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Feb. 7, 2003

Box Score

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 10-ranked Ohio State men’s hockey team came back from a goal down in the third period to beat Western Michigan in overtime, 3-2, Friday in a Central Collegiate Hockey Association game at Value City Arena. Buckeye freshman Rod Pelley tied the game with 46 seconds remaining before junior center R.J. Umberger scored the overtime winner 31 seconds into the extra stanza.

The win, which keeps the Buckeyes in second place in the CCHA, improves the squad to 19-6-3 on the year and 13-4-2 in the league. The Broncos fall to 13-13-1 overall, 11-8-0 in conference play.

The teams complete the two-game series at 7:05 p.m. Saturday in Value City Arena. OSU has won the last five games against the Broncos.

OSU got on the scoreboard board first, as Dave Steckel deflected an Umberger pass past WMU goalie Scott Foster at the 12:22 mark with the Buckeyes on the power play. Doug Andress also had an assist on the goal. Western Michigan outshot the Buckeyes in the period, 8-7.

There was no scoring in the second period until WMU’s Pat Dwyer put in the rebound of an Andrew Dwyer shot at the 14:51 mark. OSU had 12 shots in the period, WMU eight. OSU held Western scoreless on four power-play chances in the stanza and was scoreless on its one opportunity.

Dana Lattery put WMU up by one (2-1) when he scored at the 5:19 mark of the third period, picking up the puck in the neutral zone and beating Betz in close. The score remained the same until the 19:14 mark. OSU pulled Betz with 1:29 remaining for the extra attacker. The move paid off for the second consecutive week (OSU scored with 4.7 seconds remaining at Notre Dame to tie the score), as Ryan Kesler got the puck to Bittner behind the net. Bittner passed to Pelley at the right side of the cage, who beat Foster on the short side. OSU had nine shots in the period and held the Broncos to just one.

In overtime, Scott Titus and Kesler led Umberger down the left side of the ice. He broke in and beat Foster with a wrist shot just 31 seconds into the extra stanza for his sixth gamewinning tally of the year. It was the only shot of overtime.

The Buckeyes held the Broncos scoreless on eight power-play chances, their second consecutive 8-for-8 performance. The Buckeyes were 1-for-5 with the man advantage.

Betz had 15 saves in the game on 17 Bronco shots. OSU had 26 shots, with Foster stopping 26.

Postgame Quotes
Ohio State head coach John Markell
“Obviously it really came down to the wire but we are just happy to get the win. I always tell the team at this point in the season two points is key and staying at the top is of the utmost importance.”

“We learn from our mistakes. I think to come back after four road games and play in this arena is a little tough to adjust to but that’s not an excuse. Western Michigan is a very good hockey club and you have to compliment them. It wasn’t an easy game but we got through it and got two points. We have 24 hours before we come back here and play this same team.”

Western Michigan head coach Jim Culhane
“Both teams played pretty well tonight. We didn’t execute down the stretch when they pulled their goalie. Umberger’s goal got through (Foster) but he played a good game. Both teams played hard and when you look at it we didn’t execute at the end and we didn’t take advantage of power plays. If we had done that things might have come out differently. I told the guys we need to reflect on it right now, get cleaned up and move on.”

Ohio State junior forward R.J. Umberger
On his game-winning goal: “It’s always good when you get the puck with speed. I took it across the blue line and had the opportunity to get a shot off. I was surprised because I have been shooting high and I thought it was going over the net but I got it down low and it went in.

“We have a lot of heart on this team and we aren’t going to quit. I had a feeling early in the game that it wasn’t going to stay 1-1. There was a lot of potential offense from both teams. Our team is in good shape and we don’t get down on each other.”

Ohio State freshman forward Rod Pelley
On his game-tying goal: “We have been practicing that play a lot in practice. I passed it to (Bittner) and the defense committed to him. I didn’t really have time to call it and he just got it to my stick. I brought the puck around and put it in. I didn’t have time to think about it.”

Hockey Game Box Score (Final) Ohio State Hockey 2002-03 Western Michigan vs Ohio State (Feb 07, 2003 at Columbus, Ohio)

Western Michigan (13-13-1, 11-8-0 CCHA) vs. Ohio State (19-6-3, 13-4-2 CCHA) Date: Feb 07, 2003 Location: Columbus, Ohio Arena: Value City Arena Attendance:9875 Start time:7:05 pm End time:9:23 pm Total time:2:18

Goals by Period 1 2 3 OT Total Western Michigan 0 1 1 0 2 Ohio State 1 0 1 1 3

1st period – 1, OSU, Dave Steckel/10 (R.J. Umberger/20, Doug Andress/13) 12:22 (pp). Penalties – Miguel Lafleche, OSU (checking from behind) 3:26; Pete Broccoli, OSU (holding) 6:13; Doug Andress, OSU (holding) 9:19; Paul Davies, WMU (slashing) 11:51; Dave Cousineau, WMU (slashing) 14:56; Ryan Kesler, OSU (charging) 18:35; Eric Skaug, OSU (cross-checking) 19:46; Pete Broccoli, OSU (slashing after the whistle) 20:00; Dana Lattery, WMU (slashing after the whistle) 20:00.

2nd period – 2, WMU, Pat Dwyer/7 (Andrew Dwyer/2, Jeff Campbell/13) 14:51. Penalties – Paul Caponigri, OSU (broken stick) 3:19; Andrew Dwyer, WMU (interference) 6:18; Rod Pelley, OSU (charging) 15:43.

3rd period – 3, WMU, Dana Lattery/15 5:19. 4, OSU, Rod Pelley/5 (JB Bittner/6, Ryan Kesler/18) 19:14. Penalties – Nate Guenin, OSU (cross-checking) 7:04; Dave Cousineau, WMU (obstruction-holding) 9:37; Ryan Kesler, OSU (slashing) 10:16; Brian Pasko, WMU (high sticking) 10:16; Vince Bellissimo, WMU (hooking) 12:11.

OT period – 5, OSU, R.J. Umberger/19 (Ryan Kesler/19, Scott Titus/3) :31. Penalties –

Shots on goal – WMU 8-8-1-0 17; OSU 7-12-9-1 29.

Power plays – WMU 0 of 8; OSU 1 of 5.

Penalties – WMU 7 (14 min); OSU 10 (20 min).

Goalies – WMU, Scott Foster 5-5-1 (60:31 minutes, 29 shots-26 saves); OSU, Mike Betz 14-4-3 (59:48, 17-15) , EMPTY NET (00:43, 0-0).

A-9875 T-2:18 Three stars: 1. R.J. Umberger 2. Rod Pelley 3. Dana Lattery Referee:Brian Aaron Assistant Referee:Dave Kronenberg and Brian Wisner Win-Mike Betz (14-4-3). Loss-Scott Foster (5-5-1).