A wrist shot from senior defenseman Gordi Myer less than two minutes into the third period capped a tough comeback for the Ohio State men’s hockey team Friday.
No. 13 Ohio State (16-9-3, 9-7-2-0 Big Ten) tied No. 9 Penn State (17-9-2, 9-7-2-0) 2-2 in come-from-behind fashion, capturing an extra league point via shootout victory.
“You look up, we were down two-zip, but I told our guys we gotta play the same way, claw back into this thing. And I give our guys credit, they battled to the end,” Ohio State head coach Steve Rohlik said.
After two scoreless overtime periods, the Buckeyes captured an extra league point in the shootout thanks to a goal from senior forward Sam McCormik.
Everything went haywire in the first period for the Buckeyes.
Junior forward Evan Barratt netted a goal for the Nittany Lions just 1:44 into the contest.
Ohio State sophomore forward Quinn Preston, the team’s No. 2 goal scorer, went down with an injury five minutes into the contest and did not return.
Five minutes later the Nittany Lions doubled their lead when junior defenseman Cole Hults secured a goal of his own to set the score at 2-0, which remained the tally until the first period ended — despite a 17-9 shot advantage for the Buckeyes.
It took until five minutes remaining in the second period for Ohio State to eat into Penn State’s advantage.
Ohio State freshman forward Jaedon Leslie scored the first goal of the night for the Buckeyes, his second of the season in back-to-back games. Myer’s score tied it up at the beginning of the third.
“It never really felt like we were down. We were playing our game after the first period [and] in the locker room we weren’t really down on ourselves,” Myer said. We were like, ‘If we just keep playing this way, eventually things will start going our way.’”
Neither side could score again in regulation, and into overtime it went at the Schottenstein center.
Both teams challenged an overtime penalty call, but it resulted in a Buckeye advantage as Penn State senior forward Nikita Pavlychev was ultimately called for grasping the mask.
After the second overtime period, McCormick’s shootout goal put an end to the long night between the conference rivals.
“Anytime you can win, especially in our building, it’s exciting,” Myer said. “And shootouts are entertaining so it’s fun to see Sam go out there and get the game-winner.”
The Buckeyes face off against Penn State at 5 p.m. Saturday at the Schottenstein Center.