No. 14 Ohio State vs.
CCHA Tournament First Round
Friday, March 6 – 7:05 p.m.
Saturday, March 7 – 7:05 p.m.
Sunday, March 8 – 5:05 p.m. (if necessary)
OSU Ice Rink, Columbus, Ohio
2008-09 Series – Ohio State leads 2-0-0
Ohio State 8, at Bowling Green 5 (Jan. 9, 2009)
Ohio State 3, at Bowling Green 2 (Jan. 10, 2009)
2007-08 Series – Tied 1-1-0
Bowling Green 5, at Ohio State 2 (Feb. 1, 2008)
at Ohio State 4, Bowling Green 2 (Feb. 2, 2008)
Series History – Bowling Green leads 93-65-6
In Columbus – Ohio State leads 38-35-3
In Bowling Green, Ohio – Bowling Green leads 56-24-3
Neutral Site – Ohio State leads 3-2-0
CCHA Regular Season – Bowling Green leads 68-54-5
Postseason – Bowling Green leads 10-4-0
Overtime – Ohio State leads 10-7-6
Last 10 – Ohio State leads 6-3-1
Buckeye This and That
A series win over Bowling Green would earn the Buckeyes a trip to Alaska for the league quarterfinals next weekend. A Falcon win would send Bowling Green on the road to top-seed Notre Dame.
Ohio State reached the 20-win mark with its victory at Miami last Friday. It is the first 20-win season since the 2004-05 squad had 27. The Buckeyes have seven 20-win seasons under head coach John Markell.
Ohio State is hosting its second CCHA tournament first-round series in the OSU Ice Rink in three years. The team is looking for its first postseason series win since 2005.
Last Friday at Miami, Kyle Reed had the Buckeyes’ first hat trick since Nov. 17, 2006 and the team’s first four-point outing since Feb. 27, 2007.
Ohio State won the Ohio Cup for the first time since 2004-05. Ohio State and Miami tied with 3-1 records in Ohio Cup play, but the Buckeyes won the trophy on the tiebreakers of most goals in Cup play.
The Buckeyes are 4-10 all-time vs. Bowling Green in postseason play but won the last playoff series between the teams. The Buckeyes swept the Falcons in that series in Value City Arena in 2004.
John Albert has a team-best 37 points this year, including a team-high 23 assists. Corey Elkins is first on the squad with 14 goals this season.
The Buckeyes are 40-59-4 all-time in postseason play, with a 38-54-4 ledger in CCHA tournament action.
Ohio State opened the 2008-09 season with a 9-3 win over York in the OSU Ice Rink.
The Buckeyes’ game vs. Miami last Saturday was the first time the team scored five goals this year. The squad now has scored 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 10 goals in a game this season.
COLUMBUS, Ohio — The No. 14 Ohio State men’s hockey team opens postseason play hosting Bowling Green in a best-of-three Central Collegiate Hockey Association first-round series this weekend. The No. 5 seed Buckeyes (20-12-4/13-11-4-3 CCHA) and No. 12 seed Falcons (11-22-3/8-19-1-0 CCHA) will meet at 7:05 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 5:05 p.m. Sunday (if necessary) in the OSU Ice Rink in Columbus, Ohio.
The games Friday and Saturday are sold out. If any tickets are returned by Bowling Green, they will go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday through Ticketmaster. Will call Friday will be in the ticket office in St. John Arena. If a game is needed Sunday, they will be sold at the ticket office in St. John Arena beginning at 3:30 p.m.
Because of high school wrestling being held in Value City Arena Friday and Saturday, hockey fans are encouraged to park in the lots south of French Field House or in the lots around Ohio Stadium. If a third game is needed Sunday, fans should be aware there is a men’s basketball game in Value City Arena at 5 p.m. and traffic in the area will be heavy. Allow extra time to get to campus and find a parking space.
Follow the Action
WOSU Radio will carry all Ohio State postseason games. This weekend, the games will be online only at wosu.org, with Herb Howenstine and former Buckeye John Mowat on the call.
Live stats from the games can be accessed from the men’s hockey schedule page at OhioStateBuckeyes.com.
