Dec. 17, 2002
Complete Release in PDF Format
Download Free Acrobat Reader
- The Tournament:
- December 28 – Vermont Catamounts (5-7-2) vs. UMass-Lowell Riverhawks (6-8-0) – 4:00 p.m.
Notre Dame Fighting Irish (8-6-2) vs. Dartmouth Big Green (6-4-0) – 7:00 p.m.
December 29 – Third-place game – 4:00 p.m.; Championship game – 7:00 p.m.
- Sat.-Sun., Dec. 28-29 – Thompson Arena (4,500) – 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.
- Broadcast Information:
- Notre Dame hockey will be simulcast live on WDND South Bend’s ESPN Radio 1620 and WDNV 1490 with Mike Lockert calling all the action. Irish hockey can also be heard live via the internet at www.und.com.
HOLIDAY TOURNAMENT TIME: The Notre Dame hockey team takes a 14-day break for finals and the Christmas holiday before returning to action on Sat., December 28 at the Ledyard National Bank Tournament at Hanover, N.H. Hosting the tournament will be the Dartmouth Big Green while the Vermont Catamounts and the UMass-Lowell Riverhawks join the Irish in the tournament field. Notre Dame will face Dartmouth in the 7:00 p.m. game on Dec. 28 while Vermont and UMass-Lowell tangle at 4:00 p.m. The two losing teams will meet on Dec. 29 at 4:00 p.m. for third place with the two winners going at 7:00 p.m. for the tournament title. The Irish come into the tournament riding a three-game winning streak following the Dec. 14 win over Wayne State (3-2) at Joe Louis Arena. Notre Dame is 8-6-2 overall and 6-6-0 in CCHA play, good for a tie for sixth in the league standings. Dartmouth goes into the Christmas break with a 6-4-0 overall mark and is 4-2-0 in the ECAC, good for fifth place. Vermont comes into the tournament with a 5-7-2 record and is currently 2-4-0 in the ECAC. UMass-Lowell is 6-8-0 on the year, but 0-7-0 in Hockey East play. For Notre Dame, the Ledyard National Bank Tournament continues a string of seven consecutive games away from the Joyce Center. The road trip will continue on Jan. 3-4 when the Irish travel to Nebraska-Omaha for a pair of CCHA contests versus the Mavericks. Game time both nights is 7:05 p.m. (CST).
IRISH TOURNAMENT HISTORY: Notre Dame has played in 24 in-season tournaments in the program’s history and owns a 16-30-2 record (two games were decided with shootouts) in those tournaments. The Irish have won four tourneys, finished second six times, third three times and fourth 11 times (see list on page 10). The last in-season tournament the Irish were in was during the 2000-01 season when they finished fourth at the HSBC/R.P.I. Holiday Tournament. The last time Notre Dame won an in-season tournament was in 1981 when the Irish beat Michigan and Michigan Tech to win the Great Lakes Invitational.
FULL ROSTER: For the first time since the 1995-96 season, Notre Dame goes into the Christmas holidays with a full roster (except for injuries) since the Irish have no players on the 2002-03 U.S. Junior National Team. Since the 1996-97 season, Notre Dame has had eight different players appear on the team in that seven-year period – Ben Simon (’96-’97, ’97-’98), Joe Dusbabek (’97-’98), Dan Carlson (’98-’99), Brett Henning (’99-’00), Connor Dunlop (’99-’00, ’00-’01), David Inman (’99-’00), Rob Globke (’00-’01, ’01-’02) and Brett Lebda (’01-’02).
A LOOK AT DARTMOUTH: The Big Green are 6-4-0 overall and 4-2-0 in the ECAC coming into the Ledyard National Bank Tournament. They are led in scoring by sophomore Lee Stempniak, who has 10 goals and five assists for 15 points in 10 games, including five power-play tallies. Freshmen Hugh Jessiman (4-10-14) and Mike Ouellette (4-8-12) round out the top three scorers. In goal senior Nick Boucher is 4-2-0 with a 3.49 goals-against average and a .888 save percentage. Junior Darren Gastrock is 2-2-0 with a 3.51 goals-against average and a .877 save percentage. The Big Green are 5-1 in their last six games, including wins over nationally ranked Cornell (5-2) and Boston College (5-4 ot). The win over Cornell (10-1-0) is the Big Red’s only loss of the season. For more information on Dartmouth, check their website at www.dartmouth.edu/athletics.
