March 23, 2018

Buckeyes Advance to NCAA Midwest Regional Final

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ALLENTOWN, Pa. – With a 4-2 win over No. 4 seed Princeton, the No. 1 Ohio State men’s hockey team advanced to the NCAA Championship Midwest Regional final in PPL Center. The Buckeyes will take on No. 2 seed Denver, which beat Penn State 5-1 in the other regional semifinal, at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, with the winner moving on to the NCAA Frozen Four.

Ohio State improves to 25-9-5 on the year. Princeton, which had an eight-game unbeaten streak end with the loss, finishes its season 19-13-4.

The Buckeyes are making the second consecutive, and eight overall, appearance in the NCAA Tournament. The squad is looking for its first Frozen Four trip since 1998.

Ohio State 4, Princeton 2
The Buckeyes scored twice in 20 seconds in the first period and carried a 2-0 lead into the first intermission. At 13:32 junior Mason Jobst opened the scoring on the power play, scoring from the high slot off assists from Tanner Laczynski and Wyatt Ege. Just 20 seconds later Ronnie Hein took a pass from Matt Joyaux and carried the puck into the Tigers’ zone. He found Kevin Miller driving the net and he converted at 13:52 for a 2-0 Ohio State advantage.

Neither team scored in the second period, with the teams combining for just 13 shots (Ohio State 7, Princeton 6).

Ohio State extended the lead to 4-0 in the first 11 minutes of the third. At 3:55 Tanner Laczynskitallied from right in front, scoring off a pass from Freddy Gerard. At 10:48 Gerard scored off a long rebound of a shot by Luke Stork with the Princeton goalie out of position.

Princeton scored twice in the final 26 seconds, with a power play goal at 19:34 and even strength tally at 19:50, for the 4-2 final.

Laczynski and Gerard led the Buckeyes with two points each on a goal and an assist.

Blocking the Puck
The Buckeyes outshot the Tigers, 28-25, in the game. Ohio State goalie Sean Romeo made 23 saves in 59:16. He now has a 21-8-5 record on the year, with a 2.09 goals-against average and .925 save percentage.

Princeton goalie Ryan Ferland played 58:13 and had 24 saves. Ben Halford played the final 1:39.

Ohio State blocked 21 shots in the game, led by Matt Miller and Dakota Joshua with three blocks each. Princeton had 20 shot blocks in the game.

The Buckeyes are in the Top 5 in the NCAA in team defense, allowing 2.1 goals per game. The team has allowed two or fewer goals in nine of the last 11 games.

Special Teams
The Buckeyes entered the game first nationally on the penalty kill, while Princeton ranked first on the power play.

Ohio State was 1-for-6 with the man advantage and the penalty kill was 6-for-7 in the win.

On the penalty kill this year, the Buckeyes are 123-for-138 (.891) to lead the NCAA.

The Buckeyes have a power play goal in 15 of the last 20 games, going 26-for-79 (.329) in the stretch. The squad is 37-for-155 (.239) with the man advantage this season, standing in the Top 10 nationally.