Sept. 25, 2002
Notre Dame, Ind. – For Notre Dame hockey head coach Dave Poulin, Thursday, Sept., 26 is a day he’s been waiting for since the middle of last March when the Irish saw their late season run end at Joe Louis Arena. Thursday is the day that he and his coaching staff will return to the ice for the first official practice of the new season.
“We’re ready to get started on Thursday,” said Poulin.
“It’s important that we start at the same level we ended last season. The way we played in the playoffs at Nebraska-Omaha is the way we want to start this season and then just get better from there. A great start early in the year can provide momentum for the rest of the year.”
The Irish will hit the Joyce Center ice at 3:30 p.m. to begin preparations for the regular-season opener on Oct. 11 at Minnesota-Duluth.
Notre Dame returns 20 monogram winners from last season’s 16-17-5 team that tied for seventh in the CCHA. Thursday’s practice will also be the first time the Irish coaches will have a chance to see their six incoming freshman – forwards Matt Amado, Tony Gill, Tim Wallace and Mike Walsh, defenseman Chris Trick and goaltender Rory Walsh – in action with the entire team.
Irish hockey fans can get their first glimpse of the team in action on Sunday, Sept., 29 when the team plays its annual Blue-Gold game to benefit the Coaches Foundation. That game begins at 4:00 p.m. at the Joyce Center and admission is free.
Notre Dame will then play its lone preseason game on Friday, Oct. 4 when the Irish play host to the University of Toronto at 7:05 p.m. The home opener for the Irish comes on Friday, Oct. 18 when the open CCHA play with a visit from the Western Michigan Broncos at 7:05 p.m.