By @MichaelCaples –
DETROIT – In what could be their final showdown at Joe Louis Arena, the Wolverines and Spartans played for as long as possible.
Then Michigan claimed the bragging rights.
In the final “Duel in the D” game at Joe Louis Arena between the storied in-state rivals (they could still meet in the Big Ten playoffs at the home of the Red Wings), the Wolverines prevailed in a shootout after they played the Spartans to a 4-4 tie through regulation and overtime.
Sam Piazza scored the deciding goal in the shootout; it was his shootout attempt since juniors, and he went with the same move as he did then, beating John Lethemon for the winning goal.
Michigan State’s Joe Cox and Michigan’s Jake Slaker also scored in the series of penalty shots.
Wolverines captain Nolan De Jong scored twice in regulation, while Slaker and Max Shuart also added official goals for Michigan. Hayden Lavigne stopped 15 of the 19 regulation shots sent his way.
Sam Saliba scored twice for the Spartans, including the game-tying goal with less than 5 minutes remaining in regulation. Taro Hirose and Chris Knudson also scored for MSU.
Ed Minney started the game for the Spartans, but he was replaced by Lethemon at the start of the second period after allowing two goals in only five shots.
Lethemon stopped 22 shots in his relief appearance.
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