Wisconsin sweeps Ohio State with 2-1 win

MADISON, Wis. -- The No. 8 Wisconsin women’s hockey team extended its home-winning streak to 11 games after beating No. 9 Ohio State, 2-1, Saturday night at LaBahn Arena.

With the weekend sweep, Wisconsin (14-6-2, 10-6-2-2 WCHA) takes hold of second place in the WCHA with 34 points. Ohio State (14-7-1, 9-6-1-1) drops to third in the conference with 29 points.

In a physical game, both team’s defenses played tough, with Ohio State blocking 18 shots and Wisconsin blocking 16.

Just like in last night's contest, special teams played an important part. The first two goals of the game were scored on the power play with Ohio State’s stemming from a five-minute major that was assessed to UW’s Courtney Burke for a checking-from-behind penalty. Fortunately for the Badgers, the power-play goal would be the only Buckeye goal of the evening.

Wisconsin took the lead of the game at the 6:26 mark of the first period after Madison Packer deflected a shot from Burke. While on the power play, Brianna Decker passed the puck over to Burke, who took a shot as both Packer and Karley Sylvester were camped in front of the net. Packer was able to get a piece of the shot, directing it past OSU goalie Chelsea Knapp for her 11th goal of the season.

The Badgers ended the first period having completely dominating the flow of the game, outshooting Ohio State 12-3. However, Ohio State came out in the second looking to turn things around and was aided by the five-minute power play midway through the period.

UW netminder Alex Rigsby made a save off Sara Schmitt from the point. After a scramble in front of the net, Kari Schmitt made a back-door pass to Ally Tarr, who tied the game with six minutes remaining in the period.

Having to play with one less defenseman, Wisconsin was unfazed and played with the Buckeyes stride-for-stride in the final period of action.

At the midway point of the third period, Sylvester created a turnover at the Badgers’ blue line and connected with Alev Kelter for a breakaway. Kelter was tripped on the race to the net, but she was able to slip the puck past Knapp while being hauled down to give the Badgers a 2-1 lead.

An Ohio State penalty within the final minutes helped seal the victory for Wisconsin.

The Badgers hit the road next weekend, taking on North Dakota at Ralph Engelstad Arena, Jan. 18-19. Both games will begin at 7 p.m.

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