Talking about Playoffs
This week opens the Central Collegiate Hockey Association tournament. The teams that finished in the fifth-eighth spots host teams 9-12 in a first-round, best-of-three series, with the Top 4 teams receiving a bye. The first-round series winners will advance to take on the Top 4 teams in a best-of-three series, with those four series winners advancing to the CCHA championship at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.
In the first round, No. 5 Ohio State hosts No. 12 Bowling Green, No. 6 Northern Michigan hosts No. 11 Michigan State, No. 7 Western Michigan hosts No. 10 Lake Superior State and No. 8 Nebraska-Omaha hosts No. 9 Ferris State. No. 1 Notre Dame, No. 2 Michigan, No. 3 Miami and No. 4 Alaska earned the first-round byes.
Ohio State is ranked 14th by USCHO.com/CBS College Sports, USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine and InsideCollegeHockey.com this week, up one spot from last week.
The Buckeyes are 20-12-4 on the year and finished conference play in fifth place with a 13-11-4-3 record, one point out of fourth place. The squad is averaging 3.44 goals a game to rank ninth nationally, while allowing 2.75. On the power play, the Buckeyes have converted 23-of-167 chances (.138) and have stopped 154-of-191 opponent opportunities (.806).
Sophomore John Albert is first on the team with 26 assists and 37 points. Senior Corey Elkins is first with 14 goals and second with 20 assists and 34 points. Freshman Zac Dalpe and sophomore Hunter Bishop are second with 13 goals each. Sophomore Peter Boyd (11g, 17a, 28p), Bishop (13g, 14a, 27p), Dalpe (13g, 10a, 23p), sophomore Sergio Somma (10 g, 12a, 22p), freshman Ian Boots (9g, 13a, 22p) and sophomore defenseman Shane Sims (5g, 16a, 21p) all have reached the 20-point mark. Bishop has a team-best +25 mark, followed by Elkins at +22. Somma is first with four power-play goals. Albert, Dalpe and sophomore C.J. Severyn each have a team-best three game-winning goals.
In net, sophomore Dustin Carlson has played in 33 games, starting 30 (including 27 of the last 28), with a 2.42 goals-against average, .919 save percentage and 18-9-3 record.
The 20-Win Mark
Ohio State has 20 wins this year, the first 20-win season since the 2004-05 squad was 27-11-4. It is the eighth 20-win season under head coach John Markell.
Noting the Buckeyes in the Playoffs
Ohio State is 38-54-4 all-time in CCHA tournament play, including 4-10-0 vs. Bowling Green. The squad is 11-15-0 in conference first-round play.
The Buckeyes are looking for their first postseason series win since beating Ferris State in three games in 2005 in Columbus. The squad faced Northern Michigan each of the last two seasons, winning game one before losing the next two, with the 2007 series in Columbus and the 2008 series in Marquette, Mich. Three of the last four series overall have gone to three games.
The Buckeyes are 17-5-3 in postseason games played in Columbus, including 9-4-3 in the OSU Ice Rink.
Ohio State was the No. 5 seed once before, losing a series at Lake Superior State in three games (1-3, 4-1, 2-3 OT).
Ohio State has two CCHA postseason titles, winning the inaugural tournament crown in 1972 in St. Louis Arena in St. Louis, Mo., and claiming the CCHA Super Six title in 2004 at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.
Junior goalie Joseph Palmer has played a team-high six postseason games among the current Buckeyes. Three others – seniors Corey Elkins and Zach Pelletier and junior Mathieu Picard – have played in four postseason games each. No one else has played in more than three postseason contests.
Sophomore Kyle Reed leads the current Buckeyes with three postseason points, with a goal and two assists.
Return to the Roots
Ohio State will play in the OSU Ice Rink this weekend because the Ohio high school state wrestling championships are in Value City Arena beginning Thursday. The OSU Ice Rink served as the Buckeyes’ home ice until January 1999 when Value City Arena opened for hockey.
The team has played three regulation games and two exhibition games in the ice rink since moving to Value City Arena. The Buckeyes opened this season with a 9-3 win over York in an exhibition game in the ice rink. The regulation games came vs. Northern Michigan in a CCHA playoff series March 2-3, 2007. The squad hosted an exhibition game Sept. 26, 2003 vs. Wilfrid Laurier in its first return to the rink since moving to VCA.
