Jan. 16, 2010
East Lansing, Mich. – Over the years, a trip to Munn Arena has never been fun for the Notre Dame hockey team as Michigan State has dominated the Irish at their on-campus home. On Saturday night, for the first 35 minutes it looked like more of the same as the Spartans jumped out to a 3-0 lead on goals by Nick Sucharski, Daultan Leveille and Matt Grassi.
From there, Notre Dame took over, paced by team captain Ryan Thang’s two power-play goals, a power-play goal from Calle Ridderwall and an even-strength marker from Ben Ryan to take a 4-3 lead with just over 15 minutes left in the game.
The Spartans would get a late power-play goal of their own from Derek Grant with 2:21 left in the game to tie it 4-4 and send it to overtime where the score would remain tied. In the CCHA shootout, Michigan State picked up the extra point in the standings with a 1-0 win on a goal by Andrew Rowe.
The overtime tie gives Notre Dame a 10-10-6 overall record and moves the Irish to 6-7-5-2 in the CCHA, good for 25 points in the standings. Michigan State goes to 15-7-4 on the year and 10-4-4-1 in conference play, good for 35 points. The tie also extended the Irish unbeaten streak to eight (5-0-3) versus the Spartans dating back to the 2007-08 campaign.
Since Notre Dame returned to the CCHA in 1992-93, the Spartans are 20-3-3 versus the Irish at Munn Arena with the Irish being 1-0-2 in their last three trips to East Lansing.
“We really put ourselves in a big hole, falling behind 3-0. Brad Phillips did a good job coming in and giving us a chance to win the game,” said Notre Dame head coach Jeff Jackson.
“It was good to see us respond. Last night we were down 2-0. It was a road game, we battled back and came out of it, battled back to go ahead and then they got a nice power-play goal to tie it. Regardless it was a multiple-point weekend for us that we needed to have.”
The Spartans wasted little time taking the lead as they got on the scoreboard just 1:06 into the game as Sucharski picked up his fifth goal of the season.
Corey Tropp dumped the puck deep into the left wing corner where Derek Grant picked it up. The freshman left wing fed the puck out of the corner to Sucharski at the bottom of the left wing circle where he snapped it past Irish goaltender Mike Johnson, beating him over his glove and inside the right post.
The lead would go to 2-0 in the first period when Leveille came through the left circle and threw a shot on goal. The shot handcuffed Johnson, just getting in under his blocker at 16:22 of the period. The goal was Leveille’s fifth of the season and Tropp picked up his second assist on the play.
The Spartans improved their lead to 3-0 at the 4:30 mark of the second period when defenseman Matt Grassi’s shot from the right point through a screen got past Johnson for Grassi’s second marker of the year. At that point, Irish head coach Jeff Jackson pulled the freshman goaltender in favor of junior Brad Phillips, who made his first appearance since Nov. 28. Johnson gave up three goals on 10 shots in 24:30 of playing time.
Notre Dame would use the power play to get back in the game with a pair of man-advantage goals in the second period.
Ridderwall who leads the CCHA in power-play goals picked up his ninth of the season and 13th overall at 12:42 to cut the lead to 3-1. Freshman Kyle Palmieri wrapped the puck around the boards from the left side to the right where defenseman Kyle Lawson grabbed it near the right circle and moved the puck in front to Ridderwall who was all alone in front of goaltender Bobby Jarosz. He out waited the senior goaltender and tucked it inside the right post to get Notre Dame on the scoreboard.
Notre Dame would take advantage of a crazy bounce off the boards to cut the lead to 3-2. With the Irish on their fifth power-play of the night, Nick Larson came up with the puck on the left boards and passed it to Ian Cole at the right point. Cole boomed a shot that missed the net and hit a crack in the boards and caromed in front, hitting Thang in the skate before deflecting behind Jarosz. The goal came at 18:22 and was Thang’s third of the weekend and sixth of the season.
The Irish got the game-tying goal just 37 seconds into the third period when Brett Blatchford fed Ben Ryan at the bottom of the right circle. The junior popped a quick shot past Jarosz for his fifth of the season to make it 3-3.
Notre Dame’s third power-play goal of the night came Zach Golembiewski was given a five-minute major for hitting from behind. Thang would again capitalize on the opportunity at 4:51 when he whipped a shot past Jarosz from the slot for his fourth goal of the weekend and seventh of the season.
“Ryan Thang was outstanding this weekend. I thought our seniors really stepped up and were outstanding in both games,” said Jackson.
From there, Phillips protected the lead until the 17:39 mark with Grant drilled a rebound from the bottom of the left wing circle past the junior net minder to tie the game at 4-4. The goal was his ninth of the season and set up overtime and the shootout.
Notre Dame out shot Michigan State, 32-30, in the game. Phillips stopped 19 of 20 shots during his 40:30 of playing time. Jarosz had 28 stops for the Spartans.
The Irish gained four points in the standings on the weekend and will look to continue their recent strong play when they visit Lake Superior on Jan. 22-23 in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.
GAME SUMMARY 1 2 3 OT - FNotre Dame (10-10-6/6-7-5-2) 0 2 2 0 - 4#6/#7 Michigan State (15-7-4/10-4-4-1) 2 1 1 0 - 4
First Period: MSU: Nick Sucharski 5 (Derek Grant, Corey Tropp), 1:06; MSU: Daultan Leveille 5 (Tropp), 16:22.
Penalties: ND: 1 for 2 minutes; MSU: 2 for 4 minutes.
Penalties: ND: 1 for 2 minutes; MSU: 4 for 8 minutes.
Penalties: ND: 3 for 6 minutes; MSU: 3 for 17 minutes.
Overtime: No Scoring.
Penalties: ND: 1 for 2 minutes; MSU: 0 for 0 minutes.
Shootout:MSU - Corey Tropp (saved by Phillips)ND - Calle Ridderwall (stopped by Jarosz)MSU - Andrew Rowe (score)ND - Ryan Thang (stopped by Jarosz)MSU - Dean Chelios (poke check by Phillips)ND - Dan Kissel (save by Jarosz)
Shots On Goal:Notre Dame 8 - 13 - 10 - 1 - 32Michigan State 7 - 10 - 12 - 1 - 30
Goaltender Saves:ND: Mike Johnson (24:30) 5 - 2 - x - x - 7 Brad Phillips (40:30) x - 7 - 11 - 1 - 19MSU: Bobby Jarosz (65:00) 8 - 11 - 8 - 1- 28
Power Plays:ND: 3 for 7MSU: 1 for 4