Nov. 27, 2004
Fairbanks, Alaska - The Notre Dame Fighting Irish went North to Alaska for the Thanksgiving holiday and thanks to goaltender David Brown, strong penalty killing and an opportunistic power play picked up their second consecutive road win with a 3-2 victory over Alaska Fairbanks at the Carlson Center.
Brown stopped 35 of 37 shots on the night to pick up his first win of the season. The sophomore goaltender made many of his stops helping the Irish kill nine UAF power plays on the night.
The win extended the Notre Dame unbeaten streak to four games (2-0-2) and improved the Irish to 3-5-4 overall and 2-4-3 in CCHA play. Alaska Fairbanks falls to 5-4-0 on the season and 4-3-0 in league play.
For the second game in a row, the Irish got on the scoreboard first with Tim Wallace netting his second goal of the year at 17:40 on the power play.
Notre Dame got the puck into the right wing corner where Mike Walsh was able to control it. He found defenseman Brock Sheahan at the right point where the freshman defenseman flipped a wrist shot in front. Wallace was able to deflect the puck past goaltender Wylie Rogers for the lone goal of the first period.
The second period belonged to Brown as he stopped 16 of the 17 shots he faced while his teammates were scoring twice on just six shots.
Gill, the hard-working junior center, would make it 2-0 at the 13:08 mark of the second period with the first goal of his collegiate career.
Defenseman Noah Babin broke up a Nanook rush at the Irish blue line and dumped it along the right wing boards to center where Josh Sciba fed the puck ahead to Wallace who broke into the UAF zone on a two-on-one with Gill. Wallace carried the puck deep and fed it to Gill in the low slot. The junior center whipped a wrist shot low to the ice that beat Rogers for the goal.
The Nanooks got back in the game at 18:15 with both teams down a man. Defenseman Darcy Campbell took a feed from the left wing corner from Kyle Greentree and beat Brown from the top of the left wing circle to cut the lead to 2-1.
The Irish came back 52 seconds later to retake the two-goal lead with their second power-play goal of the night. T.J. Jindra worked the puck out of the left wing corner to Mark Van Guilder at the left wing circle. Van Guilder fired a low shot at the goal. Jason Paige was camped on the doorstep and redirected the shot through Rogers' pads for his second goal of the season.
Brown continued to work his magic in the third period stopping nine of 10 Nanook shots. The lone goal came at the 18:07 mark as the Irish just finished killing a UAF power play. Rogers left a puck for defenseman Nathan Fornataro who fed Corbin Schmidt through center ice. Schmidt reached the blue line and blasted a shot that beat Brown high to his stick side.
Alaska pulled its goaltender with 1:06 left in the game in favor of a six attacker, but Brown and his defense were able to hold off the Nanooks for the 3-2 win.
The Irish were out shot on the night by a 37-16 margin. Rogers finished with 13 saves for UAF. Notre Dame was 2-for-5 on the power play while Alaska Fairbanks was 0-for-9.
Game two of the weekend series will be played on Saturday night at the Carlson Center beginning at 7:05 p.m. (AST) - 11:05 p.m. in South Bend and can be heard live on the internet at www.und.com or on WDND ESPN Radio 1580.
** Notre Dame got to experience its own version of Planes, Trains and Automobiles on their holiday journey to Fairbanks. The Irish left campus at 1:30 p.m. (EST) on Wednesday and took five hours (traffic and weather) to travel the 110 miles to Chicago's O'Hare Airport. From there, the 7:20 p.m. (CST) flight to Anchorage, Alaska didn't leave Chicago until midnight. The six-hour-and-thirty minute flight to Anchorage arrived at 3:30 a.m. (Alaska Standard Time - 7:30 a.m. EST). The Irish missed the one-hour flight to Fairbanks by three hours and had to stay in an Anchorage hotel for five hours before leaving for the airport at 9:45 a.m. (1:45 p.m. EST). The team finally arrived in Fairbanks at 12:30 p.m. (4:30 p.m. EST), making the trip 27 hours. The Irish went right to the Carlson Center and practiced an hour-and-a-half before enjoying Thanksgiving Dinner at 3:30 p.m. (7:30 p.m. EST).
** Former Irish goaltender Forrest Karr is the assistant athletic director for compliance at Alaska Fairbanks. He started his new position at UAF in August.
GAME SUMMARY 1 2 3 F
Notre Dame (3-5-4/2-4 -3) 1 2 0 3
Alaska Fairbanks (5-4-0/4-3-0) 0 1 1 2
Penalties: ND: 2 for 4 minutes; UAF: 2 for 4 minutes.
Penalties: ND: 5 for 10 minutes; UAF: 2 for 4 minutes.
Third Period: UAF: Corbin Schmidt 1 (Nathan Fornataro, Wylie Rogers), 18:07
Penalties: ND: 2 for 4 minutes; UAF: 1 for 2 minutes.
Shots On Goal:
Notre Dame 8 - 6 - 2 - 16
Alaska Fairbanks 10 - 17 - 10 - 37
ND - David Brown (60:00) 10 - 16 - 9 - 35
UAF - Wiley Rogers (58:54) 7 - 4 - 2 - 13