March 18, 2014
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State men’s hockey team (16-13-5, 6-9-5-4/4th B1G) heads to the Xcel Energy Center in Saint Paul, Minn., for the inaugural Big Ten Tournament this week.
The tournament opens Thursday with quarterfinal matchups between the No. 4 seed Buckeyes and No. 5 seed Michigan State at 7 p.m. CT/8 p.m., preceded by a game between No. 3 seed Michigan and No. 6 seed Penn State at 2 p.m. CT/3 p.m. ET. In the semifinals Friday, No. 1 seed Minnesota will face the winner of the OSU vs. MSU game at 7 p.m. CT/8 p.m. ET and No. 2 seed Wisconsin will face the winner of the UM/PSU game at 2 p.m. CT/3 p.m. ET. The championship game is slated for 7 p.m. CT/8 p.m. ET Saturday, with the winner earning the league’s automatic berth into the NCAA tournament.
All five games of the Big Ten Tournament will be televised by BTN and available through BTN2Go. Dan Kelly will handle play-by-play duties throughout the tourney, joined by analysts Rob Andringa and Ben Clymer and Fred Pletsch rinkside.
IMG/Ohio State radio, with Herb Howenstine and former Buckeye John Mowat on the call, will carry all Ohio State games in the tournament through Buckeye Vision subscriptions on OhioStateBuckeyes.com and over the air in Columbus on 1460 AM.
Audio, video and live stats links for the Buckeyes’ B1G tournament games will be on the men’s hockey schedule or gameday pages (go.osu.edu/mhkygameday) on OhioStateBuckeyes.com, with in-game updates also on Twitter @OhioState_MHKY.
Ohio State, under first-year head coach Steve Rohlik, is 15-13-5 on the year and finished Big Ten play in fourth place with a 6-9-5-4 ledger. The Buckeyes are 4-4-4 in their last 12 games, winning all four shootouts.
The Buckeyes are averaging 3.21 goals a game to rank 14th in the NCAA in scoring offense and are allowing 2.74 goals a contest. Ohio State’s power play is 32-for-149 (.215), ranking 10th nationally and first in the conference, and the penalty kill is 103-for-132 (.780). The team averages 11.1 penalty minutes per game and 33.4 shots on goal per outing.
Junior Ryan Dzingel leads the Buckeyes with 20 goals, 23 assists and a Big Ten-best 43 points. Freshman Nick Schilkey is second with 12 goals, followed by junior Max McCormick with 11. Junior Tanner Fritz is second with 22 assists and McCormick is third with 20. McCormick is second on the squad with 31 points, followed by Fritz (28), junior Nick Oddo (8g, 19a, 27p) and Schilkey (24). Oddo is first with a +22 mark with Dzingel second at +16 and junior Justin DaSilva has blocked a team-high 82 shots. In goal, three freshmen have picked up wins for the Buckeyes. Christian Frey joined the team in December and has started 13 contests (including 10 of the last 13), with a 7-3-3 ledger, 2.29 goals-against average and .930 save percentage. Matt Tomkins has a 2.78 goals-against average and .911 save percentage in 17 games (15 starts). Logan Davis has played in five games, with four starts, posting a 2.21 goals-against average, .909 save percentage and one shutout.
The Tourney Home
The Big Ten Tournament will be held in the Xcel Energy Center, home of the NHL’s Minnesota Wild. Ohio State played in the rink once before, a loss to Minnesota Oct. 12, 2002 in the Hall of Fame Game. Ohio State competed in an NHL rink earlier this season, falling to Michigan in Nationwide Arena, home of the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets, March 1. The game Thursday will be Ohio State’s first true neutral-site game of the year. The two games not in a traditional rink were an outdoor game against Minnesota in the Gophers’ on-campus football Stadium Jan. 17 and the game in Nationwide Arena. Both are considered home games for the Gophers and Buckeyes, respectively.
