March 23, 2023

Buckeyes Ready for NCAA Regional Matchup vs. Harvard


The Basics

  • The Ohio State men’s hockey team earned an at-large berth into the 2023 NCAA Championship and is heading to Total Mortgage Arena in Bridgeport, Conn., for the East Regional.
  • The No. 3 seed Buckeyes will take on No. 2 Harvard at 2 p.m. Friday, with the game televised by ESPNU and on Ohio State Radio.
  • The other Bridgeport matchup is No. 1 Quinnipiac vs. No. 4 Merrimack, set for 5:30 p.m. on ESPNews.
  • The winning teams will meet at 4 p.m. Sunday on ESPN2 for a spot in the 2023 NCAA Frozen Four.
  • Ohio State is 20-15-3 on the year and was 11-11-2-0-0-1 in Big Ten play. Harvard is 24-7-2 overall and had an 18-4-0-5-0-0 mark in ECAC action.

Buckeye Notes to Know

  • Ohio State is making the 10th NCAA appearance in program history and first since 2019. The squad has advanced to the Frozen Four twice (1998, 2018).
  • Four teams from the Big Ten are competing in the NCAA Tournament. Minnesota and Michigan are No. 1 seeds and Penn State is a No. 2 seed.
  • The Buckeyes last played March 11, when they fell at Michigan in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals. Harvard won an ECAC Tournament semifinal game vs. Cornell last Friday before losing to Colgate in the championship game Saturday.
  • Ohio State is first nationally on the penalty kill (136/152, .895) and in shorthanded goals (10).
  • Four Buckeyes earned All-Big Ten honors – Jake Wise and Mason Lohrei were named to the second team and Jakub Dobeš and Stephen Halliday were honorable mention choices.
  • This season, 22 Buckeyes have posted at least one point. Eighteen have scored a goal, with 22 notching an assist. One Buckeye has hit 40 points, one has more than 30 and four others are at 20 points or better. In all, 14 have reached double-digit points. Rookies lead Ohio State in goals, assists and points. Stephen Halliday has a team-best 31 assists and 40 points and Davis Burnside is first with 14 goals. Four other Buckeyes – Cam Thiesing, Joe Dunlap, Tate Singleton and Wise – have 10+ goals. Halliday, Mason Lohrei and Wise each have 20+ assists.

Buckeyes in the NCAA Tourney

  • Ohio State is making its 10th appearance in the NCAA Tournament, with two Frozen Four trips (1998, 2018).
  • The squad has two stretches of three consecutive berths – 2003-05 and 2017-19 and also earned a spot in 1998, ’99 and ’09.
  • The Buckeyes have been an at-large team all but one year. The squad won the 2004 CCHA Tournament to claim the league’s automatic bid that season.
  • Two Buckeyes have NCAA Tournament game experience. Gustaf Westlund skated as a freshman for the Buckeyes in the 2019 loss to Minnesota Duluth and did not record a point. Jake Wise scored a goal against St. Cloud State in 2021 when he was playing for Boston University. Kamil Sadlocha was with the Buckeyes in 2018-19 but redshirted the season.
  • Ohio State was 7-8-1 vs. 2023 NCAA Tournament teams in the regular season, with all 15 games against Big Ten teams (4-3-0 vs. Penn State, 2-2-1 vs. Michigan, 1-3-0 vs. Minnesota). The Buckeyes’ 16 games vs. NCAA Tournament teams rank fourth, behind Michigan (18), Minnesota (17) and Penn State (17).
  • The Buckeyes lost to Denver, 2-0, in 2019 in their last NCAA Tournament game in Fargo, N.D.
  • The squad’s first trip was in 1998, when it defeated Yale and Michigan State (in 2OT) in the West Regional in Ann Arbor, Mich., to reach the NCAA Frozen Four, where it fell to Boston College in Boston.
  • The Buckeyes returned in 1999, suffering a first-round loss in the East Regional to Maine, 4-2, in Worcester, Mass.
  • In the three consecutive trips from 2003-05, Ohio State lost in the first round each time. The 2003 squad fell to Boston College 1-0 in Providence, R.I., and in 2004 the Buckeyes lost in overtime to Wisconsin by the same score in Albany, N.Y., in 2004. The 2005 team suffered a 3-2 loss to Cornell in
  • Minneapolis.
  • In 2009 the Buckeyes traveled to Manchester, N.H., falling to Boston University, 8-3.
  • In 2017, Ohio State rallied to force overtime against eventual runner-up Minnesota Duluth in Fargo. The Bulldogs prevailed, 3-2, in the extra period.
  • The 2018 squad topped Princeton (4-2) and Denver (5-1) in Allentown, Pa., to advance to the Frozen Four in St. Paul, Minn. That squad lost to the eventual champion UMD Bulldogs, 2-1.
  • Buckeye head coach Steve Rohlik was the captain on Wisconsin’s 1990 NCAA Championship team.
  • Buckeye assistant coach JB Bittner was on three Ohio State NCAA Tournament teams (2003-05). Volunteer goalie coach Dustin Carlson was on the Buckeyes’ 2009 NCAA Tournament squad.
Ohio State Buckeyes

