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Oct. 13, 2004

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State women’s ice hockey team travels to Mankato, Minn., to face the Minnesota State Mavericks in its first road trip of the 2004-05 season at 8:05 p.m. Friday and 4:05 p.m. Saturday in All Seasons Arena.

Scouting Minnesota State
Minnesota State opens its season this weekend as its faces the Buckeyes. The Mavericks defeated Manitoba, 7-0, Friday in exhibition game. Last season, MSU finished 16-14-4, marking its first winning season, and earned its first berth in the WCHA Final Five.

Leading the Maverick offense this season is senior Melanie Salatino, who finished second on the team last year with 26 points (18-8). Other top returnees are sophomore Autumn Conway and junior Kate Hainrich. Conway tallied 19 points and Hainrich posted 16 last season.

Replacing senior All-American Shari Vogt in net this year is a trio of goalies – sophomore Laura Brennan and freshmen Brittni Kehler and Casey Preston.

Mavericks Head Coach
Jeff Vizenor is in his fourth season as the head coach of the Minnesota State women’s hockey program. Last season, Vizenor guided the squad to a 16-14-4 record, marking its first winning season. The 1992 St. Cloud State graduate joined the MSU program after spending a season as an assistant coach at Wisconsin.

Buckeyes vs. Mavericks
The Buckeyes and Mavericks will be meeting for the 22nd and 23rd times in program history. Ohio State leads the all-time series 18-1-2. OSU leads MSU 8-1-1 in Mankato, Minn. In the last five meetings, OSU is 3-1-1. The Buckeyes suffered their only loss to the Mavericks Feb. 13, 2004 in Mankato, as MSU topped OSU 4-1. The loss snapped an Ohio State 18-game unbeaten streak vs. MSU.

WCHA Standings
Four teams, including Ohio State, began their seasons with WCHA league games. After the first weekend of competition, Ohio State is tied for second with St. Cloud State in the standings. Minnesota is first after sweeping North Dakota. Wisconsin and Bemidji State competed in non-league games, while Minnesota-Duluth and Minnesota State have not played a game.

Buckeyes vs. WCHA
Ohio State holds a 44-63-14 record against WCHA teams in the five-year history of the program.

Coach Barto vs. Minnesota State
Jackie Barto, Ohio State’s head coach has compiled an 18-1-2 record against Minnesota State. Prior to OSU, Barto coached Providence, but the Friars never faced MSU.

Last Time Out vs. MSU
Ohio State defeated Bemidji State, 3-1, March 12 in the first round of the 2004 WCHA Final Five in Minneapolis. OSU’s Meaghan Mulvaney got the Buckeyes on the board as she scored the first goal nine minutes into the game. Minnesota State took advantage of an Ohio State penalty at 11:32, as MSU’s Melanie Salatino scored a power-play goal to tie the game at 12:17. OSU went up 2-1 as Buckeye Jeni Creary notched her seventh goal of the season assisted by Krysta Skarda at 16:31.

There was no scoring in the second period, as Ohio State maintained its one-goal lead. OSU tallied six shots to MSU’s seven in the stanza.

The Buckeyes held onto their 2-1 lead throughout the third period and secured the victory with a goal in the final second of game. MSU pulled its goalie with 1:12 left in the game and called a timeout, but the Mavericks could not score on the extra-man advantage. The Buckeyes’ Harrigan scored an empty net goal with one second remaining.

OSU goalie Melissa Glaser recorded 19 saves on 20 Maverick shots. MSU’s Vogt stopped 29-of-32 Buckeye chances. The Buckeyes outshot the Mavericks 32-20. OSU held MSU scoreless on 4-of-5 power-play chances. OSU was 0-for-4 on the power play.

Leading The Way
Junior Jana Harrigan and freshman Jody Heywood lead the squad with two points each after two games this season. Harrigan has tallied two assists, while Heywood posted a goal and an assist.

Freshman Class Taking a Stand
In only two game this season four of the nine freshmen have recorded points – Jody Heywood (1-1-2), Shelby Aldous (1-0-1), Erin Keys (0-1-1) and Mallory Peckels (0-1-1).