10 Year Anniversary of ‘04 Title
This marks the 10th anniversary of Ohio state’s last postseason title, as the squad won the 2004 CCHA Super Six Championship at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, with three victories in three days. In the tourney, the Buckeyes, who entered the Super Six as the No. 4 seed, beat No. 5 Notre Dame in the quarterfinals in overtime (6-5), No. 2 Miami in overtime in the semifinals (4-3) and No. 1 Michigan in the championship, 4-2 (March 20, 2004). The team did not lead the Irish or RedHawks until scoring the gamewinner in OT. It was the program’s second postseason crown, after claiming the inaugural CCHA title in 1972.
Buckeyes vs. Spartans
In a series that started in 1964, Ohio State trails Michigan State, 30-82-11, 2-6-0 in neutral-site matchups and 2-6-0 in the postseason. The last postseason meeting was in the CCHA semifinals in Joe Louis Arena in Detroit in 2005, a 4-1 Buckeye victory. The teams met twice in the 1998 playoffs. In the CCHA championship, No. 1-ranked Michigan State beat Ohio State in double overtime, 3-2. Ohio State then downed the Spartans in overtime in the NCAA West Regional in Yost Ice Arena in Ann Arbor to advance to the program’s first Frozen Four. The teams met in the CCHA semifinals in 1983, ‘84 and ‘85, all MSU wins in Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.
This season, the Buckeyes and Spartans met for the first time as Big Ten foes. Ohio State won the first game vs. the Spartans, 5-3, in Columbus Jan. 10 before the teams tied, 1-1, Jan. 11 and the Spartans won the shootout. The teams then tied both games in East Lansing, 2-2, Feb. 7 and 8. Ohio State won the shootout in both games.
Ohio State vs. Michigan State in 2013-14
Game One (Jan. 10, Columbus) - Ohio State 5, Michigan State 3: Ohio State came from a goal down to defeat Michigan State, 5-3, in Value City Arena in the first Big Ten Conference game between the teams. Junior Ryan Dzingel led the Buckeyes with a hat trick and four points in the win. Ohio State led 1-0 after the first period but the Spartans scored back-to-back goals in the second period to take a 2-1 lead with five minutes left in the stanza. Dzingel tallied his first goal of the game 1:54 later for a 2-2 game but the Spartans answered with a tally with 37 seconds left in the period to carry a 3-2 lead into the third. Junior Nick Oddo scored just 17 seconds into the third to tie the game at 3 and Dzingel scored 1:13 after to push Ohio State ahead, 4-3. Dzingel completed his hat trick - the first in Big Ten Conference history - with less than five minutes in regulation, giving the Buckeyes a two-goal cushion. Freshman goalie Matt Tomkins had 33 saves in his first game since Nov. 9. Oddo had two assists for a three-point night. Max McCormick had a two-assist night and Szczechura added an assist for two points.
Game Two (Jan. 11, Columbus) - Ohio State 1, Michigan State 1 OT (MSU wins shootout, 3-2 in six rounds): Ohio State rallied for a 1-1 overtime tie with Michigan State in VCA. The Spartans led 1-0 after the first period on a goal from Matt Berry and maintained the lead through the second. In the third, Buckeye sophomore Anthony Greco found Darik Angeli in front and he was able to net the game-tying goal at 8:10. Neither team was able to score the rest of the way, including through a five-minute overtime, and the game went to a shootout. The Spartans scored in round one before neither team scored on its next four shots. Tanner Fritz tied the shootout for the Buckeyes in round three to extend the shootout and MSU and Nick Schilkey traded goals in round four. Neither team scored in round five and MSU’s Tanner Sorenson scored in round six to put Michigan State back in the lead and MSU goalie Jake Hilderbrand made a save on the Buckeyes to clinch the extra point in the Big Ten standings. Tomkins made 26 saves for the Buckeyes in net.
