Notre Dame Fighting Irish - Official Athletics Website

Hockey Heads To Minnesota For Hall-Of-Fame Game

Oct. 3, 2000

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Coach Poulin talks about this weekend’s game:

DROP THE PUCK: The Notre Dame hockey team (ranked 20th in the U.S. College Hockey preseason poll) opens its 2000-01 season by playing 11th-ranked Minnesota in the annual Hall of Fame Game, to be held Oct. 7 at the XCel Energy Center (home of the NHL expansion Minnesota Wild) … the start time has been bumped up to 6:05 central time (after an original start of 7:05) … WJVA radio (1580 AM) again will broadcast Irish hockey games during the 2000-01 season (available via the internet at while Midwest Sports Channel will provide a live television broadcast of the ND-Minnesota game.

THE SERIES: Minnesota holds a 20-12-2 series edge versus Notre Dame, with the last meeting between the teams seeing the Irish drop a 7-2 game at Minnesota in the 1990-91 opener … the previous series games at ND have produced a 6-5-1 edge for the Irish but the Gophers went 15-6-1 in 22 previous games vs. ND in Minneapolis.

FACING THE ALMA MATER: Minnesota head coach Don Lucia was a defenseman at Notre Dame from ’77-’81 and was a three-year teammate of current ND head coach Dave Poulin, who played from 1978-82 … Lucia (who had 7G-23A in 124 career GP) will be coaching vs. his alma mater for the fifth time in his career … his Alaska Fairbanks teams were 3-1 vs. ND from ’90-’92 but his Colorado College teams (’93-’99) never faced the Irish … during his ND career, Lucia helped the Irish post a 5-6-1 record vs. Minnesota (ND played in the WCHA during those seasons).

POULIN VS. FORMER TEAMMATES: Dave Poulin has plenty of past experience coaching versus his former ND teammates, as former Irish goaltender Dave Laurion was completing a six-year term as head coach at Alaska Fairbanks during Poulin’s first four seasons as the ND head coach (1995-99) … Poulin’s ND squads posted an 8-4-0 record in those games versus Laurion’s Nanooks … Laurion was a classmate of roommate of Poulin’s from 1978-82, with the pair helping the Irish reach the 1982 CCHA title game.

SCOUTING THE GOPHERS: Minnesota hockey information can be found at

HEADING TO THE LAND-O-LAKES: Notre Dame has made two previous trips to Minnesota during the six-year Dave Poulin era … the Irish posted a 3-2 win at Mankato State on Jan. 7, 1997 (Faribault native Joe Dusbabek scored the third-period GWG in that game) … Notre Dame participated in Minnesota’s 1997-98 Mariucci Classic, opening with a 4-2 loss to Northeastern before beating Brown (5-1).

HALL-OF-FAMERS: Notre Dame is opening its season by playing in the Hall of Fame Game for the second time in three years … in 1998-99, the Irish downed Wisconsin, 2-1, in front of nearly 14,000 fans at the Kohl Center dedication game … Wisconsin native Forrest Karr made 30 saves in that game while current ND captain Ryan Dolder (Hutchinson, Minn.) gave the Irish an early 1-0 lead when he collected a loose puck and quickly fired into the upper right corner of the net … Dan Bjornlie redirected a Yuri Gusak pass to tie the game in the 2nd period but Aniket Dhadphale scooped home a rebounded Ben Simon shot for the game-winner (at 9:33 of the 2nd). FOR OPENERS: Notre Dame owns a 17-16-0 record in season openers, during the 33 previous season of the program’s modern era … the Irish are 6-3-1 in their last 10 season openers, including 3-2-0 in the Dave Poulin era (2-1 loss to Guelph, 2-1 win over Western Ontario, 5-1 win over Western Ontario, 2-1 win at Wisconsin and 5-3 loss to Michigan) … during Poulin’s first three years, the Irish were 2-0-1 in their first games of those seasons versus Division I programs: 7-4 at Alaska Fairbanks, 3-3 vs. Western Michigan and 4-3 at St. Cloud State (in overtime).

BLUE-GOLD CHARITY GAME: The inaugural Notre Dame Blue-Gold Charity Scrimmage on Oct. 1 drew 750 fans while raising $3,500 for cancer research, with funds specifically helping Maine coach Shawn Walsh as he battles the disease … the Blue used a strong defensive effort to hold on for a 3-2 win in the controlled scrimmage (two 22-minute periods, penalty shots instead of PPs) … the Blue claimed an early 1-0 lead when senior F Chad Chipchase took a pass from sophomore C Connor Dunlop and knocked the puck behind sophomore G Tony Zasowski … senior RW Matt Van Arkel added to the lead later in the period, when he converted a pass in the slot from junior D Sam Cornelius … sophomore D Paul Harris pushed the lead to 3-0 early in the second period (on a tricky soft penalty shot) … the Gold scored minutes later when junior LW Brett Henning converted a penalty shot, connecting low and on the short side of junior G Jeremiah Kimento … freshman C Aaron Gill completed the scoring when he sent a penalty shot over Kimento’s shoulder … the Gold outshot the Blue 24-23 … there were nine penalty shots with the Gold converting two and the Blue one.

POULIN ON THE BLUE-GOLD GAME: “We saw some good things and were able to work on different parts of our system. This was a terrific conditioning workout and will help prepare us for the Minnesota game. You cannot simulate these conditions in practice. Everyone came out flying and ready to go. More importantly, it raised money for a great cause.?

