Normally when I think of New York City, I think of two things: the bright lights of Times Square and Rutgers football. But today we have to add a third component to that diseased brew: Ohio State hockey.
That’s right: the No. 8 Ohio State mens hockey team and Wisconsin’s mens hockey team faced off in a game at Madison Square Garden following a Rutgers-Wisconsin basketball showdown earlier in the day. Wisconsin won both of them.
Ohio State fell for the second straight game to unranked Wisconsin, this time by a score of 3-2 in overtime. At least the Buckeyes got this far this time and scored multiple goals on a middle of the pack Big Ten team.
It sure didn’t look like it was going to even be that close for nearly all of the game however. Ohio State was stymied yet again on offense, this time for the first 58:20 before they got on the board with 2:40 remaining in regulation.
Wisconsin scored the first two goals of the game, with Aidan Cavallini, likely doubling as a minor character on All My Children, scoring in the first and Matthew Freytag putting UW up 2-0 at 14:57 of the third.
OSU was again without Nick Schilkey and the offense’s sputtering since he’s been out shows how important he is and how much trouble the squad’s going to be in next year without him (especially if Tanner Laczynski turns pro). But OSU does still have the Mason Jobst assist machine firing at full capacity.
Jobst assisted on Dakota Joshua’s fourth of the year, along with Matthew Weis at 18:20 of the third, after Christian Frey was pulled from the net for the extra attacker. Joshua tipped the Jobst shot past UW goalie Matt Jurusik to get OSU on the board.
Jobst wasn’t done, however. With just 21.9 seconds left, he won a faceoff in the offensive zone back with his net empty, and the puck eventually found the stick of Josh Healey and somehow snuck into the net on a shot from the top left of the offensive zone. David Gust had the primary assist.
Mason extended his point streak to ten games, with eight goals and 11 assists in that span. He has taken hold of the team scoring lead and now has 31 points in just 24 games. Nick Schilkey being hurt and Laczynski leaving for the WJC and then getting hurt certainly made that achievement a little less meaningful, but hey, take what you can get and Jobst sure has.
Frey stopped 34 out of 37 shots on the game, including four in overtime before letting in the fifth and final one. He kept Ohio State within a goal for most of the game, stopping 21 out of 22 in the first two periods. He couldn’t steal Ohio State the win in overtime, and didn’t get much help from the offense once the game was tied.
OSU was outshot 37-29 for the entire game despite trailing for most of it and didn’t register a single shot in the overtime. Not having Schilkey really does clearly hurt this offense, but that’s still not an excuse to not have a single OT shot, especially after gaining all that momentum after tying it so late on that weird Healey shot.
On Wisconsin’s fifth shot of the extra frame, Cameron Hughes scored his fifth of the year and put the sweep officially in the books.
Ohio State came into the weekend ranked No. 8 and looked to be on top of the world. The bright lights shone on them and they melted. Not everyone can make it in New York. Especially without your best player. I hope Gene Smith got them into Hamilton at least.