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Penn State Hockey: Nittany Lions Thump Ohio State 6-1

by on February 19, 2016 9:10 PM

A few years ago coach Guy Gadowsky was asked what his brand new hockey program needed to learn. What the difference was between the moderate success Penn State was having and the programs across the nation making legitimate runs for postseason glory.

"A killer instinct."

And on Friday night Penn State showed just that. Pouncing on Ohio State in the final 10 minutes of the second period, scoring three goals in just 4:32 and turning a 2-0 game into a 5-0 blowout affair.

For 20 minutes the game was still there to be won by both teams. David Glen's opening tally 6:48 into the contest was largely the result of a fortunate combination of a lucky bounce and great positioning. As the puck squirted from behind the net to a wide open Glen in front, he simply powered it home.

However it was a close game. A 12-10 shot margin was hardly lopsided and Eamon McAdam made more than a few quality saves that kept the game at 1-0.

Vince Pedrie made it 2-0 just 4:24 into the second frame giving Penn State some breathing room with a blast from the circle. It was David Goodwin's score some nine minutes later as the Nittany Lions tic-tack-toed down the ice until Goodwin calmly slotted home a top shelf flick to finish the job. 

Luke Juha did just the same on the power play 2:59 later and Alec Marsh followed suit just over a minute later to blow the whole thing wide open.

And that was that. Zach Saar made it 6-1 with an empty net goal in the final minute of regulation but by then it was simply a formality. McAdam finished with 33 saves in his first back-to-back start of the season.

At face value Penn State's win over Ohio State was hardly unexpected. The Nittany Lions have been the better team all year and while the Buckeyes have played better than their record indicates Penn State should have won Friday night's game nine times out of 10. That itself is a small sign of progress, Penn State being able to pick up wins against teams it should beat in a fashion that reflects the kind of season both teams have been having.

In the big picture it continues Penn State's march towards the postseason. A 19-8-4 the Nittany Lions will take the ice Saturday looking to break the 20-win mark and take another step in the direction of what millions of dollars and years have planning have been leading up to.

Will Penn State make the postseason this year? That remains to be seen, the field is small and the room for error is even smaller.

But wins like the one the Nittany Lions had on Friday, those keep the conversation alive for one more day.

Ben Jones covers Penn State football and basketball for He's on Twitter as @Ben_Jones88.
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