Saturday, February 22, 2020 - 7:42pm

None of the Michigan hockey players said it. Mel Pearson didn’t either.

But they didn’t have to.

Even if no one said it aloud, it was easy to see why, in a hard-nosed, gritty defensive battle, that the one to come out would be the one to strike first. 

For all of Saturday’s game, Michigan and Notre Dame had struggled to score.

Thursday, February 20, 2020 - 9:33pm
Senior forward Jake Slaker has 17 points in 12 games since Christmas break.

Jake Slaker finished his lap around the ice with a deadpan look on his face. The senior forward had scored the opening goal Friday at Munn Ice Arena, and made it a point to turn to the Michigan State student section.

Until that point, the arena had been moderately loud. The Michigan hockey team likes to joke Munn is a library in terms of atmosphere, but the jeers and chants rained from all around, contrary to its defamation.

Monday, February 17, 2020 - 9:29pm

Michigan launched out to a quick lead in the first period, despite an early goal from Michigan State, and held onto it in the second period on the way to a 4-1 victory over the in-state rivals.

Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 8:31pm
Mel Pearson and his wife, Susie at their high school Prom Dance.

They met while they were teenagers. They got engaged in college and married a year later. It was all so fast, but she was his biggest supporter and she was the apple of his eye from the outset. When he would go out of line, whether because of coaching or anything, she would keep him in check. Through thick and thin, they stayed together for 38 years.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 10:22pm
Hockey beat writer Tien Le and sophomore goaltender Strauss Mann sharing food within their dietary restrictions.

The first thing you should know about Strauss Mann’s Paleo diet is that it isn’t exactly Paleo.

When I found out, I was popping open three boxes of tupperware and unwrapping a large bowl. It was Day 30, and I had just finished my month-long self-initiated challenge of trying out the famed diet.

Earlier in the week, I met up with the sophomore goaltender for our weekly check-in on my progress and, feeling bold, I asked if he would be down for each of us to cook up something Paleo and swap — a celebration for the end of my trial.

Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 11:45pm
Defenseman Keaton Pehrson made contributions on offense in Michigan’s 5-3 win over Wisconsin.

Last season, two of the five top point scorers for the Michigan hockey team were defensemen. It was part of the system — defensemen creating offense — an emphasis coach Mel Pearson made sure to call out after Michigan swept Notre Dame in mid-January.

It was the reason for their success then, and against Wisconsin, Saturday, a defensive pairing stepped up to fit that role in the 5-3 win to seal another sweep.

Jack Summers and Keaton Pehrson have had their fair share of disappointment. 

Thursday, February 6, 2020 - 8:30pm
Michigan coach Mel Pearson broke down Will Lockwood's game winner against Ohio State.

With four minutes left in the game, Lockwood took the puck off a rebound and scored a thrilling game-winning goal. The Wolverines went on to win the game, 3-2, due to the hustling efforts of Lockwood on his goal.

Sunday, February 2, 2020 - 12:29am

Johnny Beecher had a foot off the ice and into the tunnel leading to the locker room.

The freshman forward had just been thrown out of the game for headbutting another player in a scuffle. When he got fully off the ice, he turned to the referee right as the he was closing the door behind him and launched into his tirade.

What he shouted couldn’t be heard floors above the ice, or even rows away from his tantrum. But the nearest fans inches to him caught one word — “bullshit,” they recalled him saying.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020 - 7:11pm
Michigan coach Mel Pearson moved to Edina, Minn. to play high school hockey and lived with a billet family.

Vividly depicting the early career of Mel Pearson, head coach of Michigan Men’s Hockey, Daily Sports Writer Tien Le describes Pearson’s experience living with a billet family for his high school hockey years.

Pearson’s experience living, studying and playing away from home drastically shaped his future.

Sunday, January 26, 2020 - 12:06am
Volunteer assistant coach Matt Hunwick watched Saturday's game from the bench, a familiar perspective to when he played.

Coaching has been an aspect of hockey that Hunwick found to be a joy.

“I was excited just to be able to come back and give back,” he said.