Nov. 5, 2014
Notre Dame, Indiana –
– The Games: #14/#15 University of Notre Dame (5-2-1) at #1/#1 University of Minnesota (5-1-0)
– Date/Site/Times: Friday, Nov. 7, 2014 – Mariucci Arena (10,000) – 7 p.m. (CT) Sunday, Nov. 9, 2014 – Mariucci Arena (10,000) – 4 p.m. (CT)
– Broadcast Information: Radio: Both games of the Minnesota series can be heard live on New Country 99.9 FM in South Bend and at UND.com (WatchND). Darin Pritchett, the voice of the Irish, will call the action. Television: Friday night’s game against the Gophers will be televised live by the Big Ten Network with Fred Pletsch and Ben Clymer calling the action. Jamie Hersch will be rinkside. The Sunday contest will be televised live by ESPNU with John Buccigross and Barry Melrose handling the play-by-play and analyst’s duties.
– Internet: Audio: Live audio streaming for both games of the Minnesota series is available at the Notre Dame website at UND.com (WatchND) free of charge. Statistics: Livestats can be found at GameTracker on the Notre Dame website UND.com. Twitter: Follow Irish hockey on Twitter at @NDHockey.
ROAD TRIP: The University of Notre Dame takes to the road for the first time this season when the Irish travel to Minneapolis, Minnesota, to face top-ranked Minnesota in a Friday-Sunday series, Nov. 7 and 9 at Mariucci Arena. The two teams will face off at 7 p.m. (CT) on Nov. 7 and then take a day off while Minnesota hosts Iowa in football on Saturday. The Irish and Gophers return to action at 4 p.m. (CT) on Nov. 9 to close out the series. Both games will be televised live. Friday’s game can be seen on the Big Ten Network with Fred Pletsch, Ben Clymer and Jamie Hersch providing the play-by-play and commentary. On Sunday, ESPNU will televise the action with John Buccigross and Barry Melrose behind the microphones. Notre Dame brings a six-game unbeaten streak (5-0-1) into the weekend and is currently 5-2-1 on the season. Minnesota brings the No. 1 ranking and a 5-1-0 record into the two-game series. This is the first of four straight road games for the Irish. They opened the season with an eight-game home stand that resulted in the 5-2-1 start.
IRISH VERSUS GOPHERS: Notre Dame and Minnesota have met 41 times in the all-time series with the Gophers holding a 24-14-3 advantage. In games played at Minnesota, the Gophers are 15-8-2. The two teams have played every season since 2011-12 with the series tied 2-2-0 and each team is 1-1-0 at home. Last season, Notre Dame played host to Minnesota for a pair of games at the Compton Family Ice Arena. The Irish won the opener by a 4-1 margin while the Gophers took the second game with a 5-4 victory. For the second consecutive season, Notre Dame is facing Minnesota with the Gophers ranked No. 1 in the nation. The two teams began playing each other during the 1924-25 season and met six times between `24-’25 and 1926-27 with all the games played in Minneapolis and Minnesota winning five of the six meetings. Notre Dame and Minnesota were members of the WCHA for 10 seasons from 1971-81 and faced off 28 times with the Gophers holding a 14-11-3 advantage.
RANKINGS: With a 5-2-1 record, Notre Dame has returned to the national rankings in both polls. The Irish are ranked 14th in the USA Today/U.S. Hockey Magazine rankings and are 15th in the USCHO.com polls. The University of Minnesota, with a record of 5-1-0, is ranked first in both polls this week.
A LOOK AHEAD: The University of Notre Dame continues its four-game road trip next weekend, as the Irish open the Hockey East road schedule with a pair of games at Merrimack. The two teams meet at 7 p.m. on Nov. 14-15 at J. Thom Lawler Arena in North Andover, Massachusetts. Notre Dame and Merrimack have met eight times in the all-time series with the Irish holding a 4-3-1 edge in games played. At Merrimack, Notre Dame is 2-1-0. The last time the Irish played at Merrimack was Nov. 26, 1991, with Notre Dame winning 2-1 in overtime.