THE VERMONT CATAMOUNTS: Vermont comes into the tournament with a 5-7-2 record overall and is 3-2-0 in its last five outings. Pacing the Catamounts offense is junior forward Jeff Miles who has 11 goals and four assists for 15 points in 14 games. Four of his goals have come on the power play and two are short-handed. He is followed by senior forward Jeff Longo (4-8-12) and sophomore forward Scott Mifsud (3-9-12). In goal, Shawn Conschafter is 3-2-2 with a 3.61 goals-against average and a .885 save percentage. For more information on the University of Vermont, check the Catamounts website at www.uvmathletics.com.
THE UMASS-LOWELL RIVERHAWKS: UMass-Lowell Riverhawks are 6-8-0 overall, but 0-7-0 in Hockey East play. Coach Blaise MacDonald’s team is 6-1-0 outside the league including wins at Colorado College and Rensselaer. UML snapped a five-game losing streak on Dec. 6-7 with wins over St. Lawrence (3-2) and Clarkson (3-0). Senior forward Ed McGrane is the offensive leader of the Riverhawks with 12 goals and nine assists for 21 points. He is followed by senior forwards Stephen Slonina (3-12-15) and Peter Hay (5-4-9). Chris Davidson is 4-5-0 in 10 games in goal with a 3.54 goals-against average and a .864 save percentage. For more information on the UMass-Lowell Riverhawks, contact their website at www.goriverhawks.com.
WAYNE STATE RECAP: Yan Stastny (St. Louis, Mo.) scored two goals and Connor Dunlop (St. Louis, Mo.) scored the game-winning marker with 4:07 left in the game to give Notre Dame a 3-2 win over Wayne State Saturday afternoon (Dec. 14) at Joe Louis Arena. Goaltender Morgan Cey (So., Wilkie, Sask.) made 23 saves in the win which extended Notre Dame’s winning streak to three in a row. Stastny scored the lone goal of the first period at 16:21 for the 1-0 lead.
Tyler Kindle got the first of two Wayne State power-play goals just 40 seconds into the second period to tie the game at 1-1. Stastny put the Irish ahead 2-1 at 9:36 when he stuffed a shot under goaltender David Guerrera’s pads. Nathan Rosychuk tied the game for the Warriors with a power-play goal at 19:47 of the second for a 2-2 score. Dunlop got the game winner at 15:53 of the third when he slid the rebound of a Rob Globke (Jr., West Bloomfield, Mich.) shot past a lunging Guerrera for his first of the season and a 3-2 Irish win. Notre Dame outshot Wayne State 29-25 in the game.
IRISH AT THE JOE: Notre Dame’s win over Wayne State on Dec. 14th at Joe Louis Arena was the first for the Irish at “the Joe” since March 13, 1982 when Dave Poulin led Notre Dame to an 8-5 win over Bowling Green in the CCHA semifinals. After that, the Irish lost seven straight at “the Joe” in CCHA or Great Lakes Invitational play. The win over Wayne State was the first non-CCHA tournament or Great Lakes Invitational game for the Irish at Joe Louis Arena. Notre Dame now has a 4-7-0 record all-time at Joe Louis Arena.
ON THE SIDELINES: Freshman forward Mike Walsh (Northville, Mich.) will be out of the Irish lineup indefinitely as he was diagnosed with mononucleosis on Nov. 24. Walsh missed the first 10 games of the season with a broken jaw suffered in the Oct. 4 preseason game with the University of Toronto. He returned to action and played in Notre Dame’s 4-3 win at Michigan on Nov. 23. Junior center Aaron Gill (Rochester, Minn.) injured a shoulder in the 6-3 win over Bowling Green on Dec. 7 and is out of the lineup indefinitely.
DUNLOP DELIVERS: Connor Dunlop snapped a 19-game goal-scoring drought with his game-winning goal versus Wayne State on Dec. 14. The goal was the first of the season for the Irish playmaker who now has a goal and 14 assists on the season. The last time Dunlop scored a goal was on March 2, 2002 in the regular season finale versus Bowling Green. He then went without a goal in four postseason games last year and the first 15 games this season. Dunlop also scored the game-winning goal versus Wayne State in the first-ever meeting between the two schools in Oct. of 2000. That goal was an overtime game winner in Notre Dame’s 2-1 win over the Warriors.
CENTURY CLUB: Connor Dunlop comes into the Ledyard National Bank Tournament needing just five points to become the 39th player in Notre Dame hockey history to score 100 points in his career. Dunlop currently has 20 goals and 75 assists for 95 career points. He is currently tied for 42nd on Notre Dame’s all-time scoring list.
ON A ROLL: The Irish win over Wayne State extended Notre Dame’s current winning streak to a season-high three games.
