Junior center Mark Van Guilder got his season off to a fast start with two goals and an assist in Notre Dame's season-opening 6-1 win against Minnesota State.

Irish Travel East To Face Top-Ranked Boston College And Providence College In A Pair Of Games Against Hockey East Teams

Oct. 18, 2006

Notre Dame, Ind. –

Complete Release in PDF Format
dot.gifspacer.gifDownload Free Acrobat Reader

• The Game:  Notre Dame (1-1-0) at #1/#1 Boston College (1-0-0)
• Date/Site/Time: Fri., Oct. 20 • 7:00 p.m. • Kelley Rink (7,884)
• The Game: Notre Dame (1-1-0) at Providence College (1-1-0)
• Date/Site/Time: Sat., Oct. 21 • 7:30 p.m. • Schneider Arena (3,030)
• Broadcast Information: Radio: Notre Dame hockey can be heard live on ESPN Radio 1490,South Bend's SportsCenter. Mike Lockert, "the voice of Irish hockey" will bring youall the play-by-play action.
• Internet Broadcast: At the Notre Dame website - www.und.com.

NOTRE DAME TRAVELS TO THE EAST COAST: The Notre Dame Fighting Irish hockey team makes its only regular-season East Coast trip this weekend, traveling to Chestnut Hill, Mass., on Friday, Oct. 20 to face No. 1 ranked Boston College in a 7:00 p.m. game. The following night, the Irish will be in Providence, R.I., to face the Providence College Friars in a 7:30 p.m. contest.All three teams opened the regular season last week. Boston College is 1-0-0 on the season after defeating Northeastern in the Eagles’ home opener on Oct. 10. BC also faced the U.S. Under-18 team in an exhibition game on Oct. 13, taking a 5-4 decision in overtime. Providence got its year off to a 1-1-0 start by hosting a pair of North Country opponents – Clarkson and St. Lawrence. The Friars dropped a 6-1 decision to the Golden Knights on Oct. 13, then defeated the Saints, 4-2 on Oct. 14 at Schneider Arena. Notre Dame is also 1-1 after splitting a home-and-home series with Minnesota State. The Irish opened with a 6-1 win on Oct. 12 at the Joyce Center and then fell 3-2 in overtime, losing with 14.1 seconds left on the clock, on Oct. 14 in Mankato, Minn.

IRISH VERSUS EAGLES: Notre Dame and Boston College have met 25 times in the series history with the Eagles owning a 14-9-2 record. In the last three contests, the Irish are 2-0-1 since 2002. The last two contests have pitted the Irish versus No. 1-ranked Boston College teams. In 2003, the Irish handed BC a 1-0 loss (behind current senior goaltender David Brown) at Kelley Rink. In 2004, current Irish senior captain, T.J. Jindra scored short-handed with 15 seconds left to give the Irish a 3-2 victory at the Joyce Center. In 2002, the teams battled to a 3-3 overtime tie at the Joyce Center. Prior to that tie, Boston College was 6-0-1 in a seven-game unbeaten streak and 10-1-1 in a 12-game span from 1977-2001 against Notre Dame.

NOTRE DAME VERSUS PROVIDENCE: The Irish and Friars have met just once in the program histories with that meeting coming in the opening game of the 1999 Icebreaker Tournament at Magness Arena at the University of Denver. PC took a 2-1 win to move on to the tournament championship game.

KNOW THY ENEMY: Current Irish associate head coach Paul Pooley served as head coach of the Providence Friars for 11 years before coming to Notre Dame last season. Pooley was 185-187-40 in those 11 seasons with a Hockey East title (1996) and two trips to the NCAA tournament (1996, 2001). He has coached or recruited most of the players on the current Friars’ roster.

