Saturday night the Hoosiers (8-3-1,2-1-1) began what they hope will be a new Thanksgiving tradition by winning the first ever Big Ten Thanksgiving Classic Championship. IU upset American Collegiate Hockey Association Division I leader Penn State 6-4 en route to a Great Midwestern Hockey League showdown against Michigan State for the title.\n"I don't think it was our biggest game, but I think it was our biggest win ever," general manager Alex Kyrias said. "Penn State doesn't lose."\nBefore the upset, the Icers hadn't lost in 16 games, a fact that was clearly weighing in the minds of a temporarily awestruck Hoosier team. Penn State jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead in the first 10 minutes of the game.\n"I think we were a little nervous because of Penn State's aura and everything," senior Bryan Grant said. Grant tied for the team lead with five points during the tournament. "They're supposed to be the best team right now, and I think we let that get to us at the beginning of the game."\nDespite being outshot 39-21, the Hoosiers were able to hold off the Penn State offense primarily thanks to the heroics of sophomore goaltender Charlie Pulley. Pulley stopped 67 of 72 shots over the weekend.\n"Charlie Pulley played amazing this weekend," Kyrias said. "He was phenomenal."\nIU tied the game at three before the first intermission as seniors Brandon Phillips, Bryan Grant and freshman David Ravensberg all beat Icers' goalie Geoff Beauparlant. Grant and Phillips each scored again to beat Penn State.\n"The impact of this could be felt down the road," said Kyrias. "This gets us a lot of recognition from alumni, from possible recruits. Years down the road, a kid could be looking at Penn State and IU and decide Indiana can play at the level of Penn State."\nA 4-1 win over the Spartans on Saturday sealed the tournament championship for the Hoosiers, who received big plays from some unlikely sources. Sophomore David Dassell, whose hard-nosed agitating style of play doesn't usually allow for many offensive numbers, got in on the scoring with two goals against the Spartans -- his second and third of the year. \n"It's always good to get goals from guys that play on the 3rd and 4th line," Grant said. With his weekend performances, Grant overtook Ravensberg to reclaim the top spot on Hoosier scoring chart. \n"Those guys go out there every night to play physical and intimidate. When they score it's a plus. That whole line of Dassell, Mat Howard and Ed Karasek played incredibly well Saturday night."\nThe Hoosiers won't have much time to celebrate their victory as they prepare for their final two games of the first semester against former conference rival, Dayton.
Get stories like this in your inboxSubscribe