Jan. 25, 2000
The Notre Dame hockey team (10-13-5, 7-7-4 CCHA) has climbed to fifth in the CCHA standings, after an emotion-packed sweep last week of visiting Western Michigan (4-3/ot, 4-1) … the Irish rallied from a 3-1 deficit with four minutes left in the first game before jumping out to a 4-0 lead in the second game … ND is looking for its first win on the opponent’s ice this season (0-5-3) … the Irish are closing the regular season with seven of their final 10 games on the road … a real-time broadcast of the UAF games can be accessed via the UAF website: www.uaf.alaska.edu (game recaps also will posted on the Notre Dame website-www.und.com-after each game).
QUICK NOTES FROM THE WMU SERIES: ND halted two trends, ending an 11-game winless streak in overtime (0-1-10, with the last OT victory coming at Bowling Green on Jan. 24, 1998, 5-4) while picking up points in the second game of a league series (ND is 5-2-2 in first games of CCHA series, 2-5-2 in second games) … ND held a 56-12 shot edge in the 4-3 OT win (25-1 in the third), ND’s most shots in a game since rejoining the CCHA in ’92-’93 … juniors Dan Carlson (who has 7G-5A in eight career games vs. WMU) and Ryan Dolder became the first ND players with multiple GWGs this season … ND scored eight goals in a span of 40:09 during the series (starting with the final 4:28 of the first game) … ND has 25 goals in its last five games vs. WMU … ND improved to 18-3-5 (.789) at home during CCHA regular-season games over the past two seasons (one loss to FSU, two to Michigan) … the home team in the ND-WMU series is 11-1-1 during the last 13 meetings.
PLAYOFF POSITIONING: With anywhere from 10-12 league games remaining for each CCHA team (ND has 10 left), positioning for the 10-team CCHA playoffs is still up for grabs … Michigan (14-4-0), MSU (12-5-0) and NMU (11-3-2) have separated from the pack and will be looking to clinch a crucial top-three finish (which would avoid any possible inclusion in the 4-vs.-5 play-in game that determines the final semi-finalist, after the five first-round series) … Lake Superior (10-7-1) has surged to fourth, followed by ND (7-7-4), Ferris State (8-9-1), Miami (7-6-3), WMU (7-7-2) and Neb.-Omaha (6-8-4) … Bowling Green (6-10-0) is looking to hold off Ohio State (4-12-1) and UAF (3-15-0) for the final spot.
CARLSON AND DUSBABEK COMBINE FOR 10-POINT SERIES: A pair of Minnesota natives-junior LW Dan Carlson (Edina) and senior RW Joe Dusbabek (Faribault)-played leading roles in Notre Dame’s sweep last week of Western Michigan, with Carlson fittingly serving as the cover boy on the Friday game program while Dusbabek was featured earlier in the week by the South Bend Tribune … Carlson-who has surged to a share of the team goal lead (9)-converted a scramble 6-on-5 goal with 1:23 left in regulation to force overtime in the first game before slapping home a power-play goal from the top of the slot 52 seconds into the OT … Carlson (who had 3G on seven shots in the series) then assisted on Dusbabek’s goal the next day for a 1-0 lead before scoring the clinching third goal en route to a 4-1 final … Carlson’s four-point weekend was just the fourth by a Notre Dame player this season and the first in CCHA action but Dusbabek (who now leads ND in scoring with 7G-13A) bettered him with a six-point series … Dusbabek-who totaled 1G-2A in both of the WMU games-was credited with the first ND goal of the series when his pass deflected off a WMU player (he later assisted on Carlson’s GTG and GWG) … the next night, he opened the scoring with a rocket shot from outside the blue line before assisting on the next two lines as the Irish built their lead to 3-0.