ONE WIN, ONE LOSS: Notre Dame opened the 2006-07 season with a split in the home-and-home series with Minnesota State. In the season opener at the Joyce Center, the Irish got off to a fast start with a 6-1 win on October 12. Senior goaltender David Brown led the way, stopping 36-of-37 shots while sophomore Garrett Regan and junior Mark Van Guilder each scored a pair of goals. Josh Sciba and Ryan Thang each added single goals in the win. Van Guilder recorded his fifth career game with three or more points, getting two goals and an assist in the contest. Sciba, Thang, Jason Paige and Wes O’Neill each had two points in the game. Notre Dame was out shot in the game by a 37-28 margin. The Irish were 1-for-10 on the power play while the Mavericks were 0-for-6. On Saturday, October 14, Notre Dame traveled to Mankato, Minn., where the Mavericks won with 14.1 seconds left in overtime, 3-2, at the Midwest Wireless Civic Center. Jon Kalinski’s power-play goal at 4:45 of overtime gave MSU the win. The Irish scored first in the game as freshman Kevin Deeth teamed with sophomore Erik Condra to score a short-handed goal at 17:02 of the first period. The Mavericks roared back early in the second period, scoring twice in a 1:10 span. Joel Hanson tied the game at 1:36 and Kael Mouillierat’s power-play goal at 2:46 gave Minnesota State a 2-1 lead. The score stayed that way until 8:28 of the second when Deeth got his second goal of the game on a 5-on-3 power play to tie the game at 2-2. The score stayed that way until Kalinski’s overtime winner. The Irish outshot Minnesota State, 29-16 in the game. Brown had 13 saves for Notre Dame while Tormey picked up the win with a 27-save effort. MSU was 2-for-7 on the power play while Notre Dame was 1-for-6.

FRESHMEN FIRSTS: Three members of Notre Dame’s freshmen class got their collegiate careers off to strong starts in the season opener. Right wing Ryan Thang led the way with his first collegiate goal and an assist. Center Kevin Deeth and left wing Dan Kissel each picked up assists in the game for the first points of their careers. Defenseman Kyle Lawson also action and was +1 in the win. Deeth followed with a two-goal game (ppg, shg) in the 3-2 loss at Minnesota State. Freshman defenseman Brett Blatchford played in his first game on the road at Mankato, Minn., and picked up his first career point with an assist on Deeth’s power-play goal.

ROAD WARRIORS: After opening the season at home versus Minnesota State (Oct. 12), the Irish will not play at home again until Fri., Nov., 10th when they play host to Bowling Green. Notre Dame began a seven-game road trip on Oct. 14 at Minnesota State. The road swing continues this weekend with games at Boston College (Oct. 20) and Providence College (Oct. 21). Next weekend, the Irish are in Tampa, Fla., for the first-ever Lightning College Hockey Classic vs. Army (Oct. 27) and then against either Air Force or Alabama-Huntsville (Oct. 28). The road trip ends the following weekend at Ohio State (Nov. 3-4).

BEATING THE BEST: Notre Dame has defeated the No. 1 ranked team eight times in the program’s 39-year history. The last two times have come at the expense of the Boston College Eagles. In each of the last two times (`03-’04 and `04-’05) that the Irish have played Boston College, the Eagles came into those games ranked No. 1 in the nation. Both times, the Irish came away with victories. In 2004-05, Notre Dame knocked off the No. 1-ranked Boston College Eagles in South Bend by a 3-2 score. A year earlier, the Irish traveled to BC’s Kelley Rink, and knocked off the top-ranked Eagles, 1-0, with current senior goaltender David Brown turning in the shutout. Here’s the list of Irish wins versus top-ranked teams in the 39-year history of the program.

10/22/04 – vs. Boston College, 3-2

10/23/03 – at Boston College, 1-0

1/3/99 – at North Dakota, 4-3

11/20/78 – at Minnesota, 3-2

1/13/78 – vs. Denver, 5-3

1/18/74 – vs. Michigan Tech, 7-1

2/24/73 – vs. Wisconsin, 4-3

2/23/73 – vs. Wisconsin, 8-5

In 2005-06, Notre Dame played nine games versus ranked teams and was 0-7-2 in those games.

