Senior left wing Nick Larson began his professional hockey career on April 13 with the Peoria Rivermen in the American Hockey League.

Irish Return Home To Close Out CCHA Regular Season Versus Bowling Green

Feb. 27, 2013

Notre Dame, Ind. –

Notre Dame Hockey Game NotesGet Acrobat Reader

– The Teams: #12/#11 Notre Dame (19-12-3/15-8-3-2) vs. Bowling Green (13-16-5/10-13-3-1)

– The Games: Friday, March 1, 2013 – Compton Family Ice Arena (5,022) – 7:35 p.m. Saturday, March 2, 2013 – Compton Family Ice Arena (5,022) – 7:05 p.m.

– Broadcast Information: Radio: Notre Dame’s series versus Bowling Green can be heard live on Real Country 99.9 FM in South Bend and at Darin Pritchett, the voice of the Irish, will call the action.

– Internet: Audio/Video: Live audio and video streaming for the Bowling Green series is available on the Notre Dame website at free of charge. Statistics: Livestats can be found at GameTracker, or Twitter: Follow Irish hockey on Twitter at ND_hockey.

END OF AN ERA: Notre Dame and Bowling Green meet this weekend for the final time in regular-season action as members of the Central Collegiate Hockey Association as the conference comes to an end this season. The two teams will meet on March 1-2, 2013 at the Compton Family Ice Arena. Friday’s game has a 7:35 p.m. start time while Saturday’s game will drop the puck at 7:05 p.m. Saturday will be Notre Dame’s Senior Night as the five-man senior class and their families will be honored prior to the start of the game. The Irish come into the weekend having clinched third place in the CCHA with a 19-12-3 overall record and a 15-8-3-2 mark in league play, good for 50 points. They trail second-place Western Michigan (51) by one point in the standings and first-place Miami (56) by six points. Western Michigan needs any combination of six points (Irish losses/ties or WMU wins/ties) to clinch second while Miami needs just one point to clinch first. Notre Dame is coming off a pair of ties at Western Michigan last weekend (3-3 and 1-1) with each team getting one shootout win. Bowling Green enters the series with a 13-16-5 overall record and is 10-13-3-1 in the CCHA, good for 34 points and seventh place in the standings. The Falcons are looking to nail down home ice (6th, 7th or 8th place) in the first round of the CCHA playoffs next week. They trail sixth-place Alaska (40) by six points and lead eighth-place Lake Superior (32) by two and ninth-place Michigan (31) by three. Bowling Green split a pair with Northern Michigan last week, losing 5-2 and winning 5-3 versus the Wildcats.

IRISH VERSUS FALCONS: Notre Dame and Bowling Green have met 101 times in the all-time series with the Irish owning a 55-38-8 advantage to date. At Notre Dame, the Irish are 29-13-5 since the series started in 1970, including 12-1-1 at home since the 2005-06 season. The last time that Bowling Green won at Notre Dame came in the Falcons’ last visit, Feb. 4, 2012, a 3-2 win, that snapped a 13-game home unbeaten streak. The two teams have met twice this season with each team winning once. On Dec. 15, Notre Dame took a 4-1 win at the BGSU Ice Arena and then one month later on Jan. 15, the Falcons returned the favor with a 4-2 win over the Irish at Bowling Green. Since the start of the 2010-11 season, Notre Dame is 7-3-0 against Bowling Green.

NEXT FOR THE IRISH: Notre Dame will have a bye next weekend as the CCHA playoffs begin. The Irish will host a quarterfinal round, best-of-three series the weekend of March 15-17 at the Compton Family Ice Arena against a yet to be determined opponent.

SENIOR WEEKEND: The Irish will honor its graduating senior class of 2013 and their parents prior to the start of Saturday night’s game. The group of five includes senior manager John Madison, defenseman Sam Calabrese (Park Ridge, Ill.), left wing Nick Larson (Apple Valley, Minn.), right wing Kevin Nugent (New Canaan, Conn.) and goaltender Mike Johnson (Verona, Wis.). The team will wear its “fourth” jersey – the green jerseys to honor the seniors in their final regular-season home game at the Compton Family Ice Arena.

END OF AN ERA: This weekend’s series versus Bowling Green closes out the final regular season for Notre Dame in the CCHA as the conference ceases to exist after this year. The Irish will play next year in Hockey East while Bowling Green becomes a member of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA). The Irish have been members of the CCHA twice – from 1981 to 1983 and again from 1992 through this season. In those 23 campaigns going into this final weekend, Notre Dame owns a 271-303-85 record in CCHA regular-season games. During the first 22 years in the conference, the Irish have won two regular-season titles (2007 and 2009) and two CCHA tournament championships (2007 and 2009).

