ERIE, Pa. – The No. 15 Ohio State men’s hockey team posted a 3-1 victory at Mercyhurst Saturday to complete a series sweep and improve to 4-1-1 this season. Gustaf Westlund scored twice for the Buckeyes, while Carson Meyer had the first assist on both Westlund goals vs. the Lakers (2-4-0).
The Buckeyes return to Columbus to open Big Ten play against Michigan. The teams will meet at 7 p.m. Friday and 5 p.m. Saturday in Value City Arena.
The Short Story – Ohio State 3, Mercyhurst 1
Ohio State opened the scoring 9:09 into the game on a Gustaf Westlund score, but the Lakers answered 26 seconds later to tie the contest. Just under three minutes later, Westlund put the Buckeyes back ahead with the eventual gamewinner. In the second, Kamil Sadlocha gave Ohio State a two-goal cushion with his first career goal. Neither team scored the rest of the way. Buckeye goalie Tommy Nappier had 28 saves on 29 shots, including 14 in the third period, and the Buckeye penalty kill was 5-for-5 in the victory.
Quoting Buckeye head coach Steve Rohlik
“Tonight was a hard-fought win. It was a great sweep on the road for the guys. We will get back to work on Monday.”
Quoting Buckeye senior forward Carson Meyer
“It was a really good series as a team. We took a step this weekend. Whenever you can sweep on the road, it’s great. We are excited to prepare for Big Ten play this week.”
Ohio State 3, Mercyhurst 1
In the First … Ohio State opened the scoring on a Gustaf Westlund goal. Carson Meyer forced a turnover behind the Laker net and found Westlund in front. The sophomore drew the goalie out of position and put the puck in the empty net. Just 26 seconds later the Lakers tied the game as Dalton Hunter got to a loose puck in front. Meyer and Westlund connected for another goal at 12:32, with Meyer finding Westlund in front. Wyatt Ege also assisted on the tally. Shots were 18-6 in favor of the Buckeyes in the period, with 10 coming on two power play chances, and a third PP chance that carried into the second period.
In the Second … The lone goal of the third was scored at 4:56, as a shot from freshman Layton Ahac went off redshirt freshman Kamil Sadlocha in front. Ronnie Hein had the second assist on the tally, which marked the first career point for both rookies. The Lakers had the edge in shots, 9-8, in the period.
In the Third … Ohio State maintained its two-goal edge through the third period. Tommy Nappier stopped all 14 shots he faced and the Buckeye penalty kill was 3-for-3 in the period. A late penalty gave the Lakers a power play and they pulled their goalie for the extra attacker, but they were unable to get closer. Ohio State had nine shots in the period.
Shots … The Buckeyes outshot the Lakers, 35-29, in the game. Nappier played 59:46 and had 28 stops.
Mercyhurst goalie Stefano Cantali had 32 saves in 57:45. The Buckeyes blocked 18 shots, led by Ryan O’Connell with three and Gordi Myer and Tanner Laczynski with two each.
Special Teams … One night after going 4-for-7, the Buckeyes were unable to convert five power play chances. The penalty kill was 5-for-5 in the contest and 9-for-10 in the series.
Buckeye This and That … Westlund ended the weekend with five points, including two two-goal games; he leads the Buckeyes with eight points (4g, 4a) this year … the Buckeyes and Nappier have not allowed more than two goals in a game on the year … Nappier has a 1.66 goals-against average and .940 save percentage overall … Meyer had two points in each game vs. the Lakers for a four-point weekend … Ege had a helper to end the series with four points after his hat trick Friday … the sweep was the Buckeyes’ first this season; the squad is now 3-0-1 away from Columbus.