COLUMBUS, Ohio – Led by four points by Natalie Spooner, the Ohio State women’s ice hockey team defeated St. Cloud State, 6-1, Friday afternoon at the National Hockey Center in St. Cloud, Minn. Spooner tallied her third-career hat trick along with an assist to help the Scarlet and Gray improve to 3-0 this season vs. the Huskies.
In all, four Buckeyes recorded multi-point performances. Junior forward Laura McIntosh had four assists and junior defenseman Kelly Wild had three, while freshman forward Ally Tarr posted her first-career two-goal game.
Spooner, who leads the team with 13-multi point performances this season, has a team-high 23 goals in 2011. The native of Toronto, Ontario, Spooner has scored multiple goals in eight games this year.
With her three assists, McIntosh is now one assist away from tying former Buckeye Jana Harrigan (2003-06) for first on Ohio State’s all-time career assists lists with 92 helpers.
Ohio State improves to 13-12-2 overall with a 7-12-2-2 in conference play, while St. Cloud State falls to 0-25-1 and 0-19-1-1 in WCHA action.
After the first 15 minutes of the opening period went scoreless, Ohio State got on the board during its first power play when senior defenseman Shannon Reilly scored her seventh goal of the season at 15:41, set up by Spooner and Wild.
In the second period, Spooner put the Buckeyes ahead, 2-0, with her 21st goal of the season at 9:58 with McIntosh earning the assist.
Ohio State added to its lead with a four-on-four goal with less than two minutes remaining in the second with Tarr scoring at 18:13. Wild and McIntosh each posted their second assists of the afternoon.
The Buckeyes continued the momentum to begin the final period when Tarr made the score 4-0 in favor of the Buckeyes with her second goal of the game at 1:52, while sophomore Tina Hollowell had an assist and McIntosh picked up her third assist. She now has had at least 28 assists (team-high) in each of her three seasons with the Scarlet and Gray.
Just three minutes later, Spooner gave Ohio State a 5-0 lead, scoring her second goal at 4:02, while Wild earned with her third assist on a Buckeye power play. She completed the hat trick after scoring her 23rd goal of the season at 7:57 set up by sophomore forward Minttu Tuominen on another Ohio State power play.
The Huskies denied the Buckeye shutout during their own power play when Julia Gilbert scored a 11:15 with assists from Alex Nelson and Sydney Burghard.
Freshman goalie Lisa Steffes had another solid outing between the pipes, recording 31 saves to improve to 13-12-2 in her first season as a Buckeye. The Amherstburg, Ontario, native has made 30-plus saves in 14 games.
The Buckeyes conclude the two-game series vs. the Huskies at 1 p.m. CT Saturday at the National Hockey Center in St. Cloud, Minn.