DEFENSIVE DEMOM: Notre Dame defenseman Evan Nielsen (Sr., Evanston, Ill.) continues to be one of the steadiest defensemen in the CCHA. The senior blueliner leads the Irish with a +11 this season. Offensively, Nielsen is second among CCHA defensemen (only Nebraska-Omaha’s Greg Zanon with 18 points has more) in scoring with two goals and 12 assists for 14 points. In the nation, only five other defensemen have more points than Nielsen.
SOLID START: Notre Dame goes into the break for finals and the Christmas holidays with their best record at this point of the season since 1998-99. The Irish are currently 8-6-2 overall. A year ago, they were 5-7-4 at the break. In 2000-01 they were 4-12-3 and in 1999-2000 the Irish were 7-11-2. During the 1998-99 season, Notre Dame was 9-5-2 going into the the holiday season.
THE ST. LOUIS CONNECTION: Notre Dame’s St. Louis connection played a vital role in the Irish win at Wayne State. Sophomore center Yan Stastny recorded two goals in the game (the second two-goal game of his career) while Connor Dunlop scored the game-winning goal. The third member of the trio, defenseman Neil Komadoski (Jr., Chesterfield, Mo.), made the key play on Dunlop’s goal has he kept the puck in the Wayne State zone and made the pass to Globke at the side of the net for an assist on the play.
JUST CALL HIM THE CAPTAIN: Defenseman Evan Nielsen turned in the best weekend of his career versus Bowling Green (Dec. 7-8) collecting a pair of three-point games with a goal and two assists in each. The three-point games equal Nielsen’s career best as he has now recorded four three-point nights in his career. Nielsen has a four-game point scoring streak (2-6-8). For the season, the senior is third on the Irish in scoring with two goals and 12 assists for 14 points.
GOALS FOR GLOBKE: With 14 goals on the season, Rob Globke leads the CCHA in goals and ranks fifth in the nation among goal scorers. He leads the CCHA in goals during league games with 11 goals in 12 contests. With 14 goals and 10 assists this season for 24 points, the 2002 second-round pick of the NHL’s Florida Panthers has already surpassed last year’s point totals of 11-11-22. Globke’s 24 points tie him for fourth in the CCHA’s overall scoring race. In league scoring he is tied for third with 11 goals and seven assists for 18 points. Globke has three game-winning goals this season which are the most by a Notre Dame player since Dan Carlson had five in the 1999-2000 season. The junior right wing’s best season came as a freshman when he had 17 goals and 11 assists for 28 points.
MORE GLOBKE: With an assist on Connor Dunlop’s game-winning goal versus Wayne State, Rob Globke has now ran his season-best point scoring streak to six games (7-6-13). In the first five games of the streak, Globke recorded at least two points in each game. On the year, Globke has four games with three-or-more points and seven multiple-point games overall. He started the season with a four-point game (3g, 1a) at Minnesota-Duluth (Oct. 12) and a three-point game (2g, 1a) at Western Michigan (Oct. 18). The last time a Notre Dame player scored five goals over a two-game period was during the 1994-95 season when Tim Harberts scored four goals in a game versus Waterloo (Oct. 21) and then scored a single-goal versus Lake Superior (Oct. 28). The last time a Notre Dame player had seven points in a two-game span was last season when Connor Dunlop (Sr., St. Louis, Mo.) had two goals and five assists in a weekend series versus Alaska Fairbanks (Feb. 1-2, 2002). For his career, Globke now has 14 multiple-point games and eight multiple-goal games.
ALWAYS SEN(CEY)TIONAL: After a rough weekend at Alaska Fairbanks (Nov. 28-29), Irish goaltender Morgan Cey has turned things around with three straight wins in goal for Notre Dame. Versus Bowling Green (Dec. 7-8), Cey stopped 87 of 92 (.946) shots in the sweep of Bowling Green, including a career-high 47-save game in a 5-2 win on Dec. 8. On Dec. 14 versus Wayne State, the sophomore from Wilkie, Sask., made 23 saves in a 3-2 win. The only two goals he gave up were on power-play deflections. Over the last three games, Cey is 3-0-0 with a 2.33 goals-against average and a .940 save percentage. Since turning Notre Dame’s season around last Feb. 8th when he helped the Irish go 7-2-0 over their last nine games, Cey is 14-7-2 with a 2.32 goals against and a .924 save percentage.
ROAD WARRIORS: With the win at Wayne State, the Irish improved to 4-3-1 on the road this season. Since Feb. 9, 2002, the Irish are 9-4-1 over their last 14 road games. Last season, Notre Dame was 10-8-3 on the road.
FIRING THE BISCUIT: Notre Dame recorded a season-high 50 shots on goal in the Dec. 7 game with Bowling Green. The last time the Irish had 50 or more shots in a game was March 1, 2002 versus Bowling Green at the Joyce Center.