Buckeyes vs. Crimson

  • Ohio State and Harvard have met just once, a 4-2 Buckeye win on their home ice in the Ohio Hockey Classic Dec. 29, 2007.
  • Harvard is seventh nationally in goals per game (3.76) and goals against per game (2.21). The team is ninth nationally on the power play (.241) and 26th on the penalty kill (.813), with seven shorthanded goals. Sean Farrell is the nation’s second-leading scorer, posting 1.58 points per night, and Alex Laferriere is seventh with a 1.72 points per game average. Farrell is second in assists per game (.97). Laferriere is third in the NCAA with .64 goals a night, with teammates Matthew Coronato and Farrell tied for fourth with .61 goals a game. Goalie Mitchell Gibson has a 2.05 goals-against average and .925 save percentage to rank seventh in the country.
  • The Crimson finished second in the ECAC behind Quinnipiac with an 18-4-0-5-0-0 record. The squad is 24-7-2 on the year.
  • Ohio State did not face an ECAC member school during the 2022-23 regular season and is 2-1 vs. ECAC programs in the NCAA Tournament.

In the Rankings

  • This week, the Buckeyes are eighth in the DCU/ and USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine polls.
  • Ohio State started the year No. 16 in the DCU/ preseason poll and was No. 18 in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine preseason rankings. The squad has been ranked in the Top 20 all season and in the Top 10 since Jan. 9.
  • Ohio State is one of five Big Ten teams in the USCHO Top 20 this week, joining No. 1 Minnesota, No. 2 Michigan, No. 11 Penn State and No. 18 Michigan State, with Notre Dame receiving votes.
  • Ohio State finished ninth in this year’s Pairwise rankings.

B1G Honorees

  • For the second year in a row, Jakub Dobeš was a finalist for the Big Ten Goaltender of the Year, Mason Lohrei was a Best Defensive Player award finalist and Steve Rohlik was among the Top 3 for the league coach of the year honor.
  • Jake Wise and Lohrei were named Second Team All-Big Ten and Dobeš and Stephen Halliday were honorable mention selections.
  • Halliday was named to the Tim Taylor Award watch list for the nation’s freshman of the year honor.
  • Dobeš, Lohrei and Jake Wise were all among the candidates for the 2023 Hobey Baker Award.
  • Lohrei was an honorable mention all-conference selection a season ago, while Dobeš was a First Team All-B1G selection and the B1G Goaltender of the Year and co-Freshman of the Year. The duo also earned a spot on the league all-freshman team last season.
  • The all-league honor was the first for Wise, a fifth-year senior.

Special Teams

  • The Buckeyes were 3-for-3 on the penalty kill at Michigan in their last time out.
  • The squad is now 136-for-152 (.895) this season, leading the NCAA.
  • The 2017-18 Buckeyes ended the campaign with the nation’s best penalty kill (.894).
  • Ohio State is first nationally with 10 shorthanded goals, ahead of Northern Michigan and St. Cloud State with eight.
  • Davis Burnside and Patrick Guzzo each have two shorthanded goals to lead the Buckeyes and tie for sixth in the NCAA. Ohio State also has man-down tallies from Cam Thiesing, Dominic Vidoli, Tate Singleton, Kamil Sadlocha, Joe Dunlap and Tyler Duke.
  • The 10 shorthanded goals are the most for the Buckeyes since the 2006-07 squad had 11. The previous best since that year was five in 2012-13 and 2015-16.
  • The squad has allowed four shorthanded goals – vs. Wisconsin Oct. 8, Bentley Oct. 20, LIU Nov. 26 and Penn State Dec. 3.
  • Overall, Ohio State is 35-for-156 (.224) with the man advantage and has put 265 shots on goals while a man up. The squad, 17th nationally on the power play, was 2-for-3 on the power play in the Big Ten Tournament semifinal at Michigan.
  • Jake Wise is tied for first in the Big Ten and is tied for sixth nationally with nine power play goals. Travis Treloar and Stephen Halliday are tied for second on the team and 16th in the NCAA with seven power play tallies each. Cole McWard and Cam Thiesing each have three power play goals and Michael Gildon has two. Scooter Brickey, Tyler Duke and Mason Lohrei have also scored on the power play.
  • Halliday has a team-best 23 power play points and 16 power play assists. Mason Lohrei is second with 16 assists with the man advantage and third with 18 power play points. Wise is second with 19 points with the man advantage (9g, 10a) and Treloar is fourth with 17 (7g, 10a).