WESTERN MICHIGAN RECAP: Saturday, February 23 – For the second straight night, Notre Dame and Western Michigan played a tight-checking, goaltending battle as the teams played to a 1-1 overtime tie. This time, though, the Irish were on the winning side of the post-overtime shootout as they picked up the extra point in the standings with a 2-0 shootout win. All the scoring came in the first period as Notre Dame got its goal from junior right wing Bryan Rust (Novi, Mich,) who had a goal in each game of the series. The Broncos answered with a power-play goal off the stick of Mike Cichy. In the shootout, the Irish got goals from Rust and Anders Lee (Jr., Edina, Minn.) while goaltender Steven Summerhays (Jr., Anchorage, Alaska) was stopping both Bronco shots he faced to gain the extra point and give the teams a weekend split. Goaltending was a major factor in the game as Summerhays kicked out 25-of-26 shots in 65 minutes of action while the Broncos’ Frank Slubowski had a 37-save night. The teams traded first-period goals with Rust getting his 12th of the year at 10:38 before Cichy scored on the power play at 16:16 for his fourth of the year to make it 1-1. That was it for the scoring as Summerhays and Slubowski slammed the door through the final two periods and in overtime. In the shootout, the Broncos shot first with Cichy getting stopped by Summerhays. Rust gave the Irish a 1-0 lead when he beat Slubowski with a deke, going backhand, forehand and tucking a shot inside the right post. Mike Leone took Western’s second shot and Summerhays forced him to shoot wide. Lee locked up the point when he beat Slubowski with a quick shot through the five-hole from the low slot to secure the point in the standings.

Friday, February 22 – Two evenly matched teams battled in a playoff atmosphere on Friday night with Notre Dame and Western Michigan battling to a 3-3 tie at Lawson Arena. The Broncos earned the extra point in the standings with a 2-1 win in the shootout. David Gerths (Jr., Ankeny, Iowa), Bryan Rust and Austin Wuthrich (So., Anchorage, Alaska) scored for the Irish as they came from behind three times to earn the tie. Western Michigan got its goals from Justin Kovacks, Will Kessel and Nolan LaPorte in the tie. In the shootout, Mike Leone and Chase Balisy offset a goal by Rust that tied the shootout in the third round. Balisy’s wrist shot in the fourth round proved to be the winner. The Irish outshot the Broncos, 28-25, in the game. Steven Summerhays made 22 saves for Notre Dame while Frank Slubowski had 25 for Western Michigan. In the shootout, Summerhays stopped two-of-four shots while Slubowski gave up one goal on four Irish shots. Both teams were 0-for-3 on the power play on the night.

ONE IS THE LONELIEST NUMBER: Despite being tied with Michigan with 99 goals on the season, the Irish have been held to just one goal in a game 12 times. When scoring just one goal in a game this season, Notre Dame is 2-9-1. With two or more goals in a game, the Irish are 17-3-2. In those 22 contests, Notre Dame has scored 87 goals or 3.95 per game.

FIT TO BE TIED: Notre Dame’s back-to-back ties with Western Michigan marked the first time since Nov. 4-5, 2011 that the Irish had tied both games of a weekend series when they tied two at Northern Michigan. After going through the first four months of the 2012-13 season with no overtime games, Notre Dame had three in February with all three ending in ties and going to the shootout. The Irish are 2-1 in the shootout this season and 9-10 all-time since the CCHA started them in the 2008-09 season.

POWER OUTAGE: Notre Dame has now gone four games without scoring a power-play goal and has been held off the scoreboard with the man advantage since the 6:26 mark of the second period versus Michigan on Feb. 9. Since that goal by Anders Lee, the Irish are 0-for-16 on the power play. In the 16 games played in the second half of the season, Notre Dame is 9-fo-69 (13.4%). For the season, the Irish are 24-for-148 for a 16.2% success rate.

RUST NEVER SLEEPS: Junior right wing Bryan Rust had the hot hand in the goal-scoring department in the two ties last weekend versus Western Michigan. On the weekend, Rust scored four goals – getting one in regulation each night (short-handed on Friday) and then scoring a goal in each of the shootouts. The two shootout goals won’t count in his season totals but for the year, Rust is second in team scoring with career highs in goals (12), assists (15) and points (27). He is tied for the team lead in power-play goals (4) and game winners (3).