FLIPPING THE SWITCH: Notre Dame’s power play came to life versus Bowling Green on Dec. 7, converting four-of-six chances in the game. That snapped a 2-for-41 (4.9%) dry spell over the previous eight games. The four power-play goals marks the second time this season that the Irish have scored four power-play goals in a game. They turned the trick on Oct. 19 when they scored on four-of-seven chances in an 8-5 win over Western Michigan. On the year, Notre Dame now has 14 power-play goals on 86 chances for a 16.3% success rate.
GETTING IT DUN(LOP): Senior center Connor Dunlop has recorded two-point games in four of the last six games he’s played. His two-assist night on Dec. 8 gave him eight points in the last five games and his goal versus Wayne State makes in nine points (1-8-9) over the last six contests. For the season, Dunlop ranks second on the team with a goal and 14 assists for 15 points. Dunlop now has 23 multiple-point games for his career. That includes two with four points, five with three points and 16 with two points.
“A” FOR EFFORT: Notre Dame left wing John Wroblewski turned in his best series of the season in the Bowling Green sweep as he picked up two goals and three assists for the weekend. Wroblewski had a pair of assists in the Dec. 7 win. He then followed that with his second three-point game of the season and the third of his career in the 5-2 win with two goals and an assist. The two-goal game was also his second of the season and the third of his career. Wroblewski was named an alternate captain for the remainder of the 2002-03 season on Nov. 20. In making the announcement, head coach Dave Poulin said, “John has emerged as an integral part of this team with his leadership and strong communication skills. He adds to an already strong captain’s group on this year’s team.” Wroblewski now has six goals and seven assists for 13 points in 16 games this season. He currently has a three-game point scoring streak (2-4-6).
- Rob Globke has a six-game point scoring streak (7-6-13).
- Connor Dunlop has points in two straight games (1-2-3) and in five of his six (1-8-9).
- Neil Komadoski has scored points in six of his last eight games (0-6-6). His four-game streak from 11/9-29 was the longest point- scoring streak of his Notre Dame career.
- Evan Nielsen has points in four straight (2-6-8) and in six of his last eight games (2-9-11).
- Yan Stastny has a four-game point scoring streak (4-3-7)
- John Wroblewski has a three-game scoring streak (2-4-6).
BACK ON THE BOARD: Left wing Yan Stastny snapped a five-game scoring slump with a goal and an assist on Nov. 30 versus Alaska Fairbanks and hasn’t stopped scoring since them. The sophomore scored twice in the 3-2 win over Wayne State and has now picked up points in four straight games (4-3-7). Stastny is second on the team in goals with eight and ranks sixth in scoring with eight goals and four assists for 12 points on the season.
CORY’S STORY: Sophomore right wing Cory McLean (So., Fargo, N.D.) has become Notre Dame’s sniper on the power play as he picked up two more power-play markers in the 6-3 win over Bowling Green. For the season, McLean now has four power-play goals to lead the team. For the year, McLean has career-highs in goals (6) and points (8). As a freshman, he had just one goal and four assists for five points during the 2001-02 season.
CHIN WINNER: Senior left wing Michael Chin (Sr., Urbana, Ill.) snapped a seven-game scoreless streak when he scored his third goal of the season, the eventual game winner, in the 5-2 win over Bowling Green. Chin has three goals and four assists for seven points in 14 games this season.
FRESHMAN FIRSTS: Freshman forward Matt Amado (Surrey, B.C.) picked up the first goal and assist of his Notre Dame career at Alaska Fairbanks (Nov. 29-30). He added an assist in the win over Bowling Green (Dec. 7) for a three-point scoring streak (1-2-3).
NHL DRAFTEES: Notre Dame had three players selected in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft last June. Junior Rob Globke led the way as he was selected in the second round, 40th overall, by the Florida Panthers. That is the highest any Notre Dame hockey player has ever been selected in the NHL Draft. In the fifth round, freshman Mike Walsh was selected 143rd overall by the New York Rangers. The third member of the Notre Dame roster picked was sophomore Yan Stastny who was selected in the eighth round, 259th overall, by the Boston Bruins. They join senior Evan Nielsen (Atlanta Thrashers, 8th round, 2000 Draft) and junior defenseman Neil Komadoski (Ottawa Senators, 3rd round, 2001 Draft) as Notre Dame players selected by the NHL.
PENALTY SHOTS: Irish goaltender Morgan Cey faced the second penalty shot of his career in the 4-2 loss to Michigan on Nov. 9, stopping Milan Gajic at 12:36 of the third period. As a freshman, Cey stopped Bowling Green’s Greg Day on Dec. 8, 2001 in a 4-2 loss to the Falcons.
