November 2, 1996
Notre Dame Hockey Completes 7-5 Comeback Win at No. 3 Bowling Green
Irish score five times in the 3rd as Karr comes on for a memorable first win
Bowling Green, Ohio — Sophomore goaltender Forrest Karr(DeForest, WI) came off the bench to stop 28 of 30 shots and collect hisfirst career win while junior center Lyle Andrusiak (Foam Lake, SASK)snapped out of a two-year scoring funk in timely fashion as theUniversity of Notre Dame hockey team scored five times in the final 16minutes of the game to claim a stunning 7-5 comeback victory at#3-ranked Bowling Green, in Central Collegiate Hockey Association actionSaturday at the BGSU Ice Arena.
The victory vaults Notre Dame (3-2-1, 2-2-1 CCHA) past Bowling Green(6-2-0, 2-2-0) into fourth place in the early-season CCHA standings,with both of the Irish wins coming on the road (also 3-0 at Ohio Stateon Oct. 25). BGSU also lost on Friday night at Michigan State, whichreturned to the ice Saturday to record a 5-4 win over #1 Michigan.
The upset ranks as a landmark result in the history of Irish hockey,marking the highest-ranked Notre Dame opponent defeated on its home icein recent memory (stretching back to the playing days of current Irishcoach Dave Poulin, 1979-82). The Irish shocked then-#1 Michigan duringthe 1994-95 season (6-3), but that victory came in the comfortableconfines of Notre Dame’s Joyce Center.
The Falcons jumped out to a 3-0 lead after the first nine minutes ofthe game, bunching their goals in a span of 2:40 to seemingly takecontrol of the game. But Notre Dame senior Tim Harberts snapped out of ascoring drought of his own late in the first period, netting his firstgoal of the year, and the Irish played their hosts even in the secondbefore rallying to the dramatic road win.
Notre Dame junior Matt Eisler–who last week was named the CCHAdefensive player of the week after a 47-save shutout at OSU and120-minute shutout streak–was pulled from the game in favor of therelatively inexperienced Karr, after Eisler had allowed the Falcons toscore on three of their first four shots.
Saturday’s effort was easily the biggest of his career for Karr, whohad yet to see the ice this season and played in just two games lastseason while logging only 78 minutes. The win over the Falcons also madeKarr’s debut in a CCHA game all the more special.
Notre Dame headed into the third period still trailing by two goals(4-2) and desperately looking to catch a break that might ignite acomeback rally. Such a chance came on Andrusiak’s second goal, at the3:56 mark, and co-captains Steve Noble and Terry Lorenz both followedsuit over the next eight minutes to give the visitors their first lead.
Two minutes later, Falcons freshman Adam Edinger converted on thepowerplay for his second goal of the night, tying the game at 5-5. ButNotre Dame’s Benoit Cotnoir delivered on a slapshot from the blueline atthe 17:15 mark and his fellow sophomore Aniket Dhadphale sealed theupset on an open-net goal with 17 seconds left to play.
Andrusiak’s sparkplug goal came after Molina had passed the puck toDhadphale, who sent a pass from the left side across the middle of theice. Falcons senior defenseman Kelly Perrault was skating back to coveron the play and appeared ready to intercept Dhadphale’s pass at thecenter faceoff circle. But the puck skipped past Perrault and Andrusiakseized the opportunity, taking the puck in stride and skating in onsophomore goaltender Mike Savard before putting home a backhanded shotinto the left side of the net.
Prior to Saturday’s game, Andrusiak–who enjoyed stellar scoringsuccess in junior hockey–has totaled just one goal in his last 39 gamesfor the Irish. But the native of Fort Lake, Saskatchewan had beenshowing renewed offensive spark since sliding over to the center spot,totaling three assists in the last three games before finally findingthe net vs. the Falcons.
Noble tied the game at 4-4 after freshman Ben Simon (from nearbyShaker Heights, OH) overskated a chance at the top of the crease andthen unselfishly elected to send the puck back in front of the goal,rather than trying to tuck it around the left post. Noble was there toquickly redirect the puck into the net for his third goal in as manygames (4;46).
Lorenz scored at the 11:57 mark, swooping in from the left side andmuscling the puck into the crease, where it kicked off the skate of aFalcons defenseman before sliding by Savard.
BGSU made Notre Dame’s first lead of the game a shortlived one, as aFry pass from behind the net found Edinger’ s stick near the rightcrease, with the first-year center quickly flicking the puck home for a5-5 tie (13:50).
Simon also played a big part in Cotnoir’s goal, winning a faceoff atthe left circle before kicking the puck back to Harberts, who then slida pass across the blueline for the offensive-minded Cotnoir.
Notre Dame trailed heading into the first intermission, 3-1, despiteoutshooting the Falcons 16-10 in the first 20 minutes. BGSU thenstretched its lead back to three goals when Perrault scored at the 12:06mark, assisted by fellow senior Curtis Fry, but Andrusiak made the game4-2 three minutes later after gathering in a loose puck at the backboards and sliding around the net–to the left side of Savard–beforetucking the puck inside the near post.