PLAYOFF TICKETS: Tickets for Notre Dame’s quarterfinal round playoff series March 15, 16 and 17 if necessary are now on sale with prices starting at $7.00. Tickest are available online at, at the Murnane Family Ticket office in Purcell Pavillion or by phone at 574-631-7356. The also will be on sale at the Compton Family Ice Arena ticket office on game days through the start of the second period.

WORK HORSE: Dating back to last Feb. 24, Irish goaltender Steven Summerhays has played in 36 of the last 40 games, making 35 starts. During those 36 games, Summerhays is 19-13-2 with a 1.89 goals-against average, a .926 save percentage and five shutouts. His win on Feb. 9 vs. Michigan was the 30th win of his Notre Dame career. He is now 31-23-3 for his career with a 2.30 goals-against average and a .908 save percentage. This season, Summerhays is second in the CCHA in wins (16) and is fifth in goals-against average (1.99). He is eighth in save percentage (.919) and tied for second in the league with three shutouts.

THE OTHER GUY: Senior goaltender Mike Johnson (Verona, Wis.) saw action in his third consecutive game on Feb. 8 in the 7-4 win over Michigan as he stopped 18 of 22 shots for his third win of the season. The Verona, Wis., native is now 3-1-1 with a 2.63 goals-against average and a .885 save percentage. For his career, he has appeared in 97 games, making 90 starts and is 42-34-13 with a 2.63 goals-against average and a .900 save percentage with two shutouts. His 42 wins make him just one of seven Notre Dame goaltenders to win 40 or more games in his career.

FEAST OR FAMINE: Junior center David Gerths recorded his eighth goal of the season in the 3-3 tie with Western Michigan. That equals his career high set during his freshman year when he had eight goals and three assists for 11 points. This season Gerths has eight goals and no assists for eight points. As a sophomore, the hard-working center had no goals and four assists on the year.

SHARING THE WEALTH: Freshman left wing Sam Herr (Hinsdale, Ill.) recorded his first point of the season in 12 games when he assisted on David Gerths first period goal in the 3-3 tie at Western Michigan (Feb. 22). Through the first 34 games of the season, the Irish have been good at spreading the scoring around. In those games, 19 different Notre Dame players have scored the team’s 99 goals with Anders Lee leading the way with 17 and Bryan Rust is second with 12. Twenty-one of the team’s 23 skaters have scored at least one point with Lee leading the way with 31 points while Rust is next with 27. Eleven different players have scored game-winning goals for the Irish with T.J. Tynan (Jr., Orland Park, Ill.) and Rust leading the way with three. The Irish have 12 players on the roster with 10 or more points this season.

THE MOOSE IS LOOSE: Sophomore defenseman Eric Johnson (Verona, Wis.) recorded his first career assist in the 3-3 tie at Western Michigan. He followed that up with an assist in the 1-1 tie on Feb. 23 versus the Broncos. After going pointless in his first 15 games this season, Johnson now has a two-game point and assist streak (0-2-2) and has points in three of his last six games (1g, 2a).

SPECIAL TEAM WOES: Notre Dame saw its streak of two games without giving up a power-play goal snapped on Feb. 23 when the Irish gave up a man-advantage goal in six chances to the Western Michigan Broncos in the 1-1 tie. Over the last three games, the Irish are 12-for-13 on the penalty kill. Before that, they had givien up power-play goals in nines straight games. After spending the first half of the season with one of the top penalty killing units in the nation, the Irish have struggled during the season half. After the first 18 games of the season, Notre Dame had given up just seven power-play goals in 70 chances for a 90.0% success rate. Over the last 16 games, the Irish have surrendered 17 power-play goals in 74 chances for a 77.0% penalty-killing ratio in those games. For the season, Notre Dame is 119-of-143 for an 83.2% success rate on the penalty kill.

SCORING FIRST: Notre Dame has scored the first goal of the game in 23 of its first 34 contests this season and is now 17-5-1 in those games. The Irish scored the first goal in six consecutive games between Jan. 15 and Feb. 1 but were just 1-5-0 in those games. When they don’t light the lamp first, the Irish are just 2-7-2.

YOUNG GUN: Freshman center Steven Fogarty (Edina, Minn.) saw his four-game point-scoring streak snapped on Feb. 23 in the 1-1 tie with Western Michigan. Fogarty had a goal and three assists for four points in the streak. He has played in every game this season and has five goals and five assists for 10 points with two power-play goals.

