SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. – The Michigan Tech 2020-21 hockey team started with a goalless draw on Lake Superior State Saturday (Nov. 21) at Taffy Abel Arena. Two experienced goalkeepers held the puck out of their respective nets before 65:00.
Mark Sinclair made his first start between the pipes in the Black and Gold, stopping all 21 shots he encountered to pick up his fourth collegiate shutout. His last shutout was February 14, 2020, also at LSSU in a winless tie when he was with Alabama Huntsville.
“Maybe it’s closer to home in Ontario,” Sinclair said of his performance. “I don’t know what it is, but I’ve always enjoyed playing in that arena. It’s the first game and I wanted to have a good game right away. Sometimes I thought I was getting a little sloppy and I could.” got a few rebounds under better control, but overall I think it went pretty well.
“I didn’t see much traffic all night. I think the guys did a really good job for me showing me pucks and for the most part everything stayed out so that helped.”
Huskies outshot Lakers 28-21 and controlled play for most of the second half of the game.
“I was happy with the way the boys played,” said tech coach Joe Shawhan. “I thought we got better as the game went on and we played our best in the third period.
“Sinclair played a very good game for us. I think we have a very good goalkeeper there and both keepers played well tonight.”
Tech got plenty of opportunities in the third period, looking for the go-ahead goal. Alec Broetzman walked in from the blue line with plenty of space, but a defender recovered and tapped a wrist shot high. Jake Crespi sounded a loose puck from the face-off spot that went just wide halfway through the period.
The Huskies were whistled for a penalty with 4:56 left in the third, but came out with the best scoring opportunity when Broetzman and Logan Pietila had a shorthand 2-to-1. Pietila’s shot was tipped wide.
The NCAA has adjusted the overtime for this year to 5:00 from 3-on-3. Trenton Bliss and Tommy Parrottino both had partial breakaways that were saved when the Huskies outperformed LSSU 3-1 in the extra session.
LSSU won a pointless three round shootout after the game. Logan Pietila scored on Tech’s second chance. Yuki Miura and Ashton Calder scored for the Lakers. Parrottino and Bliss missed their chance for the Huskies.
Freshmen Carson Bantle, Arvid Caderoth and Brett Thorne made their Michigan Tech debuts.
“I thought our freshmen were doing really well,” added Shawhan. “Carson and Arvid played hard up front and created some opportunities. Brett is a great player and had a lot of poise on the blue line, and we even managed to get him there in 3-on-3.”
Sinclair stopped seven shots in each of the first two bouts, six in the third and one in extra time.
“The extended preseason probably helped me,” added Sinclair. “Obviously you don’t want to take so much free time and rather play games, but I was able to adapt to my new teammates and they have been very welcoming since I got here.”
The teams only combined three small penalties.
Tech’s last goalless draw was on November 10, 2006 against Minnesota Duluth. The last time Tech had a tie in the season opener was October 6, 2000 against Northern Michigan (3-3).
Tech and LSSU will complete the non-conference series on Sunday at 3:07 PM.
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