Just like against Providence, you can't kill these Buckeyes.
The Ohio State Men's hockey team fell behind 2-0 and 3-2 last night at Canisius but rallied back to tie the game at 2 and then 3 before earning a tie with a 3-3 final. It was the Buckeyes' third game that went into overtime and they now have the symmetrical and palindromic 1-1-1 record in overtime this year.
Canisius went ahead on a goal by Shane Conacher just 22 seconds into the game and added to their lead with a goal by Doug Beck at 1:49. After the first, it was 2-0 and starter Christian Frey was pulled extremely quickly and aggressively by Coach Rohlik after facing 11 shots and rebounding after that rough start. Backup Matt Tomkins came in to start the second. He would only allow one more goal on the 27 shots he faced.
Matt Johnson narrowed the lead to 2-1 with a goal that passed review in the second and Luke Stork tied the game at 13:08 with his second collegiate goal.
Jack Stander scored for Canisius to make it 3-2 in the third before Tanner Fritz's apparent tying goal was waived off to keep the score at 3-2. David Gust later scored to tie it at 3 for the Buckeyes with his first of the season. This time the goal stood.
Ohio State would hit the post in overtime and add two more shots, as did Canisius, but nobody scored and the game ended in a tie.
The goaltending early probably didn't help, but when you go 0 for 6 on the powerplay, you can't solely blame Frey, who got an extremely quick hook after giving up 2 goals on 11 shots. It paid off tonight with a solid relief effort by Tomkins, but Frey has still probably been the better goalie overall as his save percentage going into last night as .935 to Tomkins' .887. That's basically comparing the best goalie in the NHL to an AHL caliber goalie, to put it in perspective. But Rohlik's move to Tomkins paid off tonight and it wouldn't surprise me to see the ill advised decision to give him the start based on that relief appearance tonight versus Canisius.
But the fact is that Ohio State has to beat Canisius and teams like them if they want to be taken seriously like they were after splitting with Providence. A tie just isn't good enough.