A LOOK BACK AT THE VERMONT SERIES:
Fri., Oct. 31 vs. Vermont –
Junior left wing Thomas DiPauli (Caldaro, Italy) showed off his blazing speed on the way to a two-goal night and freshman Cal Petersen (Waterloo, Iowa) stopped 34 shots, as the University of Notre Dame won its Hockey East opener with a 3-2 win over Vermont Friday night. DiPauli and junior Mario Lucia (Plymouth, Minn.) staked the Irish to a 2-0 first-period lead only to see the Catamounts score two goals in the second period to even the score. DiPauli notched the game winner at 7:31 of the third for the first multiple-goal game of his career. Jarrid Privitera and Kyle Reynolds scored the Vermont goals. The Catamounts peppered Petersen with 36 shots on the night, while Notre Dame fired 23 at Vermont goaltender Mike Santaguida, who finished the night with 20 saves.
Sat., Nov. 1 vs. Vermont –
Vermont’ Colin Markison scored on a rebound with 41 seconds left for the tying goal, as the Catamounts and Fighting Irish battled to a 2-2 overtime tie. Freshman goaltender Cal Petersen had a career-high 42 saves in the game, as Vermont fired a season-high 44 shots on the Irish goal. Goals by freshman Jake Evans (Fr., Toronto, Ont.) and junior Mario Lucia (his eighth in eight games) in the second period staked Notre Dame to a 2-0 lead only to see the Catamounts score twice in the third on the way to the tie. Sophomore left wing Brady Shaw snapped Petersen’s shutout bid at 5:17 of the third period. With just under a minute left, Vermont pulled goaltender Brody Hoffman in favor of a sixth attacker, setting up Markison’s game-tying goal. The Cats out shot the Irish by a 44-28 margin in the game. Hoffman finished with 26 saves. Vermont was zero-for-four on the power play while the Irish were scoreless in two chances.
PLANES, TRAINS AND AUTOMOBILES: Senior right wing Peter Schneider (Vienna, Austria) had an interesting week prior to the series versus Vermont. Early in the week, Schneider got the bad news that his grandmother had passed away in his native Austria. He returned home on Tuesday (Oct. 28) to be with his family and to attend her funeral. On Friday (Oct. 31), he left Vienna at 7 a.m. in Austria (1:00 a.m. at Notre Dame) and flew from Vienna to Frankfurt, Germany, and after a layover there, it was on to Chicago. From Chicago, he traveled by car to South Bend, arriving just after 5 p.m. to prepare for the game. He spent 14 hours flying and then a two-hour trip in the car, covering seven time zones. In both games, Schneider took a regular shift, saw action on the power play and penalty-killing units and set up one goal each night by Mario Lucia. On Sunday, Schneider rested.
FAMILY TIES: For the third time in as many seasons, father and son will face off against each other when Minnesota faces Notre Dame. Don Lucia, a 1981 Notre Dame graduate and the head coach of the Gophers, will face his son, Irish left wing Mario Lucia. Don Lucia played four seasons (1977-81) at Notre Dame for Coach Lefty Smith, as a defenseman where he saw action in 124 games, scoring seven goals with 23 assists for 30 points. Now in his 16th season as the head coach at Minnesota, Lucia has been a collegiate head coach for 28 seasons. At Minnesota, Lucia owns a 377-190-65 record while his all-time mark is 656-345-94 between Minnesota, Colorado College and Alaska Fairbanks. While at Minnesota, Lucia’s teams have won two NCAA titles. Mario comes into the weekend series as Notre Dame’s top scorer with eight goals and two assists for 10 points in eight games. He leads all Hockey East scorers in points and is tops in goals. Nationally, his 10 points are fifth in the nation and his eight goals are second overall. In three games versus his dad’s team, Mario has two goals and one assist for three points. All three points came in last season’s 5-4 loss to the Gophers. A second member of the Minnesota coaching staff, associate head coach Mike Guentzel, also sent a son to Notre Dame. Ryan Guentzel `11 played for Jeff Jackson at Notre Dame from 2007-11 and was a member of two Frozen Four teams (2008 and 2011).