The Falcons had a chance to pad their lead late in the second, afterIrish freshman defenseman Sean Molina saved a sure goal with a holdingpenalty near the right side of the crease. But Karr and the Irishdefense turned back five shots on goal, foiling the BGSU powerplay forthe fifth consecutive time.
Bowling Green jumped ahead at the 5:47 mark when Edinger finished aFalcons break. Two minutes later, BGSU senior Brett Punchard sent home aslapshot from the left point and freshman Zach Ham followed suit just 15seconds later, blasting home a shot from a tight angle on the leftboards, with the rising puck tucking inside the far right post.
IRISH NOTES: In addition to the goaltender change, Notre Dame madewhat proved to be a timely change in its first two lines, with Harbertsgoing from left wing of the second line to right wing on the first.Sophomore Brian Urick slid back from his right wing spot on the firstline to right wing on the second while freshman Troy Bagne moved fromright to left on the second line. Notre Dame’s most consistent andproductive line remains the third unit of Andrusiak, left wing Dhadphaleand freshman right wing Joe Dusbabek, who have combined to score exactlyhalf (7) of Notre Dame’s 14 even-strength goals this season, sinceAndrusiak moved from his wing position on the fourth line to the thirdline center spot in the third game of the season (at OSU). Notre Dame’soffensive balance can be seen in the fact that nine different playershave combined to score the team’s 19 goals this season, with sevenhaving two or three goals (the other two have one each).
CCHA HOCKEY (11/2/96) - at the Bowling Green Ice ArenaNOTRE DAME 1 1 5 - 7BOWLING GREEN 3 1 1 - 51st: BG 1. - Edinger (Ilvonen, Desjarlais) 5:47; BG 2. Punchard (Jones, Perrault) 8:12; BG 3. - Ham (Perrault, Johnson); ND 1. - Harberts (Simon, Cotnoir).2nd: BG 4. Perrault (Fry); ND 2. - Andrusiak (unassisted).3rd: ND 3. - Andrusiak (Dhadphale, Molina); ND 4. - Noble (Simon, Harberts); ND 5. - Lorenz (Urick, Bagne); BG 5. - Edinger (Fry, Johnson); ND 6. - Cotnoir (Harberts, Simon); ND 7. - Dhadphale (Andrusiak, Dusbabek).SHOTS ON GOAL: ND 16-14-12/42; BG 10-13-11/34.SAVES: Eisler (ND) 1-X-X/1; Karr (ND) 6-12-10/28; Savard (BG) 15-13-7/35. PENALTIES: ND 7 for 14; BG 5 for 10.POWERPLAY: ND 1-of-4; BG 1-of-6.
POSTGAME QUOTES – Notre Dame hockey at Bowling Green (11/2/96)
Note: Quotes from BGSU coach Buddy Powers and Falcons players wereunavailable due to time constraints.
Notre Dame Coach Dave Poulin: “Overall, we are real encouraged byour manner of winning. I was fully confident during the secondintermission that we would come back and win. Even when we fell behind3-0, we had been getting our chances but they weren’t going in. We’vehad flashes of good play all year, leading up to tonight. You could feelit on the bench that we weren’t going to lose the game. This team justhas a very special resiliency and consistently created chances out theretonight. This type of result is satisfying for a young team that justhas to remember to be patient. The key tonight was that we worried moreabout ourselves than about the other team. After letting Michigan getoff to a good start on Friday, we targeted having a quality starttonight–but Bowling Green’s shots just ended up in the net. In regardsto the line change, you don’t want to change for the sake of changing; but, you also have to keep looking for the best combinations. Troy Bagnehad skated well on the left wing in camp, so we switched him over thereand then moved Brian Urick into the right wing spot on the second line.That allowed Tim Harberts to move to the right wing as well (on thefirst line) and helped Tim see the puck a lot more since the centers onboth of our first lines are left-handed (Simon and Lorenz). We also madesome critical adjustments to our powerplay unit before the Michigan gameand that helped again tonight. You also can’t overlook our fourth lineof Craig Hagkull, John Dwyer and Neal Johnson–they did a great job forus all weekend. And of course the line of Dhadphale, Andrusiak andDusbabek has been on a tear the last couple of weeks. Changing goaliesis similar to taking out your best pitcher. You don’t want to do it tooquickly and yet Eisler didn’t seem to be on tonight. Often time it alsofires up the team and helps to slow momentum. It worked for us tonight,but it is a gamble and a decision you have to be confident in making.”
Notre Dame Junior Forward Lyle Andrusiak: “Since I’ve moved tocenter, I’ve been much more comfortable. Aniket and Joe have been greatlinemates. I just trey to keep my feet moving and driving to the net.The three of us are always out there talking and communicating–it’sgotten to the point already where we almost know where the other guysare going to be.”
Notre Dame Sophomore Goaltender Forrest Karr: “I feel great rightnow. I can’t give enough credit to the character of this team. Mentally,I always try to keep myself ready for the chance that I’ll get the call.It’s all about confidence. This team has a lot of confidence, characterand talent. I was just glad to be a part of it.”