Jan. 1, 2014
Notre Dame, Ind. – We’re back and ready to start the second half of the 2013-14 season and will do that in grand style on Saturday, January 4th when the Irish travel to Boston’s Fenway Park to face the Boston College Eagles in a 7:30 p.m. game. The Irish will participate in Citi’s Frozen Fenway series in what should be a truly frozen ballpark if early weather forecasts hold up.
Notre Dame and Boston College will play in the second game of the day Saturday night. In the opening game on Saturday, Providence College will square off against Merrimack at 4:00 p.m. The games will be telecast on the New England Sports Network (NESN) and by the NBC Sports Network. What makes these games interesting besides being played outdoors is that they will count in the Hockey East standings.
And, back to that weather forecast … Boston has a winter storm watch in effect from Thursday, Jan. 2 at 1:00 a.m. until Friday, Jan. 3 at 10 a.m. with the snow estimates as high as 12-to-18 inches of snow and high winds. The storm is expected to clear out for Saturday with a high temperature of 23 and a low of 18. Might have to back that extra sweater and definitely bring the gloves along.
Notre Dame has played Boston College more than any other team in Hockey East as the two teams have met 32 times in the all-time series with the Eagles holding a 17-13-2 advantage. The two teams have played since the 1969-70 campaign. Last season, the teams played at Boston College’s Kelley Rink with the Eagles taking a 3-1 victory. The Irish are 6-3-1 against BC since the 2002-03 season.
If you can call Fenway Park a neutral site for the game, the teams are 2-2-0 versus each other on neutral ice. The last time the Irish and the Eagles met at a neutral site was the 2008 NCAA Championship game in Denver, Colo., where Boston College took a 4-1 victory.
WORLD JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIPS
Notre Dame players Thomas DiPauli and Vince Hinostroza will miss the weekend trip to Boston College as they continue play in Malmo, Sweden with Team USA in the 2014 World Junior Championships. The Irish duo will be back in action at 6:00 a.m. (ET) on Thursday, Jan. 2 when the U.S. meets Russia in a quarterfinal game at Malmo Isstadion.
The United States team finished second in Group A with a 3-1-0 record as the lone loss came on Tuesday by a 3-2 score to Canada. The Canadians were first in Group A and will play Switzerland at 1:00 p.m. (ET).
Through the first four games of the tournament, Hinostroza leads Team USA with three goals and is tied for third in scoring on the team with five points. He is +2 with five shots on goal in the tournament.
DiPauli has played in all four games and has three assists in those contests. He has three shots on goal and is tied for third on the team with a +3 rating. The Notre Dame sophomore has been a key member of the U.S. penalty-killing unit that has given up four goals on 15 chances in the round-robin portion of the tournament.
If the U.S. team gets by Russia, they will advance to the semifinals on Saturday, Jan. 4 versus the winner of the Sweden-Slovakia game.
DiPauli and Hinostroza are the 16th and 17th Notre Dame players to compete in the IIHF World Junior Championships. They join current teammates Mario Lucia (2013), Stephen Johns (2012) and T.J. Tynan (2012).
The United States has medaled in three of the last four IIHF World Junior Championships. Thursday’s game can be seen live on the NHL Network (DirecTV 215, DISH 477) and streamed live via NHL.com.
FROZEN FENWAY FACTS
** Notre Dame’s game versus Boston College in Citi Frozen Fenway will be the second outdoor game for the Irish in the last two seasons. On Feb. 17, 2013, Notre Dame faced Miami (OH) in the OfficeMax Hockey City Classic at Chicago’s Soldier Field. The Irish took a 2-1 win in that game. That game was the first outdoor game in the 46-year history of the program. Prior to becoming a varsity program, the Irish had a club program from 1963-68 that saw all of its home games played outdoors at South Bend’s Howard Park Rink. Notre Dame originally had hockey as far back as 1912-13 and then again from 1919 through 1927. Back then, ice was always an issue as the team played a majority of its games outdoors. Irish home games were played on an outdoor rink that was built near the current site of Badin Hall or on St. Mary’s Lake on the Notre Dame campus.
** In the last week, two Notre Dame teams will have played in two of Major League Baseball’s most historic parks, but neither have been the Notre Dame baseball team. Last Saturday, Dec. 28, the Notre Dame football team played at Yankee Stadium in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl where they defeated Rutgers, 29-16. On Jan. 4, the Irish hockey team faces Boston College in Citi Frozen Fenway at Fenway Park. When do pitchers and catchers report?
** Boston sports fans will get a chance to see another Notre Dame team play at Fenway Park as the Irish football team is scheduled to play in the historic ballpark on Nov. 21, 2015 against Boston College as part of Notre Dame’s Shamrock Series.
** Notre Dame will wear special jerseys designed for its appearance at Citi Frozen Fenway against Boston College. The Irish will sport new-look jerseys and socks on Jan. 4 against the Eagles. The jerseys, designed by Reebok and Exclusive Pro Sports, are blue with special gold material used for the striping, the numbers, the crest and the nameplates called Lurex metallic gold that gives the gold a glitter effect that mirrors the gold helmets worn by the Notre Dame hockey team. The jerseys have two gold stripes on each arm and two around the bottom. The name IRISH is displayed across the front with the ND logo under it with both being in an Old English font that is a similar font to the one that the Boston Red Sox use in tribute to playing at historic Fenway Park. The jerseys have the gold piping around the collar with a blue string tie at the neck. Gold numbers appear on each sleeve and on the back and are also in the Old English font. Inside the tail of the jersey is a small green commemorative pennant that states – N.D. vs. B.C., Boston, Mass., Jan. 4, 2014. The socks worn by the Irish at Frozen Fenway are the blue Reebok socks with two Lurex metallic gold stripes with one blue in the middle.
