Feb. 12, 2011
Notre Dame, Ind. – Freshman left wing Anders Lee did what he does best – score a goal – getting the game winner with 3:14 left in the game as Notre Dame handed Bowling Green a 2-1 loss at a sold-out Joyce Center on Friday night.
Lee, at the end of a shift took a pass from Bryan Rust inside the Bowling Green blue line near the right boards before carrying it across the blue line to the center point where he sailed a wrist shot over Falcons’ goaltender Andrew Hammond’s shoulder to give the Irish the 2-1 win.
Rust scored the first goal of the game for the Irish in the first period and along with Lee had a two-point night in the win. Bowling Green got the equalizer in the second period on a power-play tally by Michael Fink.
Hammond made 36 saves in the game while Notre Dame’s Mike Johnson stopped 21 for the victory.
The Irish win, coupled with Miami’s tie with Western Michigan and 1-0 shootout loss, moved Notre Dame back into first place in the CCHA. The 10th-ranked Irish are now 17-9-5 on the season and 14-6-3-2 in conference play, good for 47 points in the standings with two games in hand on Miami. The RedHawks now have 46 points in the CCHA and are tied for second with Michigan with the Wolverines also having two games in hand. The loss dropped Bowling Green to 8-20-3 overall and 3-17-3-1 in league action.
“It’s going to be like this the rest of the way,” said Irish head coach Jeff Jackson referring to the tight game.
“Everyone is battling for position, everyone is playing that tough style. It’s always tougher in the latter stages of the season.”
The Irish head coach was not surprised by the tight-checking style that Bowling Green played on Friday night.
“Bowling Green played exactly how I expected them to play,” explained Jackson.
“That’s what we saw on tape last week against Western Michigan. They are playing a real tough style to play against right now. I give Coach Bergeron a lot of credit. He has them playing exactly how they have to play and they are doing it well.”
The Irish controlled the play for most of the opening period and had a 15-8 edge in the shots, with Hammond stopping all but one shot as Rust scored on a rebound at 12:39 of the opening period to give the Irish the 1-0 lead.
Lee and Tynan set the goal up as Lee won a battle along the boards and was able to get it in front to Tynan who got a shot on goal. Hammond made the stop with the rebound bouncing off players in front before it slid out to the right circle where Rust was waiting to rip the rebound into the net for his fifth of the season.
The score would stay that way until the eight-minute mark of the second period when Bowling Green would convert on the power play as Fink scored from in the slot to make it 1-1.
David Solway took a pass from Brett Mohler in the corner and whipped a shot at the net that Johnson stopped. Fink jumped on the rebound and tucked it through the Irish goaltenders pads for his third goal of the season.
Notre Dame had a 25-13 advantage in shots after two periods but the game was tied 1-1.
Lee put Notre Dame ahead at 16:46 with his team-high 19th goal of the year and his fifth game-winning goal of the season. For the freshman it was a case of just doing what the coach asked him to do.
“I was chirping at the guys to get the puck to the net. That’s the biggest thing,” said Jackson.
“Anything can happen when you get pucks to the net and Anders did. He is a goal scorer, and when goal scorers get opportunities, they find a way to get the puck in the net. He’s scored a variety of ways this year, so it doesn’t surprise me.”
From there, Johnson and the Notre Dame defense held the Falcons off the scoreboard. BG pulled Hammond with 1:10 left but could not get the puck past Johnson.
On the night, the Irish out shot Bowling Green by a 38-22 margin. The Falcons were 1-for-4 on the power play while Notre Dame was 0-for-3.
The two teams will close out the series on Saturday night with faceoff at the Joyce Center set for 7:05 p.m.
** IRISH NOTES **
** With his game-winning goal, Anders Lee is now tops in the CCHA with five game-winning goals on the season.
** With the win, Notre Dame is now 10-0-1 versus the Falcons in the last 11 games at the Joyce Center. The last time the Falcons won at the Joyce Center was Jan. 29, 2005.
GAME SUMMARY 1 2 3 - FBowling Green (8-20-3/3-17-3-1) 0 1 0 - 1#10/#10 Notre Dame (17-9-5/14-6-3-2) 1 0 1 - 2
ScoringFirst Period: ND: Bryan Rust 5 (T.J. Tynan, Anders Lee), 12:39.Penalties: BGSU: 1 for 2 minutes; ND: 2 for 4 minutes.
Second Period: BGSU: Michael Fink 3 (David Solway, Brett Mohler), PPG, 8:00.Penalties: BGSU: 1 for 2 minutes; ND: 1 for 2 minutes.
Third Period: ND: Lee 19 (Rust, Kevin Lind), 16:46.Penalties: BGSU: 1 for 2 minutes; ND: 1 for 2 minutes.
Shots On Goal:Bowling Green 8 - 5 - 9 - 22Notre Dame 15 - 10 - 13 - 38
Goaltender Saves:BGSU: Andrew Hammond (58:50) 14 - 10 - 12 - 36ND: Mike Johnson (60:00) 8 - 4 - 9 - 21
Power Plays:BGSU: 1 for 4ND: 0 for 4