Sharing Time In Net
In goal for the Buckeyes is senior Melissa Glaser and sophomore Erika Vanderveer.

Glaser has one loss on the year with a 2.04 goals against average and .857 save percentage. Vanderveer played in the second game against St. Cloud State and earned a victory with a 1.00 gaa and .957 save percentage.

+- Leader
Freshman Mallory Peckels from Minocqua, Wis., leads Ohio State with a +2 rating. Six other Buckeyes have a +1 rating.

Back On The Ice For The Buckeyes
Sophomore Tessa Bonhomme, who was named to the 2004 Canadian Under-22 Team, returns to the roster this week after competing at the Canadian Thanksgiving Festival Oct. 3-10 in Kitchener, Ontario.

Bonhomme recorded a goal and four assists in the tournament. The Sudbury, Ontario, native assisted on a power-play goal the second night of competition against Canada’s Red Team. In the third night of action, Oct. 9, Bonhomme posted two assists vs. Russia. Bonhomme’s team, Canada White, advanced to the gold medal game of tournament where it lost to Canada’s Red Team Oct. 10. Bonhomme scored the first goal of the game and an assist to earn player of the game.

Last Time Out
Ohio State split its opening weekend with St. Cloud State in the OSU Ice Rink. Despite outshooting SCSU, 26-14, OSU fell, 2-1, Friday. The Buckeyes came back to top the Huskies, 3-1, Saturday.

Welcome to College Hockey
Seven Buckeyes played in their first games wearing the Scarlet and Gray against St. Cloud State last weekend. Forwards – Jody Heywood, Erin Keys, Mallory Peckels, Shelby Aldous and Pamela Patterson. Defensemen – Rachel Vanscoy and Lisa Chesson.

Keep Your Eye On – Buckeye PK
Ohio State’s penalty-killing unit held St. Cloud State scoreless on four-of-five chances over the weekend. Last season, the Buckeye penalty-killing unit finished the year ranked sixth in the nation, stopping 130-of-148 of their opponents’ chances (87.8).

Stingy Defense
Ohio State’s defense is back in action as they are holding opponents to just 1.5 goals per game and 18.5 shots per game.

WCHA Coaches’ Poll
The WCHA released its annual Preseason Coaches Poll and Players of the Year Oct. 7. Ohio State was ranked fourth with 50 points. Minnesota, the defending WCHA and NCAA champion, was selected first for the second straight year with 70 points. Wisconsin was picked second, receiving 64 points and one first place vote. Minnesota-Duluth was ranked third with 58 points.

New to the Bunch
Ohio State added nine freshmen to the team this season, marking the biggest rookie class since the inaugural season when 18 freshmen joined the team.

The Buckeye Returnees
The Buckeyes boast 14 returning players, including seven forwards, five defensemen and two goaltenders, to lead the charge in the upcoming campaign. Among the group are five seniors who will be looked upon to guide the squad to a winning season, including second-year captain Meaghan Mulvaney and alternate captains Melissa Glaser and Jeni Creary.

“We are going to have good chemistry this year,” head coach Jackie Barto, who has been with the program since its inception, said. “I am really excited about the student-athletes and the way they are coming together. Not only just our captain and alternate captains, but our senior class is dedicated to the success of the program. They are very good leaders who are going to lead from the top down.”

Addition to The Program
New to the Ohio State program this season is assistant coach Katie Lachapelle. She comes to OSU from Niagara where she served as an assistant women’s ice hockey coach. The Purple Eagles recorded a 49-49-8 record during her three-year stint and made an appearance in the 2002 NCAA Frozen Four. She was involved in all facets of the Niagara program including recruiting, coordinating team travel, monitoring academics and coaching the forwards.

Prior to Niagara, Lachapelle was an assistant coach at Union College for two years. A native of Lewiston, Maine, Lachapelle graduated from Providence in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in social science.

2003-04 Season Recap
Ohio State ended the 2003-04 season with a fourth-place finish in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association regular season and tournament. The season marked another successful year as the Buckeyes went 16-16-3 overall and finished 10-12-2 in league play.

