at No. 2 Michigan
Friday, Nov. 30 – 7:35 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 1 – 7:35 p.m.
Yost Ice Arena, Ann Arbor, Mich.
Sophomore goalie Joseph Palmer and the Buckeyes shut out Western Michigan, 3-0, last Saturday. It was the first whitewash for both Palmer and the team since Oct. 13, 2006, vs. Lake Superior State in the season opener last season. Palmer now has two career shutouts.
Freshman John Albert scored his first career goal at Western Michigan Friday, followed by classmate Brad Gorham’s first goal as a Buckeye Saturday. Six Buckeye freshmen have recorded at least one goal this season. In all, 11 rookies have at least one point on the year.
Senior Kyle Hood is on a four-game scoring streak. His assist vs. Western Michigan was the 50th point of his Buckeye career.
Senior defenseman Johann Kroll did not play vs. the Broncos last weekend because of injury, ending his consecutive games played streak at 130 and marking the first game he missed in his career. It was the team’s longest ironman streak since Doug Andress played in 148-consecutive from 2001-04. Ohio State’s all-time leader in consecutive games played is Mark Anderson, who played in all 167 games from 1985-88.
COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio State men’s hockey team (3-10-1, 1-7 CCHA) continues its four-game stretch of road contests when it travels to take on No. 2 Michigan (13-1-0, 8-0-0 CCHA) this weekend. The teams will meet at 7:35 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Yost Ice Arena in Ann Arbor, Mich.
WOSU Radio (820 AM Columbus/wosu.org) will carry both Buckeye games this weekend, with Neil Sika calling the action and former Buckeyes John Mowat (Friday) and Luke Pavlas (Saturday) providing analysis. The game Friday will be a web-only broadcast, while Saturday will be both over the air and on the internet.
Both games also will be televised. FSN Detroit will carry the game live Friday, with Ken Daniels and Fred Pletsch calling the action. Saturday Comcast Local will televise the game, with Ben Holden and Sean Ritchlin on the call.
Live stats can be accessed online at mgoblue.com.
A Buckeye Brief
Ohio State is 3-10-1 on the year and 1-7-0 in the CCHA. The squad is averaging 2.1 goals a game while allowing 3.6.
The Buckeyes have converted 15.2 percent of their power-play chances (13/79) and have stopped their opponents on 81.9 percent of their opportunities (59/76).
Senior Tommy Goebel is first with five goals and 10 points this season. Classmate Tom Fritsche has a team-best seven assists and is second with nine points. Freshmen Peter Boyd and Sergio Somma are second with three goals each. Seniors Matt McIlvane and Kyle Hood are tied for third with seven points (2g, 5a) each.
In net, sophomore Joseph Palmer has started 13-of-14 games, with a 3.43 goals-against average and .877 save percentage.
Last Time Out
The Buckeyes split a two-game series at Western Michigan last weekend, falling in the opener Friday, 4-2, before rebounding for a 3-0 win Saturday.
In game one, Ohio State trailed 1-0 after the first period on Mike Lesperance’s tally at 15:14. The teams traded goals in the last 3:42 of the second period to go into intermission with WMU ahead, 2-1. Patrick Galivan tallied at 16:18 for the Broncos and Buckeye Tommy Goebel scored on the power play at 19:52.
In the third, Ohio State freshman John Albert’s first career goal tied the score at 2 just 2:43 into the period. The game remained tied until 15:54 when Jeff LoVecchio tallied on a breakaway after WMU goalie Riley Gill made a point-blank save to keep OSU off the board. LoVecchio closed out the game with an empty-net goal with 18 seconds remaining.
The Buckeyes outshot the Broncos, 24-23. Ohio State was 1-for-7 on the power play. WMU was 0-for-5.
Saturday, Brad Gorham opened the scoring with his first career goal 2:46 into the game. The Buckeyes carried the 1-0 lead through the second period. Just 1:03 into the third period Mathieu Picard put the Buckeyes ahead 2-0 and Kyle Reed closed out the scoring on a delayed-penalty goal at 14:22. Buckeye goalie Joseph Palmer made 16 stops for the shutout.
Each team was 0-for-4 on the power play in the game. The Buckeyes outshot the Broncos, 29-16.
The victory ended the Buckeyes’ 11-game winless streak (0-10-1), the program’s longest since 1999-00.
Buckeyes vs. Wolverines
The Buckeyes trail the all-time series with Michigan, 27-60-11. In Ann Arbor, the Wolverines lead 30-11-6.
The Buckeyes and Wolverines split the series in Columbus last season (Feb. 23-24), with Michigan winning the opener, 4-3, before the Buckeyes won game two, 6-5.