Game 3 (Feb. 7, East Lansing) - Ohio State 2, Michigan State 2 OT (OSU wins shootout, 2-1 in five rounds): With two power play goals in the final 1:34 of regulation - including the game-tying tally with 1.7 seconds left on the clock - Ohio State rallied for a 2-2 tie at Michigan State in Munn Ice Arena. The Buckeyes then won the shootout, 2-1 in five rounds, to pick up the extra point in the Big Ten standings. After a scoreless first period, Michigan State scored at 7:44 of the second for a 1-0 lead and extended the advantage to 2-0 at 8:19 of the third. With time winding down, Ohio State pulled its goalie for the extra attacker and drew a penalty. With Ohio State skating 6-on-4, junior Tanner Fritz put Ohio State on the board at 18:26 and senior Alex Szczechura netted the gametying tally with 1.7 seconds left on the clock and Ohio State again skating 6-on-4, on the power play and with the net empty. Neither team was able to score in overtime, ending the game as a tie for NCAA purposes. The game went to a shootout to determine who would receive the extra point in the Big Ten standings. After Michigan State and Buckeye freshman Nick Schilkey traded goals in the first round, neither team could convert in the next three. In the fifth round, Buckeye freshman goalie Christian Frey made a save and Fritz scored for an Ohio State shootout win.
Game 4 (Feb. 8, East Lansing) - Ohio State 2, Michigan State 2 OT (OSU wins shootout, 1-0 in three rounds): With two goals from junior Matt Johnson, two assists from senior Alex Lippincott and 30 saves from freshman Christian Frey, Ohio State skated to a 2-2 tie and shootout win at Michigan State. Johnson scored an early first-period goal but the Spartans’ Greg Wolfe scored two power play goals in the second period to give MSU a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes. In the third, Lippincott set up Johnson for a goal at 11:01, tying the game at 2. Neither team was able to score in overtime and for the third consecutive game between the teams, the game went to a shootout. In the first round Nick Schilkey scored to put the Buckeyes ahead and Frey stopped all three Spartan attempts to secure the Buckeye shootout win.
Dzingel Named First Team All-Big Ten
Ryan Dzingel was named to the All-Big Ten First Team, the first Buckeye skater to earn first team all-conference accolades since Zac Dalpe in 2009-10 and the ninth forward in program history to be named to an all-conference first team. Honorees were selected by the conference’s coaches and a media panel. Dzingel, from Wheaton, Ill., had a Big Ten-best 23 points in B1G play and tied for the conference lead with 12 goals, tying for third with 12 assists in all 20 games. Overall this season, he has a league-high 43 points and is tied for the lead with 20 goals. Dzingel is first in the Big Ten and tied for ninth in the NCAA with 1.26 points per game, tying for first in the league and ninth nationally with .59 goals per outing. He has a point in 23-of-34 games on the year, with 12 multiple point games, and is +16. Dzingel, a three-time Big Ten Star of the Week, recorded the 100th point of his Buckeye career Feb. 15, becoming the first Ohio State player to reach triple digits as a junior since RJ Umberger in 2003. He is the first Buckeye with 40-plus points since 2009-10 and has the seventh 40-point campaign for a Buckeye since 1998-99. Dzingel was an honorable mention All-CCHA selection in 2013.
Brevig, Frey and Schilkey Pick Up B1G All-Freshman Team Accolades
Ohio State players made up half of the inaugural Big Ten All-FreshmanTeam, as defenseman Drew Brevig, goalie Christian Frey and forward Nick Schilkey each earned spots. Honorees were selected by the conference’s coaches and a media panel.
Brevig, a native of Lakeville, Minn., has played in 31 games and has 14 points, including 12 assists, to tie for first in scoring among Big Ten freshman defensemen and rank 10th nationally. He is tied for eighth in scoring among all Big Ten rookies and tied for seventh in points among all B1G blueliners. Brevig had six assists and seven points in 20 Big Ten games to rank second among rookie blueliners and tie for 11th among all defensemen. He is +10 this season and even or better in 25 of his last 28 games, tying for 10th among Big Ten defensemen in plus/minus. His +9 rating in conference outings is second in the league among blueliners.