OUCH: Notre Dame surrendered four power-play goals on six chances to Alaska Fairbanks in the 5-4 loss to the Nanooks on Nov. 30. The last time the Irish gave up four power-play goals in a game came on Feb. 15, 1997 at Michigan in a 6-1 loss. Prior to the UAF game on Nov. 30, the Irish penalty-killing unit had killed 29 of 32 opponent power-play chances. Notre Dame’s penalty killers got back on track versus Bowling Green (Dec.7-8) when they killed 12 of 13 Falcon power-play chances. For the season, the Irish are sixth overall in the CCHA after giving up 16 ppg’s on 81 chances for a 80.2% success rate.
SWEEPS: Notre Dame’s series sweep of Bowling Green gives the Irish two CCHA series sweeps this season. Earlier this year (Oct. 18-19), the Irish swept a home-and-home series with Western Michigan. The last time the Irish won more that two CCHA series was in the 1998-99 season when they swept four weekend series. The Irish sweep of Western Michigan earlier this year gave the Irish three consecutive CCHA series sweeps going back to the 2001-02 season. The Irish ended the season by sweeping Lake Superior at Sault Ste. Marie and then Bowling Green at the Joyce Center. That marked the first time in Notre Dame’s 11 years in the CCHA that the Irish won three consecutive league series. The last time Notre Dame won three consecutive weekend series was during the 1990-91 season with sweeps versus Mercyhurst, Alabama-Huntsville and UMass-Boston. Notre Dame’s streak of three consecutive regular-season series sweeps came to an end versus Ferris State when the Bulldogs took 5-2 and 4-1 verdicts from the Irish on Oct. 25-26.
GETTING OFFENSIVE: Notre Dame defenseman Neil Komadoski (Jr., Chesterfield, Mo.) is having a career-year offensively on the Irish blue line. Through the first 16 games of the season, Komadoski is tied for fourth in team scoring with a goal and 12 assists for 13 points. The 12 assists and 13 points are career-highs for Komadoski. Among CCHA defensemen, Komadoski is tied for fourth in scoring.
SHORT-CIRCUITED: Notre Dame gave up its fourth short-handed goal of the season in the 4-3 win versus Michigan (Nov. 23) when Dwight Helminen scored a man down at 6:45 of the first period. Last season, the Irish gave up just four shorthanded goals in 38 games.
PULLING THE GOALTENDER: The Irish have pulled the goaltender in games six times this season and have been successful in getting the tying goal twice. The Irish converted their first two attempts getting game-tying goals versus Minnesota-Duluth and Boston College. On Oct. 11, Yan Stastny performed the heroics versus Minnesota-Duluth. With Morgan Cey on the bench, Stastny scored with 57 seconds left to tie that game at 2-2. Aaron Gill got the game-tying goal with 42 seconds left and Cey on the bench Nov. 1 to send the Boston College game into overtime at 3-3. The last four times the Irish have pulled the goaltender in favor of a sixth attacker they have failed to score.
FIT TO BE TIED: The 3-3 tie versus Boston College (Nov. 1) was Notre Dame’s second tie of the season and they are 0-0-2 in those games. Since the 1999-2000 season, the Irish are 5-2-22 in overtime games.
THE BROTHERS GILL: Notre Dame’s brother combination of Aaron Gill and Tony Gill saw their first action of the season together on the same line versus Miami (Nov. 8). Aaron scored Notre Dame’s only goal while getting five shots on goal with a +1 rating. Tony collected one shot and was also +1 for the evening.
CENTRAL SCOUTING REPORT: The National Hockey League released its Central Scouting Services preliminary rankings for the 2003 Entry Draft Nov 25. On its list of 42 collegiate players (37 skaters and five goaltenders), 11 CCHA players were ranked. Ranked 12th among collegiate players is Irish right wing Tim Wallace (Fr., Anchorage, Alaska). Wallace has played in all 16 games for the Irish with two goals and three assists for five points.
IRON MEN: Senior center Jake Wiegand (Northville, Mich.) saw his consecutive games streak of 79 straight games snapped on Oct. 25 versus Ferris State. The 6-3, 218-pound forward went down with a sprained left knee in Notre Dame’s 8-5 win at Western Michigan (Oct. 19). Junior center Aaron Gill (Jr., Rochester, Minn.) had his 62-game streak snapped on Dec. 8 when he missed the Bowling Green game with a separated right shoulder. Defenseman Evan Nielsen now has the team lead having played in 91 consecutive games. Junior defenseman Brett Lebda (Buffalo Grove, Ill.) has played in 87 of 91 career games at Notre Dame. The lone games he has missed came between 12/28 – 1/5 of last season while he was playing for the U.S. Junior National Team in the World Junior Championships. The Notre Dame record for consecutive games played is 103 and was set by Ryan Dolder over three seasons.
