturday, Dec. 10.
GVSU came out hungry, looking like a completely different team Friday in terms of effort and confidence from last weekend. The Lakers had a field day shooting, totaling 53 shots on goal. DePaul goaltender Nicholas Vitton finished the night with 46 saves.
“We definitely got more puck in the net than last weekend,” Forbes said. “We worked hard on getting the puck and more bodies near the net and we exposed them because of that.”
The Lakers opened up scoring after a quick first-period goal by senior Collin Finkhouse, assisted by linemate Matt Sherman. Finkhouse, GVSU’s leader in assists, finished the night with a hat trick.
One minute later, GVSU’s Troy Marrett tacked on another goal, which proved to be the game-winning goal in the first period. Tommy Carey and Thomas Luzynski were responsible for the assist. Other Laker scorers were Daniel Smith, Mitch Claggett and Ryan Hein.
GVSU goaltender Jared Maddock had plenty of help from a stifiling Laker defense, totaling 15 saves on only 16 shots on goal by the Blue Devils.
The Saturday game was a similar story as the Lakers excelled to find open opportunities and taking advantage of DePaul penalties, scoring two power-play and short-handed goals.
Lucas Little put the first point of the board off an assist by Sherman and Finkhouse and the Lakers never looked back.
In the third period, the Lakers scored three goals within a five minute span. Goal scorers for the Lakers were Hein, Tommy Carey, Troy Marrett, Collin Finkhouse and Smith. DePaul’s Erik Lundgren broke up the shutout with over six minutes remaining.
GVSU freshman Matt Sherman said these victories were much needed after a bad weekend.
“We played a lot more physical this weekend and finally was able to keep our guys out of the penalty box,” Sherman said.
Forbes had a goal for his team to step up its game, and was happy they delivered.
“I just want us to be harder to play against,” Forbes said. “We have to make it difficult for the other defenses and make them work, and against Miami we were a perimeter team and tried to play the puck around the outside. Once we got in a groove this weekend, we really put the defense on their heels.”
The Lakers hope to keep their offense flowing against Davenport Friday, Dec. 16 at 9 p.m.