March 5, 1999

OXFORD, Ohio – Sophomore center Jason Deskins scored Miami’s second shorthanded goal of the game in the first minute of overtime, lifting the RedHawks to a 3-2 victory Friday over visiting Notre Dame at Goggin Ice Arena, in a crucial final-week game for both teams.

The frustrating loss dropped Notre Dame (17-12-5, 14-11-4 CCHA) back into fifth place in the CCHA standings, with one regular-season game left to play. Northern Michigan (14-10-5) used a 4-2 home win over Western Michigan to move one point ahead of the Irish in the race for the fourth and final home-ice spot in next weeks best 2-of-3 CCHA Tournament quarterfinal series.

Notre Dame-which owns the tiebreaker versus NMU thanks to a 1-0-2 record in the season series with the Wildcats-would secure the fourth home ice spot by defeating Miami on Saturday night, coupled with a loss or tie by NMU in its game versus Michigan. A tie by Notre Dame and a loss by NMU also would result in the Irish earning home ice.

Miami (11-19-5, 9-16-4 CCHA)-which opened a 2-0 lead Friday before seeing the Irish rally in the final minutes of regulation-retained its one-point lead on Lake Superior in the race for the eighth and final CCHA Tournament spot. LSSU (9-17-3) stayed alive with a 3-2 win over visiting Michigan while Western Michigan (5-16-8) was eliminated from the playoff hunt due to its loss at NMU.

Notre Dame rallied behind goals late in the third period by freshmen centers David Inman and Brett Henning, but Miami emerged with the victory after scoring each of its goals on turnovers and counter-attacks.

The Irish owned a 35-19 overall shot advantage-including a 16-3 edge in power-play shots-but Miami junior Ian Olsen came through with 33 saves while boosting his season record to 5-13-4. Notre Dame has outshot Miami 148-78 during the last four games of the series while managing just seven goals and a 1-2-1 record during those games.

Notre Dame had allowed just three shorthanded goals during its first 33 games of 1998-99-and only one in the last 17 games-before seeing Miami score two man-down goals.

Deskins notched his CCHA-leading 26th goal of the season in dramatic fashion, just 0:48 into overtime. The Irish opened the OT with 1:23 left on their seventh power-play chance of the night, but Miami junior right wing Mark Shalawylo came up with the puck in his own zone and fired a cross-ice pass from the left boards. Junior defenseman Josh Mizerek took the pass and sent the puck into the middle for Deskins, who skated into the slot before beating Irish senior Forrest Karr with a low stick-side shot inside the far left post, extending Deskins goalscoring streak to nine games and his eighth power play of the season.

Deskins-a four-time CCHA offensive player of the week selection in 1998-99-assisted on the first goal of the game, at 16:28 of the first period. Miami came up with a turnover in the Irish zone and Shalawylo slanted towards the net from the left boards. The puck then ended up on the stick of sophomore right wing Pat Leahy, whose wrist shot clanged off the crossbar before kicking into the net for Leahy’s 10th goal of the season.

The hosts added to their lead early in the second period, on just the third goal of the season from Mizerek. The Irish were 30 seconds into a power-play chance when Mizerek picked up a loose puck in the Miami zone and led a 2-on-1 with Shalawylo down the right side. Mizerek-who had just nine goals in his previous 106 career games-elected to keep the puck and beat Karr with a low shot to the glove side (1:43).

Notre Dame was 0-for-5 on the power play during the first two periods-extending the teams eight-game, power-play drought to 1-for-41-before Inman scored his ninth goal of the season. Senior right wing Brian Urick worked the puck to senior defenseman Benoit Cotnoir, who slid a pass from the left circle to the right circle. Inman was waiting and slapped a low, glove-side shot past Olsen (13:58), producing a 2-1 game.

The Irish then scored an emotional equalizing goal on a 4-on-4 situation, with just 2:13 left in regulation. Junior right wing Joe Dusbabek worked the puck to junior defenseman Sean Molina, who sent a low shot on net from the top of the left circle. Olsen knocked the puck away but Henning was stationed at the top of the crease and poked the puck into the net-despite being blanketed by a pair of Miami players-for his fourth goal of the season (17:47).

NOTES: Michigan (16-8-5) and Ohio State (17-9-3) are tied for second in the CCHA, with OSU playing at Bowling Green on Saturday (OSU holds the tiebreaker on UM) … BGs 2-1 win at OSU on Tuesday could end up helping the Irish, as it provides Michigan with some extra motivation on Saturday at NMU (an OSU win on Tuesday, coupled with UMs loss at LSSU, would have clinched second for the Buckeyes) … first-place Michigan State (20-2-7) posted a 4-1 win over Ferris State (12-12-5) on Friday, meaning that BG (12-14-3) still could finish ahead of FSU in the final standings (BG owns the tiebreaker over FSU) … Notre Dame owns a road win over every CCHA team but Miami during the past two seasons … Fridays loss dropped Notre Dames all-time record to 2-10 at Miami, including losses in the final minute of regulation during each of the past two seasons … the Irish have totaled just nine goals in the last seven games … Notre Dame is just 11-6-4 when outshooting the opponent this season, 1-9-1 when junior C Ben Simon is held off the scoresheet and 3-12-2 when trailing or tied at the second intermission … FSU’s loss assures that Notre Dame will finish no lower than fifth … senior LW Aniket Dhadphale has just two goals and no assists in 11 career games vs. Miami (he has 79 points in 98 combined games vs. the other nine CCHA teams).

NOTRE DAME 0 0 2 0 – 2

MIAMI 1 1 0 1 – 3

1st: MIA 1. Leahy 10 (Shalawylo, Deskins) 16:28.

2nd: MIA 2. Mizerek 3 (unassisted), SH, 1:43.

3rd: ND 1. Inman 9 (Cotnoir, Urick), PP, 13:58; ND 2. Henning 4 (Molina, Dusbabek) 17:47.

OT: MIA 3. Deskins 26 (Mizerak, Shalawylo), SH, 0:48.

SHOTS: ND 8-11-15-1/35, MIAMI 6-6-6-1/19.

SAVES: ND (Karr) 5-5-6-0/16, MIAMI (Marsch) 8-11-13-1/33.

POWER PLAY: ND 1-for-8, MIAMI 0-for-2.

PENALTIES: ND 8 for 16:00, MIAMI 14 for 28:00.