Current Notre Dame Consecutive Game Streaks:
Evan Nielsen – 91 games
John Wroblewski – 89 games
GILL THE THRILL: Junior center Aaron Gill has provided his heroics twice for the Irish this season. The Rochester, Minn., native scored with 42 seconds left to give Notre Dame a 3-3 tie with third-ranked Boston College on Nov. 1. Earlier in the season (Oct. 19), Gill recorded the first hat trick of his career in Notre Dame’s 8-5 win over Western Michigan. Gill scored two power-play goals and had the game-winning tally among his three lamplighters.
HAT TRICKS: Junior center Aaron Gill scored three goals for the Irish in the 8-5 win at Western Michigan on Oct. 19. The hat trick was the first of his collegiate career and marked the second time in the first four games that Notre Dame recorded a hat trick. Rob Globke scored three times in the 5-3 win at Minnesota-Duluth. This marks the first time since the 1994-95 season that two Notre Dame players have recorded hat tricks in the same season. Tim Harberts (four goals) and Ben Nelsen each had hat tricks in October of 1994.
EIGHT IS GREAT: The eight goals scored by the Irish in the 8-5 win at Western Michigan are the most goals scored by Notre Dame in a game since Nov. 20, 1998 in a 9-5 win over Western Michigan. That covers a span of 150 games.
NOT SO GREAT EIGHT: Ferris State’s Chris Kunitz scored eight points in the weekend (Oct. 25-26) series versus the Irish. The senior left wing recorded two goals and two assists in each game. The last time Notre Dame gave up eight points in a CCHA series was during the 1981-82 season when Western Michigan’s Ross Fitzpatrick recorded six goals and two assists on Feb. 26-27, 1982. Fitzpatrick had three goals and one assist in each game.
NO BULL: Notre Dame will face teams with the nickname Bulldogs eight times this season. The Irish opened the season with two games versus the Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs. They will face the Ferris State Bulldogs four times this season as members of the CCHA. In January, the Irish will play host to the Yale Bulldogs with one game (Jan. 17) at the Joyce Center and one game (Jan. 18) at Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Ill.
CLOSING THE DEAL: After seeing their 50-game unbeaten streak (42-0-8) when leading after two periods stopped in the second game of last season, the Irish went 16-0-1 over the final 17 games when they led after two periods. This season, the Irish are 4-0-1 when they lead after two periods of play. Since Jan. 9, 1998, the Irish are 62-2-10 when leading after two periods of play. During that period, Boston College has handed the Irish a loss and a two ties.
WOW ZOW: Notre Dame goaltender Tony Zasowski (Sr., Darien, Ill.) made his first start since Dec. 1, 2001 in the second game of the weekend series at Minnesota-Duluth (Oct. 12). After giving up two first-period goals, Zasowski stopped 30 of 31 shots over the final two periods for the 5-3 win. On the night, Zasowski made 39 saves, the second highest total of his career. Zasowski made 29 saves in his second appearance of the year, a 4-1 loss to Ferris State on Oct. 26.
WASTING LITTLE TIME: Freshman right wing Tim Wallace (Anchorage, Alaska) wasted little time scoring his first collegiate goal in the 2-2 tie at Minnesota-Duluth. Wallace scored the first goal of his career for the Irish on the first shot of his collegiate career. The goal came at 9:12 of the first period and tied the score at 1-1. He added his second career goal in the first period of ND’s 8-5 win over Western Michigan. That goal snapped a 1-1 tie and put the Irish ahead to stay in the game. Through 16 games this season, Wallace has two goals and three assists for five points in his rookie season.
CENTER OF ATTENTION: Irish center Connor Dunlop is coming off the best season of his career and the best year for a Notre Dame hockey player since 1991-92. Dunlop capped his junior year by leading the Irish in scoring with nine goals and 36 assists for 45 points. The 36 assists were the most since Curtis Janicke recorded 38 in 1991-92 and the 45 points were the most since Janicke’s 50-point campaign in ’91-’92.
Dunlop finished fourth overall among CCHA scorers and third in assists. In the 28-game regular season league rankings, Dunlop was second in points (36) and assists (27).
An honorable mention all-CCHA selection in 2001-02, Dunlop turned in a seven-point (two goals, five assists) weekend series versus Alaska Fairbanks (Feb. 1-2) including his second four-point game of the season. For the year, Dunlop recorded two four-point games, three with three-points and 13 multiple-point games in all.
