[Andrew Bowlby | WOUB]

Ohio struggles in the third period as it falls to No. 1 Minot State 8-5

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ATHENS, Ohio (WOUB) – Ohio (24-5-1) couldn’t keep up in the third period against Minot State (26-2-0) as it dropped the second game of the series 8-5. 

From the moment fans stepped into Bird Arena, the energy was felt throughout. The Bobcats came into the game knowing they needed to be fast and physical if they wanted to compete with the number one team in the American Collegiate Hockey Association. 

Ohio rolling quickly with a goal from Hollander Thompson just over five minutes in. Then, Laker Aldrige took advantage of a Bobcat power play and extended their lead, 2-0. 

An aggressive Minot State continued to fight back and find ways to get around Ohio. The defense for Ohio kept Minot State out of the net until with 6:11 left in the period it made it a 2-1 game. 

The second period is where things got interesting. The Bobcats fought a back-and-forth battle with the Beavers as both of them combined for six goals in the period alone. It felt like once one team scored, another goal was bound to happen. That fight had them go into the second intermission up 5-4. 

Ohio had chances in the third period to capitalize, but three goals in a matter of four minutes allowed Minot State to pull away. Ohio had a couple different power plays and chances to come back, but the shots simply weren’t falling. 

“It’s tough because I think we had a good chance to get back in the game and we were pretty close,” head coach Lionel Mauron said. “A couple shots that you know if we hit those, I think we’re right back in it and we miss and then you grip your stick a little tight and down the stretch we just didn’t have the energy to get back.”

The Bobcats finished with 31 shots on goal compared to the Beavers 39. 10 of those shots came from them in the third period, but they struggled to find the net. Despite the tough stretch, Mauron remains positive about where his team is at. 

“We played three lines throughout the weekend and I think you could tell in the third,” Mauron said. “We were running on fumes a little bit, but we’ll get back healthy. Everybody’s going to be back and I think we’re a dangerous team so I’m happy about the way we played this weekend.”

Ohio is back in action as it looks to get back in the win column against Robert Morris on Feb. 11.