PLAYER OF THE MONTH: Junior left wing Mario Lucia has been named the Hockey East/Warrior player of the month for October. In seven games, Lucia had seven goals and two assists for nine points. He had 19 shots on goal with a 36.8% shooting percentage and was +5. He scored his first career hat trick in October and added one game-winning goal. Lucia leads Notre Dame in scoring after eight games with eight goals and two assists for 10 points. That includes a six-game point streak (7g, 2a, 9 points) and a three-game goal streak (3g, 1a, 4 pts.). His point streak is one off his career best streak of seven consecutive games (6g, 5a), set last season and his three-game goal streak marks the fourth time he has done that in his career.
STANDING TALL: Freshman goaltender Cal Petersen made back-to-back starts for the first time in his career versus the University of Vermont last weekend. On Oct. 31, he made a career-best 34 saves in the 3-2 win over the Catamounts. In that game, he saw his personal shutout streak of 132:31 stopped in the third period. He had held teams scoreless from the 2:29 mark of the second period of the Oct. 18 game versus Lake Superior State and then followed that with a 7-0 shutout of Niagara on Oct. 25. On Saturday, Nov. 1, in the 2-2 overtime tie, Petersen established a new career high as he stopped 42-of-44 shots in the game. For the year, Petersen is 3-1-1 with a 1.58 goals-against average and a .950 save percentage. He is third among Hockey East goaltenders in goals-against average and second in save percentage.
DYNAMITE DEFENSEMAN: Senior blue liner Robbie Russo (Westmont, Ill.) is second on the Notre Dame roster in scoring with three goals and six assists for nine points in eight games. He leads Notre Dame in shots on goal with 31 and also is tops with a +12 plus-minus rating. His nine points is tops among Hockey East defensemen and ties him for the top spot nationally with Minnesota State’s Zach Palmquist. His +12 is tops in the conference and the best in the nation through November 3.
VERSUS THE BEST: For the second time in the last two seasons, Notre Dame will face the University of Minnesota with the Gophers ranked No. 1 in the nation. Last November, the Irish split with the Gophers at the Compton Family Ice Arena. The Nov. 8, 4-1 win, was one of two wins for the Irish against a No. 1 team as they were 2-1 against top-ranked squads. On March 1, they picked up their 14th win against a No. 1 team when they won at top-ranked Boston College, 2-1 in overtime. Here’s a list of Irish wins versus top-ranked teams.
3/1/14 - at Boston College, 2-1 (ot)11/8/13 - vs. Minnesota, 4-110/23/10 - vs. Boston College, 2-1 4/10/08 - vs. Michigan, 5-4 ot (at Frozen Four)10/9/07 - at Miami, 2-110/21/06 - vs. Boston College, 7-110/22/04 - vs. Boston College, 3-210/23/03 - at Boston College, 1-01/3/99 - at North Dakota, 4-311/20/78 - at Minnesota, 3-21/13/78 - vs. Denver, 5-31/18/74 - vs. Michigan Tech, 7-12/24/73 - vs. Wisconsin, 4-32/23/73 - vs. Wisconsin, 8-5
SCORING FIRST: Notre Dame is now 5-1-1 on the season when scoring the first goal of the game. The Irish are 5-1-1 when they lead after one period and 5-0-1 when they have the advantage after two periods.
DIPAULI DOINGS: In 26 games as a sophomore, left wing Thomas DiPauli battled injuries the entire season. In those games, he had three goals and two assists for five points. In his first eight games this season, while totally healthy, DiPauli already has three goals and five assists for eight points. He recorded his first two-goal game when he scored twice in the 3-2 win over Vermont on Oct. 31. His career best came as a freshman when he had five goals and seven assists for 12 points.
