Despite tough test, DePaul improves to 17-2 with weekend sweep over Michigan


Donald Crocker

DePaul completed the weekend sweep of Michigan with a 5-3 win on Friday and a 5-2 win the next day.

As the season’s midway point has come and gone, the Blue Demons have set themselves up with a 17-2 record after a weekend sweep over the University of Michigan. 

In a 5-3 win on Friday Dec. 3 and a 5-2 win the next day, DePaul saw themselves take care of yet another top ranked ACHA southeast division opponent. 

Saturday’s first period was a battle test for DePaul, as they have seldomly trailed so far this season. Even after some early goals were let in by junior goalie Asher Motew, his late second and third period production gave the Blue Demons some spark to hold off the Wolverines and pick up the critical wins. 

This game saw more of the experienced upperclassmen take charge. The team’s leaders guided the team when it looked rattled. 

DePaul seems to be stuck around the No. 9 and No. 8 seed in the central division. After the team’s split with Indiana, the Blue Demons went back to No. 11. With big matchups against Kentucky, Marian and Iowa to finish the season, DePaul looks to gain more momentum as each game approaches. 

The game began to get scrappy as both teams couldn’t find answers offensively. Committing penalties has been a season-long issue for head coach Dan Wood and his team as players have had a hard time keeping composure when moments get tense. 

DePaul’s offense once again performed when it needed to as they pushed forward and took control of the game. 

Wingers Billy Pachen, Brock Ash and Danny Mannarino have been the main attacking units for the Blue Demons, and they came through again, when it was needed. 

DePaul has been perfect on the road this season, having yet to lose a game away from Johnny’s Ice House. As the regular season nears an end with just nine games left, five of DePaul’s last nine will be on the road. 

Saturday Dec. 10 is the squad’s next game against Kentucky, at Lexington Ice Arena. Kentucky, sitting at 17-4, is ranked No. 4 in the southeast division. A win would boost the Blue Demons resume and possibly make a case for the top-5 placement in the central division. 

Matchups against Concordia and Iowa will be one to keep an eye on, as both teams are currently ranked ahead of DePaul. Both of DePaul’s losses came to the hands of teams who either rank higher, or are just a couple of spots behind the Blue Demons. 

DePaul won’t be back at home until Jan. 13, when they take on University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh for a weekend series.