Wisconsin women’s hockey took advantage of Ohio State penalties for the second straight game to complete a series sweep and third consecutive victory over the Buckeyes dating back to a season ago.
The No. 1 Badgers (6-0, 2,0 WCHA) converted on all four power plays on the day, and scored four goals in the final period to beat Ohio State (4-2, 2,2) 7-3 Saturday.
“Being on the penalty killed us,” Ohio State head coach Nadine Muzerall said. “Yesterday, two power play goals for them, and today, four power play goals. If you do the math, if we can stay out of the box, it would be a pretty even game.”
The Buckeyes came back from a 3-1 deficit to tie the game by the end of the second period, but the Badgers’ third-period dominance rendered the effort futile.
“It was upsetting after we fought so hard in the second and I felt like we dominated that second period,” Muzerall said.
Ohio State drew first blood around the ninth minute of the first period. Junior forward Emma Maltais won a faceoff and passed to junior forward Liz Schepers who buried the puck in the net.
The Buckeyes lead was short-lived though. Two minutes later, senior defenseman Jincy Dunne was called for interference, giving the Badgers their first power play opportunity of the game. They struck almost immediately off a goal by sophomore forward Britta Curl.
With four minutes left in the first period, Buckeyes junior forward Tatum Skaggs was sent to the box for cross checking, and with one second left in the ensuing power play, Badgers senior forward Maddie Rowe scored to put Wisconsin on top 2-1.
Less than three minutes into the second period, Wisconsin scored again. This time it was senior defenseman Mekenzie Steffens, who found the goal to increase the Badgers lead to 3-1.
Ohio State kept their heads up and really took command of the rest of the second period. With 12:32 left in the second, freshman forward Brooke Bink got her second goal of the season on a followup attempt after a shot by sophomore defenseman Sophie Jacques.
With 9:11 left in the second, Schepers sent her second goal of the night into the top of the net to tie the game. Assisting on the play was Maltais.
Ohio State had momentum on their side going into the final period, but it couldn’t gain an advantage.
With 13:10 on the clock, Steffens scored the go-ahead-goal off yet another power play, her second of the night. The play came under review for a high stick, but the goal stood.
Less than a minute later, senior forward Sophie Shirley scored to put the Badgers up 5-3.
With 3:43 left in the game, senior forward Abby Roque added another, and Buckeye junior forward Tatum Skaggs went to the box to give Wisconsin their final power play.
Like clockwork, the Badgers converted, junior forward Daryl Watts putting the puck in the net.
“We’re going to go back and watch our film, work really hard this week, and we’re going to get two wins out of Mankato,” Bink said.
Ohio State faces Minnesota State next weekend on the road in Mankato, Minnesota.