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Record crowd watches Michigan win 'Big Chill'

Saturday, 12.11.2010 / 11:43 PM ET / News
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Record crowd watches Michigan win \'Big Chill\'
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Devils' 2010 second-rounder Jon Merrill (24) celebrates on Saturday. He scored twice and was one of three Devils prospects playing for the Wolverines. David Wohlberg (6th round, 2008) had a goal, and Brandon Burlon (2nd round, 2008) had two assists.
The "Big Chill in the Big House" was a big win for the home side.

A world-record hockey crowd of 113,411 packed Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor on Saturday to watch the Wolverines roll to a 5-0 victory against archrival Michigan State.

The turnout smashed the previous hockey record of 77,803 set at last the International Ice Hockey Federation world championships in Germany this spring. It's the largest crowd in the history of the venerable stadium, which routinely draws more than 100,000 fans for football.

"Any time you looked away from the game and look at the environment and the surroundings, it was definitely surreal," Michigan coach Red Berenson said.

It was the second time the teams have played outdoors -- they drew 74,544 at Michigan State's Spartan Stadium in 2001, setting a record for the largest hockey crowd at the time. This game featured temperatures in the low 40s and an 8 mph wind, producing a wind-chill factor that was just above freezing.

"It was a big risk when they undertook this," added Berenson, who played his college hockey at Michigan and is in his 27th season as coach of the Wolverines. "You never knew if fans would support it, what the weather would be like or what the game would be like. But everything turned out all right and couldn't be better."

Jon Merrill and Carl Hagelin each scored twice for the Wolverines, now 10-5-4. Goaltender Shawn Hunwick stopped all 34 shots he faced for his first shutout of the season.

Merrill, chosen by New Jersey in the second round of the Entry Draft in June, opened the scoring with a power-play goal 12:04 into the game and made it 2-0 when he scored again at 14:54.

Hagelin scored the next two goals, connecting during a power play at 12:12 of the second period and again with the extra man at 8:57 of the third. David Wohlberg completed the scoring at 10:45 of the final period by batting in a rebound.

Among the fans who had the longest trip were friends and family of Hagelin, a native of Sweden.
"I have 20 or 25 family or friends from back home," he said. "It's just amazing to first off get them the win -- and (to) score a couple of goals was fun."

Spartans coach Rick Comley was thrilled with the scene, if not the outcome.

"The whole thing was great. If you can separate losing, you can't as a person involved in hockey experience anything better than what you experienced tonight," he said.

Material from school media was used in this report.


SCHEDULE

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
K. Palmieri 82 30 27 3 57
A. Henrique 80 30 20 10 50
T. Zajac 74 14 28 3 42
M. Cammalleri 42 14 24 15 38
D. Severson 72 1 20 -8 21
R. Boucher 39 8 11 -13 19
D. Schlemko 67 6 13 -22 19
J. Moore 73 4 15 -12 19
A. Larsson 82 3 15 15 18
J. Blandisi 41 5 12 -14 17
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Schneider 27 25 6 .924 2.15
K. Kinkaid 9 9 1 .904 2.81
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