Oct. 13, 2006
Notre Dame, Ind. – The Notre Dame hockey team entered the 2006-07 campaign on Thursday night looking to pick up where they left off last season with a strong second-half record.
After a sluggish start over the first minutes of the opening period, the Irish found their legs and got started on that goal. Senior goaltender David Brown made 36 saves and got offensive help from sophomore Garrett Regan and junior Mark Van Guilder as both scored two goals on the night on the way to a 6-1 win over Minnesota State at the Joyce Center. Senior Josh Sciba and freshman Ryan Thang added single goals in the win while Jon Kalinski broke Brown’s shutout bid with a short-handed goal early in the third period.
The opening-night win was the first for the Irish icers since Oct. 10, 2003 when they knocked off Ohio State, 5-2, in Columbus, Ohio and the first time Notre Dame won its first home game since the 2002-03 season.
Brown was the story all night for the Irish as he made 13 big saves in the first period while Minnesota State forced the attack and had Notre Dame on its heels for the first 10 minutes.
“It was a good start for us,” said Brown following the game. “I liked getting a lot of shots, it helps you get in the groove and get into the game.”
Sciba, Notre Dame’s goal-scoring leader last season, picked up where he left off last year, when his shot through a screen from the right point on the power play went through a screen and beat Maverick goaltender Dan Tormey. Wes O’Neill and Van Guilder picked up assists on the goal.
The Irish turned the tables in the second period and took the attack to Minnesota State, scoring three goals in the first 4:20 of the period and four overall to build a 5-0 lead after two periods.
“I really didn’t have to say anything to them between periods,” said head coach Jeff Jackson. “We got out played and out hustled in the first 10 minutes. I didn’t have to say anything, they knew what they had to do.”
Regan and Jason Paige combined on the eventual game winner just 44 seconds into the middle period. The duo double-teamed a Maverick defenseman behind the net and Paige came away with the puck and tried to tuck it in on Tormey. The big goaltender made the save, but Regan was there to stuff the puck in.
“Jason (Paige) and I worked the puck low behind the net and Jason made a nice play to get the shot on goal,” explained Regan. “Their goalie made a nice save and I just grabbed the puck and wrapped it around the post for the first one.”
Regan would make it 3-0 less than four minutes later when he took a drop pass from defenseman Noah Babin and one-timed a shot from the top of the left-wing circle for his second goal of the night at 3:20.
Van Guilder got his first goal of the season one minute later at 4:20 when he teamed with Thang and Sciba to cycle the puck out of the left wing corner. Thang slid a pass out of the corner to center and he fired the puck high over Tormey to give Notre Dame a 4-0 lead.
The junior from Roseville, Minn., capped his three-point night at 8:24 when he redirected a perfect cross-rink pass from freshman Kevin Deeth, deflected the puck from the doorstep past Tormey for his second goal of the night for a 5-0 lead at the second intermission.
Minnesota State broke up Brown’s shutout bid at 3:18 of the third with Notre Dame on the power play. Brown came out of his net and tried to catch the Mavericks in a line change with a long pass that was intercepted by Travis Morin just inside the Irish blue line. Morin moved in on Brown and the Irish goaltender made the first stop but Kalinski was there to fire the puck home cutting the lead to 5-1.
Jackson took the blame for the errant pass.
“I’ll take the blame for that goal,” said Jackson with a smile. “We’ve been working on catching teams in a line change and we had two forwards at their blue line and he just didn’t get enough on it.”
The Irish closed the scoring at 6:48 when Thang picked up his first collegiate goal off a pair of great passes from O’Neill and freshman Dan Kissel. O’Neill broke up a Maverick offensive rush and moved the puck ahead to Kissel in the neutral zone. Kissel carried the puck toward the goal, pulling the defenseman towards him, sliding the puck to Thang who was racing down the right wing towards the net. The freshman from Edina, Minn., fired the shot over Tormey for the final of 6-1.
On the night, Minnesota State outshot Notre Dame by a 37-28 margin. Tormey finished with 22 saves in the game. Minnesota State was 0-for-6 on the power play while the Irish were 1-for-10.
The two teams meet again in Mankato, Minn., at the Midwest Wireless Civic Center in a game that will start at 7:07 p.m. (CDT).
** Notre Dame is now 20-17-2 in season-opening games. The Irish are 21-17-1 all-time in home openers.
**Three Notre Dame freshmen got in the scoring column in their first collegiate game. Ryan Thang collected a goal and an assist in the game while Kevin Deeth and Dan Kissel each collected assists in the game.
Summary: 1 2 3 FMinnesota State (0-1-0) 0 0 1 1Notre Dame (1-0-0) 1 4 1 6
First Period: ND: Josh Sciba 1 (Wes O'Neill, Mark Van Guilder), PPG, 14:05.Penalties: MSU: 3 for 6 minutes; ND: 1 for 2 minutes.
Second Period: ND: Garrett Regan 1 (Jason Paige), 00:44; ND: Regan 2 (Noah Babin, Paige), 3:20; ND: Van Guilder 1 (Ryan Thang, Sciba), 4:20; ND: Van Guilder 2 (Kevin Deeth, Erik Condra), 8:24.Penalties: MSU: 4 for 8 minutes; ND: 3 for 6 minutes.
Third Period: MSU: Jon Kalinski 1 (Travis Morin), SHG, 3:18; ND: Thang 1 (Dan Kissel, O'Neill), 6:48.Penalties: MSU: 3 for 6 minutes; ND: 2 for 4 minutes.
Shots on Goal:Minnesota State 13 - 11 - 13 - 37Notre Dame: 10 - 11 - 7 - 28
Saves: Minnesota State: Dan Tormey (60:00) 9 - 7 - 6 - 22Notre Dame: David Brown (60:00) 10 - 11 - 7 - 36
Power Plays:Minnesota State: 0 for 6Notre Dame: 1 for 10