College Hockey:
Ohio State, Michigan State finally find an overtime that separates them

Ohio State’s Anthony Greco tumbles over Michigan State goaltender Jake Hildebrand in overtime on Thursday. The Buckeyes’ Drew Brevig scored seconds later (photo: Jim Rosvold).

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Ohio State and Michigan State found themselves in a very familiar situation on Thursday night — overtime.

The Buckeyes downed the Spartans thanks to a goal by Drew Brevig 4:23 into the extra session of their first-round Big Ten tournament game.

Big Ten tournament

See the tournament bracket and get links to schedules and stories at Big Ten Playoff Central.

“I don’t know if you guys expected anything different between these two teams,” Ohio State coach Steve Rohlik said. “We just knew that there wasn’t going to be a shootout tonight — that was the only difference.”

It was the fourth straight time that a contest between the teams went to overtime; the previous three had been decided in shootouts.

Though Ohio State’s offensive is more potent, the Spartans defense, particularly their shot blocking, has kept these games close.

“You saw the will they have to block shots,” Rohlik said. “I talked to our guys about it, there’s no fear. I give lots of credit to coach [Tom] Anastos: They buy in and they’ll do whatever it takes. That’s a team effort and they have a great goaltender and they have everybody that’s out on the ice buying in.”

According to Anastos, the similarities between the two squads have also led to the close games.

“The goaltending has been really similar,” Anastos said. “Both teams play hard. I think they have some offensive experience on their team that we just don’t have right now. But both teams play hard, and after a tough first period for them they really bounced back and played in our end during the second, third and overtime.”

That lack of offensive experience has been a problem for Michigan State all season.

“Tonight’s game, for us, really epitomized our season. We just struggled to score goals,” Anastos said. “When we’re scoring three or four goals, it gives us a chance to win, rather than that chance tonight.”

Ohio State, which will play Minnesota in a semifinal game at 7 p.m. CDT Friday, finished fourth in the Big Ten standings this season; Michigan State was right on its heels in fifth.

Those regular season finishes meant that both teams entered the Big Ten tournament needing to win the championship to advance to the NCAA tournament.

“I thought there was a desperation,” Anastos said. “I thought the effort was really good. I didn’t think we had a lot of really great performances tonight, but it wasn’t because of a lack of effort.”

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  • http://twitter.com/dirtysconsin #1 Wisco SportsFan

    HAH!!! hahahahahhh yeah, eaither way the GOOFS we’re HOOOSED with this match-up. Sconnie got PENN friggggin STATE!! what says you gooophs? hah, we gonna ROLL PENNY, goofa goona GET. BEAT!!! #OOOONNNNWISCONSON!!!!!!!!!!

    • No.1 Minne AthletixJunkee

      #You’llAlwaysBe2ndBest #YouNeedAGirlfriend #MillerProductsStink #YouLookLikeAToolInYourBackwardsMilwaukeeBrewersCap

      • Brian

        Nice! However, we really shouldn’t respond to his juvenile posts. It just encourages him more. As somebody posted in a previous thread, “a moron will always be a moron”.

      • http://twitter.com/dirtysconsin #1 Wisco SportsFan

        k bro… enjoy crying in your bad MN beer tonight after the GOOOOOFS wet the bed against the bucks. You heard it hear first, goofs will NOT win another game all year!! #ON WISCONSON!!!

        • No.1 Minne AthletixJunkee

          Yeah, your predictions have been spot-on all year, so I’m sure this won’t be any different… And I think we all agree that it’s been an absolute treat reading your articulate and incredibly insightful posts in the comments sections of USCHO and SBNation this year.

          Now, finish getting ready for school so you don’t make your mom late for work. You have a big day today, champ.

          • http://twitter.com/dirtysconsin #1 Wisco SportsFan

            how you feelin this morn there bud?

          • No.1 Minne AthletixJunkee

            Just devastated, sport. I mean I know it’s just a game and everything, but it was tough to fall asleep last night next to my beautiful, real-live girlfriend after a night-out drinking delicious craft beers, and laughing with charismatic friends who don’t douse themselves in Hollister cologne and who can carry on interesting conversations about a wide-variety of topics without uttering the words “Bro” or “Brah.”

            You on the other hand… I bet you’re on cloud nine after a Badge “W” last night. THEN you wake up this morning to find your mom made you chocolate chip pancakes AND she’s taking you shopping for a new pair of jeans this afternoon. I bet you’ll even catch a quick glimpse inside Victoria’s Secret on your way to Abercrombie. Pretty exciting day for you, huh bro?

            Ok, go brush your teeth and change out of your jam-jams. Your mom will be outside waiting out in the van, crying and contemplating just driving away and never coming back.

          • http://twitter.com/dirtysconsin #1 Wisco SportsFan

            Living in sin is wrong. You should be ashamed of yourself.

          • No.1 Minne AthletixJunkee

            That “Nostradumbous” reply was crickets, but this one wasn’t too bad. I was getting pretty bored w/ your hackneyed “annoying, Gopher-obsessed, U-Dub puck fan w/ an incredibly low IQ” routine. Kudos to you for stepping up your game a tiny bit, homie.

            Now get back to work on your application to the prestigious University of Wisconsin-Madison. Remember, you have to pick a real major. You can’t major in Xbox.

          • http://twitter.com/dirtysconsin #1 Wisco SportsFan

            I already started my degree there but had to drop out for financial reasons. I’m starting back up this summer. Why do you even care?

    • No.1 Minne AthletixJunkee

      Sup braaaaaah? U mad?

    • Mike Peterson

      I can smell that second banner, and second trophy for our case.

  • Go4#1

    I would not be surprised if Bucky gets beat 2 night

    • Brian

      That would be great, but I doubt that will happen. Penn State will probably run out of gas after going through 2 overtimes against MI.

      • Go4#1

        Adrenaline goes along way for first timers.

  • thenoke

    How was this not goalie interference? They make the same call with 5 minutes left in the third, and rightly so, against Berry of MSU yet this one was given a blind eye? B1G refereeing has been suspect, at best, all season but for Brian Aaron and Chris Ciamaga to turn their head to this is appalling. OSU was the better team so I do not want to diminish their victory but the shear incompetence of Aaron and Ciamaga determined this game not the boy’s play on the ice.

  • bluegoose

    Hard fought win for the Buckeyes over a tough Michigan State team. I think both semis will be close, but I’d be surprised if it isn’t Minnesota and Wisconsin after all. But Penn State is a great story!

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