Oakland Sweeps Defending National Champions; Senior Night Set for Friday

Week 15 Preview

Weekend Recap

The Golden Grizzlies took on the 2022-2023 National Champion #13 University of Michigan Wolverines this past weekend.  The MCHC–East foe was currently ranked 13th in the country and has had the Golden Grizzlies number over the past five seasons.  The weekend games come as the latest round of rankings have the Golden Grizzlies sitting 12th in the country.  Coming into the weekend, coach Stirling and his staff were 0-9-1 against the Wolverines and currently fighting for a 2nd place position amongst the MCHC – East rankings.

In the first of the two-game series, the Golden Grizzlies were at their second home in Birmingham at Birmingham Ice Arena.  The back-and-forth contest led to goals from Tommy Davis, Jake McCatty, Jack Abbo, and Owen Storbeck in regulation time.  At the end of regulation, the score was tied 4-4 with Oakland tying the game late in the 3rd period.  In overtime, Brody Plant would find goal scorer Tommy Davis on a two-on-one and Oakland would be victorious in their 8th overtime game of the season. In the net for the Golden Grizzlies was junior goalie Tate Potteiger who made 39 of 43 saves in the contest.  For the Wolverines, Aaron Loch was in net who made 40 saves in the game.  Oakland led the game with the final shots being 45-43.

The next night was the second and final game of the series with the University of Michigan.  The Grizzlies found themselves in another competitive game at the Arctic Edge Ice Arena in Canton.  Oakland would win the contest 6-5 after the teams traded goals throughout the first and second periods.  Goaltender Tate Potteiger would pick up his 10th win of the season in a back-to-back effort and would make some key saves in the contest.

After 14 weeks of play (record of 18-6-2-2), the team highlights are below:

Leading in Goals: Brendan Danou (17)

Leading in Assists: Jack Abbo (26)

Leading in Points: Jack Abbo (36)

Team Powerplay: 30 of 119 (25.21%)

Team Penalty Kill %: 93 of 114 (81.58%)

Leader in Wins: Tate Potteiger (10)

Leader in GAA (at least 180 minutes played): Evan Hays (1.70)

Leader in Save % (at least 180 minutes played): Evan Hays (94.02%)

Week 15 Preview (#37 Northwood University)

The regular season continues this weekend as the Golden Grizzlies (18-6-2-2) welcome a home-and-home series with #37 Northwood University Timberwolves (6-11-0). Northwood is in their final season before heading to the ACHA D1 level and are currently in 8th place in the MCHC – East standings but have the most games remaining to be played in MCHC – East play (3).  Oakland hosts the Timberwolves on Friday night at Buffalo Wild Wings Arena with a return trip to Midland Ice Arena on Saturday afternoon.  Friday night’s game will also have the senior night ceremony before the puck drop as the Grizzlies honor six seniors for their dedication to the program.  Oakland did not play Northwood last season, but Coach Stirling and the staff are 4-0-0 against the Timberwolves all-time.

Northwood is led by forwards Milos Todorovic (GP 17, 23 Points, 1.35 Points per game), Donald Gooley (GP 15, 17 Points, 1.13 PPG), and Thomas Kroll (GP 17, 11 Points, 0.65 PPG).  The Timberwolves are coming off a tough weekend against Central Michigan which saw them split with scores of 6-4 (L) and 3-1 (W). In goal for the Timberwolves is first-year goaltender Aidan Schultz (GP 13, 4-9, 88.8 Save %, 3.93 GAA). Schultz has accumulated 763 minutes in net so far this season. Northwood is 4-10 against Oakland opponents this season.

The game times for this coming weekend are as follows.  Friday night’s game is at Buffalo Wild Wings and is an 8:30 PM puck drop.  Oakland will return the trip to Midland Ice Arena for Saturday’s game which is a 2:30 PM start.

Other News and Notes

Program Notes:

With the final home game of the season, the Golden Grizzlies would like to honor the six seniors for this year’s senior class.  Michael Sana, Griffin Geerts, Evan Chippa, Brody Plant, Thomas Monte, and Dylan McMullen will be part of the senior class that will be graduating at the end of the season.  We congratulate them on their accomplishments on and off the ice.  Evan Chippa leads the group in games played while Dylan McMullen joined the team this semester.

With only two weeks of ranking period games left on the schedule, the team currently sits in 12th place in the Nationals rankings.  The MCHC playoffs are a single-elimination format with some national ranking implications.  Games in the first two rounds of the MCHC playoffs (February 15th and 16th) count in the national ranking period and will consist of all MCHC – East games being played at Crystal Fieldhouse in Flint.  Rounds three and four are being played at Davenport which will include the remaining two teams from the MCHC – West division as well.


The sixth ranking period of the season was announced on 2/2 via social media and the ACHA website.  The Golden Grizzlies are currently ranked 12th in the national ranking system.  The seventh ranking will be on 2/16/2024 in the afternoon. This will include any games played by other teams and the games against U of M and Northwood.

The rankings will continue throughout the season on a bi-weekly basis until the final ranking period in the middle of February (games through 2/18, rankings released 2/23).  The top 16 teams with some automatic bids for league winners (must be in the top 25 nationally) will make the tournament which is hosted in St. Louis this season.  There is currently one auto bid outside of the top 16 (Sacred Heart, MCHC-NE League, 19th) as of this writing, that will potentially replace the 16th seed.  There is another (Saint Vincent, CHE, 28th) that is trying to crack the top 25 for a chance at their auto bid.

Out of Town Schedule for Week 15 Relevant Games

#5 Hope vs #9 Michigan State

#15 Saginaw Valley State vs #2 Lawrence Tech (For the MCHC – East Regular Season Title)

#13 University of Michigan vs #30 Central Michigan

#6 Colby College vs #16 Central Maine Community College (Playing on 2/14)

#34 Indiana vs #14 Purdue

#21 Notre Dame vs #64 Adrian

#1 Grand Valley State vs #43 Ferris State

#19 Sacred Heart vs #39 Stevens Institute of Technology

#28 Saint Vincent College vs #78 Duquesne University

MCHC – East Standings (As of 2/6/2024, 14 Games)

1) LTU – 11-0-1-0 (23 Points)

2) SVSU – 8-1-1-2 (19 Points)

3) Oakland – 8-3-1-0 (17 Points)

4) CMU – 5-4-1-2 (13 Points)

5) Michigan – 6-5-0-1 (13 Points)

T6) U of M – Flint – 3-7-0-1 (7 Points)

T6) Adrian – 3-10-0-1 (7 Points)

8) Northwood – 3-8-0-0 (6 Points)

Please visit our website https://oaklandhockeyd3.acha.hockeytech.com for more information about game times, stats, and more.