Penn State Hockey: Holstrom Nets Game Winner as Nittany Lions Split Series with Michigan State
By Penn State Sports Information
EAST LANSING, Mich. - Junior forward Taylor Holstrom netted the game-winning goal with 4:01 left in regulation as the Penn State men's hockey team erased a 2-0 deficit in a 3-2 victory against Michigan State at Munn Ice Arena Saturday night. The Nittany Lions, who won for the first time when trailing after the opening stanza, improved to 10-13-0, while the Spartans fell to 7-16-3.
Holstrom extended his point-scoring streak to six games with a two-point outing, while freshman forward Casey Bailey extended his point-scoring streak to seven games with an assist on Mark Yanis' power-play marker. Sophomore forward Max Gardiner matched a career-high with three assists, and freshman goaltender Matthew Skoff turned aside 31 shots.
Michigan State took a 2-0 lead early in the first period before Yanis tallied a power-play marker in the second to make it a 2-1 game. Bailey netted his 12th goal of the season at 3:13 of the third before Holstrom netted the game-winner later in the frame.
Penn State outshot the Spartans by a 50-33 margin and went 1-for-4 on the power play, while Michigan State finished 0-for-3 with the man advantage. Spartan netminder Jake Hildebrand made a career-high 47 saves.
Michigan State scored twice in the opening 6:21 as it skated to a 2-0 lead. RJ Boyd put the Spartans on the board at 3:49 when his slap shot from the left point deflected off Skoff's glove and trickled into the back of the net. Less than three minutes later, Matt Grassi unloaded a blast from the right point that beat Skoff high with 13:39 remaining.
In the second period, Yanis halved the Michigan State lead 32 seconds into the frame. Bailey fed Gardiner, whose attempt at the cage forced a sliding Hildebrand out of the crease. Yanis located the rebound in the slot and deposited it into the open net. The Nittany Lions peppered Michigan State throughout the stanza, outshooting the Spartans by a 17-9 margin.
Bailey tied the game at 3:13 of the third period. Gardiner moved the puck to Holstrom in the corner, where his centering pass went off the skate of a Michigan State defenseman and into the slot. Bailey corralled the puck at the right hash marks and wristed a shot low to the far side.
Holstrom notched his sixth goal in as many games at 15:59 of the third. Gardiner moved the puck to Bailey at the right half-wall, where he passed to Holstrom in the slot. The Yorba Linda, Calif., native skated in all alone before moving the puck to his backhand and slipping it past Hildebrand to account for the 3-2 final.
The Nittany Lions will return to action next weekend with a two-game exhibition series against the ACHA's Ohio Bobcats. Penn State will play Ohio at the GIANT Center in Hershey, Pa., Friday before concluding the series at Greenberg Ice Pavilion Saturday.