TOUGH SLATE: Notre Dame’s 39-game schedule includes as many as 14 games versus teams ranked in the U.S. College Hockey Online preseason top-20 poll … the 40-voter panel of coaches and media tabbed Michigan second (behind North Dakota) and Boston College fourth (behind Wisconsin), with other ND opponents on that top-20 list including Michigan State (5th), St. Lawrence (6th), Minnesota (11th), Nebraska Omaha (13th), Lake Superior (14th) and Rensselaer (19th) … ND will face Michigan, BC, MSU and LSSU twice each while playing UNO 2-3 times (RPI is a potential opponent, at the RPI Christmas Tournament) … the first half of the Irish schedule is particularly challenging, as it will include as many as 12 games versus ranked teams prior to New Year’s Day (all except the Jan. 23 and Feb. 16 games versus Michigan) … ND opens versus Minnesota and BC, followed by a potential game versus UNO … the fourth week of the season then will feature the two-game home series with Michigan State … ND also could play as many as 14 games versus teams ranked in the USA Today American Hockey Coaches Association preseason poll: Michigan (2nd), MSU (4th), BC (5th), SLU (8th), Minnesota (12th), LSSU (13th), UNO (14th) and Northern Michigan (tied for 17th-most votes).

MINNESOTA PIPELINE: The Notre Dame hockey program has a longstanding tradition of being led by players from Minnesota, dating back to the leaders of the program’s first varsity era during the 1920s?notably St. Paul native Paul Castner (also an All-America football runningback at Notre Dame and an accomplished lefthanded pitcher at ND) and goaltender Tom Lieb, who also coached the Irish during those early seasons (Lieb was a bronze medal winner at the 1924 Olympic discus competition in Paris and was a right tackle on Knute Rockne’s 1921-22 Notre Dame football teams, helping them compile an 18-2-1 record during that span) … since the program returned to varsity status in 1969, the Irish have seen 79 Minnesota natives earn varsity hockey letters (see p. 27 of the 2000-01 Notre Dame hockey media guide for a full listing) … the current Irish squad includes eight Minnesota natives while the more noteworthy former Irish players from Minnesota have included 1973 All-American D Bill Nyrop (Edina), G Dick Tomasoni (’68-’72, Chisholm), W Don Jackson (’74-’78, Bloomington), D John Friedmann (’76-’80, St. Paul) and John Schmidt (’78-’82, St. Cloud) and RW Brian Urick (’95-’99, Minnetonka) … the current Irish players from Minnesota include senior RW and team captain Ryan Dolder (Hutchinson), senior LW and alternate captain Dan Carlson (Edina), senior LW Jay Kopischke (Alexandria), senior G Kyle Kolquist (Duluth) and junior D Sam Cornelius (Edina) … three ND newcomers also hail from Minnesota: junior LW Jon Maruk (Eden Prairie), freshman C Aaron Gill (Rochester) and freshman F Kyle Dolder (Hutchinson).

JUNIOR JUMP: Junior C David Inman?who had 10G-10A as a freshman and 13G-7A as a sophomore?will be hoping to be the latest in a recent trend of Notre Dame forwards who have made huge goalscoring jumps in their junior seasons … that group includes LW Aniket Dhadphale (18 combined goals in his first two seasons, 25 as a junior in 1997-98), C Ben Simon (13G in first two years, 18 as a junior in 1998-99) and current senior LW Dan Carlson (18G in first two seasons, 17 as a junior in 1999-2000).

USHL VETERANS: Notre Dame’s 2000-01 roster?and particularly the freshman class?has plenty of experience with the United States Hockey League, as each of the five scholarship freshman?and junior newcomer Jon Maruk (Twin City Vulcans)?played in the USHL last season … all told, 17 different ND players have skated in the USHL, as members of that league’s traditional programs or the USA Hockey Under-18 Team … that group includes senior D Ryan Clark and sophomore LW Jake Wiegand (Lincoln Stars), senior LW Jay Kopischke (North Iowa Huskies), senior RW Ryan Dolder and Maruk (Twin City Vulcans), sophomore RW Michael Chin and freshman F Kyle Dolder (Twin City Vulcans) and sophomore G Tony Zasowski (Omaha Lancers) … Chin also played one year with the USA program, as did nine other current Irish players (see note below).

A PATRIOTIC GROUP: Notre Dame’s current roster includes 10 players who have past experience with USA Hockey, as members of the National Team Development Program (NTDP) and/or the National Junior Team … Notre Dame’s current total of eight NTDP alums is the most at any Division I school … that group includes junior F Brett Henning and four members of the sophomore class?RWs Michael Chin and John Wroblewski, C Connor Dunlop and D Paul Harris?plus a trio of freshmen: RW Rob Globke and D Neil Komadoski and Brett Lebda … senior LW Dan Carlson played with Team USA at the 1998-99 World Junior Championship while Henning, Dunlop and junior C David Inman played with the USA at the 1999-2000 World Juniors … four Irish players?Dunlop, Globke, Komadoski and Wroblewski?remain among the top candidates for the USA’s 2000-01 National Junior Team while a pair of 2000 Irish graduates?center Ben Simon and RW Joe Dusbabek?played for the USA at the World Juniors in ’96-’97 (Simon) and ’97-’98 (Simon and Dusbabek).