SEN-CEY-SATIONAL: Notre Dame goaltender Morgan Cey was among the top freshmen netminders in the country during the 2001-02 season. Cey turned in a 15-14-3 record with a 2.72 goals against average and a school-record .910 save percentage. He also equalled a Notre Dame mark with two shutouts. Over the final nine games of the year, Cey was 7-2 with a 1.77 goals against average. Cey backstopped the Irish to their playoff series win at Nebraska-Omaha. In three games covering 208:49 minutes, Cey gave up five goals, while stopping 99 of 104 shots for a 1.49 goals against and a .951 save percentage.
THE CAPTAINS: Senior defenseman Evan Nielsen will serve as team captain for the second consecutive season in 2002-03. He is the first two-time captain since Steve Noble handled the job in 1996-97 and 1997-98. He becomes the 12th two-time captain in the program’s 35th season. One of the CCHA’s top returning defensemen, Nielsen had a career season during 2001-02 with seven goals and 13 assists for 20 points while being +5 on the year. Serving as alternate captains this season will be senior center Connor Dunlop and junior center Aaron Gill. Dunlop served as an alternate captain in 2001-02 and had the best season of his career. Dunlop had nine goals and 36 assists for 45 points with the assist and point totals being the most for a Notre Dame player since 1991-92. An honorable mention all-CCHA performer, Dunlop was fourth among CCHA scorers overall and finished second in 28 league games with nine goals and 27 assists for 36 points. Gill has been a steady performer in his first two seasons with the Irish. He is coming off an eight-goal, 14-assist season. Known for his non-stop hustle, Gill is one of the teams top faceoff men and penalty killers. John Wroblewski was appointed the team’s third alternate captain on Nov. 20. One of the top defensive forwards in the CCHA, Wroblewski had his best season offensively in 2001-02 when he scored 10 goals with 11 assists for 21 points. All three totals were career highs.
ALL IN THE FAMILY: Three current members of the Notre Dame hockey program – senior center Connor Dunlop, junior defenseman Neil Komadoski and sophomore forward Yan Stastny – hold a unique connection, as each of their fathers enjoyed lengthy careers in the National Hockey League.
Blake Dunlop played 11 seasons in pro hockey (’73-’84), including NHL stints with the Minnesota North Stars (’73-’77), Philadelphia Flyers (’77-’79), St. Louis Blues (’79-’83) and Detroit Red Wings (’83-’84), while totaling 130G-274A in 550 career NHL games.
Neil Komadoski, Sr., played eight NHL seasons as a defenseman with the Los Angeles Kings (’72-’78) and the St. Louis Blues (’77-’80), totaling 16G-76A and 632 penalty minutes in 501 career games.
Peter Stastny played 15 seasons in the NHL with the Quebec Nordiques (’80-’90), the New Jersey Devils (’90-’93) and the St. Louis Blues (’93-’95). He is currently the 23rd all-time scorer in league history with 450 goals, 789 assists and 1,239 points in 997 games. A six-time NHL all-star, Stastny is the highest scoring European-born player in NHL history and was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1998. The 1981 NHL rookie-of-the-year, Stastny is currently a special assignment scout for the St. Louis Blues.
Notre Dame’s NHL connection doesn’t stop there.
Sophomore forward Alexander “Newsy” Lalonde (Newmarket, Ont.) also has NHL lineage as he is a distant relative of NHL pioneer and Hall of Famer, Edouard “Newsy” Lalonde. Lalonde played for the Montreal Canadiens and the New York Americans between 1917 and 1927 for a total of six seasons in which he scored 124 goals and 41 assists for 165 points in 99 games.
ALL IN THE FAMILY, PART II: Two freshmen hockey players – Rory Walsh (Milton, Mass.) and Mike Walsh have fathers who attended Notre Dame. Rory Walsh’s father, Brian (’77), was an all-American hockey player for the Irish. A center, the elder Walsh is Notre Dame’s all-time leading scorer after recording 234 career points on 89 goals and 145 assists. Mike Walsh’s father, Max, (’74) was an offensive lineman on the Notre Dame football team and a member of the 1973 national championship team. Adding to the Irish family theme, sophomore left wing Yan Stastny’s (St. Louis, Mo.) younger sister, Kristina, is a freshman with the Notre Dame women’s tennis team while junior Aaron Gill’s younger brother Tony gives the Irish their ninth brother combo in the program’s history.
ACADEMIC ALL-AMERICANS: Notre Dame saw its streak of five consecutive Verizon/CoSIDA Academic All-Americans snapped in 2001-02. Senior right wing David Inman (Toronto, Ont.) was selected as a District V selection for the At-Large team but did not make it to the national team. Prior to 2001-02, four Irish hockey players made the team over a five-year period.
