COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State University withstood 19 turnovers by converting on seven of its 22 shots Sunday afternoon, and the third-ranked Buckeyes got past the No. 13 Loyola University Maryland for a 7-4 victory in the NCAA First Round at Ohio Stadium.
Tre Leclaire scored three times for the Buckeyes (14-4 overall), and Tom Carey tallied 12 saves in goal.
The Buckeyes took a 2-0 lead in the first quarter, and they would lead for the entirety of the game, but their advantage was never more than two until Jack Jasinski scored with 12.5 seconds left on an empty net as the Greyhounds (10-6) were riding.
Leclaire put Ohio State on the board with 8:09 left in the opening quarter when he spun to the middle and slung a sidearm shot for the game’s first goal. Colin Chell then made it 2-0 Buckeyes when Logan Maccani hit him with a feed from inside three yards to score at 3:44.
Loyola did not score in the first quarter despite outshooting the Buckeyes, 10-6, in the period. Four Greyhounds shots went off pipes, and Carey saved the three shots on net.
Romar Dennis broke through for the Greyhounds 3:11 in to the second after a Zack Sirico shot ricocheted off the pipe directly to Dennis. Dennis collected the loose ball and buried a shot for Loyola. Ohio State answered with an extra-man tally at 10:23 as Austin Shanks caught a pass from Eric Fannell at point, spun and scored from inside five yards.
The Greyhounds pulled within a goal, 3-2, with 7:01 left in the half after Jack Carrigan caused a turnover and cleared it to the offensive end for Loyola. He flipped a pass to Jared Mintzlaff who ran in to score in transition.
Carrigan and Ryder Harkins each had three caused turnovers for Loyola, while Foster Huggins had five ground balls and Carrigan picked up four.
Neither Ohio State, nor Loyola scored for the remainder of the first half, and the Buckeyes went into the locker room up one.
Fannell stretched the lead to two, 2:23 into the third quarter, after John Kelly drew a slide in the right alley, and he fed Fannell rolling the crease.
Pat Spencer responded for the Greyhounds at 10:29 in the third when he dodged his defender from ‘X,’ hesitated topside and curled to shoot from six yards for a goal.
Leclaire, however, tallied his second goal of the game 68 seconds later. A Jasinski pass was intended for another Buckeyes player, but it was deflected and bounced to Leclaire on the high right wing. He picked up the ground ball and scored from 15 yards, denying the Greyhounds an opportunity to string two-straight goals together.
After a Greyhounds’ faceoff win, Zack Sirico beat his defender from behind the cage to score 33 seconds after Leclaire, and Loyola was again within one, 5-4, with 8:48 left in the third quarter. That would be the last Loyola goal of the game, however.
Leclaire scored to end a transition opportunity for Ohio State at 4:11 in the third, the last goal until Jasinski tallied the empty net score.
The NCAA appearance was the fifth in the last six years for the Greyhounds, and their third since joining the Patriot League prior to the 2014 season.