COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State women’s hockey team fell to No. 8 North Dakota by a score of 3-2 Saturday at the OSU Ice Rink, giving the Fighting Sioux all six points in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association series. Down 1-0 after the first, the Buckeyes battled back and forth with North Dakota over the next two periods, tying the score twice before UND scored the gamewinner in the third period.

The Buckeyes fall to 14-14-2 overall and 8-14-2-2 in WCHA play, while North Dakota improves to 17-8-3 overall and 15-7-2-0 in conference action.

North Dakota came out firing in the opening period and scored the first goal of the game at 11:46. Sara Dagenais skated towards the net and slid a shot inside the right post, beating goalie Lisa Steffes for the goal with assists from Kelsey Ketcher and Ashley Furia.

In the second period, the Buckeyes evened the score to 1-1 following a great save by Steffes. Junior defenseman Kelly Wild came up with the rebound and started the offensive attack with a through pass to junior forward Laura McIntosh. On a 3-on-1, McIntosh fed it back to Wild on the left side, who found an open Paige Semenza on the right for the easy tap-in goal at 5:16. McIntosh picks up her 33rd assists of the season, while Wild claims her 15th helper.

The Sioux took its second lead of the afternoon following a power-play goal by Jordan Slavin. Jocelyne Lamoure sent a pass to the right circle where Slavin found an opening in the Buckeye defense and finished with a quick wrist shot into the back left of the net at 7:25.

However, the Scarlet and Gray continued their offensive attack. Sophomore forward Kim Theut skated across the middle of the UND zone and fired a shot that found the back of the net to even the score, 2-2, at 17:34 in the second. Semenza had an assist to claim her second multi-point performance of the season, while freshman defenseman Becky Allis also tallied an assist.

With the score even headed into the final period, the Fighting Sioux recorded the eventual gamewinner at 2:35 on the power play. Stephanie Roy scored on a tap-in off a rebound in front of the Buckeye goal with assists coming from Slavin and Monique Lamoureux-Kolls.

Ohio State continued to fight hard on both ends of the ice, but time ran out on the Scarlet and Gray and North Dakota secured the victory.

Steffes finished with a total of 28 saves and moves to 14-14-2 this season.

Overall, Ohio State had a 32-31 lead in shots. Ohio State was 0-for-5 on the power play, while North Dakota was 2-for-4.

Up next, the Buckeyes will host their final home series of the 2011 regular season against Minnesota Duluth Feb. 11-12. Games begin at 7 p.m. Friday and 4 p.m. Saturday at the OSU Ice Rink.