COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Ohio State women's hockey team came out with a 3-2 win in the opening game of its non-conference series with New Hampshire Saturday afternoon at the Whittemore Center in Durham, N.H.
Ohio State (4-9-2, 2-8-2 WCHA) and New Hampshire (6-8-2, 2-3-2 Hockey East) will play game two of the series Sunday afternoon at 1:00 p.m. as the Buckeyes will go for their first series sweep of the season.
Sophomore Julia McKinnon got the scoring started in the first period as she deflected a shot by junior Kari Schmitt past New Hampshire goaltender Ashley Wilkes to give the Buckeyes a 1-0 lead at the 17:09 mark. Schmitt and senior Ally Tarr picked up assists on what was the second goal of the season for McKinnon. The goal came on a five-on-three power play opportunity for OSU.
The Buckeyes went up by two scores just over 12 minutes into the second period as sophomore Melani Moylan carried the puck into the offensive zone and fired a shot from just over the blue line that found its way into the back of the net. The unassisted goal was the first for Moylan this season.
New Hampshire was able to cut into the lead with only 52 seconds remaining in period two on the strength of a Hannah Armstrong goal and the Buckeyes carried a 2-1 lead into the second intermission.
At the 5:36 mark of the final period, sophomore Kendall Curtis scored what would prove to be the game-winner for Ohio State. McKinnon and sophomore Cara Zubko set up Curtis for the score and were credited with the assists.
UNH did make it a 3-2 game with 10:31 remaining in the contest on a Jessica Hitchcock goal but that is as close as the Wildcats would get.
OSU outshot UNH 26-25 in the game and finished 1-2 on its power play chances while holding the Wildcats scoreless on both of their power play opportunities. Senior goaltender Lisa Steffes got her third-consecutive start for the Buckeyes and stopped 23 of 25 shots faced.