Arlington, Texas, native Frey, who joined the Ohio State program prior to the second half of the season, started 11 of the Buckeyes’ 20 Big Ten Conference games, posting a 5-3-3 ledger. He was second among league goalies with a .932 save percentage and third with a 2.25 goals-against average. Overall, Frey is 7-3-3 on the year, with a 2.29 goals-against average and .930 save percentage, ranking eighth in the NCAA and third in the league in save percentage. A two-time Big Ten Star of the Week, Frey has two games with 40 or more saves and six games with 30 or more stops. He was also 3-0 in Big Ten shootouts.
Schilkey, who hails from Marysville, Mich., played in all 20 conference games and had 13 points and six goals to tie for second in the league in both categories. Overall, he has played in all 34 games and has 12 goals, 12 assists and 24 points to rank fourth in scoring and tie for first in goals among Big Ten freshmen. He has six multiple-point games this season, including a three-point day Friday at Penn State. Schilkey converted 4-of-5 shootout opportunities, helping Ohio State to a 4-1 ledger in B1G shootouts.
Sportsmanship Award for Fritz
Junior forward and alternate captain Tanner Fritz was the recipient of the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award for Ohio State. The Grande Prairie, Alberta, native is third on the team with 28 points this season, with six goals and 22 assists, in 29 games. He is tied for third in the Big Ten in assists and tied for 12th in points per game. In conference games only, Fritz tied for seventh with 16 points and was tied for third with 12 assists, in all 20 games. He has just four penalties for eight minutes this season.
Light the Lamp
• Ohio State is 14th nationally and third in the Big Ten in scoring offense, averaging 3.21 goals a game. The squad has three or more goals in 19 games this season and five or more in eight contests.
• However, the Buckeyes have scored three or fewer goals in nine of the last 10 games, with seven two-goal games, a one-goal outing and one three-goal performance. The squad broke out with four goals at Penn State Friday in a 4-2 victory.
• Thirteen Buckeyes have hit double-digit points through the first 34 games, with another two closing in with nine points. Last year, in all 40 games, the squad had just eight players post 10 points or more. The team this season has a 40-point scorer, a 30-point player and four with 20 or more points. Last season, just four had 20 or more points and three of those four passed the 30-point mark.
• The 2012-13 squad averaged 2.38 goals an outing and had 95 total goals. The 2013-14 team scored its 100th goal of the year vs. Michigan March 1 and now has 109 tallies. The team’s 3.21 goals per game average is the highest for the Buckeyes since the 2008-09 team scored 3.40 goals a game.
• In the last 10 games (when the squad has totaled 22 goals combined), 13 players have scored at least one time, with Nick Schilkey scoring a team-best four goals and Ryan Dzingel scoring three times, while Tanner Fritz, Matt Johnson, Darik Angeli and Alex Szczechura each scored twice. The other recent goal scorers are Max McCormick, Anthony Greco, Tyler Lundey, David Gust, Sam Jardine, Nick Oddo and Curtis Gedig.
• The Buckeyes are 10-2-2 this year when scoring first and 6-11-3 when allowing the first tally.
• The Buckeyes have outscored opponents 45-32 in the second period this season and 38-32 in the third period but have been outscored, 28-26, in the first 20 minutes this year.
• The Buckeyes won four of five B1G shootouts during 2013-14. The team dropped its first shootout of this season to Michigan State Jan. 11 before winning both on the road against the Spartans Feb. 7-8, along with a shootout at Michigan Feb. 28 and one vs. the Gophers March 8. The score after overtime was 2-2 in each of the last four shootout wins.
• The team is 14-14 all-time in shootouts for league points. Ohio State is 4-1 this year, was 1-4 each of the last two years, 2-2 in 2010-11, 4-2 in 2009-10 and 2-1 in 2008-09, the first year shootouts were held (in the CCHA).
