Jan. 29, 2000
Fairbanks, Alaska – Sophomore center David Inman converted twice on the power play but Alaska Fairbanks rallied for two goals in the final five minutes, as the Irish and Nanooks played to a 3-3 tie in Central Collegiate Hockey Association action Saturday night at the Carlson Center.
Notre Dame (11-13-6, 8-5-5 CCHA) heads into next week’s series at Ohio State just four points out of third place, a spot currently shared by slumping Michigan State (12-6-1) and surging Lake Superior (12-7-1). MSU dropped a 3-2 overtime game at sixth-place Western Michigan (8-9-3) while LSSU posted a 3-1 home win over ninth-place Miami (7-8-3). Northern Michigan (13-5-1) edged into second place with a 3-2 win at 10th-place Bowling Green (7-11-0) while Nebraska-Omaha (7-8-5) moved into a tie for sixth thanks to a 5-2 win at Ferris State (8-10-2), dropping the Bulldogs into eighth. Saturday’s other game saw Ohio State (4-12-2) keep its hopes alive for one of the 10 CCHA playoff spots, following a 1-1 tie at league leader Michigan (14-4-1).
Alaska Fairbanks (5-17-2, 3-16-1) also kept its slim playoff hopes alive, thanks to a 4-on-4 goal and a power-play score in the lategoing.
Notre Dame had managed just five first-period goals in its previous nine away games this season but jumped out to a 1-0 lead on Saturday behind the fourth goal of the season from junior left wing Jay Kopischke. UAF junior right wing Ryan Reinheller tied the game with a power-play goal later in the first period before Inman converted his man-up goals midway through the second period and early in the third.
Both teams totaled 24 shots on goal, with Irish freshman Tony Zasowski making 21 saves while allowing just one even-strength goal.
Each team had solid scoring chances in the final minute of overtime. UAF turned the puck over in its own end and junior left wing Dan Carlson quickly set up senior right wing Joe Dusbabek from the left circle, but UAF freshman Lance Mayes made the save.
Then, with the clock ticking under 0:07, Reinheller got free in the slot but Zasowski made the left-pad save.
The much-traveled Irish departed Fairbanks immediately following the game (11:00 p.m. flight), with the ensuing 14-hour trip including stops in Anchorage, Seattle, Cincinnati and South Bend (arrive back at campus at 5:00 p.m. EST on Sunday).
* Freshman RW Michael Chin picked up his second assist of the weekend, after sending a shot from the right circle … the puck squirted loose in the crease area, with Kopischke alertly wristing a shot from the edge of the left circle into the left side of the net (2:41).
* Sophomore C Bobby Andrews and sophomore D Aaron Grosul picked up the assists on UAF’s tying goal later in the first period, with Reinheller skating towards the top of the left circle before drilling a shot over Zasowski’s left shoulder and into the upper corner of the far right post (14:27).
* The Irish retook the lead on the power play midway through the second period … freshman C Connor Dunlop moved the puck to senior D Sean Molina, who sent a shot on goal from the top of the slot … Inman was stationed at the right side of the crease and lifted the deflection into the open right side of the net (12:42).
* Inman’s team-leading 11th goal of the season padded the Irish lead early in the third period … Chin collected the puck near the left corner and tucked behind the net before sliding a pass across the top of the crease … Inman again was well-positioned and lifted a shot into the left side of the net before UAF freshman G Lance Mayes had time to recover (1:05).
* Senior LW Kevin McNeill ignited the UAF comeback with an unassisted goal at the 15:34 mark … McNeill broke down the middle and split the Irish defense with several tough moves before beating Zasowski for the 4-on-4 score (his fourth goal of the season).
* Freshman C Blaine Bablitz set up the game-tying goal, with sophomore C Bobby Andrews sending home a low power-play shot from the center of the blue line (18:05).
NOTES: Kopischke’s four goals this season are double his total from the past two seasons combined (2) … he has 4G-4A in his last 14 games … Chin has 3G-3A in his last 11 games … Molina extended his career-best season point total to eight (1G-7A) … the tie ended ND’s seven-game winning streak vs. UAF (the Irish are 10-2-1 in the last 13 meetings of the series) and halted ND’s three-game winning streak (longest since Jan. 18, 1999) … 30 of ND’s 72 goals have come on the PP this season … 13 of ND’s last 20 games have been decided by 0-1 goals (5-3-5 in those games) … ND is 24-0-4 over the past two seasons when leading at the second intermission (8-0-1 this season) … ND’s 21 CCHA points this season include 14 in the first games of a league series (6-2-2) but just seven in the second games (2-5-3) … Zasowski has allowed just 25 even-strength goals in 19 games played this season (including just five in his last seven appearances) … Inman has 3G-2A since returning from the World Junior Championship (eight games played) … ND has scored PPGs in each of the last four games (7-for-29 PP in those games, .241) but the Irish also have allowed PPGs in six straight games (28-for-37 penalty kill in that stretch, .757) … Inman recorded the third two-goal game of his career and the fourth by an ND player this season (he had two vs. Union while Ben Simon scored twice vs. UMass and Carlson twice vs. WMU).
NOTRE DAME (11-13-6, 8-7-5 CCHA) 1 1 1 0 – 3
ALASKA FAIRBANKS (5-17-2, 3-16-1 CCHA) 1 0 2 0 – 3
1st: ND 1. Kopischke 4 (Chin) 2:41, UAF 2. Reinheller 3 (Andrews, Grosul), PP, 14:27.
2nd: ND 2. Inman 10 (Molina, Dunlop), PP, 12:42.
3rd: ND 3. Inman 11 (Chin), PP, 1:05, UAF 2. McNeill 4 (unassisted) 15:34, UAF 3. Andrews 9 (Bablitz), PP, 18:05.
Shots: ND 7-7-9-1/24, UAF 9-7-7-1/24.
Saves: ND (Zasowski) 8-7-5-1/21. UAF (Mayes) 6-6-8-1/21.
Power Play: ND 2-for-6, UAF 2-for-4.
Penalties: ND 6 for 12:00, UAF 8 for 16:00.