Goal-by-Goal Analysis: Ohio State- Part 1

Submitted by Adam Schnepp on January 19th, 2016 at 10:00 AM

Friday, January 15, 2016

Ohio State 5, #6 Michigan 5

1st period

Jobst goal, Ohio State

OSU 1 UM 0 EV 09:12 Assists: Larocque & Brevig

Brevig shoots for the boards, and the puck rolls around to Larocque at the opposite point. This looks like a pretty innocuous start to a play until we focus on what’s happening in that scrum in front of Racine.

osu 1-1

The next three screen caps take place as the puck is making its way from Brevig’s stick to Larocque’s. Martin shoves Jobst, who bumps Racine hard enough that he ends up nearly outside the crease. Racine’s first reaction after the goal is to skate directly to the ref to complain about the contact, but it was initiated by his own skater.

osu 1-3

To make matters worse, Cecconi accidentally skates into Racine. He’s able to reset and lock down the opposite post, but it’s a panicked scramble just to get there.

osu 1-4

Jobst, who you may remember as the guy who ran into Racine a couple of screen caps ago, has now skated out of the crease and is lingering in the bottom of the faceoff circle. Larocque throws a shot on net from the point, and Jobst redirects it just inside the far-side post.

osu 1-5

Martin gets bumped by another skater in the crease and loses Jobst, allowing him to get out of the crease and into the faceoff circle unchecked.

osu 1-2

[After THE JUMP: “Fluky,” the all-encompassing adjective of the day]

2nd period

Greco goal, Ohio State

OSU 2 UM 0 SH 01:45 Assists: Larocque & Jobst

Nieves loses a battle along the boards to Larocque, who chips it ahead to Greco.

osu 2-1

Greco speeds through the neutral zone. Calderone, in the faceoff circle in the screen cap above, has jumped up and is trying to even up with Greco; he’s a step behind until Greco starts to glide toward the net. This is just about the moment that Werenski realizes the guy he’s covering is too far out of the play to be a threat to receive a pass, which frees him to turn and try and cover the front of the net.

osu 2-2

Calderone does a really nice job of closing and getting a stick across the front of Greco, impeding his progress just enough but not so much that it would draw a penalty.

osu 2-3

Werenski closes and sees the puck in front of Greco, and he’s tempted into a poke-check attempt. He gets the puck, but unfortunately he knocks it in through Racine’s five hole. Kind of fluky all around, and really well defended by Calderone.

osu 2-4


Wiitala goal, Ohio State

OSU 3 UM 0 PPG 06:17 Assists: Jobst & Healey

Ohio State breaks the puck out of their end, and for a second it looks like Michigan has this well defended; the passing lane is taken away, and there’s nothing for Jobst to do but skate it in while pinned to the boards.

osu 3-1

Jobst takes another couple of strides and gets past the stick taking away the first passing lane, and he does something that’s either incredibly lucky or incredibly smart, or maybe a mix of the two: he banks the puck off of Boka’s skate, and it rockets ahead to the area where Wiitala is (all alone, of course).

osu 3-2

Wiitala skates to the puck and one-times it just inside the far-side post, and Racine can’t even raise his glove before the puck is behind him. It’s hard to criticize Racine here; if he’s further to his left he probably gets a piece of this but gives up space to the near side, and if he’s edging to his right (as he is here) he takes away anything near side but cedes some space over his shoulder. Still, Racine does seem to just miss on this shot.

osu 3-3


OSU 3 UM 1 EV 14:11 Assists: De Jong

Compher obliterates a guy in the defensive zone and De Jong boxes out his man, which allows Motte to pick up the loose puck and take off. OSU decides it’s time for a line change as Motte speeds through the neutral zone (I don’t get it either), and of the two defensemen back one seems really preoccupied with making sure that Motte doesn’t have an uncovered guy to pass to.

osu 4-1

Motte cuts across the zone, while Pointing Guy cuts off his own d-partner for a second. This allows Motte an extra half second to split the two guys attempting to cover him.

osu 4-2

Motte fires high short-side and hits the corner, displaying Connor-like aim.

osu 4-3


OSU 3 UM 2 EV 14:35 Assists: Selman

Brevig tries to clear the puck, but it hits a couple of bodies and bounces. Selman sees the puck and chops at it, executing a crazy between-the-legs drop pass for Kile.

osu 5-1

Kile skates in with only the deep defensemen left in his path, and he pulls off a perfect backhanded shot that goes over Tomkins and appears to be almost vertical. This shot’s about as close to impossible to stop as shots come.

osu 5-2

3rd period


OSU 3 UM 3 PPG 01:19 Assists: Motte & Compher

Downing holds the puck in at the blue line and passes to Compher, who passes to Motte behind the net. Motte’s passing lane to the slot is taken away, but that means he has room to go behind the net and look for the next pass.

osu 6-1

Motte has pulled the defender who would normally at least be somewhat cognizant of Connor’s position away, and Tomkins has locked down the post nearest Motte just in case. Motte passes and Connor one-times it, and there’s no chance that any goalie looking around the opposite post is going to be able to get across and stop the guy who has the best shot in the conference.

osu 6-2

Motte helps Connor out by passing from the opposite post instead of directly behind the net (Tomkins would have started to move across had that happened). The two defenders in the crease just collapsed and decided to take away Kile, missing Connor completely.

osu 6-3

Gust goal, Ohio State

OSU 4 UM 3 EV 06:54 Assists: Jobst & Wiitala

Michigan loses a battle along the boards, and as the puck rolls out of the scrum Jobst just hacks it out of the zone.

