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COLUMBUS, Ohio -- A fast start on offense keyed by face-off dominance and a stellar defensive effort in goal added up to a 15-9 victory for No. 8 Ohio State (2-0) over No. 20 Boston University (1-1) on Saturday in front of a sold-out crowd at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.
THE SHORT STORY
The combination of sophomore Tre Leclaire and freshman Jackson Reid scored seven goals on the afternoon and Ohio State jumped out to an 8-0 second-quarter lead. The Buckeyes then quelled a third-quarter BU rally thanks to the play of goalie Matthew Smidt, who made a career high 15 saves. Nine different Buckeyes found the back of the net, including multi-goal outings from Reid, Leclaire and Jack Jasinski (2G). In the face-off X, sophomore Christian Feliziani and freshman Justin Inacio combined to win 12 of 13 draws in the first half as Ohio State built a 10-1 halftime advantage.
THE TURNING POINT
After taking a 10-1 lead into the locker room at halftime, Ohio State saw BU score the first four goals of the third quarter in a five and a half minute span. With its lead trimmed to 10-5, Ohio State responded with a three-goal rally of its own to swing the momentum back in its favor. It started with a feed from John Kelly to Jasinski and then continued with back to back scores from Reid, the first of which came off a pass from Lukas Buckley, to make the score 13-5.
In the first quarter, Ohio State scored on the first shot that it took, as freshman JT Bugliosi cleaned up a ground ball in front of the cage and fired a shot past BU goalie Joe McSorley. Feliziani, the reigning Big Ten Specialist of the Week, then won the ensuing face-off, raced up the field and scored eight seconds later.
The Buckeyes would add five more goals before the quarter was out, as Reid scored twice and Leclaire, Hank Bethke and Jeff Henrick all found the back of the net. In all, Ohio State scored on seven of the nine shots it took in the first quarter.
Head coach Nick Myers: "We got off to fast start as a product of great wing play, great face-off play and great goundball play. We got the ball down to our attack in some opportunistic areas. Those guys did a good job putting the ball away and fighting for second chance opportunities. BU threw a lot at us -- credit them, they did a great job. [Matthew Smidt] on the back-end did a great job making stops when we needed him to."
THIS AND THAT
• Ohio State won its home opener for the 10th consecutive season.
• Saturday was the first-ever meeting between Ohio State and Boston University.
• One week after winning eight of nine draws against Cleveland State, Inacio was seven of 10 today. Feliziani won nine of 16 face-offs.
• Six different players had multiple points for Ohio State, including two freshmen -- Reid (4G) and Bugliosi (1G, 1A). Gail Thorpe also made his Buckeye debut and dished out two assists.
• The Buckeyes improved to 21-0 all-time inside the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.
JUST THE STATS
Shots: Boston University 36, Ohio State 34
Face-offs: Ohio State 16-27, Boston University 11-27
Ground Balls: Ohio State 42, Boston University 36
Clears: Ohio State 15-17, Boston University 13-16
Extra Man: Boston University 2-3, Ohio State 0-3
Saves: Ohio State (Smidt) 15, Boston University (McSorley) 13
Ohio State finishes off its two-game homestand with a contest against Hofstra next Saturday, Feb. 17, at noon inside the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. The game is expected to sell out and fans are encouraged to purchase tickets ahead of time at OhioStateBuckeyes.com
WATCH LIVE: Ohio State vs. Hofstra