FRIEND OR FOE?: Several ND and Minnesota players are past teammates: ND senior LW Dan Carlson and Minnesota D Jordan Leopold played on the 1998-99 USA National Junior Team, with Leopold and current Minnesota sophomore C Jeff Taffe then skating on the 1999-2000 USA National Junior team that also included three current Irish players: junior F Brett Henning, junior C David Inman and sophomore C Connor Dunlop … four players?Leopold, Gophers junior G Adam Hauser, Henning and current Irish sophomore RW Michael Chin?were teammates on the inaugural USA National Team Development Program (NTDP) squad, in 1997-98 … Taffe also is a product of the NTDP, where his two-year teammates included Dunlop and two other current ND sophomores: RW John Wroblewski and D Paul Harris … four current freshmen on the two squads also are products of the NTDP (most overlapped with the above players): Minnesota F John Waibel, Irish RW Rob Globke and ND defensemen Neil Komadoski and Brett Lebda … ND sophomore G Tony Zasowski played on the Green Bay Gamblers alongside Minnesota senior F Aaron Miskovich … Irish junior LW Jon Maruk and Minnesota freshman F Matt Koalska helped the USHL’s Twin City Vulcans win the 1999-2000 national junior-A title.

FIND AN OPENING: Notre Dame will be looking to develop several new goalscorers in 2000-01, as just three returners (senior LW Dan Carlson, junior C David Inman and senior RW Ryan Dolder) had more than six goals in 1999-2000.

RISING PROSPECTS: Two members of Notre Dame’s freshman class are considered top prospects for upcoming NHL drafts … defenseman Neil Komadoski was rated by NHL Central Scouting as the No. 51 prospect for the 2000 draft (even though he it not eligible for the draft until 2001) … first-year RW Rob Globke likewise could develop into a high-end draft prospect but will not be eligible for the draft until 2002.

NEW COACHING FACE: Craig Brown is the newest member of the Notre Dame hockey coaching staff, serving as volunteer goaltender coach for 2000-01 … Brown was a regular in the nets at Western Michigan for four seasons (1990-94) and was named to the all-CCHA honorable mention team as a sophomore in 1991-92 … he still owns Broncos records for save percentage in a season (.907 in ?93-’94, good for sixth in the nation) and a career (.899) while also owning both WMU goals-against-average records (2.86 in ?93-’94-which ranked seventh nationally?plus a 3.33 GAA for his career) … Brown’s freshman season in 1990-91 saw him post a 17-13-2 record while contributing four assists (most ever by a WMU goaltender)… he was named WMU rookie of the year after helping that ’90-’91 squad reach the CCHA semifinals and closed his career in 1993-94 by posting a 14-5-2 record on a Western Michigan team that advanced to the NCAAs … Brown?ranks third in the Broncos record book for career victories (53-36-10) … he was named to the CCHA’s All-Academic squad for 1993-94 … a ninth-round NHL entry draft selection by the L.A. Kings, Brown spent his five-year pro career in the East Coast Hockey League, as a member of the Pensacola Ice Pilots and the Nashville Knights from 1994-99 … his career honors included team rookie of the year and MVP, plus ECHL-leading totals in victories and minutes played for 1994-95 … Brown served as a player assistant coach in 1997 and led Pensacola to the 1998 ECHL Championship Finals … a native of Scarborough, Ontario, he played with the Wexford Raiders of the Toronto Metro Junior B League (which also produced current Irish junior C David Inman) … Brown resides in Mishawaka with his wife Deanna and two-year-old son Carson (the couple is expecting a daughter in October).

CAPTAINS NAMED: The Notre Dame hockey program has named its captains for the 2000-01 season, with senior RW Ryan Dolder serving as team captain while senior LW Dan Carlson and senior F Chad Chipchase will serve as the alternate team captains … Dolder has fashioned a classic story during the past three-plus years, after first joining the program as a last-minute walk-on in 1997-98 (he had received no Division I offers after playing two years of junior hockey with the Twin City Vulcans, prompting a move to Palm Springs, Calif., where he was living with his grandparents while planning to attend a local junior college and become a golf pro) … Dolder has continued to make strides during each season of his Irish career while developing into a clutch goalscorer and solid all-around player … his evolving leadership was recognized by the Irish coaches midway through the 1999-2000 season, when he was named the squad’s youngest alternate captain … Dolder heads into his senior season with 18 goals (4 PP, 4 GW) and 18 assists in 103 career games played (he had 10G-14A last season) … he has been whistled for just 29 penalties (66 minutes) in 103 career games (one penalty every 3.6 games) and takes a team-best streak of 64 consecutive games played into the 2000-01 season … Carlson ranks as the CCHA’s sixth-leading returning scorer (18G-19A as team MVP in 1999-2000) … a leading Academic All-America candidate (3.43 cumulative GPA as a finance and computer applications major), Carlson is a pivotal part of the ND special teams while his career stats include 35G-55A in 119 career games … Chipchase was selected as an alternate captain despite missing most of 1999-2000 due to a leg injury (he doubled his goalscoring from his freshman to sophomore season, when he 10G-5A).

CARLSON BREAKS THROUGH: Senior LW Dan Carlson (Edina, Minn.) had a big junior season that netted his team MVP honors … Carlson’s 35-point season in 1999-2000 included 17 goals (he had 18 in the previous two seasons combined), plus five game-winning goals and nine power-play goals (he totaled just three GWGs and six PPGs over the course of his first two seasons … Carlson also boosted his shot percentage as a junior (.140, compared to .098 his first two seasons) … Carlson heads into 2000-01 tied for ninth in ND history with eight career game-winning goals, needing five to tie the record shared by Irish head coach Dave Poulin (’82) and Brian Urick (’99).