Buckeyes vs. Falcons – The Series
All-time, Ohio State trails the series with Bowling Green, 65-93-6, but leads in Columbus, 38-35-3 and in the last 10, 6-3-1. The teams met in Bowling Green Jan. 9-10, with Ohio State sweeping the Falcons, 8-5 and 3-2 OT.
vs. The Falcons in the Postseason
The Buckeyes are 4-10-0 all-time vs. BG in the postseason but swept the last series in 2004, beating BG 3-2 and 5-2 in the first round of the CCHA tournament in Value City Arena. Ohio State was the fourth seed in that tournament, with the Falcons No. 9. The Buckeyes went on to win the Mason Cup, winning three games in three days at the CCHA Super Six in Detroit.
Flashback – OSU vs BG in January
Ohio State swept Bowling Green on the road Jan. 9-10, winning 8-5 and 4-3 in overtime. The road sweep was the Buckeyes’ first since winning two games at Bowling Green Nov. 17-18, 2006.
In the first game, the Buckeyes had goals from eight players and points from 16 total Buckeyes en route to the 8-5 victory.
Ohio State opened the scoring just 26 seconds into the game on Patrick Schafer’s goal. The Falcons scored back-to-back goals at 5:44 and 8:11 to take the lead, but the Buckeyes scored twice, with goals from Peter Boyd and Corey Elkins, before the end of the period to go up, 3-2.
The Buckeyes outscored the Falcons 3-1 in the second period, with Zac Dalpe, C.J. Severyn and John Albert scoring for Ohio State. Each team had two goals in the third period. The Buckeyes went ahead 7-3 on Shane Sims’ shorthanded goal before BG scored twice, including a shorty, to cut the lead to two (7-5). Ian Boots sealed the win with an empty-net goal.
In game two, the Buckeyes trailed after the first period but rallied in the second to take a lead that lasted until there was 1:09 left in regulation. Sophomore Kyle Reed scored in overtime to give the Buckeyes the win and the series sweep.
Bowling Green opened the scoring at 4:13 before Dalpe tied the game at 1 just over four minutes later (8:27). The Falcons added their second shorthanded goal of the series at 15:04 of the first period to lead 2-1 after one.
The Buckeyes scored two power-play goals in the second to tie the game and then take the lead. Sergio Somma scored at 5:52, followed by Sims’ 5-on-3 tally at 8:36. The score remained the same until BG’s Dan Sexton tallied at 18:51 of the third with the Falcon net empty.
Reed put in the rebound of a Corey Toy shot at 2:44 of overtime for the win.
Posting Points vs. BG
Buckeye sophomore Peter Boyd has a team-high six points vs. the Falcons. Senior Corey Elkins has a team-best four goals, sophomore John Albert is first with four assists, with Elkins and Albert tied for second with five points each.
Bowling Green ended the regular season 11-22-3 and finished 12th in the CCHA with an 8-19-1-0 ledger. The squad lost two games at Western Michigan, 5-2, and 5-3, last weekend and is 2-6 in February.
The Falcons are averaging 2.1 goals a game, while allowing 3.4. The team has converted 12.7 percent of its power-play chances and has stopped 83.4 of its opponents’ opportunities. Bowling Green has eight shorthanded goals on the year and has allowed 11.
Sophomore Dan Sexton leads the Falcons with 16 goals, 22 assists and 38 points. Senior Brandon Svendsen is second with 18 assists and 30 points and is tied with sophomore David Solway and junior Kai Kantola with 12 goals each. Solway is third in scoring with 24 points.
In net, Jimmy Spratt has an 11-17-3 record, with a 2.88 goals-against average and .896 save percentage. Nick Eno is 0-5-0 on the year, with a 4.49 gaa and .811 save percentage.
Scott Paluch, a 1991 graduate of Bowling Green, is in his seventh year at the helm of his alma mater. He is 84-154-23 overall.
A Hall of Famer
Buckeye head coach John Markell was a four-time letterwinner for Bowling Green from 1976-79 and was inducted into the school’s athletic hall of fame in 2000. He was a three-time CCHA first-team selection and was elected to the league’s All-Decade team for the 1970s.
