Feb. 24, 2018
COLUMBUS, Ohio — The No. 6 Ohio State University women’s ice hockey team punched its ticket to the Western Collegiate Hockey Association Final Faceoff with a 5-2 win over Minnesota State on Saturday afternoon at the OSU Ice Rink.
The Buckeyes (23-9-4, 14-6-4 WCHA) will make their first appearance in the WCHA Final Faceoff since 2013, but this time come in as the No. 2 seed in the tournament. Use the link at the top of this recap for all ticketing information you could need.
In the opening period Maddy Field continued her reign of terror over the MSU goaltending corps, scoring her fourth goal of the weekend a little over six minutes into the game. With the period winding down, Emma Maltais found the back of the net to give the Buckeyes a 2-0 lead heading into the second.
Both goaltenders had their work cut out for them in the second period, with OSU goalie Amanda Zeglen facing 17 shots, and MSU’s Chloe Crosby staring down 13 herself. With less than three minutes left in the period, Tatum Skaggs lit the lamp to push the OSU lead to 3-0. Zeglen, however, would not be able to claim her second consecutive shutout as Jordan McLaughlin gave the Mavericks their first goal of the weekend with just two seconds left in the period, making it a 3-1 game.
Not content with four goals on the weekend, Field scored again in the opening moments of the third to give Ohio State a 4-1 lead. Minnesota State continued to fire away, knowing its season was on the line, and eventually cut the lead to two with a goal from Demi Gardner at the 16:20 mark. MSU pulled Crosby out of the net to bring on an extra attacker, but that proved to seal the Mavericks’ fate as Skaggs scored an empty netter with less than a minute to play to secure the 5-2 win.
“This has been a long time coming for this team, and this squad truly deserves to contend for a WCHA title,” Buckeyes head coach Nadine Muzerall said postgame. “From here we have to keep doing what we’ve been doing. We have to make sure that team stays mentally strong and recovers for this weekend. As a team we’ve been preparing for this all year, now it’s time to get out there and do it.”
For the second straight game eight different Buckeyes tallied points in the game. Lauren Boyle led all point scorers with three, all from assists. Skaggs, Field, and Charly Dahlquist all tallied two points each, with Dahlquist getting both of hers from assists. Maltais, Liv Halvorson, Julianna Iafallo and Liz Schepers all finished with one point each.
The Buckeyes now head to the state of hockey where they’ll try to win the first WCHA Championship in program history. To get to the title game Ohio State will have to go through the Minnesota Golden Gophers. That WCHA Semifinal is set for a 6:07 p.m. ET start on Saturday, March 3.