No. 9/10 Hockey Bucks Resume Season against RedHawks

By Aubrey Nelson on December 30, 2016 at 3:45 pm
Drew Brevig looks on as Ohio State's Matt Tomkins makes a save against Miami.
Ohio State Athletics

Congratulations, friends. You survived the midseason break. The 2016-17 college hockey season picks back up this week. This time it won’t stop until we reach the tournaments.

game info saturday
Opening Faceoff 4pm ET
Online Video  Buckeye Vision (free)

There is much that could be said about the Buckeyes’ upcoming match-up. It probably isn’t necessary, though. If you’re focused at all on hockey this week, chances are you’re a die hard puckhead who doesn’t need a refresher on the longstanding rivalry between Ohio State and Miami.

I also don’t need to rehash the first half of the season for the zillionth time. On the off chance you’ve been living under a rock, here’s a recap in the smallest of nutshells: OSU put together the best first half performance of Steve Rohlik’s tenure. The season was just starting to get interesting when it went on hiatus.

It has been 27 days since the Buckeyes last saw action. Nearly four weeks for rust to build and momentum to drain away. Despite the long layoff Ohio State does not have the luxury of easing into the second half of the season. The team must get back up to speed quickly. They have just one tune-up game before diving back into conference play against No. 3 Penn State.

team stats miami ohio state
Overall Record 4-8-5 9-2-4
National Polls N/A No. 9/10
Avg. Goals For / Against 2.29 / 2.88 4.53 / 2.80
Power Play / Penalty Kill 16% / 85.7% 23.5% / 74.6%
Points Leader Anthony Louis (10-10--20) Tanner Laczynski (6-16--22)
Top Goaltender Ryan Larkin (2.58/.913) Matt Tomkins (2.60/.900)

In years past facing Miami right out of the holiday gate would be a daunting task. This season the RedHawks are somewhat diminished. They needed an overtime victory over Colorado College (5-12-1) in their first half finale to snap a 10 game winless streak. They can claim just one win over a team with a winning record. (To be fair, they have faced a brutal schedule. Of the 17 games Miami has played to date, 11 were against teams currently ranked or receiving votes in the national polls. 

But the old CCHA rivalry still has teeth and a lot can go sideways in a post-break opener. Heavy legs, dull goaltending, sloppy and undisciplined play, the odds of these and other impediments plaguing a team increase this time of year. This is upset season and the Buckeyes will have to work hard to avoid getting caught up in it.  

  • Miami leads the all-time series with Ohio State 75-62-4.
  • The Buckeyes claimed a 1-1 tie and shootout win in the teams' last meeting. 
  • Saturday is a big day for OSU sports fans. Look for your hockey recap here on Sunday morning. 
  • Christian Frey's quick reflexes in the Big Ten tourney earned a spot in Puck Daddy's Top Ten Saves of 2016

Laczynski and Team USA Face Clash with Canadians

The Bucks' potent offense will be without its leading scorer this week. Freshman Tanner Laczynski (1-1--2) is skating with Team USA at the IIHF World Juniors. The Americans also have a big game coming up on Saturday. They square off against arch rival Canada at 3:30 p.m. The victor will win Group B's round robin stage and earn a quarterfinal match up with Group A's fourth place team. The loser gets Group A's third place finisher in the quarterfinals.  

View 10 Comments