A Look Back – OSU vs Miami
Ohio State split a two-game series with Miami last weekend, with each team winning on the other’s home ice.
Last Friday, sophomore Kyle Reed’s first career hat trick and four-point game led Ohio State to a 6-2 victory over No. 7/9 Miami in Steve Cady Arena in Oxford, Ohio. After Miami tied the game at 2-all at 13:09 of the second, Sergio Somma responded just 16 seconds later to put Ohio State back on top, the first of four unanswered goals for the Buckeyes.
The Buckeyes led 1-0 after the first on Reed’s unassisted tally and extended the lead to 2-0 on a Reed goal at 5:19 of the second period. The RedHawks then scored back-to-back goals at 8:39 and 13:09 to tie the game, but Somma’s goal put the Buckeyes back on top. C.J. Severyn completed a give-and-go play with John Albert at 15:58 of the second to put Ohio State ahead, 4-2, at the end of two. Reed completed his hat trick at 13:48 of the third and Zach Pelletier closed out the game with an empty-net goal at 17:07.
Last Saturday, Ohio State cut a four-goal deficit to one with three-consecutive goals in the third period but could not get the equalizer, as a RedHawk empty net goal with one minute remaining put the game away for Miami in Value City Arena in Columbus. The No. 7/9 RedHawks skated to a 7-5 victory over the No. 15 Buckeyes, ending the Buckeyes’ hopes for a Top 4 finish and first-round bye in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs.
Miami took a 3-0 lead at the 2:41 mark of the second period, on goals by Brian Kaufman at 5:54 of the first (power play) and at 2:41 of the second. Justin Mercier also had a goal at 12:58 of the first period. Peter Boyd put the Buckeyes on the board with a shorthanded goal at 9:34 but Miami’s Alden Hirschfeld scored just 1:06 later to regain the RedHawks’ three-goal edge.
In the third Boyd scored again to draw Ohio State within two before Hirschfeld responded once again, this time tallying just under three minutes later. Andy Miele put the RedHawks ahead 6-2 at the 9:07 mark with a power-play marker.
Ohio State then tried to rally. Hunter Bishop scored at 11:41, making the score 6-3. Ohio State pulled goalie Dustin Carlson for an extra attacker with more than five minutes remaining and got two goals from Corey Elkins at 18:21 and 18:45 to cut the deficit to one. Mercier’s goal at 19:00 sealed the RedHawk win.
Have a Game
Kyle Reed’s hat trick at Miami Friday was the first for the Buckeyes since Corey Elkins scored three times at Bowling Green Nov. 17, 2006. It was the first four-point night for a Buckeye since Andrew Schembri vs. Michigan Feb. 27, 2007. Reed entered the game with three goals, five assists and eight points this season. Reed’s other multiple-goal game also came in Cady Arena, with two tallies vs. the RedHawks Feb. 29, 2008.
Sophomore Peter Boyd and senior Corey Elkins each scored twice vs. Miami last Saturday. It was the first time two Buckeyes had multiple goals in the same game since Tom Fritsche had a hat trick and Mathieu Beaudoin scored twice against Western Michigan Jan. 29, 2006 in a 7-0 win.
The game was Boyd’s third career two-goal game and first since Feb. 16, 2008 vs. Northern Michigan. Elkins had a two-goal game vs. Bentley earlier this year and had a hat trick vs. Bowling Green Nov. 17, 2006 for his first career mutliple-goal game.
Add It to the Trophy Case
The Buckeyes captured the Ohio Cup this season, winning the annual traveling trophy presented by Buckeye Sports Bulletin for the first time since 2004-05. Ohio State was declared the winner based on the third tiebreaker, which was goals for. Ohio State and Miami tied at 3-1 in Cup play (Bowling Green was 0-4) and each was plus-6 in goal differential (OSU 23-17, Miami 18-12). Bowling Green is first with 13 Ohio Cup titles all-time. Miami had won the last three crowns.
Sophomore John Albert ended CCHA play first on the team and tied for fourth in the league in scoring with 29 points. He is the first Buckeye to finish in the Top 10 in CCHA conference scoring since Rod Pelley was 10th in 2004-05 with an 18-12-30 line. Albert was the Buckeyes’ highest finisher since R.J. Umberger was second in 2002-03 with 15 goals, 23 assists and 38 points.
