Notre Dame Fighting Irish - Official Athletics Website

Three Fighting Irish to Participate in North America Hockey Championship

April 9, 1999

Three senior members of the Notre Dame hockey program, defenseman Benoit Cotnoir (Rouyn-Noranda, Quebec), goaltender Forrest Karr (DeForest, Wis.) and right wing Brian Urick (Minnetonka, Minn.)will participate in the 1999 North American College Hockey Championships. The three will play for the U.S. college team, in a two-game series between college seniors in the U.S. and Canada.

Game One is slated for Saturday, April 10, at Joe Louis Arena at 7:00 p.m. eastern. Game Two is scheduled for Sunday, April 11, at 4:00 p.m. at the new Air Canada Center in Toronto.

Fox Sports-Detroit will broadcast the April 10 game live and will rebroadcast the game later on the night of the 10th. Fox Sports also was schedule to offer the April 11 game (consult local listings). Cotnoir was among the original 20 players named to the team while Karr and Urick were late replacements for players who have already begun their professional careers.

Cotnoir is one five All-Americans who will play for the USA team, joining fellow defensemen Scott Swanson (Colorado College) and Brad Williamson (North Dakota) and forwards Rejean Stringer (Merrimack) and Jay Panzer (North Dakota). Other players on the USA team include two from NCAA runner-up New Hampshiregoaltender Sean Matile and defenseman Steve O’Brienplus three others who played in the NCAAs: Michigan defenseman Bubba Berenzweig, Boston College forwards Chris Masters and Andy Powers.

Lake Superior forward Tobin Praznik joins Berenzweig and the three Irish players as the fifth player from a Central Collegiate Hockey Association school who will play for the USA.

Team USA Final Roster1   Forrest Karr        Notre Dame        G   6-1   190  DeForest, WI2   Rob Koh             Colby             D   5-11  185  Toronto, ONT3   Bubba Berenzweig    Michigan          D   6-1   212  Arlington Heights, IL4   Chris Masters       Boston College    F   5-11  210  Lexington, MA   6   Scott Swanson       Colorado College  D   6-2   205  Cottage Grove, MN7   Kyle Knopp          Cornell           F   5-8   170  Delta, BC8   Brian Urick         Notre Dame        F   6-1   195  Minnetonka, MN9   Justin Keiffer      Air Force         F   6-0   190  Brainerd, NM10  Andy Lundholm       Army              F   6-3   225  Roseau, MN11  Jay Panzer          North Dakota      F   5-10  170  Grand Forks, ND 15  Steve O'Brien       New Hampshire     D   6-1   205  Braintree, MA   16  Rob Smillie         St. Norbert       F   6-0   195  Richmond, BC18  Brad Williamson     North Dakota      D   5-10  175  Thunder Bay, ONT24  Andy Powers         Boston College    F   5-11  200  Arlington, MA25  Benoit Cotnoir      Notre Dame        D   5-11  215  Rouyn-Noranda, QUE 26  Rejean Stringer     Merrimack         F   5-10  185  Gravelbourg, SAS27  Wyatt Smith         Minnesota         F   5-11  195  Warroad, MN28  Syl Apps            Princeton         C   6-0   195  Unionville, ONT29  Tobin Praznik       Lake Superior     F   6-2   210  Williams Lake, BC41  Sean Matile         New Hampshire     G   6-4   205  Williams Lake, BC   Head Coach: Tim Watters (Mich. Tech)  Asts: Chris Serino (Merrimack), Tom Newton (Mich. St.), Len Quesnelle (Princeton)     
Team Canada Final Roster1 Dale Masson Alberta G 5-10 170 Edmonton, ALB2 Scott Hillman Windsor D 5-10 190 Goulds, NEW4 Kevin Diachina Windsor D 6-4 224 London, ONT5 Dan LaFlamme Quebec Trois-Riveres D 6-1 195 St-Charles de Bellechasse, QUE6 Neil Fewster Acadia D 6-0 195 Guelph, ONT7 Chris Zanutto New Brunswick D 6-0 200 St. Catharines, ONT8 Shane Zulyniak Calgary D 5-11 190 Sherwood Park, ALB9 Colin Zarowny Alberta LW 5-11 185 Wellington, ONT11 Christian Caron Quebec Trois-Riveres C 6-1 195 Rimouski, QUE12 Chris Gignac Windsor C 6-1 195 Windsor, ONT14 Scott Cannam Saskatchewan F 6-0 200 Saskatoon, SAS 16 Mike Thompson Alberta C 5-6 160 St. Albert, ALB17 Tyler Graham Lethbridge F 6-0 180 Olds, ALB18 Dave Stewart St. Francis Xavier F 5-11 195 Antigonish, NS19 Dave Gilmore St. Thomas C 5-9 170 St. Thomas, ONT20 Grey Eisler Ottawa C 5-10 18021 Jeff Andrews New Brunswick LW 6-4 225 Oshawa, ONT22 Jeff Helperl Saskatchewan D 6-2 205 St Walburg, SAS 30 Trevor Amundrud Acadia G 5-10 165 Courtice, ONTHead Coach: Rob Daum (University of Alberta) Assistants: Danny Flynn (St. Francis Xavier), Lou Carnevale (Ryerson University)
  • Capsules on each Irish player and further info. on the NAHC follow on p. 2

