The Ohio State University Buckeyes forward, Lauren Spring. February 28, 2018.

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The puck is about to drop on the 2018 NCAA Women’s Ice Hockey Championships, and The Ohio State Buckeyes are looking to make some noise. The 23-10-4 Buckeyes have never made it to the NCAA tournament, but they will make history on Saturday afternoon vs Boston College at Conte Forum at Chestnut Hill.

The 2017-2018 campaign has been the most successful in Buckeyes history. Coach Nadine Muzerall’s Buckeyes made OSU Ice Rink a fortress with a 16-2-2 home record. Ohio State earned an at-large berth in the eight-team NCAA tournament. The Buckeyes have been making history all season, and they’ve still got a flock of Eagles to eliminate.

Senior forward, Lauren Spring, has seen plenty of ups and downs during her time at Ohio State. It’s been immensely rewarding to see a positive environment help contribute to the Buckeyes best season ever.

“I think from the beginning of the year, we focused on having a team culture within the locker room between the girls and the coaching staff,” Spring said. “As a whole, having pillars, and a common goal, and having a positive cultured environment to come show up and be a part of every day, has contributed to our success on the ice this year.”

The Kelowna, British Columbia native, has been a role model since the first time she stepped on campus. Spring has been nominated for the 2018 Hockey Humanitarian Award. The award recognizes the ‘finest citizen’ for leadership in the community.

“It’s extremely humbling to even be in that top five,” said a modest Spring. “Looking at the others who were dominated, the things they have done are also absolutely amazing. Just to be nominated with those other fellow student athletes is really humbling for me as a person.”

When the Buckeyes co-captain isn’t taking a wicked wrister, blocking shots, or digging for pucks in the corner, she’s finding ways to help out others. In May, Spring was part of a team of Ohio State University athletes that went to Ecuador with ‘Soles for Souls’.

“We went over for the ‘Souls for Soul’ organization,” Spring revealed. “We provided shoes to a bunch of communities within Ecuador. Everyday we’d go out and do a shoe distribution. We’d size the kids feet up, wash them, and we’d give them new shoes. It was a really great opportunity just to be a part of, and to see how such a small gesture can go such a long way.”

The 2018 Hockey Humanitarian Award will be announced at the Frozen Four in St. Paul, Minnesota on April 6, 2018.

Spring is hoping she will be there as well as her Ohio State teammates. In order to get to the Frozen Four the Buckeyes will have to upset Boston College, on their home ice. The visitors won’t be content with turning up and being in awe of the moment. Ohio State wants to experience being in the NCAA tournament, but most of all they want to win.

“I’ve never been able to play past the first round of the playoffs,” admitted Spring. “It’s just a different vibe. Practices are awesome, the girls are excited. Just to be able to go out on the ice everyday, and practice with that excitement. It’s just a whole different ball game. It’s extremely exciting, it’s what we train for all year.”

It won’t get any easier for Ohio State, but when does elimination hockey ever get easier. The Buckeyes could potentially face number one ranked Clarkson University, or Mercyhurst University on Friday, March 16. As fantastic as that would be, Spring isn’t about to look past the Eagles. The task at hand is Boston College, and that’s the primary focus.

“We’re just making program history.” said a confident Spring. “Every time we accomplish something for the program, it’s really special to be a part of. If we get to the Frozen Four, it’s just to enjoy that moment, reflect on everything that we did to get there. We know we deserve to be there, and it’ll just be some really good hockey.”

It’s March, and the madness is certainly here. You know there is always a cinderella story, and it would be Ohio State. The Buckeyes are hoping they can cause upsets, make history, and continue on playing hockey with a ‘Spring’ in their step.

Off the ice, Spring would like to stay in Columbus. If she can find a teaching job she wants to continue helping give back to kids in The Buckeye State. “I have a physical education health license here teaching K-12. I’m ready, and I’m excited.”

While one chapter closes, the next chapter is only just beginning for Lauren Spring.


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