HERE’S TO GOOD HEALTH IN 2014
While head coach Jeff Jackson won’t have his full lineup for the game against Boston College on Jan. 4 because two players are with the U.S. Junior National Team, he does have a full roster of healthy players. After playing most of the first half of the season with five players out of the lineup due to injuries, they are now all back after the Christmas break. Sophomore left wing Thomas DiPauli missed 10 games after being injured on Oct. 25 at Minnesota Duluth. Center Vince Hinostroza, the team’s top scorer at the time of his injury, missed six games after being hurt on Nov. 9 against Minnesota. Senior right wing Mike Voran missed seven games after being injured on Nov. 8 versus Minnesota. Defenseman Eric Johnson missed eight games after being injured on Oct. 26 at Minnesota Duluth. Sophomore center Steven Fogarty was injured on Nov. 15 versus Merrimack and missed seven games. He will be playing his first game this weekend since the injury.
HOT HANDS ENTERING 2014
It’s been 25 days since the Irish last played a game (Dec. 7) so you might have forgotten who had the hot hands for the Irish in those last two games against the University of Massachusetts. Sophomore left wing Mario Lucia has a two-game goal and point streak (3g, 1a, 4 pts) moving into the second half. Sophomore left wing Sam Herr also has a two-game goal and point streak (2g, 1a, 4 pts). Sophomore defenseman Andy Ryan also scored in two games against Massachusetts and has a goal and an assist for two points in his two-game point streak. Senior center T.J. Tynan has points in four of his last five games (1g, 5a, 6 pts) while senior defenseman Stephen Johns has points in three of his last four games (2g, 1a, 3 pts). One player who won’t see his streak snapped at Boston College is Vince Hinostroza. He came off the injured list and had a pair of assists in the two games versus Massachusetts on Dec. 6-7.
BACK TO THE COMPTON FAMILY ICE ARENA
It’s been awhile since Notre Dame has played in the friendly confines of the Compton Family Ice Arena. It will be exactly 34 days since the last game there when the Irish face Alabama-Huntsville at 7:35 p.m. on Jan. 10. But don’t despair because for the next three weeks, Notre Dame will play at home. The Irish face Alabama-Huntsville on Jan. 10-11 and then plays host to Lake Superior State on Jan. 17-18. Notre Dame then returns to Hockey East play on Jan. 24-25 when the Irish play host to the Northeastern Huskies. Get your tickets now. Notre Dame is 7-3-1 this season at home and since Jan. 26 last season the Irish are 14-3-1 at home.
HOCKEY EAST HAPPENINGS
While we were away, much has gone on in Hockey East. Entering the second half of the season, Boston College and Providence are tied for first in the conference with 13 points. The Eagles have played eight conference games to nine for the Friars … New Hampshire is third with 10 points in 10 games while Maine and Northeastern have nine points each … Notre Dame is in eighth with seven points in eight games, just two points out of fourth place … Boston College forwards Johnny Gaudreau (15-18-33) and Kevin Hayes (11-17-28) are 1-2 in the league scoring race while Providence’s Ross Mauermann (13-14-27) is third … Northeastern’s Kevin Roy (13-12-25) and BC’s Bill Arnold (4-19-23) round out the top five in scoring … UMass-Lowell goaltenders Doug Carr (6-1-0, 1.70, .934) and Connor Hellebuyck (7-4-0, 1.75, .945) are the top two goaltenders in the league … Steven Summerhays (9-6-1, 1.89, .931) ranks fifth in the conference among goaltenders and is second in minutes played to Maine’s Martin Ouellette … several Hockey East teams were busy over the holidays in holiday tournament play … Boston College won the Three Rivers Classic in Pittsburgh with wins over Bowling Green (5-0) and Penn State (8-2) … Maine, playing in its 14th straight Florida College Classic, tied for the tournament championship with a 1-1 tie with Cornell in the title game … the Black Bears defeated Princeton, 4-0, in the opener … Devin Shore and Ouellette were selected to the Florida College Classic’s all-tournament team … Massachusetts finished fourth at the UConn Hockey Classic as the Minutemen tied Quinnipiac, 2-2, but lost in a shootout … they then dropped a 2-1 decision to Connecticut in the third-place game … UMass-Lowell won twice at the Catamount Cup in Vermont, defeating Canisius, 5-2 and Clarkson, 3-1 … New Hampshire finished third at the Florida College Classic, falling to Cornell, 4-2, before defeating Princeton, 3-2 … team captain Eric Knodel was named to the all-tournament team … Northeastern tied for third at the Ledyard National Bank Tournament at Hanover, N.H. … the Huskies fell to Air Force, 5-2, in the opening game of the tourney and then battled host-team Dartmouth to an 8-8 tie in the third-place game … freshman Mike Szmatula was named to the all-tournament team with two goals and two assists in the tourney … Providence College finished second in the Ledyard National Bank Tournament, defeating Dartmouth, 3-2, in the opener before falling to Air Force, 3-2, in the championship game … Derek Army and Steven Shamanski were both selected to the all-tournament team … the Friars have 13 wins on the season, one of four teams with that many victories … Vermont won the annual Sheraton/TD Bank Catamount Cup in Burlington … The Catamounts defeated ninth-ranked Clarkson, 3-2, in the opening game and then downed Canisius, 5-2 to win the title … Michael Paliotta, Jake Fallon and Pete Massar were named to the all-tournament team with Paliotta taking MVP honors.