Coming off the momentum from a two-game sweep of Robert Morris over the weekend, the Ohio State men’s ice hockey team is looking forward to a rematch against Bowling Green.
The Falcons (2-1-2) and Buckeyes (2-3-0) meet Tuesday after BGSU managed to edge OSU, 4-3, when the two teams met Oct. 15 in Bowling Green for the non-conference matchup. The loss was part of an 0-3-0 start for OSU.
Coach Steve Rohlik said despite the recent victories, the Buckeyes have areas in which they could improve.
“We’ve got to work on our discipline and we’ve got to stay out of the box and special teams,” Rohlik said in a postgame interview Friday.
Senior forward Travis Statchuk agreed, adding the season is still young and the team has a long way to go.
“It’s a long year and it’s early … we’ve got some things to work on and want to get better every day,” Statchuk said Friday.
This time, OSU has home-ice advantage, and is looking to extend its winning streak to three games and grab a .500 overall record.
The Buckeyes led the Oct. 15 game after two periods of the teams’ first bout, but the Falcons managed to put two unanswered goals in the back of the net early in the third period to secure a victory.
Junior forward Max McCormick said Oct. 14 Bowling Green and OSU are “hard-nosed” and that the Oct. 15 matchup was going to be a battle. The same holds true for Tuesday.
Freshman goalie Matt Tomkins, who started the season on the bench behind sophomore goalie Collin Olson, was brought in to take Olson’s place less than three minutes into the first match against Robert Morris. Tomkins recorded 26 saves against the Colonials to earn his first career win, and then followed it up with a 21-save victory the following night.
Rohlik was impressed with the young goalie’s performance against the Colonials.
“Well, I did think (Tomkins) did give a good effort all the way through. They got one on a power play (Friday) but that’s why it’s a team effort,” Rohlik said. “This doesn’t fall on (Olson), it wasn’t his night to start and that’s why you have two goalies dressed. (Tomkins) came in and did the job that they’re both capable of doing.”
The Buckeyes are slated to take on the Falcons in the second game of the home-and-home series Tuesday at the Schottenstein Center, and the puck is set to drop at 7:05 p.m.