A SPECIAL PLAYER: Dan Carlson has played a key role on both special-teams units during his Notre Dame career and could become the fifth player to rank among Notre Dame career top 10 for both power-play goals and shorthanded goals … Carlson needs seven PPGs to crack that ND career top-10 list (10 shy of fifth) while his four career shorthanded goals rank 11th in ND history, three back of the record shared by three players.

PP PERSONNEL: For the second consecutive season, Notre Dame must replace three graduated players from its first power-play unit: C Ben Simon (10 PPG-10 PPA), RW Jo Dusbabek (5 PPG-11 PPA) and D Tyson Fraser (2 PPG-10 PPA) … those three players combined for 40 percent of ND’s PPGs last season (17 of 43) and 60 percent of the PP points (48 of 80) … the two returners from the first PP unit are senior LW Dan Carlson (9 PPG-11 PPA) and senior RW Ryan Dolder (4 PPG-10 PPA) … top candidates to move into the first PP unit in 2000-01 include junior C David Inman, sophomore C Connor Dunlop and sophomore D Evan Nielsen … three 1999 graduates were members of the 1998-99 Irish PP unit that ranked second in the CCHA (19.1 percent): D Benoit Cotnoir (3 PPG-8 PPA), LW Aniket Dhadphale (9 PPG-5 PPA) and RW Brian Urick (6 PPG-11 PPA) … those three combined for nearly half of the Irish power-play goals in 1998-99 (18 of 38, .474) while totaling 42.9 percent of the PP points (42 of 98).

RISING TO THE TOP: Senior LW Dan Carlson is one of the top returning scorers in the CCHA, as his 35 points in 1999-2000 (17G-18A) rank sixth among current CCHA players, behind Western Michigan’s David Gove (18G-28A), Michigan State’s Adam Hall (26G-13A), Miami’s Pat Leahy (16G-22A), MSU’s Rustyn Dolyny (18G-19A) and Ferris State’s Kevin Swider (15G-21A).

YOUNG D: Notre Dame’s group of eight defensemen has combined to log just 190 career games played, compared to 419 games of experience on the blue line heading into 1998-99 … the four veteran D include senior Ryan Clark (88 GP), junior Sam Cornelius (52) and sophomores Evan Nielsen (41) and Paul Harris (9) … half of the blue-line group is comprised of freshmen, including former USA Hockey teammates Neil Komadoski and Brett Lebda, plus Tom Galvin and walk-on T.J. Mathieson.

GOOD TO BE BACK: Senior F and alternate team captain Chad Chipchase returned to action in fine form during last week’s Blue-Gold Scrimmage, with solid all-around play and the first goal of the game … Chipchase played a limited role in 1999-2000 (15 GP) due to a knee injury that ultimately require surgery in February of 2000 (he did not play in the final 19 games of his junior season).

IRON MEN: Current senior RW Ryan Dolder and senior LW Dan Carlson were the only Irish players to appear in all 42 games of 1999-2000 … Dolder takes a team-best streak of 64 consecutive games played into the Minnesota game … Carlson played in 119 of 121 games during his first three seasons (missing two while at the ’98-’99 World Juniors) and needs to appear in 34 more games to break John Schmidt’s ND record for career games played (152, ’78-’82).

TAKING IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL: During the past three seasons, the Notre Dame hockey program has sent several players on to the professional ranks, with 10 of those recent players competing in 2000-01 … D Mark Eaton?who in the summer of 1998 opted to forego his final three years of college eligibility at Notre Dame and signed a free agent contract with the Philadelphia Flyers?had a solid 1998-99 season with the Philadelphia Phantoms of the American Hockey League and played 27 games with the Flyers in 1999-2000 before being traded last week to the Nashville Predators … G Matt Eisler (’98) has joined the East Coast Hockey League’s Dayton Bombers, where his teammates include former Irish center and ’96 graduate Jamie Ling (who serves as a player assistant coach with the Bombers) … RW Brian Urick (’99) had a solid preseason camp with the Edmonton Oilers and has been assigned to the AHL’s Hamilton (Ont.) Bulldogs … LW Aniket Dhadphale (’99) currently is trying out with the AHL’s Providence (R.I.) Bruins while another ’99 graduate, D Benoit Cotnoir, was in the tryout camp of the International Hockey League’s Chicago Wolves before returning to the Mobile (Ala.) Mystics of the East Coast Hockey League (he also played in Mobile last season) … five 2000 graduates likewise are active in pro hockey … C Ben Simon was in the camp of the Atlanta Thrashers and played in several preseason games before being assigned to the IHL’s Orlando (Fla.) Solar Bears … RW Joe Dusbabek attended the San Jose Sharks preseason camp and has joined the ECHL’s Roanoke Express … D Sean Molina tried out with the Chicago Wolves and has signed on with the ECHL’s Trenton (N.J.) Titans … D Nathan Borega currently is a member of the ECHL’s Louisiana Ice Gators while D Sean Seyferth is in camp with the IHL’s Detroit Vipers.

Academic All-Americans: Notre Dame is the nation’s only Division I hockey program to produce a GTE/CoSIDA Academic All-American during each of the past four seasons (as part of the fall-winter at-large program), with C Steve Noble earning second-team honors in 1996-97 and first-team honors in ’97-’98, followed by G Forrest Karr in ’98-’99 (second team) and LW Andy Jurkowski in 1999-2000 (third team).