IT’S IN THE WATER: This year’s Notre Dame roster features seven Minnesota natives, including four from the town of Edina. The four, junior Steven Fogarty, sophomore Ben Ostlie and freshmen Connor Hurley and Bo Brauer, were all teammates with the Hornets in recent seasons, winning Minnesota State titles in 2010 (Fogarty and Ostlie) and in 2013 (Hurley and Brauer). Those four are following a long list of former Hornets to attend Notre Dame, a list that includes former captains Anders Lee, Ryan Thang and Dan Carlson. The remaining three Minnesota natives are junior Mario Lucia and freshmen Tony Bretzman (Mendota Heights, Minn.) and Jordan Gross (Maple Grove, Minn.).
BY THE CLASSES: Notre Dame’s 27-man roster includes six seniors, six juniors, five sophomores and 10 freshmen. The Irish return 11 monogram winners from last season with that group including seven forwards, three defensemen and one goaltender. MR. ZERO: Freshman goaltender Cal Petersen turned in the first shutout of his career on Oct. 25, when he kicked out all 23 shots he faced in a 7-0 win over Niagara. The shutout came in his third career start, as he joins a long line of recent Notre Dame goaltenders to get a shutout in their first three starts. Mike Johnson (2009) and Tom O’Brien (2008) recorded shutouts in their first career starts while Jordan Pearce (2006) and David Brown (2003) did it in their second starts. Petersen joins Brad Phillips (2009) who recorded his first career shutout in his third start. Petersen is 2-1-0 with a 1.34 goals-against average and a .950 save percentage.
SPECIAL TEAM STRUGGLES: Through the first eight games of the season, Notre Dame has scored just three power-play goals and the Irish did that in one game. For the season, Notre Dame is three-for-34 on the power play for an 8.8% success rate. The Irish were 3-for-9 with the man advantage in the 7-0 win over Niagara on Oct. 25. On the penalty killing side, Notre Dame surrendered two power-play goals in three chances in the 6-3 win versus Niagara on Oct. 24. Since then, the Irish have killed 13 straight opponent power-play chances. For the year, the Irish have killed 27-of-34 for an 84.4% success rate.
MR. VERSATILE: Sophomore Ben Ostlie is Notre Dame’s Mr. Versatile. Recruited as a defenseman, Ostlie saw action in 12 games as a freshman in 2013-14, playing defense and right wing when injuries struck the Irish last November. This season, the Notre Dame coaching staff moved Ostlie to right wing to take advantage of his size and skating ability. Against Niagara (Oct. 25), due to injuries and illness to defensemen Eric Johnson (Sr., Verona, Wis.), Tony Bretzman (Fr., Mendota Hts., Minn.) and Nathan Billitier (Fr., Rochester, N.Y.), Ostlie moved back to his original position on defense. Versus Vermont, Bretzman returned to the lineup and Ostlie was back on right wing.
THE SHOOTIST: Throughout his Notre Dame hockey career, senior defenseman Robbie Russo has been encouraged by his coaching staff to shoot the puck. As a senior, the message has sunk in, as the talented defenseman leads the Irish in shots on goal with 31 through the first eight games. Sam Herr (Hinsdale, Ill.) is second with 26. Russo had a career-high nine shots on goal in the 5-3 win over Lake Superior State on Oct. 17.
SCORING BY PERIOD: The Irish have been on a roller coaster ride when it comes to scoring by periods. Notre Dame has out scored the opposition by a 14-2 margin in the first period, but has been out scored in the second by a 6-9 disadvantage. In the third, the Irish are back on top with a 10-6 edge. For the season, Notre Dame has outscored its opponents by a 30-17 margin or 3.75 to 2.12.
