Coming off Friday night’s loss to Adrian, the Bobcats traveled to the Arrington Ice Center with a good idea of what needed to be fixed heading into Saturday’s rematch. They had collapsed in the third period Friday and were unable to capitalize on scoring chances, especially on the power play.
But watching Ohio (1-7) get shut out 5-0 against Adrian (10-1) on Saturday night gave off a sense of deja vu.
The first 40 minutes of hockey appeared to be evenly played between the two teams. Adrian led 2-0 due to a Jordan Oshowy goal early in the first period as well as a Luke Burke goal late in the second period. But both teams played an electric game, going back and forth with puck control and keeping up the pressure on all ends of the ice.
Ohio had multiple scoring opportunities throughout the game it just wasn’t able to get by Adrian’s Mike Barrett, including multiple Sam Turner shots from the point that hit the crossbar.
Things started to fall apart for the Bobcats with just over 12 minutes left in the third period, when Nick Erker took a five-minute major penalty for cross checking.
Even if the opposing team scores, a player cannot leave the penalty box early during a five-minute major, so Ohio remained short-handed as a pair of goals scored by Connor Smith and Matteo DiGiulio gave Adrian a 4-0 lead.
A cross checking penalty by Patrick Roach and a boarding penalty by Shawn Baird prolonged Adrian’s power play, giving the Bulldogs a two-man advantage for over a minute. It was during then that Tyler Fyfe scored on a slapshot from the point to seal the game at 5-0.
While he let in five goals, Matt Server managed to stop 46 shots on goal for Ohio.
The reasons for Ohio’s failure to overcome the Bulldogs were all too similar in both games this series.
Another third period collapse
The Bobcats were unable to avoid a third period collapse like the night before. Not only was their offense unable to produce later in the game, but their defense could not find a way to stop the Bulldogs.
At the end of the first period, shots on goal were only 16-15 in Adrian’s favor. By the end of the second, it was 29-23.
By the end of the game, Adrian had outshot Ohio 51-28.
Wasting more power play opportunities
Saturday night’s matchup was intense, extremely physical and riddled with penalties. Ohio had plenty of chances to take advantage of the power play and set up more scoring opportunities. But like the night before, the Bobcats were unable to do so. Ohio didn’t capitalize on any of its 10 power plays handed to them by the Bulldogs.
For the weekend, Ohio went 0/13 on the power play.
Stuck in the penalty box
The Bobcats also found themselves in the penalty box far too often. Despite taking fewer penalties than Adrian, the Bobcats were short-handed on the ice for an extended period of time, which Adrian took advantage of and used to pull away with the lead.