October 25, 1996
Eisler records 47 saves to lead Notre DameColumbus, Ohio -- Junior goaltender Matt Eisler continued his stellar play with 47 saves, leading the University of Notre Dame hockey team to a 3-0 victory over Ohio State in Central Collegiate Hockey Association action Friday at the OSU Ice Arena.
Notre Dame (2-0-1, 1-0-1 CCHA) overcame a penalty-ridden first period to remain unbeaten heading into Saturday's important game against Miami University. Freshman Joe Dusbabek again came through with the first goal of the game and junior Lyle Andrusiak assisted on the first two goals for the Irish, who were outshot 47-30 by OSU.
Ohio State (0-4-0, 0-1-1) suffered through a frustrating 60 minutes of the game, as the Buckeyes could not solve Eisler, while failing to capitalize on 10 power-play opportunities. Notre Dame likewise continued to struggle in man-up chances, going 0-for-6.
Eisler, who entered the game with a 1.94 goals-against-average, turned away more than 20 shots from close range en route to his second career shutout.
Notre Dame seized a quick lead in the opening 90 seconds of the game when Dusbabek scored after controlling a faceoff won at the left circle by Andrusiak. Dusbabek gathered in the puck near the top of the circle and quickly slid a low shot inside the left post, past an unsuspecting OSU goaltender Ray Aho.
Eisler was sharp from the opening drop of the puck, making 13 saves in the first period alone. Midway through the opening period, OSU's Brandon Lafrance slid through the neutral zone for a breakaway chance on Eisler, but the Irish goaltender made the kick save with his right pad. With four minutes remaining in the first period, OSU's Louie Colsant had an open shot from between the circles, but Eisler again came through with a save off his right pad.
Eisler kept things going in the second period, making 21 saves. He added 13 more in the third period.
Notre Dame went ahead 2-0 at the 11:05 mark of the second period when Dusbabek sent a pass down the left side for Andrusiak, who crossed the puck to the right post for sophomore Aniket Dhadphale. Aho was in position, but Dhadphale sent a bouncer inside the left post for his first goal of the season.
The Irish were unable to secure the clinching third goal until senior Steve Noble found the empty net with just 1:13 remaining after Brian Urick sent the puck off the back boards, following a pass from Ben Nelsen.
NOTRE DAME GOALTENDER MATT EISLER: "It's very special just to get the win. To tell you the truth, I tried not to think about the shutout until the last few minutes, which is always hard to do. But in a 2-0 game, you can't really think about a shutout - you just have to focus on getting a win. Obviously, with 53 saves, I didn't see all of them. Some of them just hit me and I guess when you feel well and are playing good, that just happens. Coach mentioned that we can't be giving up (close to) 50 shots in a game. We didn't play all that poorly. We were shorthanded for most of the game, so you can't have too many scoring chances then. I really can't remember a game I've had with this many saves, at least of this magnitude. There were a couple shots that were close ones, both in the second period. There was one that I pulled off the goalline that I just got to in the nick of time. If it was an inch further, it would have been in. And then right after that, there was another one. It probably looked innocent enough to people in the stands, but it was just a floating wrist shot from the point, and the thing was that I didn't see it all. For some reason I stuck my glove out."
Score by period Notre Dame 1 1 1 -- 3 Ohio State 0 0 0 -- 0 Scoring First period - Dusbabek 2 (Andrusiak), 1:27 Second period - Dhadphale 1 (Andrusiak, Dusbabek), 11:05 Third period - Noble 1 (Urick, Nelson), 18:47 Shots by period Notre Dame 8 13 12 -- 33 Ohio State 13 21 13 -- 47 Saves by period Eisler (ND) 13 21 13 -- 47 Aho (OSU) 8 13 12 -- 30 Penalties Notre Dame 14-for-28 Ohio State 0-for-10 Attendance: 956