Buckeyes vs. Fighting Irish
• The No. 4-ranked Ohio State men’s hockey team closes out the regular season series with No. 11/13 Notre Dame tonight. The The Buckeyes (16-5-4, 9-3-3-2 B1G) and Fighting Irish (14-9-3, 7-7-2-2 B1G) will face off at 8 p.m. Saturday in Value City Arena.
• The contest will be televised by BTN and available on BTN2Go, with Dan Kelly and Fred Pletsch calling the action.
• Ohio State radio will carry the action on 1460 AM, online on OhioStateBuckeyes.com and through the Ohio State Buckeyes app. Herb Howenstine will be on the call.
• Video, radio and live stats links can be found at go.osu.edu/mhkylivestats18.
• It is Buckeye Hockey Alumni Night in Value City Arena. More than 35 alums, dating to the early days of the program, will form a Tunnel of Pride on the ice pregame.
• Ohio State won the series opener vs. the Irish, 4-2, Friday, breaking a 2-2 tie in the third period.
• The series closes the regular season series between the Buckeyes and Irish. The teams opened B1G play in South Bend Nov. 2-3, splitting a series with two one-goal games. Ohio State claimed the first 1-0 and the Irish won game two, 2-1. Last year, the Irish claimed the regular season series, 3-1, and then beat the Buckeyes in the the Big Ten Tournament championship game.
• Ohio State enters the game on a four-game winning streak and 12-2-3 since the series vs. the Irish in November. The Irish had a four-game unbeaten streak end Friday and are 10-6-2 since that November matchup.
• All-time, Ohio State has a one-game lead in the series with the Irish, 38-37-10, with the first game Feb. 13, 1965. In Columbus, Ohio State leads 19-17-6.
In the B1G
• The Buckeyes and Irish are first and second in the Big Ten standings. Ohio State is first with 32 points and the Irish have 25. The Buckeyes have a game in hand on Notre Dame.
• The six teams behind the Buckeyes are separated by five points. Following the Irish, Michigan and Minnesota have 24 points, Michigan State has 23 and Wisconsin and Penn State have 20. OSU and UW have played 15 games, ND, UM and PSU have 16 games played and the Gophers and MSU have played 17 games each.
• Ohio State opened the scoring on a goal by Freddy Gerard 14:57 into the first and extended the mark to 2-0 in the second period on an Austin Pooley tally. The Irish scored twice in 34 seconds, including a power play goal, midway through the second for a 2-2 game after 40 minutes. In the third, Gerard put the Buckeyes ahead with a power play goal at 7:38 and Brendon Kearney closed out the game with an empty net score in the final second. Buckeye goalie Sean Romeo had 27 saves in the win and the Buckeye penalty kill was 4-for-5. Defenseman Wyatt Ege had two helpers in the victory.
Buckeye Notes to Know
• The Buckeyes rank in the Top 11 in the NCAA in scoring offense (11th/3.24 goals per game), scoring defense (10th, 2.20 goals allowed per game) and power play (10th/.235).
• Ohio State has allowed two or fewer goals in 19 of 25 games this year. The squad is allowing 2.20 goals per game this season, ranking first in the Big Ten.
• Over the second half of the year (since Dec. 28), Ohio State leads the NCAA in goals per game, averaging 4.44 a night, and on the power play, converting 15-of-41 (.366) chances. The Buckeyes are 7-1-1 in the second half, sharing the national lead in winning percentage (.833).
• The Buckeyes are in a five-week stretch of Big Ten games to close the regular season, rotating between home and away. The squad is 8-4-0 at home this year, scoring 3.33 goals per game and allowing 2.75. On the road, Ohio State has an 8-1-4 ledger, scoring 3.15 goals a game and giving up 1.69 a contest.
• The Buckeye squad is 7-4-2 on Friday and 9-1-2 on Saturday this season.