FIT TO BE TIED: Head-to-head tiebreakers could be used to determine the CCHA playoff matchups, with the Irish already concluding series with Michigan, NMU, LSSU, FSU, Miami and WMU … ND holds the tiebreakers with WMU (2-0-0), LSSU and Miami (both 1-0-1) but dropped both games to FSU … ND trails the UNO series (0-1-1, -2 goal differential), needing a pair of wins on Feb. 11-12 vs. UNO to win the tiebreaker (or a tie and a win by three-plus goals) … head-to-head results will be decided in February vs. OSU and BG while the Irish need only one tie at UAF to clinch that tiebreaker.
ZASOWSKI EARNS SECOND ROOKIE AWARD: Notre Dame freshman G Tony Zasowski (Darien, Ill.) earned his second CCHA rookie-of-the-week award, after totaling 41 saves and allowed one even-strength goal in the Jan. 21-22 wins over WMU (4-3/ot, 4-1) … he ranks seventh among regular CCHA goaltenders with a 2.41 overall season GAA and fourth among league netminders who have played 750-plus minutes-while his .908 overall save pct. ranks fifth … those marks remain on pace to best the ND records set by Forrest Karr (2.58, ’98-’99) and Mark Kronholm (.907, ’70-’71) … Zasowski has allowed just 25 even-strength goals in 17 games played while allowing 0-2 total goals in 10 of his 14 starts … he has posted two shutouts (19 saves vs. UAF, 24 vs. MSU) to join Karr as the only Irish goaltenders ever to post multiple solo shutouts in the same season … he was named CCHA rookie of the week on Nov. 1, after making 58 saves in a series vs. Miami (5-2, 2-2) … Zasowski is the fourth player to earn multiple rookie-of-the-week honors this season, joining Ferris State forward Chris Kunitz (3), MSU goaltender Ryan Miller (2) and NMU forward Chris Gobert (2) … ND joins FSU (3) and NMU (3) as the only CCHA schools with three-plus rookie honorees this season (freshman center Connor Dunlop was honored on Oct. 18, after assisting on four goals in games vs. Providence and Union). SCORING IN BUNCHES: Despite being one of the CCHA’s lowest-scoring teams, ND has one of top-scoring foursomes in the conference, as four Irish players are bunched among the CCHA’s top-33 scorers (four points apart, in succession): senior RW Joe Dusbabek (7G-13A), junior LW Dan Carlson (9G-10A), senior C Ben Simon (6G-12A) and junior RW Ryan Dolder (6G-11A) … only Michigan (6), Northern Michigan (5) and Ferris State (5) have more players among the league’s top-33 scorers.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS: More than 40 pct. of ND’s goals this season have come on the power play (27 of 67, including eight of the last 14), with senior C Ben Simon (5 of 6), junior LW Dan Carlson (6 of 9) and senior RW Joe Dusbabek (5 of 7) each scoring the bulk of their goals on the PP … after shutting out Michigan State on Dec. 4 (1-0), the Irish gave up 27 goals in the next seven games before allowing just three in the LSSU series (then eight at NMU and four vs. WMU) … 11 of ND’s last 18 games have been decided by 0-1 goals (5-3-3 in those games) … ND’s 10 wins have featured eight different game-winning goalscorers … the Irish are 19-6-5 (.717) in their last 30 regular-season home games (three losses by one goal) … the Irish are 23-0-3 in the past two seasons when leading at the second intermission (7-0-0 this season) and 18-2-2 when ahead at the first break (6-2-0) … junior RW Ryan Dolder ( 2 GWG, 3 GWA) and senior RW Joe Dusbabek (1 GWG-3 GWA) are the only Irish players with more than three game-winning points this season (a total of 14 players have scored or assisted on the 10 GWGs ) … prior to the 4-1 first period vs. Vermont, the Irish had been outscored 13-4 in the first period this season (now 31-24, with a 24-20 opponent edge in the second, 23-22 opponent edge in the third).
