The Ohio State Buckeyes hockey team is one win away from the NCAA Frozen Four after an 8-1 drubbing of Harvard in the quarterfinals on Friday. The Boston Bruins had extra interest in this one as one of their top prospects was heavily involved.
Boston Bruins prospect Mason Lohrei, a sophomore defenseman with the Buckeyes, was dominant, scoring once and dishing out two assists. The 6-foot-4, 210-pound blue liner also collected four shots, two blocked shots, and was a plus-4 in the game. Lohrei was also the centerpiece behind holding the Crimson to just eight shots in the first two periods.
In 39 games this season, Lohrei scored four goals with 28 assists and led the team in average ice time. Overall, the Madison, Wisconsin native has 61 points in 70 regular-season collegiate games. The Bruins selected Lohrei with the 58th overall pick in the 2020 NHL Draft. The puck-moving defender has attended the last two Bruins Rookie Development Camps, but last summer, Lohrei could not participate due to an off-season knee procedure. During that time, the big defenseman continued to fill out his frame and is a much more physical player.
But where Lohrei ultimately excels is in his puck-carrying ability. Eliteprospects.com had the following scout on Lohrei before he was drafted: “Where Lohrei stood out was as a puck carrier. His puck skills in small-area situations were a distinct positive in a few instances, particularly for someone of his stature. He’s got a snappy wrist shot, with good form and an ability to generate a lot of power with very little movement, suggestive of a really strong upper body”.
Before arriving at Ohio State, Lohrei was defenseman of the year in the United States Hockey League in 2020-21. As assistant captain of the Green Bay Gamblers, Lohrei totaled 59 points in 48 games. His 19 goals and 40 assists were both tops in the league for defensemen.
Now the 22-year-old is vying for a National Championship at Ohio State. After this season is completed, it will be decision time again for Lohrei. Last off-season, he chose to remain at Ohio State. But this spring, it might be time for the Bruins’ top defensive prospect to forgo his final two seasons at Ohio State and sign an entry-level contract with the organization that held onto him through the trade deadline in March when several teams inquired.
Mason Lohrei and the Buckeyes face Quinnipiac today at 4 pm Eastern Time on ESPNU for the right to play in the Frozen Four.