What was shaping up to be a hugely disappointing season for Michigan Tech after coming into the season with very high expectations took a dramatic turn this past weekend when Michigan Tech captured their first Great Lakes Invitational championship since 1980. Freshman goaltender Pheonix Copley, who had given up three of more goals in each of his previous seven career starts, stopped all 70 shots he saw on the weekend en route to a 4-0 victory over Michigan in the semifinal and a 4-0 win over Western Michigan in the final.
Michigan Tech is the founder, and host of the Great Lakes Invitational, but the tournament has largely been dominated by annual invitees Michigan and Michigan State over the last 30+ years. But with both programs struggling this year--as a sidenote, this was the first GLI since 1981 that neither Michigan nor Michigan State played in the championship game--Tech was able to seize the opportunity for a rare tournament win in an event that is pretty important to the school, not just from a hockey standpoint, but also as an annual alumni gathering. The Huskies will be hoping to take the momentum from their historic tournament win and improve on their 10th-place record in the WCHA in the second half of the season.