Ohio State opens three-week homestand with first series against the Terriers
COLUMBUS, Ohio The Ohio State women’s hockey team rings in the New Year and opens a three-week homestand with a nonconference series against No. 9 Boston University, Jan. 2-3. Games begin at 7 p.m. Friday and 4 p.m. Saturday at the OSU Ice Rink. Admission is free and “Skate with the Buckeyes” and autograph sessions will be held following the Saturday game.
    The Buckeyes (6-11-1, 4-9-1-1 WCHA) wrapped up the first part of their season by taking four points from Minnesota State, Dec. 12-13 in Mankato. Ohio State won 6-5 in game one before tying 5-5 and sealing the win in a shootout. Boston University (8-5-4, 3-2-3-3 Hockey East) has dropped three of its last four games, but has been ranked as high as fourth earlier this season during its 10-game unbeaten streak.

    Live scoring the Ohio State-Boston University series will be available on the Buckeyes’ official athletics Web site: Links to the games are available on the women’s hockey schedule page.

    The Buckeyes are sixth in the WCHA standings with 10 points, moving ahead of Minnesota State by a point after defeating the Mavericks twice two weeks ago. The wins at MSU ended a five-game losing streak for Ohio State and the shootout win in game two was its first since the WCHA instituted them to decide tied games this season.
    Leading the Buckeyes is freshman forward Laura McIntosh with a team-high 23 points and 17 assists. Fellow rookie forward Natalie Spooner is right behind her with 22 points and a Buckeye-best 17 goals. Senior co-captain Hayley Klassen is third in scoring with 17 points (7g, 10a).
    Patrolling the Ohio State net for the three of the last four games, including both games at Minnesota State, has been sophomore Deidre Facklis. She is 1-2-1 with a 5.46 goals-against average and .870 save percentage while starting five games with seven appearances. Also in goal for the Buckeyes is senior assistant captain Liana Bonanno, who is 5-9-0 with a 3.70 GAA and .898 save percentage.

    Returning to Ohio State will be former assistant coach Katie Lachapelle, who is now an assistant coach at Boston University. Lachapelle, a native of Lewiston, Maine, coached the Buckeyes for four seasons before returning to the East Coast. She also was a forward at Providence College and played both ice hockey and field hockey under the direction of Jackie Barto prior to Barto’s arrival at Ohio State.

    This is the first meeting ever between Ohio State and Boston University. This is the fourth season of Terrier women’s hockey.

    While this is the first series between the Buckeyes and Terriers, it is certainly not the first against Hockey East teams. Ohio State is 18-12-2 all-time against Hockey East opponents, including a sweep at Providence to open the 2008-09 season. The Buckeyes have faced four teams from the conference and have a winning record in three of the series: Connecticut (5-1-0), Northeastern (7-3-2) and Providence (5-1-0). The only losing record is against New Hampshire with a 1-7-0 mark.

    This weekend, the Buckeyes begin a season-long three-week homestand at the OSU Ice Rink. After hosting Boston University in a nonconference series, Ohio State then welcomes WCHA foes Minnesota (Jan. 10-11) and St. Cloud State (Jan. 17-18). Five of eight series the rest of the season will be in Columbus.
    The Buckeyes concluded the first-half of their season with a stretch when they played four of five series on the road. So far this season, Ohio State has been away from Columbus for six out of nine series.

    Freshman forward Natalie Spooner set an Ohio State record for goals in a game with four vs. Minnesota State (Dec. 12). She scored 33 seconds into the first period, then added a natural hat trick in a span of 1:56 in the second, including two goals 22 seconds apart (4:33, 4:55, 6:29). Fellow rookie Laura McIntosh scored at 7:17 for a four-goal outburst in a span of 2:44. The four goals tied the OSU record for goals in a period.

    With just 14 games under her belt, rookie Natalie Spooner already ranks 10th in season goals at Ohio State with 17. The Buckeye record is 29 goals scored by Jeni Creary in 2004-05. Only four players have ever scored 20 or more goals in a season (Creary three times, Erin Keys twice, and once each for Jana Harrigan and Shana Frost).

    Ohio State will be without one of its top scorers, freshman forward Natalie Spooner, this weekend while she is in Europe with the Canadian Under-22 Team. Spooner is one of 13 forwards for the team who will play in the 2009 MLP Cup (formerly the European Air Canada Cup), Jan. 2-6 in Ravensburg, Germany. Canada is the six-time defending champion at the MLP Cup, having won every year since the tournament’s inception in 2003 and losing only once in 20 games. Canada will play in Group A with Finland and Russia, while Germany, Sweden and Switzerland will make up Pool B.
    Spooner was on three Team Canada squads in 2008. She began the season as a member of the silver medal-winning U-18 team in January, was selected to the U-22 team in August and was chosen for the national team in September that finished second in the Four Nations Cup in November.

