Nov. 12, 2004
Kalamazoo, Mich – Third-period goals by Noah Babin and Evan Rankin wiped out a 2-0 Western Michigan lead to give the Notre Dame Fighting Irish a 2-2 overtime time with the Broncos at Lawson Arena on Friday night.
Mike Erickson scored a pair of goals for the Broncos.
The tie was the second consecutive for the Irish and the fourth of the season as they go to 1-5-4 overall and 0-4-3 in CCHA play. Western Michigan is now 4-4-1 on the year and 2-4-1 in league play.
The Broncos dominated the opening period, out shooting the Irish by a 17-10 margin, but thanks to goaltender David Brown, Notre Dame trailed by just one at the end of the first period.
The Broncos got on the scoreboard at 4:51 when Mike Erickson scored off a scramble in front. Defenseman Jim McNamara fired a shot from the right point that Brown stopped. The rebound went to Brent Walton who lost control of the puck in front. Before Brown could fall on it, Erickson poked it in for his third goal of the season.
After a scoreless second period, the Broncos built a 2-0 as Erickson notched his second of the night just 1:06 into the period. The junior left wing was the third man into the Irish zone and took a drop pass from Brent Walton. He fired a shot from between the hash marks that Brown stopped but the rebound came right out to Erickson who flipped it over the Notre Dame goaltender for his fourth of the season.
Notre Dame finally broke through on Bronco goaltender Dan Bellissimo at 4:56. Babin kept a Western Michigan clearing pass in at the blue line and walked in on Bellissimo. His low wrist shot beat the freshman goaltender to his glove side to cut the lead to 2-1. The goal was the second of the year for Babin.
Rankin got his game-tying goal off a three-on-one rush. The freshman right wing came out of the penalty box as defenseman Dan VeNard cleared the puck out of the Irish zone. Rankin picked up the puck in the neutral zone and carried it in to the Bronco zone. Using Tim Wallace and Brock Sheahan as decoys he ripped a slap shot from the right wing circle past Bellissimo at 7:43 for his third goal of the year.
The goal was sweet for Rankin as he grew up in Portage, Mich., a neighboring town of Kalamazoo and learned to skate at Lawson Arena growing up.
The Irish poured it on, but couldn’t get another goal as they out shot Western Michigan, 17-6, in the final period and 38-30 in the game.
Western had three shots in overtime and came close to pulling out a win when defenseman Ryan Mahrle ripped a shot off the post with just over a minute left in the extra session. The Irish had two shots in overtime.
On the night, Bellissimo stopped 36 of 38 shots while Brown was making 28 saves for the Irish. Neither team could score on the power play as both squads were 0-for-5 on the night.
The two teams will close out the weekend series on Saturday night at Lawson Arena. Faceoff is set for 8:05 p.m.
GAME SUMMARY 1 2 3 OT F
Notre Dame (1-5-4/0-4 -3) 0 0 2 0 2
Western Michigan (4-4-1/2-4-1) 1 0 1 0 2
First Period: WMU: Mike Erickson 3 (Brett Walton, Jim McNamara), 4:51.
Penalties: ND: 3 for 6 minutes; WMU: 2 for 4 minutes.
Second Period: No Scoring.
Penalties: ND: 1 for 2 minutes; WMU: 1 for 2 minutes.
Penalties: ND: 1 for 2 minutes; WMU: 2 for 4 minutes.
Overtime: No Scoring.
Penalties: ND 1 for 2; WMU: 0 for 0 minutes.
Shots On Goal:
Notre Dame 10 – 9 – 17 – 2 – 38
Western Michigan 17 – 4 – 6 – 3 – 30
ND – David Brown (65:00) 16 – 4 – 5 – 3 – 28
WMU – Daniel Bellissimo (65:00) 10 – 9 – 15 – 2 – 36