Albert had eight more points than Peter Boyd, who was second on the team with 21 points in league action. Senior Corey Elkins and sophomore Hunter Bishop tied for third with 20 points each.
Eyes on the Buckeyes
The Buckeyes’ attendance of 9,012 Saturday vs. Miami was the second-highest this season. The team averaged 8,890 fans a game over its final three outings. That number is higher than the capacity of all but four other rinks in the nation.
On the Plus Side
As a team, the Buckeyes are +193 this season, including a +25 mark last Friday at Miami. The Buckeyes hold six of the top 14 plus/minus ratings in the league this year. Hunter Bishop is first (+25), followed by Corey Elkins in third (+22), Shane Sims (+16) in seventh, Matt Bartkowski tied for eighth (+15) and Ian Boots and John Albert tied for 10th (+14).
The Buckeyes have outscored opponents, 97-58, at even strength this year.
On the Power Play
The Buckeyes are looking for their first power-play goal since Feb. 8 vs. Notre Dame, going scoreless in their last six games and on their last 24 chances overall. The team has three goals in its last 46 chances (.065), dating back to Jan. 17 at Ferris State. The squad has converted 13.8 percent of its chances overall this season.
Ohio State scored 11 goals in the series vs. Miami, the third time this year the squad had more than 10 goals in a series. The team had 13 goals in a sweep of Bentley and 12 in two wins at Bowling Green.
Peter Boyd scored shorthanded Saturday, marking the first shorthanded goal of his career and the Buckeyes’ fourth this season. Defensemen Corey Toy (Feb. 20 vs. Michigan) and Shane Sims (Jan. 10 at Bowling Green) and forward Patrick Schafer (Oct. 10 vs. Miami) have the other shorthanded scores for the Buckeyes.
Give Him an A
Sophomore Sergio Somma has a point in eight of his last nine games, with a 4-5-9 line, going scoreless only at Michigan State Feb. 14. He had the gamewinner at Miami last Friday, scoring just 16 seconds after the RedHawks had tied the game.
Somma has a career-high 10 goals, 12 assists and 22 points this season, along with a +6 mark.
At Miami last Friday, senior defenseman Nick Biondo was a team-best and career-high +3 in the game.
Freshman defenseman Mike Folkes, who had a team season-high +4 rating at Bowling Green Jan. 9, was +3 vs. the RedHawks.
Six Buckeyes enter the playoff series vs. Bowling Green on scoring streaks.
K. Reed 2/2
K. Reed 2/3-2-5
Sophomore Hunter Bishop had the third two-assist game of his career and the first since Oct. 18 vs. Lake Superior State at Miami last Friday. Bishop scored vs. Miami last Saturday, his first goal since Feb. 13 at Michigan State. He is tied for second on the squad with 13 goals this year and now has 14 assists to rank fifth.
Bishop leads the CCHA with a +25 rating and is +1 or better in 22 games this season, with just five minus ratings.
Beating the Best
The Buckeyes have wins over four Top 7 teams this year, including victories over No. 2 Denver, No. 2 Notre Dame, No. 3 Michigan and No. 7 Miami. Three of the Buckeyes’ last four series were against teams ranked in the Top 7 nationally.
Halfway to 100
Three Buckeyes have hit the 50-point mark for their careers this season. Sophomore forward John Albert was the first current Buckeye to pass 50 and now has 58 career points (15g, 43a) in 77 games. Senior Corey Elkins has 53 points (23g, 30as) in 96 games. Sophomore Peter Boyd’s three-point game last Saturday pushed him over the mark and he now has a 21-31-52 line in 77 games.
Vote for Dusty
Sophomore goalie Dustin Carlson is on the ballot for fan voting for the Hobey Baker Award, given annually to the most outstanding Division I men’s hockey player. Fans can log on to hobeybaker.com and click on the “Vote for Hobey” link to support Carlson. The first phase of voting runs through March 8.
Sophomore forward John Albert has a team-best 37 points this year, including a team-high 26 assists. His 26 assists this year are the most since Tom Fritsche had 34 in 2005. Albert has a team-high 11 multiple-point games this season, including three three-point nights. He had three assists vs. Miami last weekend, with two helpers in the opener in Oxford.