FOR OPENERS: With the 6-1 win on Oct. 12 versus Minnesota State, the Irish improved to 20-17-2 in the opening game of the season. The home win gave Notre Dame a 21-17-1 record in home openers. The 3-2 overtime loss on Oct. 14 dropped the Irish to 14-22-3 in road openers. Last season, the Irish dropped both the road opener (3-1 at Colorado College) and the home opener (5-3 to Princeton).

ALL TIED UP: The overtime loss to Minnesota State was the first for the Irish since March 12, 2005 when they lost a 1-0 overtime decision at Michigan game two of the first round of the CCHA playoffs. Last year, Notre Dame was 0-0-4 in four overtime games. In 54 overtime games since the start of the 1999-2000 season, the Irish are 7-7-40 in overtime. The last overtime win for the Irish came on Dec. 10, 2004 in a 3-2 victory against Michigan State. That win snapped a 16-game winless skid (0-2-14) during the regular season that started on Jan. 25, 2002.

TWO-GOAL GAMES: The Irish have had three players score two goals in a game this season. Sophomore left wing Garrett Regan scored twice, including the game winner in the 6-1 win win on Oct. 12. Junior center Mark Van Guilder scored twice in the same game while recording a three-point game. On Oct. 14, it was freshman Kevin Deeth’s turn as he collected a short-handed goal and a power-play tally in the 3-2 overtime loss.

LEADER OF THE PACK: Notre Dame head coach Jeff Jackson needs just four more wins to reach the 200 mark in his career. Jackson enters the `06-’07 season with the best winning percentage among Division I coaches with five or more years. His current record stands at 196-72-29 for a .709 winning percentage. His 196 wins rank him 22nd on the all-time active list. In six seasons at his previous collegiate stop – Lake Superior State (1990-96) – Jackson’s teams were 182-52-25 with two national championships, two CCHA regular-season titles and four CCHA tournament championships. Included in his 195 career wins are 36 postseason victories and a .800 winning percentage (36-9 in postseason). In CCHA postseason action at Lake Superior, Jackson’s teams were 24-2 (.923) with the two losses coming to Michigan in CCHA Championship games (`94 and `96).

MINNESOTA MAGIC: Notre Dame’s five Minnesota natives had strong weekends in the home-and-home weekend with Minnesota State. Junior Mark Van Guilder (Roseville, Minn.) had two goals and one assist in the 6-1 win on Thursday. Sophomore Garrett Regan (Hastings, Minn.) had two goals in the 6-1 win against the Mavericks. Freshman Ryan Thang (Edina, Minn.) had a goal and an assists in the season opener. Seniors Tom Sawatske (Duluth, Minn.) was +1 on the weekend and T.J. Jindra (Faribault, Minn.) was even. An adopted son, Kevin Deeth (Gig Harbor, Wash.) who played two years of prep hockey at Shattuck St. Mary’s (Faribault, Minn.), also had two goals and an assist in two games versus MSU.

<>PREMIER PUCKSTOPPER: Senior goaltender David Brown got his final season off to a fast start in Thursday’s opener against Minnesota State. Brown stopped 36 of 37 shots he faced in that game, giving up just a second-period short-handed goal. That marked the 13th time in Brown’s career that he has made 35 or more saves in a game. Notre Dame is 6-6-1 in those games.

SPECIAL TEAMS: Notre Dame started the season by going 2-for-16 (12.5%) on the power-play versus Minnesota State. The Irish killed 11-of-13 Maverick power-play chances for an 84.6% success rate. Both teams scored a short-handed goal in the home-and-home series.

CAPTAINS: Senior right wing T.J. Jindra (Faribault, Minn.) will serve as Notre Dame’s captain for the second consecutive season. Jindra becomes the first Irish player to serve as captain twice since Evan Nielsen `03 held the responsibility from 2001-03. There have been 14 players to serve as two-time captains with the Irish. Joining Jindra as alternate captains in `06-’07, are senior center Jason Paige (Saginaw, Mich.) and senior defensemen Wes O’Neill (Essex, Ont.) and Tom Sawatske (Duluth, Minn.). Paige has served as an alternate captain since his sophomore year. O’Neill and Sawatske will be alternate captains for the first time at Notre Dame.

