Michigan State hockey captures weekend sweep Michigan, moves up to No. 6

The  Spartans celebrate a goal scored by sophomore forward Tiernan Shoudy.
The Spartans celebrate a goal scored by sophomore forward Tiernan Shoudy. / Gregory Shamus/GettyImages

For the first time since 2016, Michigan State hockey captured the Iron D trophy by beating rival Michigan in the 2024 installment of the Duel in the D at Little Caesars Arena.

In their final regular season matchup with the Wolverines (14-11-3, 7-9-2 Big Ten), the Spartans (20-7-3, 14-4-2) started the weekend out with a 5-1 blowout win in Ann Arbor. Despite going down 1-0 in the second, Michigan State would rattle off five unanswered goals, including two empty-netters to seal the road win.

Fast forward to Saturday. In front of a record Duel in the D crowd, they would face off in a much closer battle than the previous night. Junior forward Tanner Kelly would get the scoring started midway through the first following a loose puck that found him in front of the net. Poor defensive zone play would doom Michigan the whole game and led to numerous attempts for Michigan State.

Michigan would even the score in the second on the powerplay courtesy of Dylan Duke. But four minutes later, the Spartans would retake the lead thanks to a tap in from sophomore Tiernan Shoudy. Following another defensive zone turnover, Kelly would set up Karsen Dorwart to extend it to a 3-1 lead.

Gavin Brindley would bring it to a one-goal game midway through the third to put the pressure on the Spartans down the stretch. Thanks to some fantastic play in net from freshman Trey Augustine, Michigan State would hold off numerous attempts in the last two minutes of the game as Michigan had the extra attacker. It was another performance that proved Augustine continues to be one of the best goalies in college hockey. He would have 36 saves on 38 shots and would help the Spartans win their third straight game against Michigan.

It's the first time they've won three games against the Wolverines in a season since 2009-10.

While it was a huge game for bragging rights, it also helps Michigan State hockey keep a narrow lead atop the Big Ten standings over Wisconsin. The Badgers will host MSU the last weekend of the regular season before the Big Ten tournament in a series that could all but decide a conference champion and top seed in the conference tournament as well.

Michigan State will have the upcoming weekend off, and returns for the final home series of the season February 23-24 against Ohio State. The Spartans also moved up to No. 6 in the national rankings with the sweep.