COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State men’s hockey team lost on the road at No. 13 Michigan, 3-2, Friday night in Yost Ice Arena in Ann Arbor, Mich. The Buckeyes (14-14-2, 9-12-2-2 CCHA) and Wolverines (18-9-4, 15-7-1-0 CCHA) close out the season series at 7:35 p.m. Saturday in Ann Arbor, with the game televised live on Big Ten Network.
The Buckeyes and Wolverines were tied at 1 after the second period but the Wolverines scored early in the third period and extended the lead to 3-1 at 7:26. Buckeye senior Peter Boyd drew the Buckeyes within one at 13:25, but Ohio State could not get the equalizer. Senior Sergio Somma scored the Buckeyes’ first goal, marking his 50th career tally, and had the lone assist on Boyd’s tally for his second-consecutive two-point night.
“We played well,” Mark Osiecki, Ohio State head coach, said. “Their goaltender played really well and I thought that was probably the difference in the game. Our guys competed hard; they did what we asked again. (Michigan) had three shots that went in. We battled but their goaltender played well, he really did.” The teams were scoreless after the first 20 minutes, with the Buckeyes controlling play through much of the opening period. Ohio State outshot Michigan, 11-5, in the period.
Michigan scored just 40 seconds into the second period, as Scooter Vaughan’s high shot on the fly went in. The Buckeyes tied the game at 14:08 of the period. John Albert got the puck to Somma in the slot and he beat Michigan goalie Matt Hunwick five-hole. Brandon Martell had the second assist on the tally. Michigan outshot Ohio State, 13-9, in the period.
The Wolverines netted another early goal in the third when Chris Brown scored a goal five-hole on the rush just 1:21 into the period. At 7:26 Louie Caporusso extended the lead to two (3-1) when his shot bounced off traffic and got through. The Buckeyes cut the lead to one as Peter Boyd scored at 13:25. Somma got the puck to Boyd just outside the crease. He was able to draw Hunwick out of position while he was being tripped, and managed to slide the puck in at a bad angle. The tripping penalty gave the Buckeyes a power play, but they were unable to convert. Ohio State pulled goalie Cal Heeter with 2:12 remaining, and had chances to score, but Michigan held on for the win. Hunwick made 14 saves in the period, as the Buckeyes outshot the Wolverines, 15-8.
For the game, the Buckeyes outshot the Wolverines, 35-26. Heeter played 57:48 and had 23 stops. Hunwick was in net for 59:57, stopping 33 Buckeye attempts.
Just six penalties were called in the game, with each team having two power play chances.
“Obviously it’s tough. You don’t want to lose,” Somma said. “You want to win the game, but Michigan is a great team and it was a good game tonight. We played well and we had our chances. It could have gone either way.”
Postgame Notes Somma has a team-best and career-high 16 goals on the year. The tally was the 50th of his career and his assist gives him 98 points as a Buckeye. It was his eighth multiple-point game of the year and his second consecutive. He has 28 points to rank second on the team.
Albert’s assist was his team-best 21st of the season and he now has 31 points on the year. He had the first assist on six-consecutive Buckeye goals dating to Jan. 29 at Alaska.
Boyd is tied for third on the squad with 24 points and now has nine goals to rank fourth.
The Buckeye penalty kill did not allow a goal for the third-consecutive game.
The game was the Buckeyes’ third of four live games on Big Ten Network this season.
Ohio State had 20 recorded blocked shots, led by four by both Albert and Sean Duddy, with Shane Sims blocking three.