Buckeyes shootout win over Michigan lifts Gophers to sixth Big Ten title in a decade
Before they even dropped the puck on their series at Penn State, the Minnesota Gophers earned their conference's regular season title banner thanks to some help from the Ohio State Buckeyes.
COLUMBUS, Ohio — When they revamp 3M Arena at Mariucci next summer to make the ice sheet smaller, they will also need to make room in the rafters for at least one new banner.
On Thursday night when Tate Singleton scored a pair of goals for Ohio State to force overtime in the Buckeyes game with Michigan, then the home team got the only goal of the post-overtime shootout, it clinched the Big Ten regular season title for the Minnesota Gophers for the second year in a row.
Michigan led 3-1 in the second period, only to have the Buckeyes storm back and tie the game 3-3 and snap the Wolverines’ seven-game winning streak.
Class act 😮💨#NCAAHockey x 🎥 @OhioStateMHKY— NCAA Ice Hockey (@NCAAIceHockey) February 17, 2023
For the Gophers, it is the third time in five seasons under coach Bob Motzko that they have won either the Big Ten regular season title or the conference tournament. It is the sixth time in the 10 seasons of Big Ten hockey that the Gophers have won the regular season crown. The other five titles have been won by Wisconsin (2021), Penn State (2020), Ohio State (2019), Notre Dame (2018).
Before the Ohio State game, Gophers defenseman Jackson LaCombe joked that he had several friends on the Buckeyes roster but hadn’t yet called any of them to offer encouragement. The Gophers close out their Big Ten road schedule with a pair of games at Penn State this weekend, then host Ohio State to finish the regular season on Feb. 24-25 in Minneapolis.
By clinching the top seed, the Gophers will have a bye weekend to open March, then will host a Big Ten tournament semifinal game on March 11.