BY THE CLASSES: The 26-man Notre Dame hockey roster is made up of eight seniors, five juniors, five sophomore and eight freshmen. The eight seniors are the only remaining Irish players who were on the 2003-04 team that advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in the program’s history.

FAMILY MATTERS: Two members of the Notre Dame hockey team – forwards Erik Condra (Livonia, Mich.) and Garrett Regan (Hastings, Minn.) – have family ties to the Irish hockey program. Condra’s uncle is All-American forward Kirt Bjork (`83) who played at Notre Dame from 1979-83. He scored 76 goals with 85 assists for 161 career points in 141 career games. He took All-America honors in 1983 when he had 29 goals and 34 assists for 63 points. Regan’s uncle – Sean Regan – was a defenseman for the Irish from1981-83 before finishing his career at the University of Minnesota.

ROOKIE SUCCESS: Sophomore right wing Erik Condra led Notre Dame in scoring last season with six goals and 28 assists for 34 points. He became the first Notre Dame freshman to lead the team in scoring since Jamie Ling `96 led the 1992-93 team with 40 points in his first season. He would go on to lead the Irish in scoring four straight seasons. Condra was selected as Notre Dame’s rookie of the year and was selected to the CCHA’s all-rookie team. He led all CCHA freshmen in scoring and was seventh in the nation among rookie point scorers.

CCHA SCHOLAR-ATHLETE: Senior Jason Paige (Saginaw, Mich.) was Notre Dame’s representative on the CCHA Scholar-Athlete team for the 2005-06 season. Paige was one of 12 players (one from each school) selected to the team by the league’s faculty representatives. Paige has a 3.71 grade-point average in finance. He follows former Irish captain, Cory McLean (`05), who was selected as the CCHA’s first-ever Scholar-Athlete of the Year award winner following the 2004-05 season. McLean was a five-time Dean’s List selection and graduated with a degree in Finance from the Mendoza College of Business with a 3.592 grade-point average. To be considered for the CCHA Scholar-Athlete Award, a player had to have a cumulative GPA of 3.25 through the fall term of the selection year to receive the school’s Scholar-Athlete award. The award is selected by the 12 faculty representatives, voting based on a system awarding five points for a first-place vote, three points for a second-place vote and one point for a third-place vote. Previously, the CCHA honored an all-Academic team that saw the Irish have at least one honoree in all but one season (2002-03) since their return to the CCHA in `92-’93. The nine first-team selections were: Curtis Janicke and Carl Picconatto (’92-’93), Garry Gruber (`95-’96), Steve Noble (`96-’97, `97-’98), Forrest Karr and Aniket Dhadphale (`98-’99), Andy Jurkowski (99′-’00), Dan Carlson (2000-01), David Inman (2001-02) and Rob Globke (2003-04). During that 12-year span, only Western Michigan (14) produced more CCHA All-Academic selections than Notre Dame’s 11.

TURNAROUND YEAR: A year ago, the Notre Dame hockey team turned in a 13-19-4 record in Jeff Jackson’s first season behind the bench. A closer look at the mark shows vast improvement for the Irish. Through the first 13 games of the season, Notre Dame was 3-9-1. Over the remaining 23 contests, the Irish were 10-10-3. In CCHA play, Notre Dame went from 3-20-5 in `04-’05 to 11-13-4 in `05-’06, a 15-point improvement from one season to the next. Only Miami’s 16-point improvement in the standings was better than Notre Dame’s 15-point turnaround.

MR. ZERO: Notre Dame goaltender David Brown (Stoney Creek, Ont.) recorded a pair of shutouts during the 2005-06 season to give him six for his career. That ties him with Morgan Cey `05 for the Notre Dame career mark in shutouts as each now have six. Brown also is Notre Dame’s all-time leader in goals-against average (2.77) and is second all-time with a .909 save percentage.

