DETROIT – Michigan Tech fell 1-0 in overtime to No. 16 Western Michigan in the 52nd Great Lakes Invitational Championship at Joe Louis Arena on Friday (Dec. 30). It was a rematch of the 2013 GLI Title Game that went to the Broncos in similar fashion.
"It was a good hockey game," Tech coach Mel Pearson said. "They're a good team and kept pushing the pace, and they got the bounce they needed. I wasn't expecting it to be as defensive as it was tonight. There weren't a lot of opportunities with both teams taking away time and space and both goaltenders playing very well.
"It's a tough loss, but I like this group we have. We'll bounce back and be ready to go next weekend."
Colt Conrad scored the game-winner 11:55 into the extra session. Angus Redmond saved the first shot by Conrad, but he put in the rebound for the Broncos who won their third GLI Championship.
The Huskies had some prime power play opportunities earlier in the game. They had a two-man advantage for 1:57 at the end of the second period but came up empty handed.
Tech had a 5-minute power play in the overtime after a WMU player was called for checking from behind. Play was quickly evened up after Matt Roy was shipped off for a tripping penalty. The Black and Gold weren't able to capitalize on its five opportunities.
"Our power play let us down a little bit tonight," added Pearson. "We haven't had much time to work on our 5-on-3 in practice, but we looked stagnant out there and that was a real key to the game."
The Broncos scored 71 seconds into the game, but the play was called back after it was determined they entered the zone offside.
Redmond had 24 saves on the night and stopped 47-of-48 shots on the weekend. He stoned Griffen Molino on a breakaway late in the first period and had an amazing, highlight reel, toe save on a shot by Corey Schueneman early in overtime.
Redmond's goals against average went down to 1.27—tops in the country. The freshman is also third in the nation with a .942 save percentage.
"I told Angus that I would take him over any goalie in the country right now," said Pearson. "He has played so well for us, and he'll win a lot of games."
Senior captain Cliff Watson was named to the GLI All-Tournament Team after scoring against Michigan in the semifinal and leading the penalty kill to a perfect 7-of-7 on the weekend.
Tech is now 13-8-3 on the season and wraps up nonconference play next weekend (Jan. 6-7) at No. 12 Notre Dame. Both games will be televised on NBCSN. Friday's game is at 7:35 p.m. and Saturday's faces off at 7:05 p.m.
GLI All-Tournament Team
• Goaltender: Ben Blacker (Western Michigan)
• Defenseman: Corey Schueneman (Western Michigan)
• Defenseman: Cliff Watson (Michigan Tech)
• Forward: Tony Calderone (Michigan)
• Forward: Matheson Iacopelli (Western Michigan)
• Forward: Colt Conrad (Western Michigan) – MVP