Olson may be held out of U18 exhibition; U18s blank Michigan State; Duluth Heights fund raiser

Minnesota Duluth senior defenseman Drew Olson may be held out of Saturday’s exhibition with the USA Hockey Under 18 team in order to heal from an injury, coach Scott Sandelin said Tuesday.

However, Sandelin said he’s not taking the game lightly by any means. The U18 team, based in Ann Arbor, is 6-4-2 against Division I teams and on Tuesday defeated Michigan State 3-0 in Lansing, Mich. The U18s previously defeated Michigan 5-3 and tied top-ranked Minnesota 2-2 in overtime on Oct. 26.

The Michigan State Spartans, last in the CCHA, say they’re at a “low point” following the loss to the U18s, according to a story in the Lansing Journal here.

One quote from the Lansing Journal story: “What does it mean to this team? We obviously didn’t play that well. We showed up,” Michigan State senior forward Anthony Hayes said. “The compete-level wasn’t there, the dedication wasn’t there, the commitment wasn’t there. We just turned over and let them take the play to us. It’s something we can’t let happen.”

Former UMD defenseman Ryan Geris and former UMD assistant coach Lee Davidson, mite coaches for Duluth Heights, are having a fund raiser to benefit their organization. A signed Sidney Crosby jersey is being raffled off with tickets going for $5 or five for $20 (the jersey was obtained with the help of teammate, and former UMD defenseman, Matt Niskanen of the Pittsburgh Penguins).

The raffle goes through Feb. 6 and tickets can be purchased at the concession stand at the Duluth Heights Community Center, open Tuesday through Thursday from 5:45 to 7:30 p.m., or contact Geris by email at rgeris@gmail.com.