A NIGHT OF FIRSTS: Three members of the Notre Dame freshman class scored the first goals of their careers in the weekend series versus Niagara. Dawson Cook (Cadillac, Mich.) scored his first career goal at 4:18 of the third period on Oct. 24 to give the Irish a 5-2 lead. On Saturday night, Connor Hurley (Edina, Minn.) and Anders Bjork (Mequon, Wis.) got the first lamplighters of their careers. Bjork’s goal came short-handed, the first of the season for the Irish. Hurley finished the weekend with a goal and three assists for four points. Two other freshmen – right wing Jake Evans (Toronto, Ont. and defenseman Jordan Gross (Maple Grove, Minn.) – also had multi-point weekends. Evans had a career-best three assist game on Oct. 24 and then scored his second goal of the season on Oct. 25. Gross chipped in three assists on the weekend, including two in the 7-0 shutout.
DYNAMIC DUO: Through the first seven games of the 2014-15 season, Notre Dame goaltenders Chad Katunar (So., Victoria, B.C.) and Cal Petersen split the workload. Petersen played both of the games of the Vermont series. Katunar owns a two-game winning streak heading into the series with Minnesota. The 6-5 goaltender is 2-1-0 on the season with a 3.03 goal-against average and a .895 save percentage. In his last outing on Oct. 24, he defeated Niagara with 24 saves in a 6-3 Notre Dame victory.
BRIGHT KIDS: For the eighth consecutive year, 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 21 sports, including ice hockey, men’s and women’s basketball and baseball while football ranked fourth. Among the 120 Football Bowl Subdivision institutions, Notre Dame had the highest percentage of its sports with 100 percent scores (for the ninth time in 10 years), with a .909 figure (20 of 22). In hockey, Notre Dame achieved a 100 GSR rating, to rank first (tied with Bowling Green and Air Force) 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 Green, U.S. Air Force Academy91 U.S. Military Academy88 Connecticut88 Miami (OH)86 Minnesota85 Boston College85 Michigan80 Western Michigan78 Massachusetts75 Ohio State69 Michigan State
The four-year GSR data is based upon the entering classes from 2004 to 2007. In addition to men’s and women’s basketball, hockey and baseball, other Notre Dame programs recording 100 GSR scores in the 2014 listings were 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, men’s tennis, women’s tennis and women’s volleyball.
MEET THE CAPTAINS: University of Notre Dame hockey coach Jeff Jackson named his team captains for the 2014-15 season on Sept. 3. Junior center Steven Fogarty (Edina, Minn.) will serve as the team captain while senior Peter Schneider and junior Sam Herr (Hinsdale, Ill.) were selected as alternate captains. In making the selections, Jackson said, “I’m really happy with this group of captains for the coming season. All three – Steven (Fogarty), Peter (Schneider) and Sam (Herr) have strong character and with two juniors as captains, it becomes a two-year process for them leading the team. All three have the heart and voice of the team. They will do a great job for us.” Fogarty is a two-time monogram winner and follows a long line of Irish captains from Edina, Minn., joining the likes of Anders Lee, Ryan Thang and Dan Carlson in recent years. Fogarty played in 33 games last year, scoring three goals with eight assists for 11 points. Schneider is the lone senior and is coming off a junior campaign that saw him record career highs in goals (eight), assists (eight) and points (16). He is strong in the classroom with a 3.95 grade point average with a double major in finance and economics plus a minor in actuary. Herr had a breakout season as a sophomore, playing in all 40 games with 14 goals and 13 assists for 27 points, all career highs. He had four power-play goals and four game winners and was +14 on the season.
ALL IN THE FAMILY: Freshman Anders Bjork becomes the fourth Notre Dame hockey-playing son to follow his father to Notre Dame. His dad, Kirt Bjork, was an All-America at Notre Dame during the 1982-83 campaign and is tied for 12th on Notre Dame’s all-time points list with 161, after notching 76 goals and 85 assists in 141 career games. He is currently a director of regional development in Notre Dame’s development office. Anders Bjork also has another family tie to Irish hockey, as his cousin is former Irish standout Erik Condra, who is currently a member of the Ottawa Senators. As the fourth son to follow his father to Notre Dame, Anders joins current Irish left wing Mario Lucia (Don Lucia) and graduated players Kevin Nugent (Kevin Nugent, Sr.) and Rory Walsh (Brian Walsh) to play at Notre Dame after their fathers.