Oct. 21, 2016
Columbus, Ohio— Ohio State (3-3-1, 1-3-1 WCHA) opened up its home slate on Friday against No. 2 Minnesota (6-1-0, 4-1-0 WCHA), and it gave the Golden Gophers everything they could handle in a tough fought 3-2 loss.
The goals were scored by Jacyn Reeves and Maddy Field, with Reeves’ goal becoming her first in the Scarlet and Gray. Field’s goal was her third of the season and could not have been less of a surprise. The sophomore was all over the ice all night, registering a game-high and career-high six shots on goal. Lauren Boyle also contributed multiple shots on the offensive end, getting four on the Minnesota goaltender. One of the biggest points of pride for Ohio State was the zero penalties it committed tonight, a number that drew praise from head coach Nadine Muzerall.
The Buckeyes jumped out to an early lead when Jacyn Reeves scored her first Scarlet and Gray goal with just 25 second remaining in the first period. Olivia Soares dumped the puck in and Rebecca Freiburger’s aggressive defensive play forced the puck loose way in corner of Minnesota’s zone. Reeves corralled the loose puck and doubled back towards the corner, spun, and fired off a shot that deflected into the net for the first goal of the game.
Field’s goal tied the game up at 2-2 early in the third period. Boyle’s shot from the point was blocked by a Minnesota defender and skipped towards the net and onto the stick of Field, who buried the shot and sent the crowd at OSU Ice Rink into a frenzy. Muzerall made a point mention Field when talking about positives from tonight’s game.
“Maddy Field was our top player today,” the head coach said. “She did all the little things right: body positioning, getting shots through, hustling, not getting bumped off the puck. She just did all the little things and she played hungry.”
Overall the team played the number two team in the country very well, especially considering everything going on off the ice. The Buckeyes’ home opener, combined with Muzerall facing off with her former team, made for a special night.
“That was a big focus for me,” Muzerall said of controlling outside factors this weekend. “To make sure I was dialed in on the right things. Not getting too high, or too low, just keeping it steady for the girls. You have to keep that stuff internal, and it takes experience to do so. Of course it was a tough, emotional day but I’m really proud of the girls and how they handled everything.”
Ohio State will look to even the weekend series tomorrow, Saturday, at 3:07 pm.