In the last series in Ann Arbor Feb. 3-4, 2006, each squad came from behind in the third period to win. Ohio State won 7-5 before Michigan posted a 3-2 victory.
Doing the Splits
The Buckeyes and Wolverines have split each of the last three regular-season series, as well as four of the last six.
Last season, the teams split the series in Columbus Feb. 23-24 (UM 4-3, OSU 6-5).
Feb. 3-4, 2006, in Ann Arbor, OSU won 7-5 and Michigan won 3-2.
In 2005, Ohio State posted a 4-1 win Jan. 21, followed by the Wolverines’ victory Jan. 22 (6-3).
The teams were in the same CCHA scheduling cluster in 2003-04. In the November series on the Buckeyes’ home ice, UM won 4-0 and Ohio State had a 5-2 victory.
Michigan swept the second 2003-04 series (3-1, 7-1 Jan. 9-10, 2004 in Ann Arbor) and the teams tied both ends of the 2002-03 set in Columbus (4-4 OT, 3-3 OT March 7-8, 2003).
Michigan enters the weekend ranked second nationally with a 13-1 record overall and 8-0 conference ledger. The squad is on a 12-game winning streak. The Wolverines won the College Hockey Showcase last weekend with victories over Wisconsin (3-2) and Minnesota (5-1) in Ann Arbor.
The Wolverines are averaging 4.29 goals a game and are allowing 2.00 goals a contest. The squad has not scored fewer than three goals in a game this year and has held opponents to two or fewer goals in each of the last seven outings.
Senior Kevin Porter has 24 points and leads the country in points per game (1.71). His 16 goals are first nationally. Senior Chad Kolarik is second with 20 points and has a team-best 11 assists. Freshman Aaron Palushaj has 10 assists and 15 points, followed by Max Pacioretty with 12 points on three goals and nine assists.
Billy Sauer has started all 14 games in goal and has a 2.00 goals-against average and .929 save percentage.
Red Berenson, a 1962 graduate of Michigan, is in his 25th season at the helm. He has a school and career ledger of 624-293-64.
Saturday, goalie Joseph Palmer stopped all 16 Bronco shots for his second career shutout and first since Oct. 13, 2006, vs. Lake Superior State. It was the Buckeyes’ first road shutout since Dave Caruso blanked Ferris State Feb. 7, 2004, in Big Rapids, Mich.
It Takes a Team
In Ohio State’s 3-0 win Saturday over Western Michigan, three Buckeyes scored goals and five added assists. Of the 18 skaters in the game, 15 were +1.
The Rookies Team Up
Freshmen Brad Gorham (goal) and Corey Toy (assist) combined for the first Buckeye goal (the eventual gamewinner) vs. the Broncos last Saturday, marking the first career point for each player.
The Buckeyes stopped Western Michigan on all eight power-play chances in the series last weekend, going 4-for-4 in each game. The team has killed the last 15-consecutive power-play opportunities against, dating back to Nov. 16 vs. Robert Morris.
After scoring just two power-play goals over a five-game stretch Oct. 25-Nov. 8, the Buckeyes now have at least one power-play goal in four of their last five outings (5-for-31).
After he was a healthy scratch vs. Nebraska-Omaha Nov. 9, senior Kyle Hood now is on a four-game scoring streak. He had an assist in each game vs. Western Michigan. His assist vs. WMU Friday was the 50th point of his Buckeye career.
Two for No. 2
Senior Jason DeSantis had his first two-assist game since Nov. 9, 2006, vs. Western Michigan with two helpers last Friday. It was the fourth game with two helpers in his career.
No. 6 Takes the Lead
With a goal and an assist at Western Michigan Friday, senior Tommy Goebel had his second two-point night in the last three games. He now has a team-best five goals and 10 points on the year.
Goebel has a team-high four power-play goals to tie for 11th nationally and rank seventh (tied) in the CCHA. The four PPG match his career best for a season, set as a freshman at Michigan State in 2003-04.
After recording just five multiple-point games in the team’s first 10 games of the season, Ohio State players have combined for nine multiple-point performances in the last four games, with seven in the two-game series with Robert Morris and two at Western Michigan.
Freshman Kyle Reed had a team season-best three points, on a goal and two assists, vs. Robert Morris Nov. 16.
Five Buckeyes have two two-point games this season – Jason DeSantis, Tommy Goebel, Tom Fritsche, Matt McIlvane and Nick Biondo.
Kyle Hood, Todd Rudasill and Sergio Somma each have one two-point games this season.
DeSantis (0-2) and Goebel (1-1) each had two-point games last weekend.
Six Buckeyes, including three freshmen, have played in all 14 games this season. Seniors Matt McIlvane, Jason DeSantis and John Dingle have appeared in every game, along with rookies John Albert, Peter Boyd and Sergio Somma.
