COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 5 Ohio State women’s ice hockey team will end the regular season at home as the Buckeyes (18-8-6, 11-6-5 WCHA) host the St. Cloud State Huskies (6-21-4, 2-19-1 WCHA) Feb. 21-22. Before the series finale on Saturday, Ohio State’s four seniors will be honored during a special senior day ceremony. The Buckeye seniors include co-captains Jincy Dunne (O’Fallon, Mo.) and Olivia Soares (Boston, Mass.) as well as Rebecca Freiburger (Rochester, Minn.) and Elise Riemenschneider (Rocky River, Ohio).
Last time out
The Buckeyes finished the weekend against No. 2 Wisconsin with four points on the road from a win and a tie. In game one, the Buckeyes and Badgers played for a sold out crowd in LaBahn Arena for Wisconsin’s senior night, but Ohio State took the game with three power play goals. At the end of a scoreless first period, Abby Roque was booked with a five minute major which carried over into the second period. In the second, Tatum Skaggs, Sophie Jaques and Gabby Rosenthal all scored power play goals within two minutes to put the Bucks up early, 3-0. Wisconsin scored their lone goal late in the period and the Bucks clinched the game, 3-1.
In the series finale, the contest was moved into the Kohl Center where Badger and Buckeye fans filled the 15,000 seat stadium. Skaggs scored her second goal of the weekend early in the second period and the Buckeyes held onto a 1-0 lead until Wisconsin tied the game midway through the final period. The game remained tied through the first overtime period but the Badgers secured an extra league point with a 3-on-3 overtime goal. Andrea Braendli made a league-high 74 saves on the weekend and posted 37 on Sunday for a new season-high.
Senior captain Olivia Soares on the emotions leading into her senior weekend
Senior Rebecca Freiburger on the weekend matchup vs St. Cloud
Series history against St. Cloud State
Ohio State traveled to St. Cloud to open WCHA conference play early this season. The Buckeyes swept the Huskies to kick off of year with a 5-2 and 6-2 victory. In game one, Emma Maltais scored a program-high four goals. She was only the third Buckeye in school history and the first since 2010 to do so. Maltais scored four straight goals to end the game with Rebecca Freiburger netting the opening goal on a power play.
In game two, four different Buckeyes scored including first career goals from freshman Brooke Bink and sophomore Eve Savander. Tatum Skaggs and Sara Saekkinen both tallied two-goal games in the contest while Andrea Braendli posted 37 saves on the weekend. After the weekend, Bink was named WCHA Rookie of the Week while Maltais earned WCHA Forward of the Week.
The Buckeyes have not lost to the Huskies since Feb. 3, 2017 and hold a series record of 47-30-10 against St. Cloud.
More on the Huskies
St. Cloud is coming into the weekend after a conference split with Bemidji State. The Beavers downed the Huskies in game one, 3-0 but St. Cloud rebounded in game two and snapped a four game losing streak with a 1-0 victory.
Freshman forward Klara Hymlarova is leading the Huskies with 22 points from seven goals and a team-high 15 assists while senior Hallie Theodosopoulos has a team-high 11 goals and is the only Husky player to notch double digit goals on the season. Overall, ten skaters have tallied multiple goals on the season. Senior Abby Thiessen is leading the team in defensive points with four goals and seven assists for 11 points. In October, Thiessen scored against the Buckeyes as well as senior forwards Brooke Kudirka and Dana Rasmussen. Theodosopoulos also tallied a goal in the 5-2 Buckeye victory.
Junior goaltender Emma Polusny has started and played in 28 games for the Huskies. She has a season record of 5-19-4 while recording a 3.15 goals against average and .914 save percentage. Polusny played in the series finale against Ohio State and recorded 29 saves in the 6-2 loss.