Ice Hockey

Ohio State defenseman Grant Gabriele will return to Ann Arbor this weekend with No. 6 Ohio State.

“The Michigan-Ohio State rivalry in hockey has been pretty intense,” Gabriele said. “So when we see that on the schedule, it always gets people going. It’s just kind of a big game people look for and a fun one. Just a lot of intensity and the tension between the two teams are pretty crazy.”

Nick Pastujov has put forth career-high numbers in goals and points this season – notching 10 and 20, respectively.

Pastujov has quietly put together his most complete season to date. So quietly that Michigan coach Mel Pearson was unaware of his current goal-scoring drought – one that dates back to the championship game of the Great Lakes Invitational Tournament.

Senior defenseman Joseph Cecconi honed his competitive drive from his mother.

Even before his first organized hockey experience, Cecconi gravitated toward the game. He always picked the hockey stick over the basketball as a child and could always be found on skates in the winter and rollerblades in the summer — when he wasn’t playing soccer.

Freshman forward Jimmy Lambert has been honing his offensive and defensive skills as the season has progressed.

Pearson has implored Lambert to take things more seriously, through preparation for games or practices. There are many different routines or styles of hockey — different ways to play, practice or prepare. As Pearson puts it, Lambert’s yet to find his own.

But he has started to put things together.

The Michigan hockey team's odds for an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament are slim.

As the Michigan hockey team inches closer to postseason play, one thing is abundantly clear — the only way that it makes the NCAA Tournament is with an automatic bid.

Senior defenseman Joseph Cecconi committed a costly interference penalty against Notre Dame on Tuesday.

Mel Pearson sat at the back of Yost Ice Arena after an October win again St. Lawrence, content with the Michigan hockey team's victory.

But beyond that, he still had a goal in mind.

Sophomore forward Michael Pastujov learned from his time on the bench, and has supplied five goals for the Michigan hockey team since his return on Jan. 24.

There are few things that resonate more with an athlete than being benched.

It is a cut and dried message, forcing the player to do some self-reflecting while becoming an observer to the game. And it is one that Michigan coach Mel Pearson recently delivered to sophomore forward Michael Pastujov.

Junior Hayden Lavigne allowed four goals for Michigan in its disappointing loss to Notre Dame.

SOUTH BEND — On the penalty kill, a shot. On the power play, a shot. On even-strength, a shot.

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One minute and 44 seconds later, forward Dylan Malmquist fired a shot from the right circle that went over junior goaltender Hayden Lavigne’s shoulder. After taking a penalty so early in the game, the Wolverines (12-12-6, 8-8-4-2) found themselves in a hole they couldn’t climb out of.

The Fighting Irish added two goals in under a minute in the second period to put the game firmly out of reach for Michigan, who lost, 5-2.

Sophomore defenseman Quinn Hughes tallied three assists in two games against Michigan State last weekend.

His effort level has visibly been higher, and he’s made impressive plays in all four games since. This time, his plays have made Michigan’s highlight reel — not the other team’s.

Hughes is refocusing on the little things that make him successful, and it’s been effective thus far.