No one in women’s hockey had a more impressive performance last week than Ohio State’s Andrea Braendli. The freshman goaltender set a new career high for saves while backstopping the Buckeyes to consecutive shootout wins over No. 1 Wisconsin.
Today she collected some well-deserved hardware for those efforts.
Braendli earned top honors as the NCAA’s First Star of the Week. She is also the WCHA’s Goalie of the Week presented by GoodWood Hockey. This is the third time the rookie has garnered national recognition this season. It is her sixth weekly conference award.
There was no other reasonable outcome this week than Braendli winning all the things. The Zurich, Switzerland native was on fire in Madison. She stymied the Badgers’ offense again and again, frustrating the NCAA’s top-ranked team and tarnishing its senior week celebrations.
Braendli turned aside 92 shots in the series, a career-high 52 in Friday’s contest and another 40 on Saturday. This included a 111:43 streak of shutout hockey. She was near perfection in the shootouts, going five-for-six against some of the top scorers in the conference.
The freshman netminder is on a roll. This is good news for OSU because it’s tournament time. The No. 3 seed Bucks open the WCHA tourney by hosting the No. 6 seed Minnesota State. The best-of-three series begins on Friday at 6pm ET. Game 2 gets underway at 3pm ET on Saturday. Game 3, if necessary, will take place on Sunday at 3pm ET.
If you intend to help pack the OSU Ice Rink for this week’s series, note that, unlike usual, you will need a ticket. I suspect this is to help keep the crowd to an appropriate size for the old barn. I’ve attended some postseason games there with mobs that would make a fire marshal a bit twitchy. Tickets are $8 for adults with discounts for students, youth, seniors, and groups. Call the OSU ticket office or get them here.
- Emma Maltais (one goal, one assist, and two shootout goals) and Jincy Dunne (nine blocked shots) were honorable mentions for WCHA Forward and Defenseman of the Week.