Feb. 18, 2012
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Opening with three goals in the first period, the Ohio State women's hockey team closed out the regular season with a 4-2 upset of No. 1 Wisconsin Saturday afternoon at the Kohl Center in Madison. The win was the program's first regular season victory over a top-ranked opponent and the first at Wisconsin since the Buckeyes upset the Badgers in the 2010 WCHA tournament.
The victory moved Ohio State to 16-14-4 overall and gave the Buckeyes a 13-14-1-1 record in WCHA play. Wisconsin, who had already clinched the WCHA regular season title, dropped to 29-3-2 and 23-3-2.
The win solidified a fifth-place finish in the WCHA standings with 41 points. The Buckeyes will travel to Minnesota Duluth for a best-of-three series to begin the WCHA Playoffs, Feb. 24-26. First game is set for 4:07 p.m. ET from AMSOIL Arena.
Ohio State nabbed its first goal of the game at 8:03 to go up 1-0. Freshman Kari Schmitt capitalized on a Wisconsin turnover and sent a shot past Nikki Kaasa for the score. The unassisted goal was the second of the season for the defenseman.
The Buckeyes built on their lead with another even-strength goal in the first, scoring at 10:39. Senior Laura McIntosh took a shot from the faceoff circle and it slipped past Alex Rigsby for the two-goal lead. Senior Melissa Feste and junior Hokey Langan each had a helper on the goal.
A minute later, a Wisconsin interference call gave Ohio State its first power play of the game and the Buckeyes capitalized with a goal at 11:44. Langan notched her seventh goal of the year with assists to McIntosh and Natalie Spooner. Ohio State went into the first intermission with a 3-0 advantage.
Wisconsin scored its first goal of the game and the only goal of the second period late on the power play. Senior Brooke Ammerman tallied the score at 17:31 with assists to Stefanie McKeough and Brianna Decker.
The Badgers cut the lead to one at 14:59 in the third when Carolyne Prevost scored a power play goal to make the score 3-2 in favor of Ohio State.
After Wisconsin pulled its goalie, Langan sealed the 4-2 victory at 19:31 with an empty-net goal for her second score of the game.
Sophomore goalie Lisa Steffes tallied 28 stops in the win to improve to 12-10-1 on the season. Rigsby totaled 19 saves in the loss.
The Badgers held a 30-23 advantage in shots, while the Buckeyes had a 28-27 lead in faceoffs.