SPECIAL TEAMS: Last season, the Notre Dame clicked at a 16.6% success rate (38-for-229) overall and led the CCHA with a 19.5% percentage (33-for-169). On the other side of the puck, the Irish penalty killers killed of 80.5% overall and (173-of-215) and in the CCHA had success just 78.7% of the time, surrendering 36 power-play goals on 169 chances.

POWER-PLAY LEADER: Senior Josh Sciba (Westland, Mich.) tied for second in the CCHA with 10 power-play goals in 2005-06. That was the most power-play goals by a Notre Dame player since Ben Simon `00 had 10 in the 1999-2000 season. Sciba’s 10 man-advantage goals tie him for 10th on Notre Dame’s single-season list with Simon and Dave Poulin `82, who did it twice in 1978-79 and 1981-82. Of Sciba’s 30 career goals, 15 have come on the power play. The veteran center/left wing picked up where he left off last season when he scored on the power-play on Oct. 12 in the 6-1 win over Minnesota State.

POWER-PLAY PRODUCER: Wes O’Neill (Sr., Essex, Ont.) lead Notre Dame’s defense in scoring last season with six goals and 19 assists for 25 points. Four of the goals and 13 assists came on the power play. In the opening game of the season, O’Neill had a pair of assists, including one on the power play. For his career, O’Neill now has 10 goals and 25 assists via the power play. For his career, he has 14 goals and 45 assists for 59 points.

OLD-TIME DEFENSE: Notre Dame’s defense is made up of three seniors, three juniors and two freshmen this season. The three seniors – Noah Babin (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.), Wes O’Neill and Tom Sawatske will team with junior Brock Sheahan (Lethbridge, Alb.) to form the team’s top four. The final two spots will be a battle between juniors Dan VeNard and Brian D’Arcy (Western Springs, Ill.) and freshmen Kyle Lawson and Brett Blatchford (Temperance, Mich.). O’Neill comes into his final year as a candidate for all-CCHA and All-America honors.

NHL DRAFTEES: The Irish have four players on the 2006-07 roster who have been selected in the National Hockey League’s Entry Draft. Last June, sophomore right wing Erik Condra (Livonia, Mich.) was selected in the seventh round, 211th overall by the Ottawa Senators. He is joined by freshman defenseman Kyle Lawson (New Hudson, Mich.) who was selected in the 2005 NHL Draft by the Carolina Hurricanes in the seventh round, 198th overall. Condra and Lawson are joined by senior defenseman Wes O’Neill (Essex, Ont.) who was chosen in the fourth round of the 2004 Entry Draft, 115th overall by the New York Islanders. Also selected in 2004 was senior goaltender David Brown (Stony Creek, Ont.) who went in the eighth round, 228th overall to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

IRON MAN: Graduated right wing Tim Wallace (Anchorage, Alaska) finished his Notre Dame career in 2005-06 as the Notre Dame’s all-time `Iron Man.” Wallace played in every game of his career, 153 in all. He finished third on the all-time games played list for his four seasons with the Irish. Junior center Mark Van Guilder (Roseville, Minn.) is next in line as he now has played in every game in his first two-plus seasons for a total of 76 consecutive games.

PLAYING IN THE NHL: At times during the 2005-06 season, Notre Dame had five former players in the NHL at the same time. The five were: Ben Simon `00 (Columbus), Rob Globke `04 (Florida), Brett Lebda `04 (Detroit), Mark Eaton (Nashville) and Yan Stastny (Edmonton-Boston). Only one other time, have the Irish had five players in the NHL in one season. That came during the 1982-83 campaign when the Irish had five players see time, in the NHL. That group included: Jim Brown `82 (three games with Los Angeles), Jack Brownschidle `77 (72 games with St. Louis), Jeff Brownschidle `81 (four games with Hartford), Don Jackson `78 (71 games with Edmonton) and Dave Poulin `82 (two games with Philadelphia). As of Oct. 17, Eaton (Pittsburgh), Lebda (Detroit) and Stastny (Boston) were skating with NHL teams.