osu 7-1

Not really a big deal, except that there’s a penalty expiring and oh son of a…

osu 7-2

Gust gets an easy breakaway chance thanks to Werenski just skating through the slot and not even attempting to check him, and- all things considered- Racine lets in one he should have had. There was time to read Gust as the play developed, it was pretty clear Werenski wasn’t going to do anything to help (maybe he was waiting around to clear a rebound?), and the shot wasn’t from close range.

osu 7-3


OSU 4 UM 4 EV 17:19 Assists: Dancs & Downing

The puck’s been shot and deflected and shot and deflected and eventually ends up on Downing’s stick. The aforementioned shooting and deflecting has all the Buckeyes near the net, so he takes time to wind up and rip a slap shot. His shot rattles around and eventually ends up behind Dancs.

osu 8-1

Dancs passes to Compher before getting tied up, and Compher’s got nowhere to shoot. He stickhandles for a second, and this gets Tomkins to shuffle his pads.

osu 8-2

The pad shuffling gives Compher just enough room for a bank shot, and he snaps the puck in off of Tomkins’ butt.

osu 8-3

Tomkins then literally holds onto his butt, which is very appropriate considering the way this weekend ended up unfolding.

osu 8-4


OSU 4 UM 5 EV 18:26 Assists: Selman & Martin

The puck goes from OSU’s defensive zone to Michigan’s defensive zone and is thrown ahead, as Nieves eventually gets the puck and chips it ahead.

osu 9-1

Selman does an excellent job getting inside his man and boxing him out, which sets him up to retrieve the puck in the corner.

osu 9-2

Selman passes and Nieves stickhandles for a second before shooting. He throws a backhanded shot on net…

osu 9-3

…which deflects off of Dalrymple’s skate and past Tomkins.

osu 9-4

Greco goal, Ohio State

OSU 5 UM 5 EX 19:53 Assists: Schilkey &Jobst

Michigan wins the faceoff, but as the puck’s rolling back Schilkey swings at it and connects, altering its course and send it to the crease.

osu 10-1

Greco’s charging the crease and while Compher sees him he’s too far behind to do anything. He dives, but Greco snaps the puck over Racine’s glove to send the game to overtime.

osu 10-2

Red said afterward that he put two centers out in case one got tossed from the circle and it backfired, so I’m inferring Compher should have been quicker to react to his defensive assignment.


No scoring


Nine rounds, Ohio State wins (2 points in the B1G standings). Michigan gets one point for losing the shootout.

Next up: Part 2, in which Michigan again looks overmatched and staring a multi-goal deficit in the face before- and I shudder at this cliché, but it fits- flipping the switch and scoring in droves.



January 19th, 2016 at 10:09 AM ^

Good job. I will say that the 3rd and 4th OSU goals are tough for goalies. Racine did a good job closing off the near side post on both occasions but was beat by really nice shots on the far side post.

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January 19th, 2016 at 11:38 AM ^

Glad I wasn't alone in thinking that Werenski could have done a bit more on Gust's goal. I get that a "by the book" 2-on-1 defense is to cover the pass and let the goalie stay square to the puck/shooter, but the potential pass there is so far off that I would have liked to see Werenski hedge a bit more on Gust. Though, admittedly, the screen cap shows that the potential pass is clearly also beating his man, sooooo....

Pepto Bismol

January 19th, 2016 at 12:05 PM ^

Werenski's the one that turns this into some strange, laggy 2-on-1.  If he jumps Gust just inside the blue line, this is probably over.  I can't imagine the OSU guy had any idea that he had a trailer.

I also think Werenski erred on OSU's 2nd.  He thought Calderone would catch the puck carrier, which he never did, and realized it too late.  THAT'S the one that he needed to play like a 2-on-1, and let Calderone pick up whichever guy he can catch.



January 19th, 2016 at 1:10 PM ^

ZW was definitely in the position he was to defend the rebound opportunity. He determined he couldn't angle him off so he played the pass and to defend a rebound by clearing it. If Racine got a piece of that puck it was shooting out into the slot or the corner. The guy made had a nice shot that beat a goalie in good position.

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Pepto Bismol

January 19th, 2016 at 12:22 PM ^

I'm fascinated by this one -- mostly by what that pointing defenseman did. 

First, OSU has this wrapped up.  This is a run-of-the-mill 2-on-2 with a forward back to help.  The line change is fine.  Michigan's forwards cross.  Defensemen will (almost) always pass off their forwards.  Pointy guy should pick up Motte, other D falls off and picks up Connor who is looping behind to the boards.  Trailing OSU forward is there to help pester.  --  Yawn.

However, as noted, OSU's defenseman starts pointing to his forward.  What he's saying here is "watch the middle" because he's already decided he's following Connor to the boards.  As illustrated, he cuts off his own D partner, the trailing OSU forward seems surprised that pointy-guy has left and lunges to no avail and Motte scores.  This is precisely why defensemen don't cross.  It opens up all kinds of room.

The weird part is the pointing.  He KNOWS he's following Connor and vacating the middle.  He's trying to get the trailing forward's attention to see that he's bailing.  And I have no idea why.  I'm curious if this was part of a shadow on Kyle Connor.  If not, it was a crazy-weird decision by the defenseman who didn't want to let Connor out of arm's reach. 

Either way, whether the coach's orders or a D-man's brainfart, I think it shows that teams are starting to do weird sh** to try and stop these two.  That's good for Michigan.