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Penn State Men’s Lacrosse Dominated By No. 11 Ohio State 18-9

Penn State men’s lacrosse (2-8, 0-2 Big Ten) dropped a tough 18-9 game to No. 11 Ohio State (7-3, 1-1 Big Ten) in Columbus on Friday.

Sloppy second and third quarters from the Nittany Lions allowed the ranked Buckeyes squad to capitalize and create a huge lead over head coach Jeff Tambroni’s team. Penn State’s Mac Costin grabbed a hat trick and Jeb Brenfleck notched two goals, but their efforts weren’t enough to keep Ohio State at bay.

How It Happened

Ohio State midfielder Justin Inacio won the opening face-off, and the Buckeyes went to work right away. Scott White found the net after 40 seconds of play. The senior attacker beat Nittany Lion goalkeeper Aleric Fyock to give the Buckeyes an easy 1-0 lead before a minute had even shaved off of the clock.

Following White’s goal, Penn State’s Jack Posey was removed from the game for one minute on a personal foul as a result of unnecessary roughness. Because the Buckeyes had an extra man on the field, Jackson Reid was able to make it 2-0 less than a minute after White’s opening goal.

Hudson Bohn won the next face-off for the Nittany Lions and got things going in favor of Penn State. Dan Reaume set up teammate Mac Costin, who was able to send a bouncing shot past Buckeye goalie Skylar Wahlund.

Ohio State gained possession at the face-off, only for Fyock to make a great save and send the Nittany Lions in the other direction. Ethan Long and Jeb Brenfleck combined to tie the game 2-2. Brenfleck took advantage of a Buckeye miscommunication and earned the second Penn State goal of the afternoon.

The tied game didn’t last long. Ari Allen set up Mitchell Pehlke, who sent a slinging shot into the net before Fyock could react. Less than one minute later, Ohio State added another one to the scoreboard to make it 4-2. Colby Smith took a blazing shot from distance off an assist from fellow senior Jackson Reid.

Brenfleck picked up his second goal for Penn State about one minute later to make it a one-score game at the end of the first quarter.

Myers got a goal of his own less than a minute into the second quarter to lead the Nittany Lions by two. Just about 30 seconds later, Nittany Lion Jack Kelly found the back of the net by faking out Wahlund and easily converting.

White grabbed his second goal for the Buckeyes to restore Ohio State’s two-goal lead. Shortly after, Smith also earned his second goal by sending a fast, low shot between Fyock’s legs. This caused Tambroni to opt for a timeout as his team trailed 7-4.

Out of the break, Ohio State didn’t slow down. Pehlke ran behind Fyock’s cage and sent a short pass to Reid, who easily beat the goalie and left him no time to react. Little time passed before Smith picked up a hat trick when he slung another swift shot past Fyock from distance to make it 9-4 for the Buckeyes.

Reid extended Ohio State’s lead to six goals when he earned a hat trick in the final minutes of the first half. The Buckeyes carried a 10-4 lead at the end of the first 30 minutes of play, forcing Penn State to search for some answers in the locker room.

The Buckeyes won the opening face-off of the second half, but Fyock stopped a critical shot that would’ve been goal No. 11 for Ohio State. Fyock sent the ball out to Grant Haus, but the midfielder turned the ball over. Myers was able to capitalize on the Nittany Lions in transition and make it 11-4.

Penn State had its 12th turnover of the afternoon, and allowed White to add another goal to the Buckeyes’ scoreboard. Allen fed White from behind the net and Fyock couldn’t get in front of the shot. Smith notched another goal three minutes later to make it 13-4.

Myers grabbed the next goal to lead the Nittany Lions by 10. Finally, after more than 25 minutes of scoreless play for Penn State, freshman Will Peden faked out his Buckeye defender and beat Wahlund to leave the Nittany Lions trailing 14-5.

Penn State earned one more goal before the end of the third quarter when Costin powered through a defender and sent a low shot to the far post of the net. Despite showing some signs of life in the final minutes of the third quarter, the Nittany Lions still lagged behind 14-6.

Myers picked up his fourth goal of the day at the beginning of the final quarter. Two minutes later, Penn State caught Ohio State in transition when Jack Posey scored his first goal of the season. Haus sent Posey the ball while the Buckeyes’ defensemen were still recovering, and Posey calmly converted to decrease Ohio State’s lead to eight.

Jake Morin was the next Nittany Lion to notch the scoreboard and fake out Wahlund. Minutes later, Smith earned his fifth of the game to make it 16-8 for the Buckeyes.

Another Penn State turnover permitted Buckeye Jason Knox to record a goal of his own. Four minutes later, Knox added his second goal, faking out Fyock, and giving the Buckeyes a 10-goal lead once again.

Costin collected a hat trick in the final minute of the game, but it wasn’t enough to make a difference in the Nittany Lions’ 18-9 loss.

Takeaways

  • The Nittany Lions looked a little sloppy throughout this game. Once the score started to slide in favor of the Buckeyes during the second quarter, Penn State lost face-offs, increased turnovers, and committed several penalties. All of these, in turn, allowed Ohio State to capitalize on the Nittany Lions‘ mistakes.
  • The Buckeyes are fast. Ohio State left Penn State lost in transition dozens of times during the matchup and notched most of its goals as a result of Nittany Lions defensemen recovering too slow to help out goalie Aleric Fyock.
  • Penn State has some tough sledding ahead of it. The Nittany Lions are scheduled to face Michigan, Johns Hopkins, and Rutgers in their final three regular-season games, which will surely prove to be a challenge. If there’s ever a time to band together and try to salvage the season, it’s now.

What’s Next?

The Nittany Lions will return to Happy Valley to face Michigan on Friday, April 8. Face-off is scheduled for 6 p.m. on ESPN+.

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About the Author

Keeley Lamm

Keeley is a sophomore journalism major from Richmond, Va., and is one of Onward State's associate editors. She also talks sports on our podcast, Podward State. Keeley is a lover of grilled cheese, naps, and Kevin Jonas. If you would like to discuss the superior Jonas Brother, feel free to contact her on Twitter @lammkeeley. Please direct all hate mail to her email [email protected]

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