March 17, 2021

Notes to Know: Ohio State Battles Wisconsin in Frozen Four

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Ohio State will join two other teams from the WCHA on Thursday as the college women’s ice hockey season reaches its crescendo at the 2021 Frozen Four, which is taking place this year at the Erie Insurance Arena in Erie, Pa.

The third-seeded Buckeyes will meet a familiar foe in the national semifinals: second-seeded Wisconsin. The Buckeyes and Badgers just squared off 10 days ago in the championship game of the WCHA Final Faceoff. It will be the sixth meeting this season between the two teams.

Briefly on the Buckeyes

  • Ohio State advanced to the Frozen Four – its second appearance in the last four years – by virtue of its 3-1 win over Boston College on Tuesday night.
  • The Buckeyes feature a balanced offense with nine different players who have 10 or more points on the season.
  • Ohio State’s leading scorer in senior Tatum Skaggs, who had two assists on Tuesday to bring her season total to 11. She’s also scored eight goals for 19 points.
  • Emma Maltais is next with 15 points while Jenna Buglioni, Jennifer Gardiner and Liz Schepers all have 15 points. Buglioni and Gardiner scored goals on Tuesday while Schepers had an assist.
  • Defenseman Madison Bizal had a +/- of +8 on the season with nine assists, which is tied for second most on the team.
  • Goalie Andrea Braendli won her 47th career game on Tuesday and brings a .981 save percentage and 1.93 goals-against average into Thursday’s national semifinal.

A Win on Thursday would…

  • Put Ohio State in the National Championship Game for the first time in program history.
  • Improve the Buckeyes’ record to 14-6 on the season.
  • Be Ohio State’s six win over a team ranked No. 1 or No. 2 in the country at the time of the game.

Three WCHA Teams in the Frozen Four
Three-quarters of the 2021 Frozen Four field is from the WCHA: second-seeded Wisconsin, third-seeded Ohio State and fifth-seeded Minnesota Duluth. It’s the second time that the league has had three national semifinalists (2009 was the other time). The league has had at least two Frozen Four participants seven years in a row and in 15 of the last 20 tournaments.

Buckeyes and Badgers Once Again
Four of the previous five meetings this season between Ohio State and Wisconsin have been decided by one goal and two of them have gone into overtime (each team has won one of those contests). The Badgers took the most recent meeting, a 3-2 overtime decision in the WCHA Final Faceoff title game on March 7.

Ohio State is 7-7-3 against Wisconsin in the last 17 meetings. The Buckeyes knocked off the than-No. 1-ranked Badgers in Columbus on Nov. 27 and again in Madison on Jan. 9.

Generating Chances
In its Tuesday quarterfinal win, Ohio State outshot Boston College 43-8 over the second and third periods. For the season, Ohio State has a +279 shot advantage against its opponents, the third-highest mark in the country.

Playing the Best
Fifteen of Ohio State’s 19 games this season have come against teams that were ranked in the top seven nationally. The Buckeyes are 9-6 in those games with two wins over Wisconsin, two over Minnesota Duluth, four against Minnesota and one against Boston College.