Penn State to face Michigan Tech in NCAA Tournament

Story posted March 19, 2023 in CommRadio, Sports by Mac Young

The road to the Frozen Four begins Friday when Penn State takes on Michigan Tech in the opening round of the NCAA tournament.

The Nittany Lions will be playing in Allentown along with Michigan Tech, Colgate and Michigan.

Penn State enters the tournament with a 21-15-1 overall record including an impressive 10-0 mark in nonconference play.

The blue and white are slotted as a No. 2 seed after finishing eighth in the PairWise rankings which play a heavy role in putting together the bracket.

Michigan Tech, a No. 3 seed, finished the regular season with a 24-10-4 record and boasts one of the country's best defenses.

The Huskies have impressive wins including a 3-2 win over Boston University and a 2-0 victory against Minnesota State. Both of those teams are among the 16 tournament squads.

However, Michigan Tech has had its share of stumbles falling to teams like Lake Superior State and St. Thomas.

Penn State swept St. Thomas on home ice in just the Nittany Lions' third series of the year. The Tommies are one of just three common opponents between Penn State and Michigan Tech.

The other two squads are Alaska Fairbanks and Michigan State.

Penn State swept Alaska at home, went 1-1-1-1 against Michigan State and swept St. Thomas as previously mentioned.

Michigan Tech swept Alaska on the road, defeated Michigan State in overtime in a one-off matchup and took three out of four matchups against St. Thomas.

The Huskies get a lot of their offense from star freshman Kyle Kukkonen. The forward has tallied 18 goals this season, more than any player on Penn State or Michigan Tech.

In between the pipes Michigan Tech has senior Blake Pietila who has a ridiculous total of 10 shutouts entering the NCAA tournament.

The Nittany Lions collected impressive resume-building wins against Michigan and Minnesota back in the fall but struggled down the stretch bowing out of the Big Ten tournament in the first round against Ohio State.

Penn State’s top guy is senior forward Kevin Wall. The Nittany Lion winger led the team in goals with 16 and points with 29.

It should be a thrilling race to the Frozen Four in Tampa Bay beginning for the Nittany Lions in Allentown.

The puck will be dropped for Penn State and Michigan Tech at 5 p.m. on Friday. Be sure to tune into CommRadio for all the action leading up to and during the game.

Maclain Young is a third-year majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email