2000-01: Dan Carlson (3rd team)
1999-00: Andy Jurkowski (3rd team)
1998-99: Forrest Karr (2nd team)
1997-98: Steve Noble (1st team)
1996-97: Steve Noble (2nd team)
CCHA ALL-ACADEMIC TEAM: David Inman was named to the CCHA’s nine-man 2001-02 all-Academic Team, making Notre Dame the CCHA’s only school to produce an all-Academic honoree in each of the last seven seasons. Inman finished second for the Irish in scoring with 19 goals and 18 assists for 37 points and was also an honorable mention all-CCHA selection. Inman turned in a 3.54 grade point average in finance during his Notre Dame career. The Irish have produced eight previous first team CCHA All-Academic selections since rejoining the CCHA in ’92-’93: 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) and Dan Carlson (2000-01). During that 10-year span, only Western Michigan (11) has produced more CCHA All-Academic selections than Notre Dame’s 10.
HOMETOWNS: The 2002-03 Notre Dame hockey team features players from 10 states and four Canadian provinces – Alberta, British Columbia,Ontario and Saskat-chewan. In the seven-year tenure of head coach Dave Poulin, the Notre Dame hockey letter winners have hailed from 20 different states and provinces – those listed below, plus: Colorado, Delaware, New Jersey, Prince Edward Island and Quebec.
2002-03 Notre Dame Hockey – By State or Province:
Illinois (5): Michael Chin, Brett Lebda, Evan Nielsen, Tony Zasowski, Joe Zurenko
Michigan (5): Rob Globke, Jake Wiegand, Derek Smith, Chris Trick, Mike Walsh
Minnesota (3): Kyle Dolder, Aaron Gill, Tony Gill
Missouri (3): Connor Dunlop, Neil Komadoski, Yan Stastny
Alaska (1): Tim Wallace
Alberta (1): Brad Wanchulak
British Columbia (1): Matt Amado
Maryland (1): T.J. Mathieson
Massachusetts (1): Rory Walsh
New York (1): Tom Galvin
North Dakota (1): Cory McLean
Ontario (1): Alex Lalonde
Saskatchewan (1): Morgan Cey
Wisconsin (1): John Wroblewski
PATRIOTIC GROUP: Notre Dame’s current roster includes eight players who have past experience with USA Hockey, as members of the National Team Development Program (NTDP) and/or the National Junior Team. Notre Dame ranks second with 10 NTDP alums, one behind Michigan State (11), while Minnesota has nine. Notre Dame’s contingent includes seniors Michael Chin, John Wroblewski and Connor Dunlop, juniors Rob Globke, Neil Komadoski and Brett Lebda, sophomore Derek Smith and freshman forward Tim Wallace.
Former Irish players Brett Henning and Paul Harris also were members of the Developmental program prior to playing at Notre Dame.
Globke and Lebda also played for Team USA at last year’s World Junior Championships. For Globke, it was his second appearance for Team USA and he scored two goals with one assist in helping the U.S. team to a 4-1-2 record and fifth place. Lebda made his first appearance and scored a goal in seven tournament games. The Irish have had at least one player on the National Junior Team in each of the last six years.
NOTRE DAME PLAYERS ON JUNIOR NATIONAL TEAM – (since ’96-’97):
Ben Simon – 1996-97, 1997-98
Joe Dusbabek – 1997-98
Dan Carlson – 1998-99
Brett Henning – 1999-2000
Connor Dunlop – 1999-00, 2000-01
David Inman – 1999-2000
Rob Globke – 2000-01, 2001-02
Brett Lebda – 2001-02
RIVALRY CLUSTERS: The CCHA starts its new scheduling format this season as the league’s 12 teams are grouped in “rivalry pairings.” In the new pairings, Notre Dame is paired with Bowling Green. The league’s other pairings include Michigan-Michigan State, Miami-Ohio State, Lake Superior State-Northern Michigan, Ferris State-Western Michigan and Alaska Fairbanks-Nebraska-Omaha.
The conference will continue to use the 28-game three-cluster format that was implemented three years ago to determine the regular-season champion. The teams will be divided into three clusters made up of two of the above pairings with each team playing the other three members of its cluster four times (twice at home and twice on the road). Each team hosts two teams and visits the other two from each of the other clusters. While the schedule is designed for two-game weekend series, some teams have taken advantage of the option to play home-and-home series when geographically possible.
In 2002-03, Notre Dame will play Bowling Green, Ferris State and Western Michigan four times with two games at home and two away. The Irish will also host two-game series with Lake Superior State, Miami, Michigan State and Ohio State while traveling for two games to Alaska Fairbanks, Michigan, Nebraska-Omaha and Northern Michigan.