Albert ranks sixth in the CCHA in points and tied for second in assists. He is 24th in the NCAA with .72 assists a game.
After a five-game scoreless streak Nov. 1-21, Albert has a point in 18 of the last 24 games. He had just 2-5-7 totals in the first 12 games of the year, with a 9-21-30 line in the last 24 games (1.25 points per game).
Senior Corey Elkins ranks second on the team and eighth in the CCHA with a career-best 31 points, including a team-best and career-high 14 goals, along with 20 assists. He is tied for eighth in the league in goals and ranks 13th in assists. Elkins has eight multiple-point games this season and has at least one point in 24 games on the year. Elkins is +1 or better in 18 of the last 25 games, with a +22 mark on the year to rank third in the CCHA. Entering the 2008-09 campaign, Elkins had posted nine goals, 10 assists and 19 points in 60 career games, including a 2-3-5 line a year ago in 25 games.
Twenty-Twenty for 26
Sophomore Peter Boyd has a career-best 28 points this year, including a personal-best 11 goals and 17 assists. Boyd is one of just two Buckeyes (joining John Albert) with back-to-back 20-point seasons after posting 24 a year ago.
He had his fourth three-point game of the season last Saturday vs. Miami with two goals, including his first career shorthanded goal, and an assist, along with a personal-best +3 mark.
The Buckeyes have recorded 124 goals this season, including games with 10, 8, 7, 6 and 5 goals, but have had just 10 players record a multiple-goal game through 36 games.
Of the 62 goals in the 18 games combined since returning from the December break, all but nine have come at even strength shorthanded goals by Shane Sims vs. Bowling Green Jan. 9, Corey Toy vs. Michigan Feb. 20 and Peter Boyd vs. Miami Feb. 28 and six power-play tallies. Three have been scored into an empty net, with 38 5-on-5 tallies, a 4-on-4 marker at Ferris State, a 6-on-4 extra-attacker goal at Michigan State Feb. 13 and two 6-on-5 extra-attacker goals vs. Miami Feb. 28.
Between the Pipes
Sophomore goalie Dustin Carlson, the NCAA National Player of the Month in November and a two-time CCHA goalie of the week, has 30 starts this season, including in 27 of the last 28 games, sitting out just the second contest vs. Bentley Dec. 13 over the stretch. Carlson has a 2.42 goals-against average and .919 save percentage on the year, with an 18-9-3 ledger. He is second in the CCHA in saves (847/26.3 per game), ranks sixth in the CCHA in save percentage and eighth in goals-against. In the national stats, he ranks 14th in winning percentage (.650).
Carlson, who has four shutouts this year, is the sixth Buckeye goalie with four or more whitewashes in a single season. The program record is five, set by Mike Betz in 2002 and Dave Caruso in 2005.
Ohio State received 10 league player of the week accolades this year. Zac Dalpe was a three-time rookie of the week and Matt Bartkowski (rookie) and Dustin Carlson (goalie) each were honored twice. Corey Elkins was named the league offensive player of the week, while sophomores Shane Sims and Corey Toy were named defensemen of the week.
Better Late than Never
The Buckeyes have outscored their opponents, 51-32, in the third period this year, ranking first in the CCHA in third-period goals. The squad has been outscored in the second period, 38-36. In the first, Ohio State has outscored its opponents, 35-28. The team helped its third-period totals with a seven-goal outburst vs. Bentley Dec. 12, including five power-play tallies, and had five first-period scores at Alaska Jan. 31.
Then and Now
Through 36 games this season, 15 Buckeyes have reached 10 or more points. After all 41 games a year ago, 12 Ohio State players had double-digit points. The squad is averaging 3.44 goals a game this season and was held to just 2.4 an outing last year. On the defensive side, the squad is allowing 2.75 goals an outing and gave up 3.3 a season ago.
The team has 20 wins this season, surpassing the 12 victories the squad had a year ago. The team was 13-19-4 in CCHA play, bypassing the seven conference wins from 2007-08.