Balance Over Big Shot: While Notre Dame has produced just a handful of recent 20-goal scorers, the Irish featured one of the CCHA’s top-scoring fivesomes in 1999-2000, as five ND players were bunched among the CCHA’s top-50 scorers heading into the final week: junior LW Dan Carlson (finished with 17G-18A), senior RW Joe Dusbabek (8G-19A), junior RW Ryan Dolder (10G-14A), senior C Ben Simon (13G-19A) and sophomore LW/C David Inman (13G-7A, 32 GP) … only Michigan (9) headed into March with more players at 20-plus points.

Battle-Tested: ND prevailed in its 2000 CCHA playoff series with Ferris State, after a frantic regular season that saw the Irish post a 7-4 record in one-goal games while playing 10 overtime games (eight in final nine weeks). … the senior class has acquired plenty of experience in pressure-packed playoff action, as the Irish were extended to a decisive third game in the first round of the CCHA playoffs each of the past three seasons (after winning the first game each year).

Bloodlines: Four current members of the Notre Dame hockey program?junior F Brett Henning, junior LW Jon Maruk, sophomore C Connor Dunlop and freshman D Neil Komadoski?hold a unique connection, as each of their fathers enjoyed a lengthy career in the National Hockey League (see p. 39 of the 2000-01 Notre Dame mdia guide for photos from their playing days). Lorne Henning played nine seasons with the New York Islanders (’72-’81) and has spent the past 15 years as an assistant and head coach in the NHL. An original member of the Islanders, Henning compiled 73G-111A as a forward over his 543-game career and played a major role in a four-year Stanley Cup dynasty (’80-’83). Henning served as an assistant with the Islanders from ’80-84 and ’87-’94, as head coach for the Minnesota North Stars (’85-’87) and the Islanders (’94-’95), and as a Chicago Blackhawks assistant from ’95-’98 before returning in ’98-’99 to the Islanders, as associate coach.

Dennis Maruk played 14 NHL seasons?with the California Seals (’75-’76), Cleveland Barons (’76-’78), Minnesota North Stars (’78-’79, ?83-’88) and the Washington Capitols (’78-’83)?and finished as the NHL’s fourth-leading scorer in 1982 (60G-76A) while compiling 878 career points (356G-522A) in 888 games.

Blake Dunlop played 11 seasons in pro hockey (’73-’84), including NHL stints with the Minnesota North Stars (’73-’77), Philadelphia Flyers (?77-’79), St. Louis Blues (?79-’84) and Detroit Red Wings (’83-’84), while totaling 130G-274A in 550 career NHL games.

Rounding out the quartet is Neil Komadoski, Sr., who played eight NHL seasons as a defenseman with the Los Angeles Kings (’72-’78) and the St. Louis Blues (’77-’80), totaling 16G-76A and 632 penalty minutes in 501 career games.

CENTURY MEN: Senior LW Dan Carlson is on the verge of becoming the fourth ND hockey player in the last three seasons to reach 100 points, entering his final season with 35G-55A … RW Brian Urick (57G-69A) and LW Aniket Dhadphale (61G-44A) each reached 100 in the ’98-’99 season while C Ben Simon (44G-86A) reached the milestone in 1999-2000 … Carlson needs 15 goals in his final season to join Urick and center Jamie Ling (’92-’96) as the third Irish player since 1993?and 28th overall?to reach 50G-50A in his career (he needs 25G-5A to become ND’s 17th 60-60 player and first since Dave Bankoske did it from 1988-93) … a 41-point season in 2000-01 would land Carlson among ND’s top-20 career scorers (Ling, with 51G-102A, is the only post-1993 player on that list, at 13th).

Closing The Deal: Notre Dame quietly has laid claim to a lengthy streak, as the Irish head into the 2000-01 season with an unbeaten record in their previous 40 games when holding a lead at the second intermission (34-0-6, including 11-0-3 in 1999-2000) … the last time ND lost after holding a second-intermission lead was Jan. 9, 1998, in the second of three games at Alaska Fairbanks … UAF’s Sean Fraser tied the game (2-2) with a power-play goal in the third minute of the final period before Chris Kirwan converted a breakaway with 0:45 left in overtime … the Irish also are 22-2-3 during the past two seasons when leading at the first intermission (10-1-1 in 1999-2000).

CLUSTER CLUTTER: ND’s experience with the CCHA’s new cluster scheduling format in 1999-2000 yielded only a handful of weekend sweeps, as just four of the 14 series saw one team emerge with a pair of wins … three of those sweeps featured at least one close game, with Michigan sweeping the Irish in the opening week (5-3 with an empty-netter, 6-1) and Ferris State doing the same two weeks later (4-1, 4-2) … ND then needed a pair of one-goal wins to sweep Alaska Fairbanks (1-0, 3-2) before rallying to beat Western Michigan in overtime (4-3, followed by a 4-1 win).

DISCIPLINED PLAY: Since ranking as the CCHA’s most-penalized team in ’95-’96 (11.31 penalties/gm), ND has ranked as the conference’s least-penalized … the Irish averaged the fewest penalties per game by any CCHA team in ’96-’97 (8.69) and ’97-’98 (6.37) before ranking as the CCHA’s third-least penalized in ’98-’99 (8.40) … ND again was the CCHA’s least-penalized team in 1999-2000, averaging just 7.69 penalties (16.59 PIM), leading to just 5.67 opponent power-play chances per game … over the course of the past four seasons, ND has averaged an impressive 7.74 penalties per game.

Double (OT) Dip: Current Irish senior Dan Carlson turned in a rare feat during a three-week stretch of the 1999-2000 season, as the speedy left wing scored in overtime to beat both Western Michigan (4-3) and Ohio State (2-1) … that marked just the second time?and the first in 28 years? that an ND player has scored two overtime goals in the same season, as then-junior winger Paul Regan scored overtime goals in 1971-72 versus Michigan Tech (6-5) and Cornell (5-4).

