MADISON -- In what has become an all-too-common occurrence this season, Wisconsin was once again embarrassed by a superior opponent Saturday night.
In front of an announced crowd of 13,699 at the Kohl Center, No. 16 Michigan (15-7-0, 7-1-0-0 Big Ten) was able to pump in four goals in the first period and never looked back, knocking off the Badgers 6-0.
The lopsided win comes one night after Wisconsin (2-15-3, 0-5-1-1 Big Ten) blew a 4-1 lead and ended up on the wrong side of a 7-4 loss. All-in-all, the Wolverines finished the series with 12 unanswered goals.
Michigan took an early lead just 1:12 into the opening frame when freshman Dylan Larkin was able to bank a shot from behind the goal line off UW goaltender Joel Rumpel and into the back of the Wisconsin net.
Less than a minute later Zach Hyman stepped out of the corner and rifled a shot over Rumpel's blocker to give the Wolverines a 2-0 lead.
Rumpel was immediately pulled from the game in favor of Landon Peterson, just 2:03 into the first period.
Michigan would extend its lead to three goals 15:46 into the opening period on Tony Calderone's third goal of the season. Once again it was a lackluster effort from the Wisconsin goaltenders, as Peterson allowed Calderone's shot from the corner find its way into the back of the Badgers' net.
The Wolverines would take a 4-0 lead into the first intermission on freshman Zach Werenski's fourth goal of the season. The projected first-round NHL Draft pick floated into the Wisconsin zone without pressure and lasered a wrister past Peterson for the four-goal advantage.
"The first 20 (minutes) was disappointing," Wisconsin head coach Mike Eaves said. "I thought we stood around and we watched again, and we didn't respond like I thought we would have."
Between periods Eaves made another switch between the pipes, bringing Rumpel back into the game for the final two periods. The senior finished the night with 25 saves on 29 shots.
Hyman and Werenski would each add another goal in the game as the Wolverines were able to cruise to a 6-0 victory.
Michigan goaltender Zach Nagelvoort completed the shutout, stopping all 17 shots Wisconsin threw on goal.
During the final two periods Eaves benched multiple veteran players at various times, including defenseman Kevin Schulze and top forwards Grant Besse and Joseph LaBate.
"If guys weren't doing what they needed to do, they sat on the bench with the coaches and they missed ice time," Eaves said. "Enough is enough."
Eaves noted that the coaching staff will continue to hold players accountable going forward, and ice time will be adjusted accordingly.
"We can't trade for people. We can't send people down and bring people up, this is the group we have," Eaves said. "So, the fact is we have to use measures that are going to be somewhat stimulating. Part of the accountability now is ice time missed -- no matter who it is.
"The line is drawn in the sand and we're going to a new level. It's about accountability and keep moving forward."
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