For the second weekend in a row, the Ohio State Men's hockey team found a way to upset one of the teams fighting it out for the Big Ten regular season title.
After upsetting Michigan last Friday, OSU took down Penn State last night, 5-3. Penn State now sits at 8-6-1 in the Big Ten with little hope of catching up to Michigan and Minnesota, who now have a five point gap between them and the Nittany Lions. And if it wasn't for OSU upsetting Michigan last weekend, Michigan would be even farther ahead.
Things didn't start out well at all for the Buckeyes last night, though. Just 31 seconds in, Tommy Olczyk put Penn State on top with a shot that got past Christian Frey. The score would stay that way for most of the first until Matt Weis tied the game up with his fifth of the season at 14:26. Penn State outshot Ohio State 15-13 in the first, so the game overall was extremely even after one.
The second period is where Ohio State took control of the game. Tanner Fritz scored off a beautiful power play set up. Passes went tic tac toe from Nick Schilkey to Anthony Greco to Fritz right in front with the redirection. Weis would then score again at 12:13 on a pretty backhand in front off a pass from Craig Dalrymple. Just 56 seconds later, at 13:09, Dylan Richard scored for Penn State, though, to make it 3-2 on a play where he and the defenseman were fighting for the puck within inches of the goal line. It was bizarre, but a goal nonetheless.
In the third, OSU put the game out of reach. Josh Healey put one in from the point at 8:02. Goalie PJ Musico just couldn't see it and the seeing eye puck found its way in. Then at 8:59, Luke Stork scored to put OSU up 5-2. Penn State would score a goal to narrow the gap at 14:45 on a shot by Patrick Koudys, but that's all they would get and OSU would go on to win the game 5-3.
Penn State put up 49 shots in the game, in large part due to the fact that they were behind for a majority of the last two periods, but the chances were far from great and Christian Frey did all that could be expected of him by stopping 46 of them.
Ohio State also held its annual Teddy Bear Toss last night. While it wasn't quite as epic as a Calgary Hitmen one, it had its moments. My birthday bear learned what it means to give back:
The journey of my teddy bear toss bear last night pic.twitter.com/XovZZzUtH6— Matt Torino (@mtorino75) February 28, 2015
OSU and PSU will play again tonight at 7pm in Value City Arena. No teddy bears will be tossed, but hopefully Penn State's Big Ten title hopes will be.