FEELING A DRAFT: ND and Boston College both had four players selected in the ’97 NHL draft, most by any Division I school … the drafted players included a pair of forwards who graduated in 2000?Ben Simon (5th round, Chicago Blackhawks) and Joe Dusbabek (7th round, San Jose Sharks)?plus current seniors Jay Kopischke (8th round, L.A. Kings) and Ryan Clark (9th round, N.Y. Islanders) … four ND players have been selected in the first nine rounds of the same NHL draft just once previously, in ’75 … the 2000-01 ND hockey team includes five players that have been selected in the National Hockey League draft … in addition to Clark and Kopischke, ND’s drafted players include a pair of junior forwards who were selected in the 1999 NHL draft?David Inman (2nd round, New York Rangers) and Brett Henning (9th round, New York Islanders)?plus sophomore D Evan Nielsen (8th round, Atlanta Thrashers, 2000) … just two other teams in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association?Michigan (7) and Michigan State (6)?have more draft picks on their 2000-2001 rosters than Notre Dame.

Midwest Magic: Notre Dame continues to reap the benefits of the rapidly-improving youth hockey programs in the lower Midwest (namely Illinois and Missouri), as one-third of the current roster includes players from Illinois (6) or Missouri (2) … four of those players also are products of the USA Hockey National Team Development Program (NTDP): sophomore RW Michael Chin (Urbana, Ill.), sophomore C Connor Dunlop (St. Louis, Mo.) and first-year D Brett Lebda (Buffalo Grove, Ill.) and Neil Komadoski (Chesterfield, Mo.) … sophomore D Evan Nielsen (Evanston, Ill.) was invited to join the NTDP but returned for his senior year at The Taft School … ND’s other Illinois natives include the team’s top two returning goaltenders?junior Jeremiah Kimento (Palos Hills) and Tony Zasowski (Darien)?plus senior RW Matt Van Arkel (Richton Park). … prior to 1995, the ND hockey program had produced just eight total letterwinners from Illinois and two from Missouri.

ROAD TRIP ANYONE?: The Notre Dame hockey program again will travel plenty of miles during the 2000-01 season, as the Irish are slated to traverse the equivalent of nearly 17,000 miles in the upcoming season?after travelling nearly 18,000 in 1999-2000 (17,907, or close to three-quarters of the Earth’s diameter) … the longer trips of 2000-01 include the season-opening game versus Minnesota, a trip to Omaha for the Maverick Shootout (plus a later series with Nebraska Omaha), an upper-peninsula visit to Lake Superior, the RPI Christmas Tournament in Troy, N.Y., a pair of games versus Yale in New Haven, Conn., and a return journey to Fairbanks, Alaska (ND’s third trip to UAF in the last four seasons) … the 1999-2000 campaign likewise included trips to Omaha and Fairbanks, plus a pair of visits to tournaments in Denver, Colo., a Thanksgiving tournament at New Hampshire and an upper-peninsula visit to Northern Michigan … here’s a breakdown of the 2000-01 trips, based on average roundtrip land mileage:

Minneapolis, Minn. 1,022
Omaha, Neb. 1,108
Oxford, Ohio 420
Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. 870
Omaha, Neb. 1,108
Troy, N.Y. 1,736
Kalamazoo, Mich. 150
Ann Arbor, Mich. 354
New Haven, Conn. 1,552
Columbus, Ohio 530
Ann Arbor, Mich. 354
Fairbanks, Alaska 7,290
Kalamazoo, Mich. 150
Total 16,644

ROAD WARRIORS: Despite a 5-9-6 road record in 1999-2000 (3-6-6 on opponent ice), ND finished 3-4-3 in its final 10 road games and has turned in its share of big road wins during the past few seasons … in fact, the Irish posted wins in 22 different road arenas during the first five seasons of the Dave Poulin era (20 in the past three seasons). … the ’97-’98 and ’98-’99 seasons saw the Irish post road wins over all 10 CCHA opponents, including a 4-2 CCHA playoff win at Michigan and wins over Ohio State at the OSU Ice Arena and the off-campus Columbus Fairgrounds Coliseum (the Irish last season added a win over OSU at yet another Columbus venue, with the 2-1 OT win at Value City Arena) … ND also owns three road wins over Wisconsin during the Poulin era, at different sites: Milwaukee’s Bradley Center, the Dane County Coliseum and the Kohl Center … the Irish own road wins in the Poulin era at Mankato State, St. Cloud State, Northeastern and North Dakota?plus a 5-5 tie at Boston College and a pair of 2-2 ties last season at the Omaha Civic Auditorium and Northern Michigan’s Berry Events Center … finally, Notre Dame has posted recent neutral-site wins at the University of Minnesota (vs. Brown), the University of Denver (vs. Union) and the University of New Hampshire (vs. Vermont).

CLUSTER PARTNERS, PART II: The rotating CCHA cluster schedule has yielded four games for the Irish in 2000-01 versus Ohio State, Miami and Western Michigan?with two vs. the other eight squads in the 28-game schedule … the following CCHA teams will not visit the Joyce Center in 2000-01: Alaska Fairbanks, Lake Superior, Michigan and Nebraska Omaha … the Irish will not make regular-season trips in 2000-01 to Bowing Green, Ferris State, Northern Michigan and Michigan State … ND’s 1999-2000 cluster partners were UAF, MSU and UNO, with the 2001-02 partners to include Bowling Green, Ferris State and Michigan.