THE ND-UAF SERIES
UAF leads the all-time series, 12-11-0, but Notre Dame has captured the last three series and is 9-2-0 in the last 11 games vs. UAF … ND dominated in ’98-’99 (6-2, 6-1, 5-2, at home), outshooting the Nanooks 119-65 while going 7-for-18 on the power play, 12-for-12 on the penalty kill … the games were much tighter earlier this season, as ND posted two one-goal wins (1-0, 3-2) at the Joyce Center on Nov. 12-13 … ND has won seven of its last eight vs. UAF, with a 301-169 shot edge (average of 38-21) and a 14-for-47 PP in those games (.298) … ND picked up two wins in its last trip to UAF (4-2, 2-3/ot, 5-1 in 1997-98) … ND’s top career scorers vs. UAF included senior Fs Ben Simon (3G-10A) and Joe Dusbabek (3G-8A) and junior F Dan Carlson (3G-4A).
Alaska Fairbanks (5-16-1, 3-15-0 CCHA) still has a shot at rallying to one of the 10 CCHA playoff spots, but the Nanooks trail 10th-place Bowling Green by six points with 10 games to play (BG still has 12 games left) … UAF recently weathered a 12-game losing streak (longest in team history) but has posted a 2-2-1 mark in its last five games (3-2 win over MU, 3-1 win and 3-3 tie with Wayne State) … UAF has struggled with its goal differential this season (12th in scoring at 2.32 goals/gm, 10th in defense at 3.41 GA/gm) but the Nanooks rank as one of the top special-team squads in the CCHA, standing fourth in both power play (.169), penalty kill (.854) and fewest PIM per game (20.32) … top scorers for UAF include senior LW Nathan Rocheleau (6G-9A) and sophomore F Bobby Andrews (8G-6A) … freshman Lance Mayes has played 1,046 of 1,320 minutes in the UAF nets, with a 5-13-0 record, 3.10 GAA and .908 save pct. … UAF returned 20 of 26 letterwinners from its 1998-99 team that went 11-22-1 and finished eighth in the CCHA (8-21-1) … UAF’s top returning scorers from ’98-’99 include junior C Jim Lawrence (8G-14A) and junior D Darren Tiemstra (4G-5A) … senior C Kerry Hafele (8G-11A in ’98-’99) left the team after playing in 10 games this season … UAF’s top losses from last season include LW Chris Kirwan (14G-12A), RW Jamie Coady (10G-9A) and G Ian Perkins (9-15-1, 3.67 GA, .894 save pct.) … first-year UAF head coach Guy Gadowsky is a 1989 graduate of Colorado College and spent the previous three seasons as head coach of the Fresno Falcons of the West Coast Hockey League … Gadowsky replaced former Notre Dame goaltender Dave Laurion, who resigned after the ’98-’99 season (his sixth year at UAF).
FRIEND OR FOE?
Notre Dame senior D Nathan Borega (a native of Wasilla, Alaska) is a former teammate of four UAF players: senior RW Sjon Wynia (Vernon Vipers), junior RW Scott McIlroy (Anchorage Northstars), sophomore F Jake Flora and freshman G Dirk Menard (both Colony HS).
@ND 1, UAF 0 (11/12/99): Andy Jurkowski continued to spark the struggling ND offense while Tony Zasowski made 19 saves for his first shutout … UAF stayed in the game behind the play of Lance Mayes (29 saves, 5-5 PK) … UAF had several chances to tie the game but Zasowski turned away seven shots while helping stop two PPs in the final 20 minutes … UAF suffered its first back-to-back shutouts in 21 years of varsity hockey … Brett Henning set up the game’s only goal in the first period, sliding the puck to Jurkowski near the right boards … Jurkowski worked his way past a UAF player and skated behind the net before attempting a return pass for Henning … the puck hit off a UAF player and bounced towards the left side, with Jurkowski quickly redirecting a shot from the left side of the crease between the left post and Mayes’ blocker (6:19).
