Skip to main content
Blake Eiland scored 12 goals during his sophomore season in 2024.

NCAA Rewind: Ohio State a Tough Out During Brutal Schedule

June 18, 2024
Patrick Stevens
Rich Barnes

Before USA Lacrosse Magazine looks ahead to what’s to come in 2025 — look out for our NCAA Way-Too-Early Top 25 rankings later this summer — our team of staff and contributors decided it was worth taking a last look at the 2024 college lacrosse season.

To do that, we’re taking a journey through 30 of the top teams in men’s and women’s lacrosse to see what went right, what went wrong and how we should feel about the season.


USA Lacrosse preseason/final ranking: unranked/unranked
2024 record: 6-9 (1-4 Big Ten)

What went right: The Buckeyes were formidable on defense, stitching together a strong unit led by short stick Eli Fisher and defenseman Marcus Hudgins even with Bobby Van Buren sidelined for much of the season. Freshman goalie Caleb Fyock took over one game in after Henry Blake was injured, producing a solid .517 save percentage. 

Vermont grad transfer Tommy Burke’s efforts translated well in Columbus, and his .549 faceoff percentage delivered both possession and time for promising freshman Jack Oldman (.519) to develop as part of a tandem. 

Despite navigating back-to-back losing seasons for the first time since 1994-96, Ohio State was much more competitive, especially away from home.

Related Article
NCAA Rewind: Rutgers Doomed by Lack of Offense
Read More

What went wrong: While Ohio State had options — seven players with double-digit goals and eight with at least 10 points — no Buckeye managed more than 30 points on the season. Some of that can be chalked up to pace, since Ohio State tended to play methodical games. But some of it was also tied to shooting 26.6 percent as a team.

Consecutive one-goal losses to Maryland, Johns Hopkins and Michigan to close the regular season must have frustrated a team that proved capable of creating headaches for quality opponents throughout the season.

Season highlight: Probably the 14-8 victory at Rutgers on March 30 to climb over .500 heading into the final month of the season. The Buckeyes shot 31.8 percent (their second-best figure of the season) and shut down the Scarlet Knights in a complete performance.

Verdict: In 2023, it was fair to wonder if Ohio State had two different teams — the one that tended to play foes tough at home, and the one that routinely got blown out on the road. This year’s group was both stingier and more consistent, a tough out no matter where it played — and against one of Division I’s toughest schedules, as well.

It’s doubtful the Buckeyes were happy with their record, but they did get better despite some key defensive injuries. Further progress in 2025 will hinge on improved offensive efficiency.