LAX Preview: Ohio State at Michigan

Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE

Michigan welcomes the Buckeyes for an ECAC match-up.

The #13 Ohio State Buckeyes (7-3, 2-2 ECAC) will be visiting Ann Arbor on April 13 for a battle of ECAC foes. OSU is 4-1 on the road in 2013 and looking at a top four ranking within the conference in order to play in the ECAC tournament, while Michigan is looking to play the role of spoiler.

The Wolverines are coming off a disappointing loss to the Blue Hens of Delaware on April 6 in Newark, Delaware, while Ohio State is coming off a victory against fellow ECAC member Hobart (4-6, 1-3 ECAC) also on April 6. Michigan will need to show some intestinal fortitude in order to get past the Buckeyes...who are definitely better foes than the Blue Hens. Although Ohio State had some difficulties with Hobart (the first OSU goal didn't come until 5:58 in the 2nd quarter), once they did break the seal their offense rolled and brought them a 10-6 victory.

Michigan will need to key in on senior attacker, Logan Schuss, who had only one goal against Hobart, but had four assists. He's a Canadian, too, so he'll be playing tough in front of the crease. Michigan goalie, Gerald Logan, will probably need to put up more than his average number of saves this season (15) if Michigan plans on staying in the game. Carter Brown and Jesse King will also have their opportunities for the Buckeyes, so the Wolverines defenders are going to have to keep their longpoles in the chests of the Buckeyes for the entire game. Beware of the invert! Although Ohio State has scored more than 11 goals only twice this season, they've allowed their opponents to score in double digits only twice, as well--Denver and a reeling Virginia squad each scored 10 goals. This game has the potential to end up like Detroit Mercy or Marquette, where the Buckeyes scored 14 and 18 points respectively. The rest of the season's stats for each team can be found here and here.

I'm not particularly good with the technical jargon and super in-depth analysis, but I'm great with truisms: this game will be difficult for the young Wolverines. The Buckeyes' great road record and good losses to three teams ranked in the top six: #4 Denver, #5 Notre Dame, and defending national champions #6 Loyola (MD), means that Michigan will need to play their best game of the year just to stay competitive.

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