    Current freshman forward Natalie Spooner and incoming forward Casandra (Hokey) Langan were named to Canadian teams that will compete in international events in January, Hockey Canada announced in December. Spooner was selected to the Under-22 Team for the 2009 MLP Cup, Jan. 2-6 in Ravensburg, Germany. Langan was named to the Under-18 Team for the 2009 IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championships, Jan. 5-10 in Fssen, Germany.

    Ohio State closed out the first half of its season by taking four points from Minnesota State, Dec. 12-13 in Mankato, Minn. The Buckeyes had a 6-5 win Friday and a 6-5 SO win Saturday. OSU improved to 33-5-4 all-time against the Mavericks. Sophomore goaltender Deidre Facklis started both games of a road series for the first time in her career. She made a total of 71 saves against Minnesota State, including 38 in game two.
    Rookie Kim Theut gave the Buckeyes the win in game one, scoring with 59 seconds remaining in the third period. In game two, it was a back-and-forth contest with the teams tied four times. The Mavericks evened the score for the last time at 5-all with a 6-on-4 goal with 8.5 seconds remaining in the game. The teams played to a scoreless overtime forcing Ohio State to its first shootout. In the shootout, sophomore Jenna Kilpatrick scored in the ninth round to give Ohio State two points.

 All six OSU goals in that game were scored by freshmen.
 Senior co-captain Hayley Klassen led the Buckeyes in game two with a career-high four points on two goals and two assists. Linemates Natalie Spooner and Laura McIntosh had a goal and two assists each.
 For the series, the line of Klassen (2g, 4a), McIntosh (2g, 3a) and Spooner (5g, 2a) combined for 18 points.
 The OSU power play had its best performance of the season against the Mavericks, going 4-of-10 in the series, including a 3-of-6 mark in game two.

    Senior co-captain Hayley Klassen and freshman Natalie Spooner earned WCHA Player of the Week awards, the Western Collegiate Hockey Association announced Dec. 17. Klassen was named Offensive Player of the Week for the first time of her career, and Spooner was selected Rookie of the Week for the third time in the last eight weeks. The Buckeyes have earned six player of the week awards this season.
    Klassen totaled six points in a WCHA series at Minnesota State, helping Ohio State take four points from the Mavericks. She had two assists in a 6-5 victory Friday and followed with a career-high four points in game two. The forward from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, scored twice and added two assists as the Buckeyes skated to a 5-5 tie and won in a shootout. Klassen and her linemates (Spooner and Laura McIntosh) combined for 18 points in the two games.
    Spooner continued her outstanding play, setting a Buckeye record for goals in a game while totaling seven points (5g, 2a) in a road series at Minnesota State. Spooner scored four goals in game one against the Mavericks to set the single-game goal record at Ohio State. She scored her first goal 33 seconds into the contest and added a natural hat trick in a 1:56 span in the second period. She had two goals 22 seconds apart and added a third 1:34 later (4:33, 4:55, 6:29). In the second game, Spooner had a goal and two assists.

    With six points at Minnesota State (Dec. 12-13), senior forward Hayley Klassen increased her career point total to 80. The co-captain from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, ranks 10th all-time in the OSU record books and is six points shy of the ninth position. Klassen has 38 career goals to rank sixth. She has five multi-point performances this season, including a career-high four points against Minnesota State (Dec. 13) and ranks third on the team in scoring with 17 points (7g, 10a) even after missing four games with an injury.

    Three Buckeyes are on points streaks of three games or longer. Laura McIntosh has a three-game streak (6 points) and Hayley Klassen has a four-game streak (8 points). Natalie Spooner has a five-game streak (12 points), including a five-game goal streak to tie for the third-longest in Buckeye history.

     Ohio State will face its sixth nationally-ranked opponent of the season this weekend against No. 9 Boston University. In the first half of their season, the Buckeyes also played No. 2 Minnesota and Wisconsin, No. 5/6 St. Lawrence, No. 8/9 Minnesota Duluth and No. 9 Providence (rankings as of date of games). North Dakota entered the polls at No. 10 following its series against Ohio State.

    The Ohio State women’s hockey team has signed five student-athletes to NCAA National Letters of Intent, head coach Jackie Barto announced Nov. 25. The freshman class of 2009-10 includes: Krystina Hollowell (F, Little Casesars U-19; Clinton Township, Mich.), Chelsea Knapp (G, Lawrence Academy; York, N.Y.), Casandra “Hokey” Langan (F, London Jr. Devilettes; Chatham, Ontario), Paige Semenza (F, North American Hockey Academy; Pittston, Pa.) and Minnamari “Minttu” Tuominen (F, Espoo Blues; Espoo, Finland).

