A few of the 300 ways Michigan State can win:
- Be physical. Negate the Eagle’s speed with size and intensity. “We can’t try to play BC’s game,” said Spartan coach Rick Comley. “We just have to go out and be who we are…We’re not as quick as they are, and I think they score better than we do, but that doesn’t mean that they’re better than we are, overall as a team. We just have to be very, very careful to maximize what’s become our style of play.”
“We’ve known all year that when we play physical, we’re at our best,” said State captain Chris Lawrence. “The more we hit, the better we play, it seems like. Coach always says that when we’re hitting and blocking shots, he can tell we’re into the game.”
- Withstand an initial onslaught. BC has been getting up on opponents early during their now-13 game winning streak. “If I can keep my fingers crossed about anything, it would be to get through the first five minutes,” Comley said. “Honest to God. They’re a big challenge and we have great respect for them, but we have to be ourselves.”
- Get a big game from Jeff Lerg. It’s expected that BC will outshoot Michigan State, so the Spartans are going to need Lerg to be sharp. He was in the Midwest Regional, making 44 saves on 46 shots and being named MVP. On Thursday, he again shined, stopping 29 of 31 shots and holding the Black Bears scoreless over the final 56 minutes of the contest.