COTNOIR NOTES: Named second team All-American by the American Hockey Coaches Association, becoming the first Notre Dame hockey player to earn All-America honors in 16 years served as an alternate team captain and the leader of the Irish defense first Notre Dame hockey player to earn All-America since forward Kirt Bjork in 1983 he is the program’s seventh All-American, with the others including: winger Eddie Bumbacco (1973), defenseman Bill Nyrop (1973), defenseman Jack Brownschidle (1976, 1977), center Brian Walsh (1977) and right wing Greg Meredith (1980) named first team All-CCHA and one of three finalists for CCHA’s top offensive defenseman award first Irish player to earn first team all-CCHA first Irish all-conference pick since Bjork earned second team honors in ’83 first Irish player to earn first team all-conference since Meredith (first team All-WCHA, ’80) third among CCHA defensemen with 24 regular-season points (6G-18A), plus a power-play goal in the CCHA playoffs vs. NMU his ’98-’99 statistics included 25 points in 36 games, three power-play goals, two game-winning goals, two game-winning assists, a +11 plus-minus (fourth-best on the team) and 25 penalties Cotnoir’s 88 career points (28G-60A) rank ninth all-time among Notre Dame defenseman, one behind Nyrop (17G-72A, ’70-74) … more than half of Cotnoir’s career points came on the power play (11 PPG, 26 PPA) … ranked as Notre Dame’s second-leading scorer over the final 18 regular-season games (5G-10A) one of eight players named to the CCHA honorable mention all-academic team (six were named first team), due to 3.25 cumulative GPA as an economics major led an Irish defense that dealt with loss of 1998 CCHA rookie of the year Mark Eaton (signed as a free agent in summer of ’98 with Philadelphia Flyers) and sophomore defenseman Ryan Clark, who has missed 24 games due to injury helped Irish post season record for team goals-against average (2.58) while leading a penalty-killing unit that stopped 22 of 24 power plays over final seven games his season highlights included an assist in the tie at Boston College, two assists in the win at North Dakota, and goals in the win over Michigan and the tie with Michigan State.

URICK NOTES: Ranked ninth among CCHA players for overall regular-season scoring (14G-23A) and tied for seventh in conference scoring (11G-21A) he added two goals and two assists in the NMU playoff series for 41 total points in 35 games his other ’98-’99 stats included: a +23 plus-minus ratio (third-best in the CCHA), six power-play goals, one shorthanded goal, four game-winning goals, a team-high 160 shots on goal, and just 17 penalties Urick’s 13 career game-winning goals are tied for the Irish record Urick is tied for seventh in Irish history with 146 career games played and is the 27th Notre Dame player ever to total 50-plus goals and 50-plus assists in his career (57G-69A) Urick’s assist in the final NMU playoff game pushed his career-best point streak to six games (2G-5A) his season highlights included providing two assists in the win over Ohio State, one goal and two assists in the tie at Boston College, a goal in the win at North Dakota and the game-winning assist in the playoff win over NMU.