2000-01 Notre Dame Personnel Breakdown

Top Returnees (yr., pos., ht./wt. … 1999-2000 stats)

  • Dan Carlson (Sr., LW, 5-9/180, 17-18?35, 42 GP) ND’s top scorer in 1999-2000, career: 35-55?90, 119 GP
  • Ryan Dolder (Sr., RW, 6-0/195, 10-14?24, 42 GP) Former walk-on now team captain, career: 18-18?36, 103 GP
  • David Inman (Jr., C/LW, 6-1/205, 13-7?20, 32 GP) 1999 second-round draft pick (N.Y. Rangers)
  • Tony Zasowski (So., G, 5-11/195, 13-9-6, 2.56, .901) Set Irish GAA record, allowed 0-2 goals in 17 of 27 starts
  • Evan Nielsen (So., D, 6-2/210, 4-10?14, 41 GP) 2000 eighth-round NHL draft pick (Atlanta)
  • Connor Dunlop (So., C, 5-10/180, 3-13?16, 35 GP) Member of 1999-2000 USA Junior National Team
  • Ryan Clark (Sr., D, 6-4/230, 1-3?4, 36 GP) 88 career games played
  • Michael Chin (So., RW, 6-2/210, 6-7?13, 37 GP) Recorded 4G-5A in final 15 games of 1999-2000 season
  • Chad Chipchase (Sr., LW, 6-0/200, 0-0?0, 15 GP) Jr. season hampered by knee injury, career: 15-8?23, 94 GP

Top Players Lost (Yr., Pos., 1999-2000 Stats)

  • Ben Simon (Sr., C/LW, 13-19?32) ND’s 2nd-leading career scorer since ’92 (44-86?130, 144 GP)
  • Tyson Fraser (Sr., D, 3-11?14) Key PP component, alt. captain, career: 8-49?57, 131 GP
  • Joe Dusbabek (Sr., RW, 8-19?27) Career: 26-49?75, 127 GP
  • Sean Molina (Sr., D, 1-8?9) 148 career GP (4th in ND history)
  • Nathan Borega (Sr., D, 1-3?4) 6-2, 225 pounds … alternate captain … 140 career GP

Top Newcomers (all freshmen, except for Marukjunior)

  • Neil Komadoski D 6-1/215 Chesterfield, MO/USA Under-18 National Team
  • Rob Globke RW 6-2/200 West Bloomfield, MI/USA Under-18 Nat’l Team
  • Tom Galvin D 5-9/185 Miller Place, NY/Waterloo Blackhawks (USHL)
  • Aaron Gill C 6-0/170 Rochester, MN/Rochester Mustangs (USHL)
  • Brett Lebda D 5-10/195 Buffalo Grove, IL/USA Under-18 National Team
  • Jon Maruk LW 5-9/180 Eden Prairie, MN/Twin City Vulcans (USHL)/Alaska Anchorage

WHO’S BACK: Notre Dame returns 16 of 24 letterwinners from the 1999-2000 team that went 16-18-8, finished fifth in the CCHA and advanced to the CCHA semifinals … the Irish also return junior D Sam Cornelius (lettered in ’98-’99, 16 GP last season) and sophomore D Paul Harris (9 GP last season) … all told, ND’s 15 returning skaters accounted for two-thirds of the goals and 60 percent of the total offense in 1999-2000 … ND returns five of its top-seven scorers from 1999-2000, including its leading scorer in senior LW Dan Carlson (17G-18A, 9 PPG, 5 GWG) … senior RW and team captain Ryan Dolder (10G-14) was ND’s fourth-leading scorer last season, followed by junior C David Inman (13G-7A) and sophomore C Connor Dunlop (3G-13A) … Inman and Dunlop combine to give ND two of the top young centers in the CCHA while junior Brett Henning (3G-7A) could shift from C to LW this season … including Henning, ND has six veterans who could play at left wing?with that group having a combined 14 years of Division I experience … other top candidates at LW include seniors Chad Chipchase (15 GP during injury-plagued 1999-2000 season) and Jay Kopischke (6G-5A), with Chipchase also capable of playing at C or RW … for the second consecutive season, ND must replace a four-year regular at RW (Joe Dusbabek, with Brian Urick moving on after ’98-’99) … other top returners at RW include sophomore Michael Chin (6G-7A) and senior Matt Van Arkel (4G-1A) … just two 1999-2000 letterwinners return in the D: 6-4, 230-pound senior Ryan Clark and sophomore Evan Nielsen (4G-10A), who could fill the power-play point role filled the past two seasons by Benoit Cotnoir (’99) and Tyson Fraser (’00) … Clark and Nielsen skated together in 30 games last season (including the final 22) … all three Irish Gs are back, led by sophomore Tony Zasowski (ND record 2.56 GAA, 13-9-6 record, .901 save pct.) and junior Jeremiah Kimento (3-8-2 career record, 2.88 GAA, .890 save pct.).