The Buckeyes also set three program records. For the first time Ohio State went on a nine-game unbeaten streak (Nov. 14-Jan. 3). During that time OSU had a seven-game winning streak, from Nov. 14-Dec. 12, breaking the six-game streak in the 2000-01 season. The Buckeyes also won five consecutive conference games, breaking the previous record of four from the 2001-02 season.

New Career Leader
Last season, Jeni Creary made her mark in the OSU record books as she became the first Buckeye to reach 100 career points. Creary concluded her junior year with two goals and an assist in the WCHA Final Five to move her career point total to 101, breaking the OSU record of 98 set by Shana Frost (1999-03).

Goals for the squad in 2004-05
In utilizing the leadership on the team this season, Barto has set specific objectives for her squad to be able to improve upon its 16-16-3 record last year and reach its ultimate goal of advancing to the NCAA tournament, which expands from four to eight teams this season.

The Buckeyes look to have a strong start by coming out of the preseason with high energy, confidence and camaraderie. Another goal of the squad is to be more consistent from period to period and game to game. Last season, the Buckeyes finished 3-10-3 against ranked opponents, so the squad also is striving for more success against top-ranked teams. The Buckeyes know if they finish in the Top 3 of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association and rank in the national polls, they will have a good chance of earning a berth into the NCAA tournament.

Between the Pipes
Ohio State looks toward two talented returnees and a freshman to lead the Buckeyes in goal this season.

Sixth-year senior Melissa Glaser, who suffered knee injuries in 2001 and 2003, returns in goal for her final year as a Buckeye. Glaser is OSU’s career goals-against average (2.72) and save percentage (.903) leader. Glaser had her most successful season last year as she posted a 2.66 gaa and 670 saves for a .910 Spct.

Challenging Glaser for the starting spot is sophomore Erika Vanderveer, who gained a wealth of experience her freshman campaign, posting a .917 save percentage, a 2.21 gaa and a 5-3-1 record. Vanderveer also garnered two WCHA Player of the Week honors for recording a shutout in each of her first two starts.

Newcomer Jillian Mauch of Framingham, Mass., enters the goaltending ranks for the 2004-05 season. This year will allow Mauch to make the adjustment to the college level and she will be under the guidance of veteran leaders Glaser and Vanderveer.

The Schedule
Ohio State plays 18 games, 10 home and eight on the road, before heading into the holiday break.

The Buckeyes open January with three home series before entering their toughest part of the season, during which they will compete four consecutive weekends on the road. OSU concludes the regular season at home vs. Minnesota State Feb. 25-26. The Buckeyes play every WCHA team four times during the season, with a two-game series on the road and a two-game series at home.

Ohio State will face three nonconference opponents this year, including Northeastern, who the Buckeyes went 1-0-1 against last season, Nov. 13-14 in Columbus, Ohio. The Yale Bulldogs travel to the state of Ohio to face the Buckeyes in only the second meeting between the teams; their first meeting was Nov. 27, 1999 at a Providence tournament. Ohio State will make its first trek to Niagara Falls, N.Y., at the end of the season. Last year marked the first meeting between the two teams, when the Buckeyes swept the Purples Eagles in Columbus.

The WCHA has expanded to an eight-team championship this season, which will be held March 3-7 at Ridder Arena, the site of the 2005 WCHA Final Five, in Minneapolis, Minn. The NCAA expanded its tournament to eight teams, adding regional games which will be held at campus sites March 18-20. The 2005 NCAA Frozen Four will be held March 25 and 27 at the Whittemore Center in Durham, N.H.

What’s Up Next for the Buckeyes?
Ohio State returns home to face WCHA rival No. 4 Wisconsin at 7:05 p.m. Oct. 22-23 at the OSU Ice Rink in Columbus, Ohio.

Live Stats and Web Information
New for the 2004-05 season, live stats from every Buckeye home game be found online at ohiostatebuckeyes.com.

Also, keep track of the latest women’s ice hockey news, scores and stats by logging on to the Ohio State athletics website at ohiostatebuckeyes.com. The website also will feature an “On The Road with the Buckeyes” each road trip by junior forward Cyrstal Sayther.