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UM, MTU advance to GLI championship

by Alex DiFilippo / Detroit Red Wings

DETROIT – The defending-champion Michigan Wolverines will take on tournament-host Michigan Tech in the Championship Game of the 51st Annual Great Lakes Invitational (GLI) at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 30, at Joe Louis Arena. Michigan State and Northern Michigan are set to meet in the Third-Place Game at 3:30 p.m. Both games will air live on FOX Sports Detroit.

Despite trailing 2-0 entering the third period, Michigan Tech potted two unanswered goals in the final frame to force overtime and the Huskies went on to win in the extra session, 3-2, in the opening semifinal of the day. Brent Baltus scored the game-winning goal for the Huskies in overtime, marking the fifth straight overtime game between Michigan State and Michigan Tech. The Spartans jumped out to a two-goal lead thanks to goals from Matt DeBlouw and Mackenzie MacEachern and entered the final frame with a two-goal lead. But linemates Alex Gillies and Jake Lucchini each lit the lamp in the third period to force overtime, which eventually lead to Baltus’ game winner at 3:58 of the extra session. The Huskies return to the GLI Championship Game for the first time since 2013.

The No. 10 Wolverines look to repeat as GLI Champions after claiming a 3-2 win over Northern Michigan in the second semifinal matchup of the day in front of 15,597 college hockey fans. Cutler Martin gave Michigan a 1-0 lead midway through the first period, but the Wildcats responded with a pair of goals in the second period courtesy of Gerard Hanson and Dominik Shine. The Wolverines tied the game at 12:55 of the second period thanks to a power-play goal from Justin Selman and Kyle Connor potted the eventual game winner at 4:05 of the third period. Michigan was the most recent team to repeat as GLI Champions (2010-11) and will look to accomplish a similar feat on Wednesday and claim the team’s 17th MacInnes Cup.

Tickets to tomorrow’s GLI Championship and Third-Place Game start at $15 and are on sale now at the JLA Box Office, (313-471-7575), all Ticketmaster (800-745-3000) outlets, and online at www.OlympiaEntertainment.com. Little Caesars Family 4-Packs are also available for Day 2 of the GLI, featuring four tickets, four slices of pizza or hot dogs and four soft drinks, starting at $49.

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