Ex-Northern Michigan University goalie Jared Coreau hoists Calder Cup for Grand Rapids Griffins

Former Northern Michigan University goalie Jared Coreau makes a save for the Detroit Red Wings during a game against the Bruins in Boston on Jan. 24. (AP photo)

MARQUETTE

— Former Northern Michigan University goaltender Jared Coreau became a Calder Cup champion last week with the Detroit Red Wings American Hockey League affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins.

The Griffins defeated the Syracuse Crunch in six games to clinch their second Calder Cup trophy in five years on Tuesday night.

Coreau started 19 games in the Calder Cup playoffs, posting a .909 saves percentage and a 2.84 goals against average.

He told the Detroit News it was an exhausting postseason run.

“You feel some mental and physical fatigue (late in the playoffs); you have to battle,” Coreau said. “You have to battle all the way through.”

Former Northern Michigan University goalie Jared Coreau makes a save during a Detroit Red Wings game against the Penguins in Pittsburgh on Dec. 3. (AP photo)

Coreau also started 33 games for the Griffins in the regular season, and was called up to the Detroit Red Wings on Dec. 21 when Jimmy Howard was out with injury.

Coreau played in 14 games for Detroit, earning a .887 saves percentage with a 3.46 GAA and went 5-4-3 while in the NHL.

He stood between the pipes for NMU from 2010-13, starting 76 games, and in his third and final season he posted a 2.70 GAA, .919 saves percentage and 15-19-4 record.

He signed with the Red Wings in March 2013, and signed a two-year contract extension last summer.

Though Coreau was not on the Griffins roster when they won the AHL title in 2013, Griffins head coach Todd Nelson said the former Wildcat has come a long ways.

“He was huge, unreal, holding down the fort at the end of the game,” Nelson said. “I’m proud of him because he proved a lot of people wrong, people felt he couldn’t win the big games.

“Well, he won the biggest one (Tuesday).”

Coreau bounced back from major adversity in the final playoff game. In Game 5, he allowed five goals on 12 shots before being pulled after one period of Syracuse’s 5-1 win.

He turned around three days later and stopped 29 of 32 shots in the Griffins’ series-clinching 4-3 victory in Game 6.

Forward Tyler Bertuzzi was named the playoff MVP with 23 goals, a Griffins playoff record.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Writer Ray Bressette. His email address is rbressette@miningjournal.net.