EAST LANSING, Mich. — Behind 25 saves from Tommy Nappier and a Matt Miller second period goal, the No. 12 Ohio State men’s hockey team posted a 1-0 win over Michigan State in Munn Ice Arena. Ohio State, playing its final road series of the regular season, improves to 17-10-4 on the year and is in third place in the Big Ten with a 10-8-3-1 ledger. The Spartans are 14-16-1 overall and 10-10-1-0 in league play. The teams will close out the regular season series at 7 p.m. Saturday in East Lansing.
Quoting Buckeye head coach Steve Rohlik
“After a bye week I was pleased with the way our team came out and played. For the most part we stayed with our structure and got a big win on the road.”
Quoting Buckeye senior defenseman Matt Miller
“Coming into the weekend, we knew how games are going to be the rest of the way out. Everyone is fighting for a postseason spot, so low-scoring, one-goal games are something we need to make sure we can handle. The guys took care of defense first tonight and it showed. Everyone did their job starting with Nappier in net. Our focus is taking everything one game at a time and worrying about what we can control. We need to continue to learn from tonight and be ready to finish the weekend strong tomorrow.”
No. 12 @OhioStateMHKY picked up a 1-0 win against the Spartans tonight.
Goalie Tommy Nappier had a big game behind the net recording 25 saves and a shutout victory. pic.twitter.com/dn10bZMAej
— Ohio State on BTN (@OhioStateOnBTN) February 22, 2020
Ohio State vs. Michigan State
In the First … The teams combined for 20 shots – 11 by Ohio State, nine by Michigan State – but no goals. There were also 16 blocked shots, with the Spartans ahead, 10-6. No penalties were called.
In the Second … The Buckeyes got on the board at 2:24. A shot from Matt Miller went off the backwall and toward the Spartan goalie in the crease, where it bounced off him and in. Quinn Preston and Eugene Fadyeyev assisted on the tally, Miller’s fifth of the year. Shots were 15-8 in favor of the Buckeyes in the period and each team had a power play chance.
In the Third … Each team had eight shots on goal in the period. The Buckeye penalty kill stopped an early Spartan power play chance in the stanza. The Spartans pulled their goalie for the extra attacker with just under two minutes remaining, with Ohio State closing out the win.
Shots … Ohio State outshot the Spartans, 34-25. Tommy Nappier played 59:58 for the Buckeyes, with 25 stops, and Drew DeRidder had 33 stops in 58:14. The Buckeyes blocked 15 shots. Layton Ahac had a team-best three, while Austin Pooley and Ryan O’Connell each had two. Michigan State had 19 shot blocks.
Nappier is fourth in program history with eight shutouts in his career and now has three on the year.
Special Teams … The Buckeyes were 2-for-2 on the penalty kill and 0-for-1 on the power play.
— Ohio State Men's Hockey (@OhioStateMHKY) February 22, 2020