No. 1 Michigan Cages the Panthers for 7th Win

Ann Arbor, MI University of Michigan hosted the Panthers of the University of Pittsburgh at Oosterbaan Fieldhouse on Saturday night (March 19), earning their seventh win of the season after defeating the Panthers 20-1. The game was controlled by the home team with lengthy offensive possessions and stifling defense. The Wolverines made a stab at the shutout, but were denied early in the fourth.

Opening the scoring for the Wolverines was junior midfielder Alex Vasileff (Birmingham, MI Seaholm) followed by sophomore midfielder Willie Steenland (Minneapolis, MN The Blake School) three minutes later. Michigan kept the Panthers on the run throughout the quarter holding possession and moving the ball on their offense as sophomore attackman Thomas Paras (Lakewood, OH St. Ignatius) scored just outside the crease after catching a missed shot by senior attackman Trevor Yealy (Pittsburgh, PA Upper St. Clair) at 5:44.

At 1:22, Yealy netted his first, beating the goalie top-left on a shot from the crease. With under a minute left in the quarter, senior defender Matt Asperheim (Grand Rapids, MI East Grand Rapids) fed senior attackman Chad Carroll (Cincinnati, OH St. Xavier High) who rifled in a shot from straight out on a Michigan fast-break as Michigan led 5-0 after one quarter.

Pittsburgh's defense and poised possession kept Michigan from scoring until 9:26 of the second when Carroll scored his second out front with an assist from senior midfielder Roy Ichikawa (San Diego, CA Torrey Pines) on the wing. Less than a minute later, sophomore midfielder Joe Hrusovsky (Lake Forest, IL Lake Forest) put it in the net on a low crease dodge to increase the Wolverine lead to 7-0 just over half-way through the quarter.

After nearly three minutes of battling with the Panthers, junior midfielder Rob Healy (Rochester, MI Notre Dame Prep) drove up the left side of the field and scored on a left-handed blast, nestling the ball into the near low corner for his first of the season. U-M's next two goals were scored just over twenty seconds apart from freshman attackman Ryan Snyder (Houston, TX Episcopal) on the crease from Yealy followed by Carroll's third.

At the 1:18 mark, Paras spun off his defender behind the net and popped out on the crease with only the goalie to beat on a low shot as Michigan increased the lead to 12-0. Closing out the scoring for the half was transfer sophomore Ryan Dutton-O'Hara (Mount Airy, MD Urbana St. John's) on a straight out blast following an assist from Ichikawa to increase the Wolverine lead to 12-0 at the half.

To start the second half, U-M replaced senior goaltender Mark Stone (Greenwood Village, CO Cherry Creek) with senior goaltender Andrew Fowler (Grosse Pointe, MI - Hotchkiss, CT) on a planned goalie change. At the 13:00 mark, freshman attackman Jeff Chu (Berwyn, PA Conestoga) scored on the crease, beating the visiting goaltender top shelf. The Panthers were able to keep the Wolverines off the scoreboard for almost nine minutes until sophomore attackman Zach Dauch (Bloomfield Hills, MI Lahser) netted one on an unassisted drive from the left side of the field to with 2:20 left to play in the third.

U-M was awarded their first man up opportunity of the game shortly after which was converted by Carroll with a dodge on the crease and a high shot. Just over a minute later, Snyder scored on a textbook feed from Dauch at the top of the box beating Pitt's goaltender and defense backdoor. On the ensuing faceoff win, Asperheim found himself with the ball and drove to the net weaving through multiple defenders finishing with nine seconds left in the quarter. The goal was his first of the season and gave Michigan a 17-0 lead going into the final quarter of play.

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