    In her third season, junior forward Raelyn LaRocque quickly tied her career high in points just 14 games into the schedule. The native from The Pas, Manitoba, set a career high for points in a season with nine (3g, 6a).

    Freshman forwards Laura McIntosh and Natalie Spooner rank among the best in the NCAA. Spooner is fourth among rookies and 12th overall with 1.57 points per game. She also is second in goals per game with 1.21. McIntosh is sixth in freshman scoring with 1.28 points per game and tied for eighth with 0.94 assists per game.

    The Ohio State freshman class continues to be the backboard of the team’s offense, accounting for 50 percent of its points. All six rookie skaters have collected at least two points this season, totaling 58 points on 27 goals and 31 assists.   The other three classes have combined for 59 points. The seniors are second with 27 points, followed by the sophomores with 18 and juniors with 14.

    Erika Vanderveer, a former goaltender for the women’s hockey team, has been added as a blogger to the “Hockey Insiders” section of The Hockey News’ Web site ( The 2007 Ohio State graduate had her first blog posted Dec. 12 and is the only female blogger for the site on either their “The Hockey News” or “Hockey Insider” blogs. The Bradford, Ontario, native is a graphic designer for the magazine and a goaltender with the Burlington Barracudas of the Canadian Women’s League.
    Vanderveer patrolled the Ohio State net from 2004-07 and concluded her career with several Buckeye records in both season and career categories, including career wins (42) and season goals-against average (9.20). She earned a total of eight Western Collegiate Hockey Association player of the week awards. While at Ohio State, Vanderveer had strong performances in the classroom as well and received a number of honors. She was a three-time Scholar All-American selection by the American Women’s Hockey Coaches Association, a two-time Scholar-Athlete and three-time All-Academic Team honoree by the WCHA.

 Natalie Spooner earned WCHA Rookie of the Week honors Dec. 3. She scored three of Ohio State’s five goals against No. 5/6 St. Lawrence in a nonconference series in Canton, N.Y. The Scarborough, Ontario, native had a goal in the first game and added two in the second to extend her goal streak to three games. She had a point in six of the last seven games. It was her fourth multiple-goal game.
 Laura McIntosh was named WCHA Co-Rookie of the Week Nov. 5. She shared the award with Alyssa Wiere, a forward from North Dakota. McIntosh played a part in five of six Buckeye goals in a road series at North Dakota, Nov. 1-2. The rookie forward from Waterloo, Ontario, had an assist on the second goal in game one. She followed by setting up or scoring all four OSU goals in the second game, alternating with assist, goal, assist and goal. Her line totaled 10 points that contest.
 Natalie Spooner earned the WCHA Rookie of the Week award Oct. 29.  Spooner factored into four of Ohio State’s five goals in a sweep of Bemidji State at the OSU Ice Rink (Oct. 24-25). The freshman from Scarborough, Ontario, scored twice in a 3-0 shutout of the Beavers in game one. In the second game, Spooner set up the first goal before scoring the gamewinner for the 2-1 victory.
 Senior goaltender Liana Bonanno earned two Defensive Player of the Week awards to open the 2008-09 season. She received the honors from U.S. College Hockey Online, Oct. 6, and the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, Oct. 8. Bonanno backstopped Ohio State to an upset sweep at then-No. 9 Providence, Oct. 3-4 in Providence, R.I. The assistant captain made a total of 70 saves with just three goals allowed to the Friars for a .959 save percentage. She made 39 saves, just three shy of her career high, in a season-opening 2-1 victory. She then made 31 saves in the second game as the Buckeyes rallied for a 3-2 win to complete the sweep. A native of Mount Sinai, N.Y., Bonanno has now made 30 or more saves in a game 19 times in her career.

    The Ohio State women’s hockey program is celebrating its 10th year throughout the 2008-09 season. Under the direction of head coach Jackie Barto for the duration of the program, the Buckeyes have developed into a nationally-ranked team while battling in the top women’s hockey league, the Western Collegiate Hockey Association. The Buckeyes have an overall record of 145-171-32 (94-126-26 WCHA) during their nine-plus seasons and have never finished below fifth in the conference standings.

    The Buckeyes return to Western Collegiate Hockey Association play with a series against No. 2 Minnesota, Jan. 10-11 at the OSU Ice Rink. Games begin at 7 p.m. Friday and 4 p.m. Saturday.