@ND 3, UAF 1 (11/13/99): ND shook off its struggles with a decisive three-goal third period … Henning assisted on the game-tying goal (10:08) before scoring the GWG (16:07) … Jurkowski had the primary assist on the first goal (by Ryan Dolder, at 4:05) while Evan Nielsen scored the GWG, cashing in on the PP for his first career goal (he had the primary assist on Henning’s goal) … Joe Dusbabek added assists on the final two Irish goals while Tyson Fraser helped set up the first … UAF staked a 2-0 lead behind a first-period goal from Ryan Reinheller (off a rebounded shot from Casey Bartzen) and a PPG in the second period from Daniel Carriere (on a low shot from the right circle) … Lance Mayes saved all 21 ND shots in the first two periods … ND totaled 11 shots on goal and three PP chances in the decisive period while holding UAF to three shots and no PP chances … Zasowski finished with 21 saves (40 stops, 2 GA in the series … on the first goal, Jurkowski appeared to score after slapping home Fraser’s rebounded shot from the left side of the crease … the puck squirted back to the slot, with Dolder scooping a shot into the open net … Nielsen drilled a shot from the right point six minutes later and Henning tipped the puck over Mayes’ stick for a 2-2 game … the winning goal came 25 seconds into a holding penalty on Sjon Wynia … Henning ducked behind the UAF goal., emerged on the far side and slid a perfect pass to Nielsen, who quickly fired a low shot from the bottom of the right circle inside the far left post.
AROUND THE HORN
Senior RW Joe Dusbabek has surged to the team scoring lead, with 20 points (7G-13A) … he also has four more points in CCHA play (5G-10A) than any other Irish player and is tied for second on the team in overall power-play goals (5) … Dusbabek had 1G-2A in both WMU games last week and has 10 points in the last seven games (4G-6A) … junior LW DAN CARLSON had 3G-2A in the WMU series, including the game-tying goal in the first game with 1:23 left to play and the overtime game-winner in that 4-3 game … Carlson has 6G-5A in the last 11 games (see note on p. 1 for further info. on Dusbabek and Carlson) … junior RW Ryan Dolder has 11 points (4G-7A) in the last 14 games and ranks fourth on the team in scoring (6G-11A) … Dolder was recognized by the coaching staff for his emerging leadership by being named the team’s third alternate captain on Dec. 1 … sophomore LW David Inman has 2G-1A since returning from the World Junior Championship (he scored the second goal in the 4-3 win over WMU) … Inman has 3A in his last seven games, after totaling just one in the first 17 … all three of freshman RW Michael Chin’s goals this season have come during the last nine games (he scored the equalizer in the 1-1 tie with LSSU) … senior LW Andy Jurkowski has played in a team-best 80 consecutive games … junior LW Jay Kopischke has 3G-4A in his last 12 games played (he had nine points in the last two seasons) … senior C Ben Simon has 114 career pts (37G-77A) in 130 games … Simon notched his third career two-goal game in the 5-3 UMass win (he has yet to record a hat trick) … he has 11 points (4G-7A) in his last 14 games (five in first 12) … Jurkowski posted the first multi-point game of his career in the 4-3 loss to Princeton (2A) and ranks sixth on the team with 11 points (4G-7A, he had 2G-4A in 70 games over his first three seasons, as mostly a D) … Jurkowski notched an assist in the 4-3 win over WMU to end a seven-game point drought but still is looking to end a 17-game goal drought (he had 4G in the previous six games) … Dolder, Carlson and Jurkowski are the only players to appear in all 28 games this season … freshman C Connor Dunlop assisted on Carlson’s goal in the 4-1 win over WMU for his first point since returning from the World Junior Championship … sophomore C Brett Henning has no points since Nov. 28 (he has no points in his last 10 GP, while also playing in the World Juniors) … sophomore Sam Cornelius played five games as a fourth-line LW/extra D in mid-December and early January.