Get on the Board
The first goal has proved important in many of the Buckeyes’ games this season. Ohio State is 13-2-3 when scoring first, but 7-10-1 when allowing the first goal. The team is 12-0-2 when leading after the first period, 3-8 when trailing after the first and 5-4-2 when tied after the opening stanza.
When ahead after the second period, the Buckeyes suffered their first loss in three years against Notre Dame Feb. 6 and are 13-1-1. The squad has rallied to win two games (2-8-1) and is 5-2-2 when even after two stanzas.
The seven goals allowed by the Buckeyes vs. Miami Saturday were the most since a 7-3 loss to Lake Superior State Oct. 17. The squad has given up more than two goals just twice in the last seven outings and has allowed more than four just twice since returning from the December break.
From the Blueline
Sophomore defenseman Shane Sims leads the Buckeye blueliners with five goals, 16 assists and 21 points this year, all career highs. He has a 5-13-18 line in the last 22 games, after just three points in the first 14 games of the year. Sims, who is tied for eighth among CCHA defensemen in scoring, is +16 on the year to tie for seventh in the league. He was +2 in each game vs. Miami and is +1 or better in seven of the last nine games.
Fifth Year’s a Charm
Fifth-year senior co-captain and Zach Pelletier had a goal and an assist in the series vs. Miami and now has career highs of four goals, three assists and seven points this season in 33 games. He entered the year with a 1-3-4 line in his first 50 collegiate games.
No. 3 on D
Freshman defenseman Matt Bartkowski has 16 points on the year, including 13 assists, with a point in nine of his last 17 games (1g, 8a). Bartkowski ranks second among CCHA freshmen defensemen, ninth (tied) among CCHA rookies and 14th among league blueliners overall in scoring. He is +15 on the year, ranking first among CCHA rookies and rookie defensemen and fifth among blueliners overall. Bartkowski is +1 or better in 14 of his last 23 games and has just six minus ratings this season.
Freshman forward Zac Dalpe is tied for second among the Buckeyes with 13 goals this season, ranking second (tied) among CCHA rookies in goals, tying for third nationally in goals among rookies and ranking 13th among all CCHA players. Three of his goals are gamewinners. Dalpe has 23 points on the year to tie for fourth among CCHA rookies in scoring.
Dalpe, who missed the series vs. Western Michigan and Alaska with an injury, has a point in 10 of his last 17 games, with a goal in six of those outings.
Goal Good Stuff
The Buckeyes are ninth in scoring in the NCAA, averaging 3.44 goals a game. After being held to two goals or less in seven of 11 games, the squad averaged 5.5 goals an outing vs. Miami.
The Buckeyes have three games with seven or more goals (W 7-4 vs. Robert Morris Dec. 6, W 10-1 vs. Bentley Dec. 12, W 8-5 at Bowling Green Jan. 9) and have three six-goal outings. It is the first time the team has scored at least seven goals in three games in a season since 2004-05, when the squad had two seven-goal outputs (7-1 vs. Sacred Heart Nov. 6, 2004 and 7-0 vs. Western Michigan Jan. 29, 2005) and a 9-3 victory over Miami Oct. 21, 2004.
Don’t Talk About the Streak
After 11-consecutive wins and back-to-back ties (and ensuing shootout wins), Ohio State had its program-record tying 13-game unbeaten streak ended Jan. 24 with a 4-1 loss to Western Michigan. The program record was first set by the 1983-84 squad, which opened the year with 13-consecutive wins.
It was the longest unbeaten streak since the 2002-03 squad was 9-0-1 over a 10-game stretch Dec. 6, 2002-Jan. 17, 2003.
The loss to the Broncos was the first for the squad since falling on the road at Northern Michigan Nov. 21 (3-1). Included in the 13-game unbeaten streak were two overtime wins and shootout wins in the other two games that went to the extra session.
The Buckeyes have scored in the first minute of a game four times this year. Patrick Schafer has two, with a goal 23 seconds into the game vs. Western Michigan Jan. 23 and 26 seconds into the contest at Bowling Green Jan. 9. Hunter Bishop had the earliest goal, scoring 14 seconds into the game vs. Lake Superior State Oct. 17 and C.J. Severyn tallied 34 seconds into the contest vs. Robert Morris Dec. 6 in Cleveland.
