EAST LANSING, Mich. – With 29 saves from sophomore goalie Tommy Nappier and multiple points from five Buckeyes, the No. 7/4-ranked Ohio State men’s hockey team shut out Michigan State, 6-0, Saturday in Munn Ice Arena. The Buckeyes, now 12-4-4 overall and 5-2-3-2 in the Big Ten, were 1-0-1 on the weekend against the Spartans (6-11-3, 2-6-2-2 B1G).
Up next, the Buckeyes will host Michigan at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday in Value City Arena.
In the win over the Spartans, Buckeye senior captain Mason Jobst had a team-high three points with a goal and two assists, giving him seven points in the weekend series (and a team-best 23 on the year). His goal in the second period was the 150th point of his Buckeye career and he ended the series with 65 goals and 86 assists for 151 points in the Scarlet and Gray. He is the first Buckeye since 1991 with at least 150 points.
Three Buckeyes – Michigan natives Ronnie Hein and Dakota Joshua, along with John Wiitala – had two points with a goal and an assist each in the win and Tanner Laczynski had two helpers. After a scoreless first period, the Buckeyes scored three times in the second and third periods for the victory.
— Ohio State Men's Hockey (@OhioStateMHKY) January 6, 2019
Quoting Buckeye head coach Steve Rohlik
“This was a good bounceback after last night’s disappointing tie. We had one of our best, most complete games tonight. It was a good team win.”
Quoting Buckeye senior defenseman Sasha Larocque
“Coming off of a long break and a few off games it was great to see the guys come together and give a complete effort tonight. There are still areas that we need to improve but the effort we played with was a big step in the right direction. Our offense was clicking all weekend and defensively we were able to turn it around from Friday night. When we had our breakdowns ‘Napes’ was there to make some big saves.”
Quoting Buckeye sophomore goalie Tommy Nappier
“We’re really proud of how we bounced back as a team tonight after what happened last night. I thought we played a real solid team game and the guys did a great job playing in front of me. That’s a big win leading into a huge series next weekend against the Wolverines.”
Ohio State 6, Michigan State 0
In the first … There was no scoring – and no penalties – in the opening period. The Buckeyes outshot the Spartans, 13-9.
In the second … Buckeye junior Ronnie Hein opened the scoring at 4:40 with his seventh goal of th year. Matt Miller shot the puck in wide and it deflected off John Wiitala at the side of the nnet and went to the high slot, where Hein was able to beat the Spartan defender to the puck. At 8:14 rookie Quinn Preston tallied after a faceoff win down low by Mason Jobst. Preston drove the net and scored his third of the year. The Buckeyes extended the lead to 3-0 at 13:26 with a power play goal. Tanner Laczynski passed to Dakota Joshua in front and the puck went to Jobst at the far post, where he was able to backhand the puck in. Ohio State had the edge in shots, 13-8.
In the third … Ohio State added three goals in the third for the victory. On a major power play, John Wiitala got to a puck in the crease for a goal at 5:25, assisted by Hein and Preston. At 7:31, with the Buckeyes skating 5×3, Jobst fed Joshua down low and he went backhand-forehand and scored to put Ohio State ahead 5-0. Laczynski also assisted on the goal, Joshua’s sixth of the year. The final goal came from Brendon Kearney at 16:31. He made a play in the defensive zone and carried into the Spartan zone, driving between two MSU defenders and scoring inside the post. Ohio State had 18 shots on goal in the period, with the Spartans putting 12 on net.
The Buckeyes outshot the Spartans, 44-29, in the game. Nappier played all 60 minutes for the Buckeyes and had 29 saves. MSU’s John Lethemon had 38 stops in 60 minutes
Ohio State was 3-for-5 on the power play and killed the one Spartan chance with the man advantage.
Noting the Buckeyes