Preview: Michigan Tech at UAH

Where: Propst Arena at Von Braun Center, Huntsville, Ala,
When: Friday & Saturday, 7:07 p.m.
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Ticket information

Charger update: UAH (0-8-0 overall, 0-2-0 WCHA) dropped one-goal decisions to Lake Superior State in each of its first two games of the conference schedule.

“We competed very well last weekend, so we’ve got to be able to take the next step,” UAH head coach mike Corbett said. “We got on the doorstep to be able to win a game, and we didn’t finish. That’s the disappointing part.”

The Chargers finally scored multiple goals in the first game, but lost 4-3 last Friday. Tyr Thompson, Brandon Salerno, and Connor James found the back of the net.

Mark Sinclair stopped 31 of 34 shots for his third straight solid game between the pipes. That earned him another start in the second game, giving him consecutive starts for the first time.

Sinclair did well again on Saturday, making 24 saves, but the Chargers fell again 2-1. UAH had its first lead when Jack Jeffers scored early in the second period, but the Lakers scored twice in the third period for the win.

Now comes Michigan Tech to finish off three straight weekends at home with UAH still looking for its first win of the season. The Chargers have scored only seven goals in eight games.

“I’m not too worried about the other team,” Corbett said. “Right now, it’s all about us and making sure we execute under pressure. That’s going to be the biggest thing.

“Confidence and egos and things like that can be a little bit fragile right now for kids, and we’re trying to get them confident. To take a little bit from football, we want to make up for our mistakes with some aggression.”

On Friday night, the first 500 fans will receive the third set of the 2018-19 UAH hockey trading cards, courtesy of Bojangles. Kids 12 and under can get free general admission tickets, courtesy Huntsville International Airport, at the VBC box office on game days.

UAH 2018-19 statistics

About the Huskies: Michigan Tech (1-3-0) will be starting its WCHA slate against the Chargers after two tough non-conference series.

The Huskies opened the year at home against defending national champion and third-ranked Minnesota Duluth, losing 2-1 and 5-2. Last week, they traveled to No. 14 Wisconsin, splitting a pair of games each with the score of 6-2.

“Michigan Tech went to the national tournament last year,” Corbett said. “They split with Wisconsin and gave up some goals.”

Brian Halonen was named the WCHA Rookie of the Week for his performance against Wisconsin, getting two points in each of the two games. The freshman has moved into the team lead for scoring with five points.

While the Huskies are getting production from freshmen in the early going, Tech has some dangerous upperclassmen. Senior Jake Lucchini led the team in scoring (16-23-39) last season, with junior Gavin Gould and senior Jake Jackson (San Jose Sharks prospect) pitching in 14 and 13 goals, respectively.

Goaltending has been a little shaky so far. The Huskies have already used all three goalies in four games. Junior Matt Jurusik and senior Devin Kero each have posted .881 save percentages in two starts, but Kero had some success last season as Patrick Munson’s primary backup with a 2.50 GAA and .910 save percentage.

The Huskies, who won the WCHA tournament and lost in overtime to Notre Dame in the NCAA East Regional semifinals, were picked to finish fourth in both the coaches’ and media preseason polls.

Michigan Tech 2018-19 statistics

Series notes:
Michigan Tech leads 13-1-2.
In Huntsville: MTU leads 5-0-1.
First meeting: Feb. 7-8, 2014 at Houghton, Mich. MTU won 4-1 and 10-4.
Last meeting: Oct. 20-21, 2017 at Houghton, Mich. MTU won 5-4, UAH won 4-2.
Last meeting in Huntsville: Jan. 27-28, 2017. MTU won 5-2, tied 4-4 (MTU won shootout point).

This week in the WCHA: All times are Central. All WCHA home games can be seen on * denotes conference game.

Friday, November 2
* Michigan Tech at UAH, 7:07 p.m.
* Northern Michigan at #9 Bowling Green, 6:07 p.m.
* Bemidji State at Alaska Anchorage, 10:07 p.m.
Ferris State at Michigan State, 6 p.m.
#12 Michigan at Lake Superior State, 6:07 p.m.
#4 Minnesota State at #10 Minnesota, 7 p.m.

Saturday, November 3
* Michigan Tech at UAH, 7:07 p.m.
* Northern Michigan at #9 Bowling Green, 6:07 p.m.
* Bemidji State at Alaska Anchorage, 7:07 p.m.
Michigan State at Ferris State, 6 p.m.
#12 Michigan at Lake Superior State, 6:07 p.m.
#10 Minnesota at #4 Minnesota State, 7 p.m.