Ohio State seemed to be in a hurry when sudden-death overtime started against Michigan in a Big Ten men’s hockey tournament semifinal Saturday night at Nationwide Arena, so it made sense that Matthew Weis’ winning goal came on a breakaway rush.

He took a cross-ice pass from Tanner Laczynski and slapped the puck past Michigan goalie Hayden Lavigne from 20 feet 32 seconds into the period. The sixth-ranked Buckeyes mobbed Weis, knowing that the 3-2 win sends them to the Big Ten tournament final at Notre Dame, which is the top seed and ranked No. 4, at 8 p.m. Saturday.

“It’s unbelievable,” Weis said of the winner that gave OSU a five-game sweep of Michigan this season. “The way this team is going, it’s great to see. And we’re just looking forward to next weekend at South Bend.”

Video: Ohio State's Matthew Weis on OT game-winning goal vs. Michigan

The Buckeyes twice squandered one-goal leads, with Michigan’s Cooper Marody drawing the Wolverines back even each time. His second goal came on a whirling backhander from about 10 feet in front, the puck never leaving the ice and beating goalie Sean Romeo 7:28 into the third period.

The teams fought down the stretch to force overtime. That’s when Ohio State coach Steve Rohlik said his players were reminding each other that they had been in the same situation a week earlier, gaining a sudden-death win over Michigan State and a 2-0 sweep in that best-of-three quarterfinal series. The difference this time was that the semifinal was a one-and-done affair.

“A lot of guys were saying, ‘Hey, we’ve been there, we’ve done that. Let’s go out there and play with confidence,’” Rohlik said. “That was just kind of the message.”

The Buckeyes' previous two goals had come on power-play opportunities, not the least of which was the blistering slap shot from sophomore defenseman Gordi Myer that beat Lavigne 16:02 into the first period. It was just the second career goal for Myer, the first having come in the NCAA Tournament loss to Minnesota-Duluth last year.

“Gordi likes to show up in big games? I don’t know,” Rohlik joked. “If he just likes to score the big goals in the big games, that’s fine by me.”

After Carmody pulled Michigan even the first time, Ohio State’s Dakota Joshua, a provocateur all game, gained credit for putting the Buckeyes up 2-1 at 4:01 into the third. The shot from the right by John Wiitala actually hit Michigan defenseman Nicholas Boka, then glanced off Joshua and up and over Lavigne.

Marody came with the counterpunch, though, fitting first-year Michigan coach Mel Pearson’s message to his players.

“We weren’t going to a ballet,” Pearson said. “This was a boxing match.”

And who knows, the teams might dance again. Michigan is expected to make the NCAA Tournament's 16-team field, and Ohio State is considered a lock, no matter what happens at Notre Dame.