Jan. 23, 2016
Mankato, Minn.— It had been a little over two years since Ohio State (8-17-1, 4-15-1 WCHA) scored at least eight goals in a game, but today’s 8-3 shellacking of Minnesota State (3-20-3, 0-18-2 WCHA) met that benchmark to close out the weekend.
Claudia Kepler and Julia McKinnon led the way offensively with four points each- two goals and two assists for both skaters- and Jessica Dunne led all comers with three assists. All three numbers set new career highs for those Buckeyes in the team’s biggest offensive performance since an 8-0 win over Penn State in early January of 2014.
The Buckeyes started off the scoring in today’s game with two quick goals to take an early lead. Kepler scored 5:24 into the game with assists from McKinnon and Alexa Ranahan, and on the ensuing faceoff Katie Matheny took control of the puck and put it in the back of the net for her fourth goal of the season. All told it was 21 seconds between the two scores. Minnesota State would answer though, scoring two goals of its own before the period would end. After 20 minutes of play both teams were tied at 2-2.
Matheny scored her second goal of the game 4:40 into the second period before the Mavericks’ Emily Antony also potted her second goal of the afternoon, which locked the teams in a 3-3 tie. That wouldn’t last long though, with a power play goal from Kepler coming just over a minute later to give Ohio State a lead it would not relinquish.
McKinnon added another second period goal at the 16:50 mark; a shorthanded score, the first such goal for the Buckeyes this season. Ohio State would score three goals again in the third period, capping its best offensive performance of the season. McKinnon scored again 5:13 into the frame, flipping a backhand shot past the Maverick goalie. Kendall Curtis scored on the power play at the 8:42 mark for goal number seven, and captain Melani Moylan capped off the afternoon with her second goal of the weekend.
The 8-3 final score gave Ohio State 11 goals for the weekend, the best two-game series in terms of offensive output all season. Aside from the aforementioned top performers, Dani Sadek also added two assists today to give her a team-leading 13 on the year.
After being outshot in yesterday’s tie, Ohio State’s 28 shots outnumbered Minnesota State’s 21, and the success on the power play today also contributed to the victory. OSU converted two of its three chances.
The Buckeyes will look to build off this weekend’s success when they visit Minnesota Duluth next weekend.