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Penn State Men’s Hockey Dominates Game, Sweeps Wisconsin In 7-2 Win

Penn State men’s hockey (14-12-0) dropped a touchdown to sweep Wisconsin (8-15-3) in a 7-2 victory Saturday night.

The Nittany Lions were explosive on offense all game, with Ryan Kirwan and Ben Schoen each tallying two goals.

How It Happened

Head coach Guy Gadowsky went back to his starter Oskar Autio for tonight’s matchup.

Penn State came out of the locker room with a pep in its step but couldn’t score on a few grade-A chances, including an early breakaway for Connor McMenamin. The Nittany Lions led 10-2 in shots on goal at the ten-minute mark of the first period.

The first period ended in a scoreless tie, with Penn State leading the shot battle 14-2 in a fast-paced game.

Coming out of the first intermission, Wisconsin picked up the pace. Autio was tested with a few shots but turned them all away.

The game’s first goal came off the stick of Ryan Kirwan, who was set up on a beautiful passing play to give Penn State a 1-0 lead at 4:28 of the second period.

The Nittany Lions kept up the momentum, though, as Ryan Kirwan went top shelf to score his second goal of the game (and fourth of the weekend) to extend Penn State’s lead to 2-0 at 14:31 of the period.

The game’s first penalty came when Tyler Gratton went to the box for interference at 17:06, but the junior was the beneficiary of a tremendous effort from Kevin Wall to get him the puck and extend Penn State’s lead to 3-0 with just 45 seconds remaining in the period.

The game became interesting once the third period started, when Wisconsin’s Carson Bantle scored at 1:10 of the frame. Just under two minutes later, Bantle scored, again, to cut Penn State’s lead to 3-2 at 2:45 of the period. Gadowsky quickly called a timeout to halt the momentum gained by Wisconsin.

Following his two goals, Bantle took Wiconsin’s first penalty of the game, going to the box for roughing to send Penn State to the power play at 4:30 of the period. Ben Schoen took advantage of the power play chance and extended the Nittany Lions’ lead to 4-2 at 5:07 of the period.

Penn State didn’t stop there, as Danny Dzhaniyev potted another goal to extend Penn State’s lead to 5-2 at 5:50 of the period. Then, two quick penalties from Wisconsin gave Penn State a 5-on-3 advantage, and Connor MacEachern decided that he wanted to take part in the scoring, burying a goal at 8:27 of the period to extend Penn State’s lead to 6-2.

Ben Schoen got in on the scoring action, again, making it a touchdown for Penn State and extending the lead to 7-2 at 11:51 of the period.

The game ended as a 7-2 victory for Penn State.

Takeaways

  • Have a weekend, Ryan Kirwan! The freshman forward dominated on the offensive side of the puck, registering four goals in the series. It was certainly an impressive series for the New York native.
  • The Nittany Lions showed great discipline all game and throughout the entire series, as well. Tyler Gratton took the lone penalty of the night. Penn State has shown some great progress in this area.
  • Defense wins games, but so does offense. The Nittany Lions exploded for three quick goals in both the second and third periods to take Wisconsin out of the game.

What’s Next

The Nittany Lions will be back in action when they take on Ohio State at Pegula Ice Arena on Friday, January 28. Puck drop is set for 7 p.m.

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About the Author

Frankie Marzano

Frankie is a senior accounting and economics major from Long Island, NY. You can probably recognize him as the typical Italian-American with slicked back black hair. He is an avid fan of the New York Rangers and Mets, along with every Penn State Athletics team. Follow him on Twitter @frankiemarzano for obnoxious amounts of Rangers and Penn State content or email him at [email protected]

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