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Michigan Tech Hockey Wins CCHA Mason Cup Championship

Huskies clinch Frozen Four playoff big against Bemidji State

In their first and last away game of the CCHA playoffs last Friday, Michigan Tech sealed a 2-1 victory against Bemidji State to win their first ever CCHA Mason Cup Championship. The victory allowed the Huskies to automatically clinch the 16th seed for the NCAA Division I Frozen Four Playoffs.  

Bemidji struck first and opened the scoring at 14:07, when Kasper Magnussen received a pass and wired the puck past Blake Pietila’s blocker. However, Michigan Tech responded almost immediately on their next shift to tie the game at 14:59, after the Huskies’ captain Chase Pietila slapped home a rebound puck just outside the crease after a 2-on-1 rush into the Beaver’s zone. The first period finished 1-1 with the shots favoring Tech 14-7.

The second period played out very similarly to the first. At 9:20 into the period, the Huskies stuck again on another 2-on-1 rush, this time with Ryland Mosely walking through a Bemidji defender before unleashing a backhander that went off the post and into the net from directly in front of the crease. The Huskies would hold on to their 2-1 lead for the rest of the period, which ended with shots on goal favoring them at 21-18.

With a 2-1 lead going into the third period, the Huskies took advantage of their lead and played excellent defense. The score remained unchanged throughout, with Michigan Tech killing off the first penalty of the entire game at 15:02. Bemidji tried to even up the score by pulling their goalie with just under two minutes left in the game, but Tech held on to the game and won their first ever CCHA Mason Cup Championship with a score of 2-1.

Reflecting on the monumental win, Kellan Melloche, third-year Mechanical Engineering major and President of Mitch’s Misfits, the spirited student section, expressed immense pride in their support for the team. The Misfits’ dedication, driving 12 hours to witness the historic moment, underscored the electrifying atmosphere in the stadium, marking it as one of the most memorable experiences for Husky hockey fans.

“When athletics asked if we could fill 80 tickets worth of Misfits, I said yes with no hesitation,” Melloche reflected. “No matter what ticket count they gave us, we would get that amount of Misfits to come and support our team. It was a lot of hard work getting our student section here and raising as much money as we did…we drove 12 hours to witness this, and the energy in the stadium is something I have never witnessed in my life. It was one of the best experiences I have had as a Tech hockey fan, and we couldn’t be more proud of the team and coaches for this amazing victory.”

Following the victory, Coach Shawhan complimented Bemidji on their impressive season and playoff run and thanked the athletic staff of Michigan Tech for their support of the team. Coach Shawhan would go on to praise the efforts of his team throughout the season, saying that they’re a “great group of guys, win or lose… the leadership of this group, the desire to keep playing… [is] felt every time I go in the rink.” Blake Pietila would also speak at the press conference, calling the championship win “really special” and “the cherry on top” of his long, COVID-extended five-year college hockey career.

Following the results of the remaining D1 hockey playoffs in other conferences, Michigan Tech will head to Providence, RI, to face off against Boston College Friday, Mar. 29 at 2 p.m. This game can be watched on ESPNU/ESPN+.

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