In Thursday SEL play, Dennis Persson was stationed on Timra's left side for a total of 20:42 in their 2-1 overtime loss to HV71. The 6'1 blueliner didn't score any points, but he made a standout play when breaking up a two-on-one break in the early second period. With Mikko Lehtonen returning to the Eagles lineup, it was unclear how the veteran's presence would impact the progress made by the 20-year old Sabres prospect. If one game is any indication, it would appear that the time is Persson's to lose. In the NCAA, Sophomore Corey Tropp had two shots on goal as #11 Michigan State stumbled on home ice in a 3-0 loss to Lowell. Dressing a total of 13 underclassmen, the mistake-prone Spartans looked every bit inexperienced in the shutout. Tropp has been skating on a line with freshmen Daulton Leveille (ATL) and Andrew Conboy (MTL), but was mixed-and-matched quite a bit last season. Regardless of line combos, expect a sharper Spartan club Friday night when the two play it back at Munn. After a quiet Thursday, a 30-game weekend will make this space a tad more robust. The coffee will be brewing, so stop back throughout to keep tabs on how it all shakes out.