Oct. 25, 2013
COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Ohio State men's hockey team rallied from an early two-goal deficit to defeat Robert Morris, 5-3, Friday night in Value City Arena. The line of senior Travis Statchuk and juniors Nick Oddo and Matt Johnson led the way for the Buckeyes, combining for three goals and eight points in the victory. The Buckeyes (1-3-0, 0-0-0 B1G) and Colonials (0-3-1, 0-0-1 AHA) will close the weekend series at 7:05 p.m. Saturday in Pittsburgh.
"We didn't start out pretty tonight and we certainly have some things to work on, but what I liked about our team tonight is they weren't going to let it [a loss] happen to them again," Ohio State coach Steve Rohlik, who picked up his first win as a collegiate head coach, said. "We have a good group. We bounced back and fought hard. Good teams find a way to win, and we did that tonight."
Statchuk had three assists for the first multiple point game of his Buckeye career. Oddo notched his first multiple goal game and the second three-point night of his Buckeye career. Johnson had a goal and an assist to mark his second career multiple-point outing. Freshman goalie Matt Tomkins had 26 saves to pick up his first collegiate victory.
"We took it upon ourselves to find a way to win tonight," Statchuk said. "Coach challenged us between periods and we went out there, stuck to our plan and got it done."
The teams were tied at two after the first period. The Colonials scored twice in the first three minutes of the opening period to take a 2-0 lead. Greg Gibson tallied at the 50 second mark, followed by a Cody Wydo power play goal at 2:51. The Buckeyes tied the game with two unanswered goals. Johnson netted his first goal of the year at 8:43, putting in the rebound of a shot from Statchuk, with Oddo picked up the second assist. With Ohio State on the power play late in the game, freshman Drew Brevig's shot went wide and hit junior Darik Angeli, who was there to put it home for his team-best third goal of the year. Senior Alex Szczechura also had an assist on the goal, which came at 19:03. Shots were 13-11 in favor of the Buckeyes in the period, despite Robert Morris outshooting Ohio State, 8-1, to start the game.
Ohio State held a 5-2 lead after the second period. At 2:55 Oddo scored, taking a pass from Statchuk, who was behind the net. Junior blueliner Justin DaSilva had the second assist on the tally, which gave Ohio State its first lead of the game. At 5:42 sophomore Anthony Greco's pass, headed for McCormick at the far post, deflected off a defenseman's skate and into the goal for Greco's first tally of the season. Juniors Ryan Dzingel and McCormick had the assists on the power play goal. Oddo got his second of the night at 10:42, set up by linemates Johnson and Statchuk. Ohio State had 12 shots in the period, with Robert Morris putting nine on net.
Robert Morris picked up the only goal in the third period when Chase Golightly scored on the power play at 14:47. The Colonials pulled their goalie for an extra attacker while on the power play, but Ohio State was able to hold them off the scoreboard, helped by a point blank save by Tomkins. Oddo had a chance for a hat trick late in the period, heading into the Colonial zone with the puck while the net was empty, but was tripped and an Ohio State power play ensued. Ohio State outshot Robert Morris, 16-10, in the stanza.
Ohio State outshot Robert Morris, 41-30. In the Buckeye net, Tomkins made 26 saves and allowed just one goal in 57:09. Sophomore Collin Olson started the game and allowed two goals before Tomkins came on in relief. For Robert Morris, starter Terry Shafer played the first 40 minutes and had 20 saves on 25 shots. Brandon Lane played the last period and stopped all 16 shots he faced.
The Buckeyes converted 2-of-7 power play chances, while Robert Morris was 2-for-3.