Ohio State Women’s Hockey defeats Minnesota Duluth, 3-2, to win the first national championship in program history

Ohio State is a first-time national hockey champion.

The Ohio State women’s hockey team captured the Buckeyes’ first-ever NCAA title on the ice Sunday by defeating Minnesota Duluth, 3-2, in the Frozen Four final at Penn State’s Pegula Ice Arena.

Ohio State junior forward Kenzie Hauswirth scored the game-winning goal with just 6:40 left in the game when she fired a shot towards the net that hit a defender’s skate of Minnesota Duluth and into the net for the Buckeyes’ third goal of the game, which would prove enough for the Buckeyes to beat their WCHA opponent and celebrate their first-ever national title.

Neither team scored in the first half of the game and both teams scored once in the second half. Ohio State’s Paetyn Levis put the Buckeyes on the board first with a power-play goal, firing a shot into the net even as she was checked on the ice by a Minnesota Duluth defenseman.

Later in the second period, Minnesota Duluth’s Naomi Rogge deflected a shot that went through Ohio State goaltender Amanda Thiele’s five hole for the tying goal.

Ohio State regained the lead just 24 seconds into the third period on a goal from Clair DeGeorge – who also scored twice in the Buckeyes’ NCAA Tournament quarterfinal win over Quinnipiac – after the Minnesota Duluth goaltender Emma Soderberg made the unfortunate decision to skate. from the net, leaving the door open for DeGeorge to put the Buckeyes back in front.

Minnesota Duluth tied the game again just a minute and 23 seconds later when Elizabeth Giguere scored past Thiele after an Ohio State turnover.

After Hauswirth scored Ohio State’s third goal of the game, however, Minnesota Duluth was unable to score its own third goal as Thiele and the Buckeyes defense held on for the rest of the game.

Levis and DeGeorge both finished the game with two points for the Buckeyes, as each was credited with an assist on the other’s goals, to lead Ohio State to score in their historic win. .

The national title comes in Nadine Muzerall’s sixth season as head coach of Ohio State. The Buckeyes quickly became a championship contender once Muzerall took over the program, making the Frozen Four in only his second season as head coach, but Ohio State had never even made a championship game. national nor won a Frozen Four game before this year.

Now, after a pair of Frozen Four wins over Yale and Minnesota Duluth, Ohio State — which also set a program record with 32 wins this season and was the No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in program history – can officially, is arguably called the best team in women’s college hockey for the 2021-22 season and celebrates a title for the first time in program history.

“I believed in those girls so much,” Muzerall said in a post-game interview on ESPN. “They played perfectly tonight. I’m so proud of them.