Just Hold On
Ohio State’s overtime loss Feb. 6 to Notre Dame was its first when leading entering the third period in three years, dating to Feb. 4, 2006 at Michigan. The squad led 2-1 after the second period and led 3-2 with less than three minutes remaining, but gave up a goal as time expired and in the first minute of overtime in the team’s first overtime loss of the year (2-1-2). The team is 12-1-1 when leading after two this year. The defeat was the first overtime loss since Jan. 26, 2008 at Lake Superior State.
Former Buckeyes are playing at all levels of professional hockey, both in the United States and abroad. Four Buckeyes currently are in the National Hockey League R.J. Umberger (Columbus Blue Jackets), Dave Steckel (Washington Capitals), Ryan Kesler (Vancouver Canucks) and Tyson Strachan (St. Louis Blues).
Former Buckeye Nate Guenin was called up by the Philadelphia Flyers Sunday and played one game with the club before being returned to the AHL Tuesday.
Nine former Buckeyes currently are playing in the American Hockey League, one step below the NHL. The players currently in the AHL are Rod Pelley (Lowell Devils), Guenin (Philadelphia Phantoms), Dave Caruso (Lowell Devils), Sean Collins (Hershey Bears), Jason DeSantis (Philadelphia Phantoms), Mathieu Beaudoin (Milwaukee Admirals), Tommy Goebel (Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins), Johann Kroll (Syracuse Crunch) and Tom Fritsche (Lake Erie Monsters).
Former Buckeye Ian Keserich is in the ECHL with the Johnstown Chiefs. Former Buckeyes Kenny Bernard (Odessa Jackalopes), Daymen (Bencharski) Rycroft (Rocky Mountain Rage), Kyle Hood (Arizona Sundogs), Domenic Maiani (Rocky Mountain Rage) and Chris Richards (Corpus Christi IceRays) are playing in the Central Hockey League. Jason Selleke is playing for the Port Huron Icehawks in the International Hockey League.
A number of Buckeyes are continuing their hockey careers in Europe. Hugo Boisvert and Eric Meloche are in the DEL in Germany. Doug Andress and Scott May are playing in 2.Bundesliga in Germany, with Paul Caponigri and Andrew Schembri in Germany Obl. Jeff Maund is skating in Italy, Jean-Francois Dufour is in France, Matt Waddell is in Sweden and Andre Signoretti is in Denmark.
Wearing the C
Senior Zach Pelletier and sophomore Peter Boyd are serving as captains for the Ohio State men’s hockey team in 2008-09. Sophomore Sergio Somma was awarded an “A” Feb. 21 and now serves as an alternate captain for the squad.
Pelletier, from China Village, Maine, is in his fifth year with the squad after receiving a redshirt in 2007-08 because of a leg injury. He has played in 50 games as a Buckeye, including 24 in 2006-07. Pelletier earned his bachelor’s degree in criminology in Spring 2008.
Boyd, a native of Cambridge-Narrows, New Brunswick, is just the third sophomore to wear a “C” for the Buckeyes, joining current assistant coach Steve Brent (1994-95) and John Israel (1973-74). Boyd was voted the George Burke Most Valuable Freshman by his teammates last year after finishing the campaign second on the team with 24 points and 10 goals. He played in all 41 games and had a team-best four gamewinning goals, along with four power-play tallies.
A Young Group
The 27-player Ohio State roster is dominated by underclassmen in 2008-09. The squad includes just three seniors and two juniors, who are joined by 13 sophomores and nine freshmen. Last year, at least nine freshmen were regularly in the Ohio State lineup each game.
Seven NHL draft picks are on the Buckeye roster this season. Freshman forward Zac Dalpe was the 45th overall pick in the second round of the 2008 draft, the highest Buckeye draft pick since Tom Fritsche went 47th in 2005. Rookie forward Taylor Stefishen (Nashville 2008) and defenseman Matt Bartkowski (Florida 2008) join returning NHL draft picks – junior goalie Joseph Palmer (Chicago 2006), sophomore defenseman Shane Sims (New York Islanders 2006) and sophomore forwards John Albert (Atlanta 2007) and C.J. Severyn (Calgary 2007).