Jan. 29, 2006
Columbus, Ohio – The Notre Dame Fighting Irish and the Ohio State Buckeyes each scored one goal in their weekend series at the Value City Arena with goaltenders stealing the show both nights.
On Saturday night, it was Irish goaltender David Brown’s turn as he stopped all 24 shots he faced in blanking the Buckeyes, 1-0, in front of a crowd of 11,141, Ohio State’s biggest crowd of the year. Senior left wing Mike Walsh scored the only goal that Brown would need via the power play early in the second period.
Brown and Ohio State’s Dave Caruso each turned in 1-0 shutouts in the weekend series. For Brown, the shutout was the second of the season and sixth of his career, tying former Irish goaltender Morgan Cey for the Notre Dame career shutout mark.
Brown was quick to spread the credit for the whitewashing of the Buckeyes.
“We really had a good team effort tonight,” said Brown.
“Our defense had a strong game. There was good communication all around and our forwards did a great job coming back. I thought we really played the 6-on-5 at the end well. It was an all-around team effort.”
The Irish victory snapped a seven-game losing streak versus Ohio State. Notre Dame improves to 9-14-3 overall and 7-10-3 in CCHA play. The Buckeyes fall to 13-11-4 on the year and 9-9-2 in conference play.
After a scoreless first period that extended Notre Dame’s scoreless run to four periods on the weekend, the Irish got the only goal of the game at 3:45 of the second period.
The Irish gained control deep in the Ohio State zone. Freshman right wing Erik Condra set the play in motion moving it from the left-wing corner to Josh Sciba who snuck in from the left point. Caruso got a pad on Sciba’s low wrist shot but the rebound found it’s way onto Walsh’s stick as the senior was parked on the doorstep to the right of Caruso. Walsh flipped it over the Ohio State goaltender for his eight of the season.
That goal snapped an Irish string of 94:55 without a goal dating back to the third period of the Jan. 21 win at Northern Michigan. For Walsh, it was his team-best third game winner of the season and the eighth of his career. Three of his game winners during his career have come in 1-0 Irish wins.
From there, Brown held the fort, as the Irish killed all four Ohio State power-play chances with the Buckeyes best chance coming early in the third when junior right wing Mathieu Beaudoin broke in alone on a power play and the junior goaltender made the big save.
“Being such a tight game, you want to play each situation correctly,” said Brown about Beaudoin’s scoring bid.
“We back checked that play really well. The D came back and took away his options and I was able to make the stop. That switched the momentum back to us.”
For the Irish the win closes the month of January that saw them play six of eight games on the road where they went 3-2-1 away from the Joyce Center.
Irish head coach Jeff Jackson sees his team improving as each week goes by.
“This team has definitely progressed since the beginning of the year. First we had to learn how to compete. We’ve learned how to protect the puck and now we are learning how to win. Winning one-goal games the last couple of weekends has been important,” said Jackson.
Jackson and his squad returns home for the first time since Jan. 14 on Friday, Feb. 3 when they open a home-and-home series with Michigan State. Friday’s game will start at 7:35 p.m. On Saturday, Feb. 4, the Irish travel to Michigan State for a 7:05 p.m. contest.
** The Irish shutout was the third of the season. Brown owns one other shutout versus Western Michigan (3-0) on Dec. 3. Freshman Jordan Pearce shutout Princeton, 2-0, on Oct. 29.
** Notre Dame has now scored at least one power-play goal in eight of its last nine games going back to Dec. 18 versus Lake Superior State.
** The Irish are now 5-4-1 in the second game of their CCHA series. They are 2-6-2 in the opening game.
GAME SUMMARY 1 2 3 - F
Notre Dame (9-14-3/7-10-3) 0 1 0 - 1
Ohio State (13-11-4/9-9-2) 0 0 0 - 0
First Period: No Scoring
Penalties: ND: 1 for 2 minutes; OSU: 0 for 0 minutes.
Second Period: ND: Mike Walsh 8 (Josh Sciba, Erik Condra), PPG, 3:45.
Penalties: ND: 2 for 4 minutes; OSU: 2 for 4 minutes.
Third Period: No Scoring.
Penalties: ND: 2 for 4 minutes; OSU: 1 for 2 minutes.
Shots On Goal:
Notre Dame 8 - 10 - 5 - 23
Ohio State 6 - 5 - 13 - 24
ND - David Brown (59:39) 6 - 5 - 13 - 24
OSU - Dave Caruso (59:02) 8 - 9 - 5 - 22
ND: 1 for 2
OSU: 0 for 4