Penn State (10-7-2) was able to answer the Ohio State (7-10-2) victory on Friday night for a series split. In a game that started slow for the first 10 minutes, the teams finished strong for the final two and a half periods. The game featured many hard and clean hits on both sides and there were also a few chippy moments as well.
At the start of the game it was evident that the teams were a little sluggish following the overtime game the previous night. Play went back and forth evenly until Scott Conway of PSU was called for a penalty with five minutes left in the period. Ohio State was not able to take advantage of the extra skater but it was at this point that the teams began to skate aggressively. A minute after the Lions killed the penalty, Josh Healey of OSU was called for a vicious hit to the head on Tommy Olczyk. Penn State was able to capitalize with forty seconds left in the period when Curtis Loik scored a power play goal on an assist from Scott Conway and Eric Scheid. The period ended with the Lions on top 1-0.
The final five minutes of the period was played at a very high level. PSU led with a 14-8 shots on goal edge and face-offs were even at 16-16. PSU was without David Glen, who had won 14 of 19 face-offs the night before. Glen is nursing a lower leg injury.
The second period started with a fast pace. Play was relatively even for the first couple of minutes with Ohio State holding a slight edge in effort. Three minutes into the period Max Gardiner was called for cross-checking and the Buckeyes went on the power play. The Lions were able to hold down the fort on the penalty kill until Nate Jensen was called for another penalty with 12 seconds remaining in the first penalty. OSU immediately capitalized on the 5 on 3 advantage with Matthew Weis tying the game at 1-1. Unfortunately for PSU four seconds remained on the first penalty, so OSU would have another 1:54 of power play. Penn State was able to kill the power play.
At this point in the period the Buckeyes had a 13-0 shot on goal advantage. This was mostly due to the penalties, but still is an amazing statistic considering PSU had over 50 shots on goal the previous night. At this point in the period Guy Gadowsky's squad flipped momentum, getting the next 5 shots on a flurry of extremely high effort plays.
With twelve minutes left in the period Christian Lampasso of OSU and Nate Jensen of PSU got dual unsportsmanlike conduct penalties. The call came when the two got into a scuffle in front of Penn State goalie Eamon McAdam after a whistle. The result was 4 on 4 hockey for two minutes. Penn State took advantage, scoring a goal ten seconds into the action. David Goodwin got the goal on the assist from Taylor Holstrom for a 2-1 lead.
With the four-on-four action continuing, Penn State kept the throttle down and pressure on Ohio State. Eric Scheid scored on an assist from Scott Conway to extend the lead to 3-1. The period would end without any further scoring but the action did not subside. The teams exchanged multiple brutal and clean hits and each had quality scoring opportunities. At the end of the period the teams got into a pushing match but no penalties were given.
Play started fast and even in the final period of play. Six minutes in Max Gardner of Penn State took a penalty for goalie interference. Ohio State had a few nice looks at scoring but was unable to get one past Eamon McAdam with the man advantage. With eight minutes left in the game Penn State went on the power play and used the chance to kill the clock and maintain the 3-1 lead while getting some quality shots on goal. During the penalty Matthew Weis of OSU had a short-handed break-away but McAdam was able to make the save. Coach Gadowsky had this to say about the play after the game.
I thought the play of the game was Eamon stopping the short-handed breakaway with seven minutes to play. That could have greatly changed the momentum and complex of the game. So I think he deserves a ton of credit for that.
A couple minutes later the Lions went on the power play again when OSU had too many men on the ice. While the Lions were not able to score during either power play, it used the time to wear out the Buckeyes and to shorten the game. With just over three minutes remaining the teams were at full strength.
With just under two minutes remaining in the game Eric Scheid scored on an empty net, giving the Lions the 4-1 lead and that is the way the game would end.
- Penn State is now 4-2 early in B1G play.
- Eamon McAdam got the win, his third in B1G play. No other goalie has more than one win in conference play this season.
- Ohio State managed to out-shoot Penn State 36-35. This is due partly to the flurry of 13 consecutive shots on goal that it had to start the second period and also the way PSU played for the final ten minutes of the game. PSU abandoned the high-flying shots on goal style for a more controlled style in order to minimize the risk of an odd-man rush on McAdam.
- The Lions will host Michigan State next weekend in a Friday night and Saturday afternoon series. The team will wear their 3rd, or alternate jersey style for the first time.