The 2012 Great Lakes Invitational (GLI) is currently underway at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, home of the Detroit Red Wings, with NCAA men’s ice hockey teams from the University of Michigan, Michigan State University, Michigan Tech and Western Michigan University all participating in this year’s event.
Western Michigan University came into the tournament as favorites to win, and after defeating Michigan State University 2-1 in a shootout last night, will advance to the finals against Michigan Tech tonight to determine the winner. Michigan State will play the University of Michigan in the consolation game.
The shootout to put Western Michigan into the finals was the first ever shootout in the GLI – and it was memorable. Mike Leone, a native of metro Detroit, scored the shootout-winner for Western Michigan in the fourth round with the only goal of the post-overtime event.
Western Michigan Bronco’s defenseman Dennis Brown came close to giving Western Michigan the leg up with a fantastic and crafty alteration of a move that Pavel Datsyuk made famous by faking the forehand shot, only to heel drag the puck back, but instead of flipping the puck into the open net Brown stopped and reversed back to the forehand. Michigan State goalie Jake Hildebrand made an even better save when he kicked out his left pad to stone Brown on the goal line.
The video below shows the GLI shootout in it’s entirety. You can check out Brown’s move and the subsequent save at 1:40 of the video, with Mike Leone’s game-winning goal coming at 3:40 of the video (sorry for the poor quality, this was the best we could find. We’ll update the video if we can find a better one).