Ice Hockey: Big Win in Columbus

Sophomore Brandon Naurato netted his 11th goal of the season with just 1:08 left on the clock in the final period to complete the comeback, and Michigan held on for a 4-3 win over the Ohio State Buckeyes on Friday night at Value City Arena in Columbus, Ohio. Michigan also received goals from T.J. Hensick, Jack Johnson and Tim Miller. Billy Sauer made 35 saves for the Wolverines.

Tim Miller intercepted a clearing pass with just over a minute to go and fired the puck towards the Ohio State net. With just 1:08 left on the clock, Brandon Naurato fired it home to send the Wolverines to a come from behind 4-3 win over Ohio State.

"We were forechecking (Sean) Collins and he tried to go high off the glass. (Tim) Miller made a good play to intercept it," Naurato said. "Then he went around the net and (Travis) Turnbull just went to the net. Miller made a nice pass and I had an empty net. It was a nice play by Miller."

Naurato's goal completed No. 10-ranked Michigan's comeback after falling behind the Buckeyes 2-0 near the end of the first period.

"I think it was either (Brandon) Naurato or (Travis) Turnbull who got his stick on one of their guys' passes going out of the zone. It went up in the air; I grabbed it out of the air; I went around the net and beat the guy around the net," Miller said. "Then I knew those two are going to the net, so I just threw it out front and Naurato was there and I saw him tap it in and I went off on my own little celebration."

Ohio State went up 1-0 with 2:55 left on the clock in the first period. Kyle Hood put the puck in the net on the Buckeyes first full power play opportunity of the contest when his shot from between the circles beat Michigan's Billy Sauer with a crowd in front of the Wolverines netminder.

Two minutes later, the Buckeyes made it 2-0. Andrew Schembri flung a rebound past Sauer with 51 seconds left in the period.

Michigan, however, battled back before the ending of the frame. Tim Miller sliced the Wolverines in half with just tenths of a second left on the clock. Miller fired the puck past Ohio State goalie Joseph Palmer on a feed from Jason Dest in the corner.

"It's huge. We didn't feel that bad about the period but the score would definitely jumpstart the home team. Any last minute is always a key goal, but when you score it in the last second [it's huge]," Michigan coach Red Berenson said.

Jack Johnson tied the score 2-2 less then a minute into the second period. After taking control of the puck just after the opening face-off, the Wolverines carried the disc into the Buckeyes defensive zone. Rohlfs found Johnson and fired the puck past Palmer at 00:29.

Ohio State went back on top two minutes later when Jason DeSantis shot rang in off the crossbar, but that was all the Buckeyes would get.

T.J. Hensick tied the score again in the final moments of the period with a breakaway down the center of the ice.

The score was tied 3-3 going into the final period, setting the stage for Naurato's game winning goal.

"It's huge to do that in an environment where in the time that I've been here we've split. I think we've lost that first game in the past. It gives us confidence and momentum heading into tomorrow night. It gives us a chance to get a sweep against a pretty big rival for our team," Hensick said.

With the win, the Wolverines remain one point ahead of Miami for second place in the CCHA standings with just one regular season game to play. The final game of the regular season is scheduled for 8:05 Saturday night at Value City Arena.

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