SHOOTING THE BISCUIT: Through the first 34 games this season, Notre Dame has out shot the opposition in 26 of them and recorded 30 or more shots 22 times. The Irish are averaging 31.3 shots per game to 24.9 by their opponents. They are 14-6-2 when getting 30 or more shots in a game and 16-7-3 when out shooting them in all games. Notre Dame’s season low for shots on goal is 21 and was set versus Boston College on Nov. 9 and against Miami on Feb. 15. The season high for shots on goal is 47 and came on Feb. 2 at Ohio State.

MAKING UP FOR LOST TIME: Freshman left wing Mario Lucia (Plymouth, Minn.) leads Notre Dame freshmen in scoring with 10 goals and nine assists for 19 points in 25 games this season. He missed the first nine games of the season with a broken leg suffered in preseason training. His 10 goals are third on the team and his four power-play goals tie him for the team lead in that category. He was named the CCHA Rookie of the Week twice in December and was the Rookie of the Month for December.

HELPING HAND: Senior defenseman Sam Calabrese (Park Ridge, Ill.) set a career high in assists when he picked up his 15th of the year on Jeff Costello’s first-period goal in the 6-4 win over Michigan (Feb. 9). He scored his first goal of the season (a power-play goal) in the 2-2 tie with the Ohio State on Feb. 2 . For the year, Calabrese has one goal and 16 assists for 17 points and is second among Irish defensemen in scoring. For his career, the lone senior on the Notre Dame defense now has 10 goals and 41 assists for 51 points in 119 career games.

CAREER YEAR: Sophomore defenseman Robbie Russo (Westmont, Ill.) now has career highs in goals (5), assists (14), points (19) and power-play goals (4) this season in 32 games. As a freshman, Russo had four goals and 11 assists for 15 points in 40 games. He is tied for second among CCHA defensemen in scoring this season with his 19 points. His four power-play goals tie him for tops on the team.

WHAT A SHAYNE: Junior defenseman Shayne Taker (Surrey, B.C.) has quietly put together his best offensive season this year while at Notre Dame. In 34 games, the Surrey, B.C. native has a goal and 11 assists for 12 points and is +6 for the season. His assists and point totals are career highs.

CAREER YEAR II: Junior defenseman Stephen Johns (Wampum, Pa.) picked up his career-high 12th assist in the 6-3 loss at Ohio State on Feb. 1. With a goal and 12 assists, he has equaled his career high in points (13) that he set as a freshman in 2010-11 (2g, 11a). Last season, he had a career high with four goals in the goal-scoring department.

BRIGHT KIDS: University of Notre Dame athletic programs again rank as the best in the country in graduation rates, based on Graduation Success Rate (GSR) figures released by the NCAA — including first-place ratings in the sports of football, men’s basketball, women’s basketball and ice hockey. Among the 120 Football Bowl Subdivision institutions, Notre Dame had the highest percentage of its sports with 100 percent scores (for the seventh time in eight years), with a .863 figure (19 of 22). In hockey, Notre Dame achieved a 100 GSR rating, to rank first (tied with Bowling Green) among Division I-A football-playing institutions. Here are the FBS institutions with scores of 65 or higher in that category:

Score      Institution100        Notre Dame, Bowling Green96     U.S. Air Force Academy94     Michigan85         U.S. Military Academy,           Boston College, Connecticut83         Miami (Ohio)73         Western Michigan65         Michigan State

The four-year GSR data is based upon the entering classes from 2002 to 2005. In addition to men’s and women’s basketball and hockey, other Notre Dame programs recording 100 GSR scores in the 2012 listings were baseball, men’s cross country/track, women’s cross country/track, men’s fencing, women’s fencing, men’s golf, women’s golf, women’s lacrosse, women’s rowing, men’s soccer, women’s soccer, women’s softball, men’s swimming, women’s swimming, women’s tennis and women’s volleyball.

SIX STRAIGHT: Notre Dame hockey fans have sold out (5,022) the Compton Family Ice Arena in each of the last six home games since Jan. 18. Through 16 home games this season, the Irish have had nine standing-room sellouts. In the two seasons that the Compton Family Ice Arena has been open, the Irish have had 35 home games with 20 of them being sellouts of 5,022. After averaging 4,793 in 19 home games last season, Notre Dame is averaging 4,877 this year in the first 16 home games.