The Ohio State Buckeyes men’s lacrosse team’s losing streak continued in the first game of conference play, as the squad dropped its fifth-straight game, this time against No. 18 Penn State, by a score of 6-5. Goalie Tom Carey recorded 13 saves in the defensive struggle, in which the Buckeyes held Penn State to the lowest scoring performance of the season. Unfortunately, the Buckeyes tied their own low-score of the season, able to find the back of the net only five times on the day and just once in the first half.
Penn State opened up the scoring early, getting past Carey just over a minute into the first quarter, but the Buckeyes tied things up with 5:34 remaining in the first on a goal by attackman Austin Shanks. The Nittany Lions would answer shortly thereafter to bring the score to 2-1 at the close of the quarter, and would drop another goal early in the second to go up by two. Though Carey and the defense would hold them scoreless for nearly 12 minutes, Penn State managed one more goal before the half to go up 4-1 heading into the break.
Still, Ohio State managed to rally its offense in the second half...sort of. Scoring two goals in 39 seconds early in the third on shots by attackmen Colin Chell and Ryan Hunter, the Buckeyes closed the deficit to just one score. Penn State answered midway through the quarter to bring the score to 5-3, but Ohio State again rallied on two fourth-quarter goals by fellow attackmen Jack Jasinski and J.T. Blubaugh, tying the game at 5-5 with 6:53 remaining in the fourth quarter.
The Buckeyes had several more opportunities to score, recording six more shots after Blubaugh’s goal, but it was Penn State who found the back of the net with 1:41 left in the game to go up 6-5. Penn State won the ensuing faceoff, but the Buckeyes got the ball back with 1:19 remaining on a clear. Though the Buckeyes got one more shot off with 21 seconds left, it was saved by Penn State, effectively sealing their victory.
Ohio State’s defense again showed up strong against Penn State, riding Carey’s solid, 13-save performance. Chell led the Buckeyes in total points on one goal and two assists. Midfielder Jake Withers went 9-6 on faceoffs on the day.
With the loss, the Buckeyes have fallen to 5-6 on the season. They are scheduled to face No. 9 Johns Hopkins next weekend in Baltimore.