Who: Michigan vs. Lake Superior
Where: Yost Arena, Ann Arbor, Michigan
When: February 1st, 1992
Final Score: 1-0 Michigan
This may seem like ages ago, but at one time, there was no bigger rivalry in college hockey than the games between Michigan and Lake Superior. I think the only time I ever saw a fight break out before a game even started was a game between these two
teams. You could pick just about any game throughout the early to mid 90's and you'd have an incredibly physical, fast, one goal game, possibly decided in overtime. But even though I'm a guy who enjoys wide open, offensive hockey, this 1-0 battle sticks out most in mind.
Ten different players on that Michigan team would go on to see time in the NHL, including Mike Knuble and Aaron Ward, who are still playing today. Six Lakers would go on to play in the NHL as well, including a young freshman named Brian Rolston. Both goalies, Michigan's Steve Shields and Lake Superior's Darrin Madeley, would become NHL goalies and both were absolutely fantastic on this night.
The game also featured a pretty all-star coaching match-up between Red Berenson, who had resurrected Michigan's program and Jeff Jackson, who was in his second year as head coach after taking over the reigns of the LSSU powerhouse from Frank Anzalone.
Funny enough, nearly 17 years to the date after this series, Berenson and Jackson will meet for a big series between CCHA powerhouses later this year. Meanwhile, Rick Comley has a program in a periodic decline after a surprising national championship. The more things change, the more they stay the same, I guess.
Lake Superior had embarrassed Michigan earlier in the year up at the Soo, winning the Friday night game in overtime, before coming back and blowing them out 10-0 the second night. Michigan won the first game of their second series of the year on Friday night 4-3, after 11 consecutive games against the Lakers without a win. Michigan wanted to prove the previous game wasn't a fluke, and Lake Superior wanted to prove it was.
The game's only goal was scored by Michigan's Denny Felsner who finished that season with 94 points, though would lose the Hobey Baker to Maine's Scott Pellerin, who totaled 57 points that year.
The win would help Michigan go on to win their first even CCHA regular season title. But Lake Superior would get the last laugh, beating Michigan in CCHA Playoff Championship and going on to win the national title.