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COLUMBUS, Ohio Despite two goals from freshman Sergio Somma and two assists from junior Nick Biondo, the Ohio State men’s hockey team lost at home to Robert Morris, 4-3, Sunday afternoon in Value City Arena. The game wrapped up a home-and-home series between the Buckeyes (2-9-1) and Colonials (6-3-1). The teams tied, 5-5, Friday in Mellon Arena in Pittsburgh.

There was no scoring in the first period, as Ohio State outshot the Colonials, 10-6. The Buckeyes did not score on two power-play chances. The Colonials were 0-for-2, including a 59-second 5-on-3 advantage, and carried a power play into the second period.

The second period ended with the Colonials ahead, 3-1. The Buckeyes got on the board first when Somma, a Pittsburgh native, scored from the right face-off dot on the power play after taking a cross-ice pass from Kyle Hood. Peter Boyd had the second assist on the goal, which came at 6:36. Robert Morris tied the game and took the lead with two goals in 46 seconds. Jason Towsley scored the equalizer unassisted at 8:13 following a turnover deep near the Ohio State net, followed by Tom Biondich’s goal from in front of the crease at 8:59. RMU then went ahead by two on Brett Hopfe’s tally at 15:19. The Buckeyes outshot the Colonials in the period, 14-10. Robert Morris had one power-play chance. Ohio State converted 1-of-2 chances and had a power play continue into the third.

Somma brought the Buckeye within one (3-2) at 6:52 of the third when he deflected in John Albert’s shot. Biondo had the second assist on the goal. Chris Margott regained the Colonials’ two-goal edge with a breakaway score at 12:07. Ohio State responded just 41 seconds later, however, when senior Tommy Goebel tipped in a shot from Biondo with Ohio State on the power play, with senior Tom Fritsche picking up the second assist, to make the score 4-3. Ohio State pulled goalie Joseph Palmer with 1:00 remaining, but could not get the equalizer. The Buckeyes put 13 shots on net in the period, RMU 10. Ohio State converted its one complete power-play chance in the period and held the Colonials scoreless on one opportunity.

For the game, the Buckeyes outshot RMU, 37-26. Palmer made 22 saves in 59 minutes in net for Ohio State. RMU’s Christian Boucher had 34 stops in all 60 minutes.

The Buckeyes converted 2-of-6 power-play chances and held the Colonials scoreless on all four opportunities.

Game Notes
The Buckeyes will be on the road for their next four games. The squad will travel to Kalamazoo, Mich., to take on Western Michigan this weekend. The teams will meet at 7:35 p.m. Friday and Saturday in Lawson Arena. Ohio State then will play at Michigan Nov. 30-Dec. 1.

Biondo had his second-consecutive two-point game with a career-best two assists. He led the squad with four points on the weekend (1g, 3a) and is on a three-game scoring streak (1g, 4a).

Somma’s two goals were a career best and Ohio State’s second two-goal game of the season, joining Todd Rudasill (2 PPG vs. Ferris State Nov. 4).

With an assist, Fritsche now has 97 career points (29g, 68a).

Goebel had a goal in each game vs. the Colonials, while Fritsche had three assists in the series.

Ohio State is on a 10-game winless streak (0-9-1), its longest since the 1999-00 season.

Postgame Quotes
John Markell, Ohio State head coach
On the game
“I expected us to show some fire. We came out and played another good first period. We had a bad bounce in the second period and never seemed to recover. We had to show patience and not let the bad bounces get us down.”

On what to improve
“We have to work between the ears. There are going to be bad bounces, but it can’t get you down. It happens. Our play has nothing to do with the puck, it’s all mental.”

Tommy Goebel, Ohio State senior forward

On the mood of the team
“There are a lot of guys in that locker room that feel sick to their stomachs, especially the seniors.”

On the play of the team since the Wisconsin game
“The energy hasn’t been there. I don’t know how to fix that.”

On the game
“I thought we were winning battles, but when it rains on us it pours. It seems like one quick goal becomes two or three goals.”

Sergio Somma, Ohio State freshman forward
On his two goals
“It’s nice to get a goal, but you want to win the game first and foremost.”

On the game and the team’s mood
“It was real tough. It was just goals right after the other. It seemed like a momentum shift. We’re working hard. I think it’s more a mental thing.”

Derek Schooley, Robert Morris head coach
On the effort of the Robert Morris team
“We played hard tonight and that’s what Robert Morris hockey is about. Our skill level keeps getting better but we still have those hard-working guys who can get in there and grind. I thought we played well this weekend and kept doing the things we needed to do to be successful.”

On playing a CCHA opponent
“We stress our non-conference opponents because that’s how to get the respect of the nation. So when you play a team like Ohio State, you want to do well and show everyone what Robert Morris is about.”

                         Hockey Game Box Score (Final)
                        Ohio State Men’s Hockey 2007-08
          Robert Morris vs Ohio State (Nov 18, 2007 at Columbus, Ohio)

 Robert Morris (6-3-1) vs. Ohio State (2-9-1)
 Date: Nov 18, 2007  Location: Columbus, Ohio        Arena: Value City Arena   
 Attendance:2138   Start time:2:05 pm   End time:4:12 pm   Total time:2:07   

 Goals by Period       1  2  3  Tot
 ———————————-
 Robert Morris…….  0  3  1 –  4
 Ohio State……….  0  1  2 –  3
 
   1st period – Penalties – Jeff Gilbert, RMU (tripping) 5:12; Mathieu
Picard, OSU (slashing) 10:55; Matt McIlvane, OSU (hooking) 12:01;
Nathan Longpre, RMU (interference) 13:49; Johann Kroll, OSU (tripping)
18:59.

   2nd period – 1, OSU, Sergio Somma/2 (Kyle Hood/3, Peter Boyd/2)
6:36 (pp). 2, RMU, Jason Towsley/6 8:13. 3, RMU, Tom Biondich/1 (Joel
Gasper/4, Jake Obermeyer/1) 8:59. 4, RMU, Brett Hopfe/2 (Chris
Kaufman/4, Joel Gasper/5) 15:19. Penalties – Jake Obermeyer, RMU
(tripping) 2:49; Denny Urban, RMU (interference) 5:15; Sean
Berkstresser, RMU (o-holding) 19:35.

   3rd period – 5, OSU, Sergio Somma/3 (John Albert/4, Nick Biondo/3)
6:52. 6, RMU, Chris Margott/3 (Jeff Gilbert/3) 12:07. 7, OSU, Tommy
Goebel/4 (Nick Biondo/5, Tom Fritsche/8) 12:48 (pp). Penalties –
Mathieu Picard, OSU (tripping) 7:46; Peter Boyd, OSU (hooking) 10:53;
Tom Biondich, RMU (unsportsmanlike – diving) 10:53; David Boguslawski,
RMU (tripping) 12:13.

   Shots on goal – RMU 6-10-10 26; OSU 10-14-13 37.

   Power plays – RMU 0 of 4; OSU 2 of 6.

   Penalties – RMU 7 (14 min); OSU 5 (10 min).

   Goalies – RMU, Christian Boucher 6-2-0 (60:00 minutes, 37 shots-34
saves); OSU, Joseph Palmer 2-8-1 (59:00, 26-22) , EMPTY NET (01:00,
0-0).

   Penalty shots – None.

 A-2138  T-2:07   
 Three stars: 1. Joel Gasper    2. Sergio Somma    3. Chris Margott   
 Referee:Brian Hill  AR:Tony Molina; Chris Max
 Win-Christian Boucher (6-2-0).  Loss-Joseph Palmer (2-8-1). 
 Ohio State timeout at 19:08 of third period