When: Thursday 4:30 p.m.
Where: Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, Michigan
Television: Big Ten Network
Penn State (18-14-4) recently finished the most successful regular season in the program's short division one history. By all standards the team has out-performed expectations to this point. Awards have been handed out for a spectacular performance in the regular season. Guy Gadowsky was named coach of the year. Casey Bailey was named to the first all-conference team. The regular season was a wonderful unexpected ride. Now the regular season is over.
We move into the post-season. All records have been wiped clean, no wins and no losses. With three wins in the Big Ten tournament the Lions will capture the automatic bid to the NCAA tournament that is awarded to each conference champion. It would be a historic event for the team and college hockey. The prospects of such an event is a conversation that can wait until Saturday morning, if the Lions are able to win the first two games in the tournament.
Penn State faces a very difficult challenge in the first round of the Big Ten tournament. A Buckeye team that has been playing very well over the past month stands in the path of Guy Gadowsky's squad. If victorious in game one against OSU it would then face the Minnesota Golden Gophers at 4:30 p.m. on Friday.
The team will focus solely on this game. It's the time of year where every game is survive and advance. The season is over for the Lions if the team loses a game from here on out.
Gadowsky has been quick to acknowledge success with honor when other teams at Penn State are in the limelight. The team wore stickers that read '409' in support of the football team and fans when the relaxed sanctions restored victories to the school. The team clearly prepped hard for the THON dance competition as it won easily. And this past week Guy's guys offered support to Pat's guys as they posed the question, 'Why not us?'
Why not @PennStateMBB? #WeAre #PennState #WhyNotUs— Penn State Hockey (@PennStateMHKY) March 12, 2015
With football and basketball season officially over it is time to ask this question for Penn State hockey.
Guy not us? Why not Guy.
Why not us, eh? Oui are Penn State! We bleed blue and white, sometimes grey, just like everyone else. Let's give this team our full support. You can tune in on your phone or computer using btn2go.com or you can watch the games on the Big Ten network.
Since We Last Met
The Buckeyes swept the Lions in Columbus on the last weekend of February. Ohio State has split a series with Minnesota and got a win and shootout win against Wisconsin this past weekend. Dating back to February 13th the team has a record of 6-3-1 after starting the season 7-15-2. The team is finding a groove at the right time.
Anthony Greco was named as an honorable mention on the All-Big Ten team. The junior forward scored 15 goals during the regular season and had 8 assists as well. Matthew Weis was named to the freshman All-Big Ten team, contributing 8 goals and 14 assists on the year. Tanner Fritz led the Buckeyes with 26 points off 11 goals and 15 assists.
Christian Lampasso, Matt Johnson, and Nick Schilkey round out the scoring threats for OSU. The team is streaky when it comes to scoring. During the past 13 games the Buckeyes have finished with either five goals or two goals.
The team allows just over three goals per game. Goalies Matt Tomkins and Christian Frey split the duties in net with Frey getting the majority of the starts. Frey has a 3.17 goals against average and it is likely that the sturdy sophomore netminder will draw the start against the Lions.
BLOG: #NittanyLions Prepare for @B1GHockey Tournament. http://t.co/4BwNFjaEui #WeAre #HockeyValley pic.twitter.com/vqptQ93xkV— Penn State Hockey (@PennStateMHKY) March 18, 2015
- The comment section of this article will be used as the open thread discussion during the game.
- With 18 wins on the year, Penn State more than doubled the total achieved last season (8).
- The team arrived in Detroit yesterday afternoon and will be well-rested for the game today.