Hockey: Ohio Shoots Past Liberty, 7-4

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After a flurry of scoring in the third period, Ohio managed to defeat the Liberty University Flames, 7-4, in the second round of the ACHA National Tournament in Chicago.

Entering the third period, the Bobcats held a tender 4-3 lead, but went on to score three times in the final frame, turning what was once a tight, one-goal contest into a convincing victory.

Liberty went to the penalty box nine times during the course of the game. Their undisciplined play proved to be their Achilles heel as four of Ohio’s seven goals came on the power play.

Clayton Brown was in net for the Flames during all seven of Ohio’s goals, but still made 61 saves in three periods. Brown faced a gigantic total of 68 shots, while his opponent on the other end of the ice, Matt Michno, saw 28 shots come his way during the course of the game.

Early in the game, the Bobcats’ offense was led by their defense, as three different blue liners scored for Ohio in the first two periods of play. Tyler Benson, Mike Kretz, and Jonathan Gulch all recorded goals for the Bobcats.

Seniors Nick Rostek, Tyler Pilmore, and Jonathan Pietramala all scored for the Bobcats, and J.D. Howard added an insurance marker on the power play in the third period, as well.

Kretz’s goal put Ohio up 2-0 at the time, as he came out of the corner, made a power move around one Liberty defenseman, then quickly pulled the puck from his backhand to forehand to cut around another defender, and then tucked the puck in the far post for a highlight reel goal.

The Flames’ Ryley Egan scored twice, once in the second period and then again late in the third period on the man advantage. Egan’s second goal was Liberty’s only power play goal of the game.

Ohio awaits the winner of Robert Morris and Iowa State, and will face-off against that team in the quarterfinals of the ACHA National Tournament at 8:30 p.m. Sunday.