• Freshman Nick Schilkey leads the way for Ohio State with four goals in five shootout attempts, the only Buckeye to shoot in each game.
On D ... and a Block Party
• The Buckeyes are allowing 2.74 goals a game this season. The team has given up two or fewer in 13 of the last 20 games, including in nine of the last 12 outings.
• When allowing two or less goals, Ohio State is 11-1-5 this season, with the lone loss a 1-0 setback against Minnesota Jan. 17 in the outdoor game.
• Ohio State blocked 33 shots in the series at Penn State, including 22 in game two. The squad has 20 or more recorded blocked shots in five games this year - a season-high 30 at Michigan Nov. 29, 22 Jan. 25 at Wisconsin and Saturday at Penn State, 21 Nov. 15 vs. Canisius and 20 Nov. 16 vs. Canisius.
• Saturday at Penn State, 11 Buckeyes blocked at least one shot, led by senior Curtis Gedig with four.
• Junior Justin DaSilva is first in the Big Ten and the NCAA with 2.73 blocks per game this season. He has 82 total blocked shots, ranking seventh nationally and first in the B1G. DaSilva has at least one blocked shot in all but one of the 30 games he has played, including six Nov. 29 at Michigan and vs. Minnesota March 7 and five at Wisconsin Jan. 25.
• Freshmen Drew Brevig is second with 50 blocked shots, followed by Gedig (49), freshman Josh Healey (48) and junior Al McLean (41).
• Ohio State’s blueliners have posted 58 points this season, with 10 goals and 48 assists. Brevig is first with 14 (2g, 12a), ranking seventh (tied) in scoring among Big Ten blueliners and first (tied) among freshman defensemen. Sophomore Sam Jardine is 11th in the league with 13 points, with a goal and 12 assists. DaSilva is tied for 15th with a 4-6-10 line, Gedig has a 2-7-9 line (including a power play goal Saturday at Penn State), Healey has four assists and five points and McLean has a helper.
With the Man Advantage
• On the power play, the Buckeyes are 32-for-149, ranking 10th in the NCAA and first in the Big Ten at 21.5 percent.
• The squad has a power play goal in five of the last six games, including each of the last three. The team was 1-for-6 Friday at Penn State and 1-for-3 Saturday against the Nittany Lions.
• This is just the second Ohio State team since 1998-99 to convert more than 20 percent of its power play chances. The 2004-05 team leads the way in recent years, with 66 power play goals on 301 chances (21.9 percent).
• In Big Ten games, Ohio State converted a league-best 24.1 percent of its chances, with 19 goals on 79 opportunities.
• The team has a power play goal in 15 of the last 21 games, converting 25.6 percent (20-of-77) of its opportunities in the stretch.
• Ryan Dzingel shares the Big Ten lead with 18 power play points and is tied for second in the league with eight power play goals, including a score Friday at Penn State. Max McCormick is third among B1G players with 16 points on the power play and second in the league with 13 power play assists.
• Freshman Nick Schilkey, junior Tanner Fritz and senior Alex Szczechura each have four power play goals, tying for seventh in the league.
On the PK
• Ohio State was 6-for-9 on the penalty kill at Penn State in its last series. In the last 27 games combined, the squad is 76-for-89 (.854), allowing a goal in 13 of the 27 contests.
• On the year, the team has stopped 78 percent (103-of-132) of its opponents’ chances. In conference games only, the team stopped 77.9 percent (60-of-77).
• Ryan Dzingel has two shorthanded goals this season (Nov. 9 vs. Niagara, Jan. 31 vs. Penn State) and is the first Buckeye with more than one shorthanded goal since Tom Fritsche in 2008. He is tied for second in the B1G and 12th in the NCAA in shorthanded scores.
