COLUMBUS, Ohio -- With eight different goal scorers and a total team effort, Ohio State propelled itself to a 14-8 victory Sunday afternoon over California at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. With the win, the Buckeyes improve to 4-1, while the Golden Bears fall to 1-3 on the season.
Molly Wood had yet another dominating performance, scoring four goals for the second straight game with assists from Liza Hernandez, Baley Parrott and Mackenzie Maring. Hernandez finished with three goals and one assist. As true freshman, she leads the team with 15 goals in the first five games of the season.
The Buckeyes started the game strong, quickly taking a 5-0 lead in the first 10 minutes of the game. California battled back to bring the lead within three with 1:21 left in the first half. A timely goal from Wood at the end of the first half gave the Buckeyes the momentum and the Buckeyes led 7-3 at the half.
"I'm really proud of our defense, I think we really set the tone early and held them scoreless for a number of minutes," head coach Alexis Venechanos said after the game. "It was a tough loss on Friday night and you always like to see how your team responds and I think we stepped up. We still had some turnovers there and we need to clean that up a little. But I think we're understanding things better and now we just need to execute better. We also had players step up when we needed them to so that was nice to see as well."
— OhioStateWomen's LAX (@OhioState_WLAX) February 26, 2017
California struck back with a goal from leading-scorer Kate Mattimore to cut the lead to 7-4. But that was as close as the Bears would come in the second half. The Buckeyes responded with a 3-0 run, with goals from Parrott, Hernandez and Vander Molen, to bring the lead to 10-4 with 22:37 left in the game. The Buckeyes never looked back, never letting their lead get closer than five goals the rest of the way. Goals from Wood and Sage Darling capped the Ohio State 14-8 victory.
Ohio State forced 18 turnovers and capitalized on 25 ground ball opportunities. Mackenzie Maring had four ground balls, while Christina Turner, Shannon Rosati and Jill Rizzo, who also had 10 saves, had three ground balls each. Turner also led the team with three forced turnovers.
Jena Fritts and Kate Mattimore had three goals each for California. Goalie Jenny Wilkens had 14 saves on the day, including 8 during the second half.
The Buckeyes will start a four-game road trip when they take on Duquesne next Friday, March 3 at 3 p.m. ET.
-- Casey Schaffer, Ohio State Athletics Communications
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