Oct. 7, 2011
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State men’s hockey team won its season opener Friday night in Value City Arena, downing Quinnipiac, 2-1. Freshman Ryan Dzingel’s third-period 5-on-3 power-play goal broke a 1-all tie and stood as the game winner, while senior goalie Cal Heeter had 35 saves in the Buckeye net. The Buckeyes (1-0) and Bobcats (0-1) will meet at 7:05 p.m. Saturday in Value City Arena.
The Buckeyes wasted little time getting on the board, taking a 1-0 lead 3:20 into the contest. With Ohio State on the power play, freshman Darik Angeli passed down low to junior Alex Carlson, who slid the puck to sophomore Chris Crane at the far post where he was able to redirect the puck for the first Ohio State goal of the campaign. Shots were 10-6 in favor of the Bobcats in the period, with Heeter stopping all 10 shots he faced.
The Bobcats tied the game at 1 with less than four minutes left in the second period when Spencer Heichman put home a rebound from just outside the crease. Heeter stood strong throughout the 20 minutes, making 15 saves, as Quinnipiac outshot Ohio State, 16-4, in the stanza. Ohio State had a major power play in the middle part of the period, but was unable to convert.
In the third period, with the Buckeyes on their second major power play of the night, the Bobcats took another penalty to give Ohio State a two-man advantage for two minutes and a trio of freshmen converted to give Ohio State a 2-1 lead. Ben Gallacher carried the puck into the zone and passed to Max McCormick. McCormick found Dzingel skating through the slot and he was able to score on a backhand, with the tally coming at 7:44. Heeter again made 10 saves in the period, with Ohio State putting six shots on net.
Ohio State was outshot in the contest, 36-16. Heeter had 35 saves in all 60 minutes between the pipes. The Bobcats’ Eric Hartzell played 59:19, coming out late in the game for the extra attacker, and had 14 saves.
The Buckeyes were 4-for-4 on the penalty kill in the contest and converted 2-of-4 power-play chances.
Ohio State had 10 freshmen play in the game, with four picking up their first career point. Dzingel had the first goal for the rookie class, with Angeli netting the first assist. McCormick and Gallacher each had an assist as well.
It was the 22nd time in Heeter’s career he had 30 or more saves.
Ohio State and Quinnipiac are facing off to open the year for the third-consecutive season.
The assist was Carlson’s first since Jan. 2 vs. Army.
Mark Osiecki, Ohio State head coach
On the team’s power-play opportunities
“We had two 5-minute majors which gave us an opportunity to work on the power play a little bit. It was our first game and we have a young group. The second period didn’t go as well as we would have liked it to. It sucked the energy out of the bench but we were able to recover.”
On the team’s 5-on-5 play
“I thought it went very well. We could have been a little tougher around the net on their goal. Cal [Heeter] played extremely well, and I was happy with how we looked.”
On the play of Cal Heeter
“He gave us an opportunity to win. He had some great saves and remained calm in the net. He took whistles when he needed to and he did his job tonight.”
Ryan Dzingel, Ohio State freshman forward
On his first collegiate game “It was pretty exciting. We have a lot of freshmen on the team, so there was a little hesitation at first for us. I was personally a little nervous. We had some bad moments the first two periods, but we showed our character in the third period to get the win.”
On his second period 5-on-3 goal
“It was a weird momentum shift, getting that second penalty. The goal was one of those plays that happened so fast I don’t remember the specifics. I just know we had two great passes to get it to me.”
Cal Heeter, Ohio State senior goaltender
On his 35 saves
“They were fine by me. It didn’t matter if they had 10 shots or 50 shots. To get the win is all I care about. It’s what’s important for the team.”
On the game
“It was definitely nice not to get blasted from the start. We came out with a lot of energy from the puck drop, but we had a couple mental breakdowns in the second period before we pulled the game out in the third.”
Rand Pecknold, Quinnipiac head coach
On the team’s major penalties “Well, we had two majors, one of which led to a 5-on-3 disadvantage. That was the hockey game. That said, I thought Cal Heeter was the best player on the ice tonight.”
On how having a veteran team affects reaction to majors
“We killed the first penalty. On the second, we were shorthanded and they got on a breakaway. There was a slash which led to the 5-on-3. I’m not sure how we gave up the breakaway but that was unacceptable. We have upperclassmen on the blue lines and we can’t have those penalties.”