• The Buckeyes have three shorthanded goals this season. Freshman David Gust scored shorthanded at Wisconsin Jan. 24, the first shorty of his career, to join Dzingel’s two SHG.
• On the year, the team is averaging 11.1 penalty minutes a game. The squad has single-digit penalty minutes in 18 outings and more than 14 minutes just seven times. With 18 penalty minutes Saturday at Penn State, the Buckeyes ended a streak of four games in a row with four penalties for eight minutes, facing four power plays in each game. The Buckeyes were assessed just one penalty in each game vs. Mercyhurst Dec. 28-29.
Hobey Candidate Dzingel Pacing the Big Ten, Joins Century Club
• Junior forward and First Team All-Big Ten selection Ryan Dzingel has a Big Ten-best 43 points and shares the league lead with 20 goals, ranking second with 23 assists. He is ninth in the NCAA and first in the Big Ten in points per game (1.26) and tied for 10th nationally in goals per outing (.59). Dzingel had two goals and an assist for three points and was on the ice for all four Buckeye goals Friday at Penn State in the Buckeyes’ 4-2 win. It was his sixth three-point game of the year and the eighth of his career.
• Dzingel is the first Buckeye with 40 points since All-American Zac Dalpe had 45 in 2009-10. It is just the seventh 40-point campaign since 1998-99 (Hugo Boisvert, 51/1998-99, RJ Umberger, 53/2002-03), Tom Fritsche (45/2004-05), Rod Pelley (41/2004-05), Corey Elkins (40/2008-09) and Dalpe.
• He is the first Buckeye to score 20 goals in a season since Sergio Somma in 2011 and it is the seventh 20-goal campaign for a Buckeye since 2000. R.J. Umberger had 26 in 2002-03, Mathieu Beaudoin (23) and Rod Pelley (22) both had 20+ in 2004-05, Tommy Goebel scored 21 in 2007-08, Dalpe had 21 in 2009-10 and Somma had 20 in 2010-11.
• Dzingel’s assist in the second period vs. Wisconsin Feb. 15 marked the 100th point of his Buckeye career (and came in his 101st game). He is the first Buckeye to hit the century mark since Sergio Somma, Peter Boyd and John Albert in 2010-11, who all hit triple digits as seniors. The last Buckeye with 100 points as a junior was RJ Umberger in 2003, who ended his three-year career with 129 points. Dzingel shared the team scoring lead as a freshman with 24 points (7g, 17a) and had a Buckeye-best 16 goals and 38 points last season. He now has 105 career points, tying for 47th in program history.
• Dzingel led the Big Ten with 24 points in conference games only, playing in all 20 games. He was tied for first with 12 goals and tied for third with 12 assists. He was first among league players in the Big Ten rankings with 1.20 points per contest.
• Dzingel has a point in all but 11 games this season. He has four multiple-goal games and 12 multiple-point outings.
• Dzingel has eight power play goals to tie for second in the Big Ten and is tied for first with 18 power play points.
• He is tied for second in the league with four gamewinning goals, tying for 18th in the country. Dzingel netted his second shorthanded goal of the year Feb. 1 vs. Penn State, the first Buckeye with more than one shorthanded goal in a season since Tom Fritsche in 2008.
• Dzingel tallied his second career hat trick Jan. 10 vs. Michigan State. It was the first in Big Ten Conference play and was matched by Wisconsin’s Michael Mersch later that night. Dzingel also scored three times vs. Penn State Dec. 29, 2012. He also had an assist vs. the Spartans for his second career four-point day after two goals and two assists at Michigan Nov. 19, 2011. It was the Buckeyes’ first hat trick since Alex Szczechura Feb. 16, 2013.
• Dzingel was on the ballot for the Hobey Baker Award fan vote and was among the Top 7 vote getters when it wrapped up March 9. The fans’ vote accounts for a full one percent of the total ballot in each phase in selecting this year’s award recipient.
Complete notes, updated bios and statistics are available in the PDF linked above
Mason Jobst - All-American