Twenty-two Buckeyes (all but one skater who has played this season, along with goalie Joseph Palmer) have at least one point this season, with 16 scoring a goal and 18 having an assist. Twelve Buckeyes have at least one goal and one assist this year.
Freshman John Albert had his first goal and junior Corey Elkins had his first assists of the season at Western Michigan last weekend. Corey Toy (assist) and Brad Gorham (goal) each had their first career points vs. the Broncos.
We’re On the Air
Monday night marked the debut of Buckeye Hockey Weekly, head coach John Markell’s weekly radio whow, for 2007-08.
The show, broadcast on 1460 AM in Columbus and online at 1460thefan.com, will be held the next two Tuesdays from 8-8:30 p.m. (Dec. 4, 11). Beginning Jan. 7, the show will run from 8-8:30 p.m. on Mondays for seven-consecutive weeks. More shows may be added depending on the Buckeyes’ postseason schedule.
Dustin Carlson was the 13th Buckeye freshman to see game action for the Buckeyes this season when he faced Nebraska-Omaha Nov. 9.
Rookies John Albert, Peter Boyd and Sergio Somma have seen action in all 14 games this year. Chris Reed has played in 13 games, while Shane Sims has seen action in 12 contests. Kyle Reed and Patrick Schafer have played in nine games, followed by C.J. Severyn with 10 games. Corey Toy has appeared in eight games, with Todd Rudasill making seven lineups. Erick Belanger has played in six games and Brad Gorham has played in four. Carlson has played in two games.
In the Bigs
Ryan Kesler, the fourth former Buckeye currently in the NHL, has 5-8-13 totals in 23 games for the Vancouver Canucks this season and had a four-game scoring streak stopped Sunday. A Buckeye in 2003, he has played in 181 career games in the NHL, with 23 goals, 34 assists and 57 points.
R.J. Umberger, a member of the Philadelphia Flyers this season, has played in 21 games and has three goals and 10 assists for 13 points, including back-to-back two-point games Nov. 23-24. A Buckeye from 2001-03, he has seen action in 175 career NHL games and has 39 goals, 40 assists and 79 points.
Former Buckeye and current Washington Capital Dave Steckel, who played for the Buckeyes from 2001-04, has played in 36 career NHL games, including 24 this season. He leads all NHL rookies and ranks 17th in the NHL in faceoffs. Steckel scored his first National Hockey League goal Oct. 24 vs. the Tampa Bay Lightning and also has an assist this season.
Rod Pelley, a Buckeye from 2003-06, and a member of the New Jersey Devils this season, now has four points this season and scored the first gamewinner of his NHL career Nov. 23 at Atlanta. He played nine games for the Devils last season and has seen action in 23 NHL contests this year.
Nate Guenin, who played at Ohio State from 2003-06, has spent time with both the Philadelphia Flyers (NHL) and Phantoms (AHL) this season. He has played in two NHL games this year after playing in nine a season ago.
Former Buckeyes Matt Waddell (Hartford Wolf Pack) and Sean Collins (Hershey Bears) also are playing in the AHL.
Buckeye senior John Dingle played in his 100th career game in the opener at Minnesota Oct. 25 and now has played in 108 collegiate contests. He is the sixth current Buckeye to hit the 100 games played mark at Ohio State, joining Johann Kroll (130), Matt McIlvane (129), Jason DeSantis (117), Kyle Hood (114) and Tom Fritsche (111). Tommy Goebel has played in 121 collegiate games, with 76 at Michigan State and 45 at Ohio State.
Four Buckeyes are within five games of the 50-games played mark – Joseph Palmer (47), Corey Elkins (46) and Mathieu Picard (45). Goebel is five away from the 50-game mark at Ohio State. Zach Pelletier, who is out with injury, has played in exactly 50 games for the Scarlet and Gray.
No other Buckeyes have played more than 24 games in their Buckeye careers.
Starting Off Right
Four Buckeyes had points in their first collegiate games – Peter Boyd (goal) and John Albert (assist) vs. Mercyhurst Oct. 12, Patrick Schafer (goal) against Wisconsin Oct. 13 and Todd Rudasill vs. Ferris State Nov. 2. They were the first Buckeye freshmen to score points in their first collegiate games since NHL first-round draft picks R.J. Umberger had a goal and two assists and Dave Steckel had two goals at Northern Michigan Oct. 13, 2000.
Boyd and Hood Named CCHA Players of the Week
Peter Boyd and Kyle Hood were named CCHA Rookie and Defenseman of the Week, respectively, the Central Collegiate Hockey Association announced Oct. 15. The duo helped the Buckeyes win the Lefty McFadden College Hockey Invitational title over the weekend at the E.J. Nutter Center in Dayton, Ohio.