FROM THE BLUE LINE
Senior D Sean Seyferth has six points this season (2G-4A) after totaling seven in his first three seasons combined (4G-3A) … senior D Sean Molina’s seven points this season (1G-6A) are a career-best … junior D Ryan Clark (from nearby Littleton, Colo.) scored in the Denver game for his first goal of the season and second of his career … Molina scored in the 4-3 loss to Princeton on Dec. 19, for his first career goal … Molina is tied for sixth on the squad in plus-minus (even), after ranking second on the ’98-’99 squad (+13) … Molina has totaled just 37 career penalties while playing the most games (134) of any current Irish player (he is averaging 3.6 games per penalty for his career) … Molina is tied for fifth on the 1999-2000 team with six assists, equaling his career-best season total from ’97-’98 … senior D Tyson Fraser’s assist vs. UMass was his 50th career point (he now has 7G-45A) and marked his 45th career game with a goal or assist (now 46) … freshman D Evan Nielsen has 2G-3A in the last 11 games … the Irish senior D foursome of Borega (126), Fraser (117), Molina (134) and Seyferth (53) has combined for 430 career games played … by playing in the final 10 regular-season games and at least two postseason games, Molina would become the ninth Notre Dame player ever to log 146 career games played.
BETWEEN THE PIPES
Freshman Tony Zasowski ranks 7th overall in the CCHA with a 2.47 GAA (fourth among goalies with 750-plus minutes), which would best the Irish record of 2.58 set by Forrest Karr last season, while sophomore Jeremiah Kimento (3.01) ranks 12th in the CCHA … Zasowski has allowed just 25 even-strength goals in 17 games played … he received his second CCHA rookie-of-the-week award (see p. 1) after totaling 41 saves and allowing one even-strength goal in the WMU series (4-3/ot, 4-1) … Zasowski and Kimento combined for 56 saves and three GA in the recent LSSU series … Zasowski picked up the 2-1 win over LSSU in his first appearance since Dec. 10, making 29 saves and helping stop all six Lakers PPs (he closed the game with 28 straight saves, after allowing an early goal) … Zasowski’s season save percentage (.908) sits ahead of the long-standing ND record of .907 (set by Mark Kronholm in 1970-71) … Zasowski has allowed 0-2 goals in 10 of his 14 starts … Kimento closed the 1-1 game vs. LSSU with 25 straight saves (he totaled 27) … Zasowski turned in an earlier shutout streak of 130:36, spanning 54 minutes of the 2-1 loss at UNH and the first 76 minutes of the MSU series … ND’s team GAA of 2.74 could challenge the team record (2.61, set in ’98-’99) … Zasowski (19 saves vs. UAF, 24 vs. MSU) is the second ND goalie with two solo shutouts in the same season (Karr shut out OSU and Miami in ’98-’99) … Kimento posted a 19-save shutout vs. Union, marking the first time that the Irish have shut out three opponents in the same season … junior G Kyle Kolquist made his first career start (and second career appearance) in the 4-2 loss to Princeton, with 21 saves and just one even-strength goal allowed.
RACKING UP THE MILES: Notre Dame’s 11 road trips this season cover many miles, with two trips to Denver, plus last week’s trip to the upper peninsula for a series at Northern Michigan, the upcoming trip to Fairbanks, Alaska, and earlier visits to Omaha, Neb. and Durham, N.H. … the other trips include Big Rapids/Grand Rapids, Mich., East Lansing, Mich. (2), Bowling Green, Ohio, and Columbus, Ohio … the reworked CCHA “cluster” schedule resulted in the loss of the customary short trips to Kalamazoo (Western Michigan) or Ann Arbor (Michigan).