KARR NOTES: Most recently named to GTE District V All-Academic team for fall and winter at-large sports, qualifying him for Academic All-America consideration (to be announced April 13) would give Notre Dame hockey program its third straight Academic All-American (center Steve Noble was second team in 1997 and first team in 1998) finished the regular season ranked third in the CCHA with a 2.27 goals-against average in conference games he is the only CCHA goaltender to start every game for his team during the regular season while logging 95 percent of the team’s minutes … Karr set Notre Dame records for overall season GAA (2.58), career GAA (2.92) and career save pct. (.888) while his .899 season save pct. ranks third in Irish history Karr’s season highlights included earning two CCHA “defensive player of the week” awards while posting a 4-4-3 record versus teams ranked in the national top 10 (wins over Wisconsin, Ohio State, North Dakota and Michigan) … he is the first Notre Dame goaltender to post two solo shutouts in the same season (3-0 vs. OSU, 2-0 vs. Miami) and allowed three or fewer goals in 19 of his final 21 outings (two or fewer in 12 of those games) … Karr’s 2,160:14 minutes played in 1998-99 rank second in Irish history, just 43 minutes behind Lance Madson’s record total of 2,213 in 1988-89 a six-time Dean’s List student with a 3.73 cumulative GPA as a finance major, Karr was named to the six-player CCHA All-Academic Team and is under consideration for Academic All-America honors he allowed just 58 even-strength goals in 38 games played during the 1998-99 season.

NAHC HISTORY: The 1999 North American University Hockey Championship will be the third meeting between the best college and university players in the United States and Canada. The 1999 challenge will include two games, the first to be played at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit and the second game to be played at the new Air Canada Centre in Toronto. The two-game format will bring the championship to Canada for the first time and will allow university hockey fans in Canada to enjoy the best of intercollegiate hockey. In 1997, teams representing the best of the NCAA seniors player against the best university players from the Canadian Intercollegiate Athletic Union (CIAU) in the inaugural game of what then was called the World University Hockey Championship at Joe Louis Arena. The CIAU tied the game at 4-4 with 0.9 second left before winning in overtime. The game was considered by fans to be one of the most exciting games they ever had witnessed. The 1998 game was played under the current name to better reflect the makeup of the teams and the entities they represent. The game was a continuation of a long tradition of intercollegiate cross-border rivalry which began with a game between Harvard and McGill in 1894. The revival of that tradition began again in 1997. The second game of the annual series was an exciting and spirited contest that was won by the United States College Stars, 3-1 at Joe Louis Arena. The idea of a hockey championship at the university level between Canada and the United States and other countries has been under discussion by various governing bodies for well over a decade. Hockey was played at the World University Games but somehow has never received the stature and public exposure that it deserves. Justice Joe Kane, former member of the Board of Directors of Hockey Canada and founder of the Final Four format for the Canadian university hockey championships (now the University Cup), brought the idea forward at meetings of the Nationals management Committee. As a result, members of the committee began attending the NCAA Hockey Championship on an annual basis and informally discussed the possibility of such an event. A formal presentation of the concept was made by members of the University Cup Organizing Committee and the CIAU to the NCAA and the four Division I hockey commissioners at the championship in Providence, R.I., in April of 1995. The concept became feasible as the governing bodies of university hockey in Canada and the USA agreed to support the event. The organizational meeting, hosted by Mike Ilitch of the Detroit Red Wings, took place on Aug. 23, 1996, at Joe Louis Arena. Those in attendance included representatives of USA Hockey, the Canadian Hockey Association, CIAU and the NCAA Division I hockey commissioners. Cap and Gown Productions, Inc., became the entity charged with organizing the event and is continuing in that capacity to the present game.