WHO’S GONE: With two of the top-three scorers lost to graduation, ND is one of several CCHA teams looking to receive boosts in goalscoring from other players … the Irish also must replace four of their top-six defenseman from last season: Nathan Borega, Tyson Fraser, Sean Molina and Sean Seyferth … the 6-2, 225-pound Borgea (70 PIM last season) was a four-year enforcer with the Irish while Fraser’s subtle skills included serving as the point man on the Irish power play (he had 3G-11A last season, 7G-49A for his career) … Molina (1G-8A in 1999-2000) appeared in 148 career games (tied for 4th in ND history) and played a role on the second PP unit in 1999-2000 … the graduated D foursome combined to appear in 486 career games (140 for Borega, 131 for Fraser, 67 for Seyferth) … top losses from the forward line include C and team captain Ben Simon and RW Joe Dusbabek … Simon’s 1999-2000 season included 13G-19A and a team-best 10 PPGs … he averaged nearly a point per game in his career (44G-85A, 143 GP) and is ND’s second-leading career scorer since the Irish rejoined the CCHA in 1992 … Dusbabek (8G-19A in 1999-2000) totaled 26G-49A in 126 career games … Academic All-American Andy Jurkowski (5G-8A) made a successful transition from D to LW as senior in 1999-2000 while C Troy Bagne rounds out the 2000 graduates (he had 2G-3A in 1999-2000, 5G-10A in 123 career games).

WHO’S NEW: ND’s fifth consecutive highly-regarded recruiting class includes three products of the USA Hockey National Team Development Program: D Neil Komadoski (Chesterfield, Mo.) and Brett Lebda (Buffalo Grove, Ill) and RW Rob Globke (West Bloomfield, Mass.) … the other two freshmen signees include C Aaron Gill (Rochester, Minn./Rochester Mustangs) and D Tom Galvin (Miller Place, NY./Waterloo Blackhawks) … one other newcomer is junior LW Jon Maruk, who played two seasons at Alaska Anchorage before scoring 32G-42A in 71 games last season with the Twin City Vulcans (which won the 1999-2000 national junior-A title) … Globke is known for strong wide-reaching offensive skills, after ranking as the third-leading scorer on the 1999-2000 USA Under-18 National Team (15G-21A) … Gill is a strong all-around centerman who totaled 26G-23A in 55 games with the Mustangs last season … the 6-1, 205-pound Komadoski?who could help replace the imposing presence of graduated Nathan Borega (6-2, 225)?made a name for himself as the top enforcer on the USA Under-18 National Team and is considered one of the nation’s top prospects for the 2001 NHL draft … Lebda is known for his smooth skating and offensive ability while Galvin is a steady performer with strong all-around skills (both could play roles on the power play).

Notre Dame Hockey
By The Numbers


Career minutes played by goaltender Lance Madson (1986-90)

First varsity hockey season of the modern area

First varsity hockey season 1580

WJVA radio (AM) is scheduled to broadcast most of the 2000-01 Notre Dame hockey season

Career games played in the NHL by Irish head coach Dave Poulin

Career coaching wins by Lefty Smith, in 19 seasons at Notre Dame

Notre Dame record for career games played, set by defenseman John Schmidt (1978-82)

Shutout streak posted by Tony Zasowski, spanning 1999-2000 games versus New Hampshire and Michigan State (2)

ND record for career goals, set by Greg Meredith (1976-80) after scoring twice in his final game to best (see new note) …

Previous Irish career goals record, set by Eddie Bumbacco (1970-74)

Consecutive games played by Andy Jurkowski, from 1998-2000

All-time Notre Dame hockey letterwinners from the state of Minnesota

Pick used by New York Rangers to select Notre Dame’s David Inman in second round of 1999 NHL Draft

Saves posted by Matt Eisler in 3-0 win over Ohio State on Oct. 25, 1996 (most ever in a Notre Dame shutout)

PRESEASON CCHA POLLS: In the fall of 1999, the Central Collegiate Hockey Association coaches correctly predicted the regular-season finishes of Michigan (1st), Michigan State (2nd), Northern Michigan (3rd, ended tied for 3rd), Miami (9th, ended tied for 9th), Western Michigan (10th, ended tied for 9th) and Alaska Fairbanks (12th) while the CCHA media poll correctly predicted the finishes of NMU, Notre Dame (5th), Miami, WMU and UAF.

Heading into 2000-2001, the polls both have picked Michigan and Michigan State to repeat at the top spots. Michigan received 11 of 12 first-place votes in the coaches poll but the Spartans garnered 19 first-place votes and 467 voting points in the media poll to edge Michigan (which had 20 first-place votes and 460 points).

Nebraska-Omaha was picked third by the coaches, followed by Lake Superior, Notre Dame, Miami, Ferris State, Northern Michigan, Bowling Green, and Ohio State?while Western Michigan and Alaska-Fairbanks were predicted to finish out of the playoffs.

The media poll tabbed Lake Superior and Northern Michigan in third and fourth, followed by UNO, which received one first-place vote. Notre Dame, Bowling Green and Ferris State were next in the media poll, followed by Miami (which also received a first-place ballot), OSU, WMU and UAF.

CCHA Coaches Poll (1st-place votes) Points
1. Michigan (11) 143
2. Michigan State (1) 132
3. Nebraska-Omaha 106
4. Lake Superior 97
5. Notre Dame 92
6. Miami 79
7. Ferris State 74
8. Northern Michigan 71
9. Bowling Green 49
10. Ohio State 44
11. Western Michigan 34
12. Alaska-Fairbanks 15
CCHA Media Poll (1st-place votes) Points
1. Michigan State (19) 467
2. Michigan (20) 460
3. Lake Superior 350
4. Northern Michigan 343
5. Nebraska-Omaha (1) 315
6. Notre Dame 270
7. Bowling Green 222
8. Ferris State 202
9. Miami (1) 183
10. Ohio State 163
11. Western Michigan 153
12. Alaska-Fairbanks 70