Boyd, a forward from Cambridge-Narrows, New Brunswick, scored the gamewinning goal against Mercyhurst in his first collegiate game, breaking a 1-all tie midway through the third period. Against Wisconsin, Boyd had the primary assist on senior John Dingle’s late second-period goal that broke a 3-all tie and stood as the gamewinner in OSU’s 5-3 victory. Boyd had eight shots on the weekend and helped the Buckeye power play convert 4-of-11 (.364) chances in the tournament.
Hood, a native of Osoyoos, British Columbia, blocked three shots in the win over Mercyhurst. Against Wisconsin in the championship game, he assisted on the first two Buckeye goals, as Ohio State jumped out to a 2-0 lead less than four minutes into the game. His two assists matched his career high, set three times earlier. This is the first league weekly honor for Hood.
Leading the Way
Senior Matt McIlvane was selected the team’s captain prior to the season. He wore an “A” for the squad last season.
Seniors Tommy Goebel and Johann Kroll are the alternate captains for the squad this year.
The Year that Was
Ohio State was 15-17-5 last year and finished seventh in the CCHA with a 12-12-4 mark.
The squad returned 12 letterwinners. Senior Tommy Goebel is the leading returning scorer, posting 26 points last year and ranking second on the squad with 12 goals. Senior defenseman Jason DeSantis was second among blueliners last season with a career-best 25 points, including a team-high 20 assists.
The Buckeye State
Nine Buckeyes hail from the state of Ohio, including the first three Central Ohio products in head coach John Markell’s tenure in Patrick Schafer of Hilliard, Todd Rudasill of Columbus (Powell) and Ryan Markell of Pickerington. Three Buckeyes are from Parma (Tom Fritsche, Nick Biondo, Tommy Goebel), along with John Albert from Concord, John Dingle from Shaker Heights and Chris Reed from Solon.
Ohio State’s 2007-08 recruiting class was rated seventh by Red Line Report and 14th by Inside College Hockey.
In INCH’s individual rankings, Shane Sims was slotted eighth among incoming defensemen.
I Feel a Draft
On the Buckeyes’ 2007-08 roster, six players are NHL draft picks, including seniors Tom Fritsche (Colorado 2005) and Matt McIlvane (Ottawa 2004), sophomore Joseph Palmer (Chicago 2006) and freshmen John Albert (Atlanta 2007), C.J. Severyn (Calgary 2007) and Shane Sims (New York Islanders 2006).
Break it Down
The Ohio State roster for 2007-08 includes nine seniors and 14 freshmen, along with just two juniors and three sophomores. The 14 freshmen mark the biggest rookie class for the Buckeyes since the 1992-93 squad opened the year with 13 freshmen.
Head coach John Markell has opened a season with 11 freshmen three times (1996, 2000, 2004).
Predicting the Future
Ohio State was picked to finish fifth by the coaches and media in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association preseason polls, the league announced Sept. 25 at its annual media day at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.
Defending NCAA champion Michigan State was the media’s choice for the top spot in the poll, while the coaches picked Miami as the team to beat.
Buckeye Jason DeSantis, a senior defenseman from Oxford, Mich., was voted to a spot on the Preseason All-CCHA Second Team by the league’s head coaches. He had a career-best and team-high 20 assists last year and ended the campaign with 25 points to rank fourth (tied) on the team.
Back to School
The fourth-annual Ohio Hockey Classic, hosted by Ohio State, has been moved to Value City Arena in Columbus because of a scheduling conflict. The tournament still will be held Dec. 29-30.
On the opening day, Miami and St. Cloud State will meet at 6 p.m., followed by the Buckeyes taking on Harvard at 9 p.m. Day two includes championship and consolation games at 5 and 8 p.m. Ohio State will play in the late game regardless of the first-day results.
Dec. 29 will be a triple-header with the Ohio State men’s basketball team, as the squad hosts UMBC at 11 a.m. in Value City Arena.
The OHC was held at Nationwide Arena in downtown Columbus the first three years. The Buckeyes won the 2006 championship, with Miami claiming the title in 2005 and Colorado College winning the inaugural event in 2004.
The Buckeyes will host St. Lawrence in a two-game non-conference series next weekend. The teams will meet at 7:05 p.m. Dec. 7-8 in Value City Arena.
Both games will be College ID night, when any college student ID shown at the game will receive the same price as an Ohio State student. (Discount valid day of game only.)
The Friday night game will feature 25-cent hot dogs (while supplies last).
At the game Saturday, free schedule key tags will be handed out to the first 2,500 fans. There also will be a Meet the Buckeyes postgame autograph session with senior defensemen Jason DeSantis and Kyle Hood.