Sept. 24, 2003
Notre Dame, Ind. – The days of autumn are upon us and for the Notre Dame hockey coaching staff that means just one thing – the official start of the hockey season. For head coach Dave Poulin that day comes on Friday, Sept., 26, at 4:00 p.m., when the Irish take the ice for their first official practice of the new campaign.
Poulin, who begins his ninth season behind the Notre Dame bench, will get a chance to see his veteran returning squad joined by his eight-man incoming freshman class together for the first time as they prepare for the upcoming season.
“We’re definitely ready to get started on Friday,” said Poulin.
“We’ve got several new faces to work into the lineup and we’ll get to see where our players stand following summer and preseason workouts. Friday is definitely the day the players have been looking forward to since they returned to campus in August.”
Notre Dame will look to improve on its 17-17-6 record from 2002-03. The Irish tied for fifth in the league standings after recording their first winning record in the CCHA (13-12-3) since the 1999-00 season. Notre Dame returned to the CCHA’s Super Six for the second consecutive season after defeating Miami in the first round of the CCHA playoffs.
Practice will begin at 4:00 p.m. and is open to the public at the Joyce Center. The Irish will have two weeks to get ready for their first regular-season weekend when they travel to Columbus, Ohio to face Ohio State on Oct. 10-11.
A strong senior class that features forwards Aaron Gill (Sr., Rochester, Minn.) and Rob Globke (Sr., West Bloomfield, Mich.) leads the 2003-04 Irish. Gill recorded 13 goals and 12 assists a year ago and will serve as the team captain this year. Globke, an all-CCHA candidate, led the Irish with 21 goals and 15 assists for 36 points, all career bests last season. Four seniors – Tom Galvin (Miller Place, N.Y.), Neil Komadoski (Chesterfield, Mo.), Brett Lebda (Buffalo Grove, Ill.) and T.J. Mathieson (Clarksville, Md.) – lead the veteran defense. Goaltender Morgan Cey (Jr., Wilkie, Sask.) returns and has been Notre Dame’s go-to-guy in goal the last two years, playing in 71 of a possible 79 games.
After just two days of practice, Irish hockey fans can see their team in action on Sunday, Sept. 28 when Notre Dame plays its annual Blue-Gold game to benefit the Coaches Foundation. That game begins at 4:00 p.m. at the Joyce Center and admission is free.
Notre Dame will then play its lone preseason game on Friday, Oct. 3 when the Irish play host to the Western Ontario Mustangs in a 7:35 p.m. game. Notre Dame’s home schedule begins on Friday, Oct. 17, when the Bowling Green Falcons visit South Bend for a single game that will begin at 7:35 p.m.