No. 9 Ohio State Buckeyes (6-2-0, 2-2-0 WCHA) vs.
No. 7 North Dakota Fighting Sioux (5-3-0, 4-2-0 WCHA)

Saturday, Nov. 6 – 2 p.m. (CT) • Sunday, Nov. 7 – 2 p.m. (CT)
Ralph Engelstad Arena • Grand Forks, N.D.

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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The ninth-ranked Ohio State women’s hockey team hits the road for another key WCHA matchup, traveling to Grand Forks to play No. 7 North Dakota, Nov. 6-7. Games begin at 2 p.m. (CT) both Saturday and Sunday at Ralph Engelstad Arena.

Ohio State moved up to No. 9 in both national polls this week with a 6-2-0 overall record (2-2-0 WCHA). The Buckeyes took a break from conference play last weekend and collected their third sweep of the season by winning both games at home vs. Syracuse by scores of 5-1 and 6-2.

Leading the Buckeyes in points and assists is Laura McIntosh, with 19 and 13, respectively. Natalie Spooner has scored a team-high 12 goals, including five on the power play, and has 17 points. Hokey Langan is third with 15 points (4g, 11a). Patrolling the OSU net is freshman Lisa Steffes, who is 6-2-0 with a 2.13 GAA and .931 save percentage.

The Buckeyes won both of its games in a non-conference series against Syracuse, Oct. 29-30 at the OSU Ice Rink. Laura McIntosh was one of four Buckeyes with multiple points in the 5-1 win last Friday as Hokey Langan also had three points (1g, 2a), Natalie Spooner scored twice and Kelly Wild had a goal and assist.

Twelve Buckeyes had a point and rookie goalie Lisa Steffes made 44 saves in the 6-2 win last Saturday. Leading Ohio State in game two was Spooner with three points on two goals and an assist. Langan, McIntosh and senior Shannon Reilly each had two assists while sophomore Tina Hollowell had a goal and assist.

Orange Series Notes:

  • This was the first meeting between Ohio State and Syracuse, who is in its third season as a Division I program.
  • Melissa Feste scored her first goal of the season on an assist by Liz Rizzo, also her first of the season, in game one.
  • Freshman forward Ally Tarr set up a goal in each game for her first collegiate points.
  • Sophomore Amanda Boskovich and freshman Becky Allis scored the first goals of their career and rookie defenseman Madison Marcotte played in her first game last Saturday.
  • Natalie Spooner (4g, 1a), Hokey Langan (1g, 4a) and Laura McIntosh (5a) each finished the series with five points.
  • Spooner moved into the 10th spot in Ohio State all-time point standings with 91.

Laura McIntosh became the fastest Buckeye to reach 100 points, surpassing the century mark last weekend with five assists in a sweep of Syracuse. The junior from Waterloo, Ontario, reached the milestone with her second of three assists in a 5-1 win Friday.

McIntosh is just the sixth Buckeye to reach 100 points and did so in 80 games, 19 games faster than the previous mark held by All-American Jana Harrigan. McIntosh now has 103 points to stand fifth in Ohio State’s all-time point category and also moved into third in career assists with 76.

Shannon Reilly was named WCHA Defensive Player of the Week, the league announced Wednesday. This is the first weekly award in Reilly’s career and the fourth weekly honor for a Buckeye this season.

Reilly, from Chanhassen, Minn., had a solid weekend on both ends of the ice in a sweep of Syracuse, Oct. 29-30 at the OSU Ice Rink. The senior defenseman had two assists, two blocked shots and a plus-3 rating against the Orange. Both of her assists came in the second game when she set up the fourth and fifth goals to help the Buckeyes pull away for the 6-2 win to complete the sweep. She blocked both shots in the 5-1 victory the opening game.

After only 11 points the entire 2009-10 season, Reilly has found her offensive touch again early this season with seven points (3g, 4a) in the first eight games.

By scoring twice in each game vs. Syracuse, Natalie Spooner extended her point streak to 12 games – the longest of her career and fourth-longest in Buckeye history. The Scarborough, Ontario, product also has scored at least one a goal in all eight games this year. Added to her goal from the final game of the 2009-10 season, she has set the Ohio State record for consecutive games with a goal at nine.

Spooner also has had a point in 20-consecutive series, dating back to the second series of last year. Her four goals upped her career total to 55 and the assistant captain is just the fourth Buckeye to reach the 50-goal mark.

Just eight games into her college career, Lisa Steffes already has turned in some of the top performances by an OSU goalie. She stopped 44 shots in Ohio State’s 6-2 win last Saturday vs. Syracuse for her third time in the last four games she has made over 40 saves.

Steffes is just the fourth goalie to have three games with 40-plus games in her career and the first do so more than twice as a rookie. At Wisconsin, she made 44 and 43 saves for the first time in the 12-year history of the program an OSU netminder had back-to-back games with 40-plus saves.

North Dakota is ranked seventh in both national polls with a 5-3-0 overall record. The Fighting Sioux are third early in the WCHA standings with 12 points at 4-2-0. They already have wins against nationally-ranked Boston University and Minnesota Duluth, as well as a sweep at Minnesota.

Joining UND this season are Grand Forks natives Jocelyn Lamoureux and Monique Lamoureux-Kolls. After a year with the U.S. Olympic Team, the sophomore twins have made in immediate impact with the Sioux and lead the team with 12 points apiece.

Ohio State leads the all-time series 17-5-2 against North Dakota, but it has been a closer story as of late. The Buckeyes and Sioux split their series last season with each team taking a win on the road. OSU has a slight edge at 6-4-0 in the last 10 games vs. North Dakota and is 7-4-1 in Grand Forks.

Leading the Buckeyes in the series are Laura McIntosh with nine points (4g, 5a) in eight games and Natalie Spooner with eight points (5g, 3a) in six games.

Hokey Langan has had a point in each game this season to extend her point streak to 10 games dating back to the last two games of the 2009-10 season. As a freshman, the Chatham, Ontario, native tied for the second-longest point streak in Buckeye history at 14 games. In her 45 career games, Langan has been held without a point just eight times.

•  Laura McIntosh tied the Ohio State record for points in a game with five points (3g, 2a), Oct. 16 vs. St. Cloud State. She is just the fifth Buckeye to reach that mark.
•  Ohio State was 4-of-7 on the power play Oct. 22 at Wisconsin. The last time the Buckeyes scored four power play goals in a game was Oct. 6, 2006 vs. Northeastern (4-of-4).

The Ohio State Scandinavian pair of Minttu Tuominen and Annie Svedin has been named to their respective national teams to compete in the 2010 Four Nations Cup. Tuominen will play with Finland while Svedin will represent Sweden in the annual international tournament held Nov. 9-13 in St. John’s and Clarenville, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Junior forward Natalie Spooner and former Buckeye defenseman Tessa Bonhomme were among the 24 players named to the National Women’s Team that will represent Canada in the 2010 Four Nations Cup, Nov. 9-13 in St. John’s and Clarenville, Newfoundland and Labrador. Spooner made her third Canadian Under-22 squad in August and will be playing in her second Four Nations Cup, also competing in the 2008 tournament. Bonhomme (a Buckeye from 2004-08) won Olympic gold with Canada at the 2010 Vancouver Games and has been a member of several national teams.

Alternating home and road series continues next weekend when the Buckeyes return to the OSU Ice Rink to host Minnesota State in a WCHA series, Nov. 12-13. Games begin at 7 p.m. both Friday and Saturday and admission, as always, is free.