THE STRETCH RUN: Despite an 0-4-0 start in the CCHA, ND is 7-3-4 in its last 14 CCHA games and alone in fifth, three points out of fourth … ND ranks 10th in the CCHA for overall goals/gm (2.39), 6th in goals allowed (2.79), 6th in power-play pct. (.160), 9th in penalty-kill pct. (.833) and 1st in fewest penalty minutes/gm (16.32) … sophomore C/LW David Inman and junior LW Dan Carlson are tied for 17th in the CCHA with nine goals in 22 (Inman had 10 in ’98-’99 while Carlson had seven) … Carlson also is tied for third in the CCHA with six PPGs … Dusbabek’s six-point series vs. WMU has vaulted him into a tie for 16th on the CCHA scoring charts (7G-13A), while Carlson is tied for 20th (9G-10A) … Dusbabek is tied for 10th in the CCHA in assists (10).
DISCIPLINED PLAY: ND’s low team GAA (2.74) is due in large part to a timely penalty kill (.837) and the CCHA’s least-penalized squad (7.7 penalties, 16.4 PIM/gm, leading to just 6.0 opp. PP chances/gm) … since ranking as the CCHA’s most-penalized team in ’95-’96 (11.31), the Irish were the CCHA’s least-penalized in ’96-’97 (8.69) and ’97-’98 (6.37) and the third-least penalized in ’98-’99 (8.40) … ND’s more disciplined players include soph. RW John Wroblewski (3 penalties), senior LW Andy Jurkowksi (5, 24 in 98 career games), senior C Ben Simon (10, compared to 30-31-31 in the past three seasons), and sophomore C Brett Henning (4, 19 in 60 career games) … senior D Sean Molina has 11 penalties this season (37 in 134 career games) … senior D Nathan Borega had just 16 penalties as a sophomore and 13 as junior but has a team-high 27 this season … the Irish were whistled for 13 penalties in the 6-0 loss at NMU (most in 20 games, since 15 in the 4-2 loss to Ferris state on Oct. 24), leading to 10 Wildcat PPs.
ND PLAYERS AMONG TOP PROSPECTS: Four current and future ND hockey players are listed among the top 160 players on the NHL’s Central Scouting Service midseason rankings-representing the most players listed from any team in the CCHA … the rankings list the top prospects for the 2000 NHL Draft, which is open to players born between Sept. 16, 1980-Sept. 15, 1982 … players born after Sept. 15, 1981 must “opt-in” and forfeit their college eligibility, regardless or whether they already have completed a year of college hockey … ND’s top-rated player is fall of ’99 signee Neil Komadoski (Feb. 10, 1982 birthdate), considered one of the nation’s top prospects among defensemen in his age group … Komadoski (Chesterfield, Mo./U.S. Under-18 National Team) checked in at 51st, ranking as the fourth-highest rated player/signee in the CCHA … current ND players on the Central Scouting list include three draft-eligible freshmen: defenseman Evan Nielsen (Evanston, Ill.), center Connor Dunlop (St. Louis, Mo.) and right wing Michael Chin (Urbana, Ill.) … Nielsen checks in at 70th on the list, sixth-highest among all current CCHA players/signees and first among active CCHA defensemen (six spots ahead of Northern Michigan’s Sean Connolly) … Dunlop is listed 118th, eight-highest among all players with CCHA ties and second among active CCHA forwards (Michigan center Andy Hilbert is listed 26th). Chin is the ninth-highest CCHA player/signee on the list, at No. 158.
IRISH HELP U.S. REACH SEMI’S: Three ND players helped the U.S. reach the semi-finals of the World Junior Championship in Sweden (Dec. 26-Jan. 4), the fourth straight year that ND players have been members of the prestigious 22-player team … the invitees included soph. C Brett Henning (Huntington, N.Y.), soph. C/LW David Inman (Toronto, Ont.) and fr. C Connor Dunlop (St. Louis, Mo.)-most from any school on the initial roster … early U.S. highlights included ties with eventual finalist Czech Republic (2-2) and rival Canada (1-1) … Dunlop had 1G-1A in a 5-1 quarterfinal win over Sweden and led the U.S. in tournament faceoff pct. (.64, 69-of-108).