December 5, 1998
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio State received goals from three unlikely scorers and sophomore goaltender Jeff Maund stopped a second-period shot by Irish senior right wing Brian Urick as Ohio State defeated No. 6-ranked Notre Dame, 4-1, in Central Collegiate Hockey Association action Saturday at the OSU Ice Arena. The game is scheduled to be the final varsity hockey contest at the OSU Ice Rink for the Buckeyes, who will begin play in the new on-campus Schottenstein Center next month.
The victory gives Ohio State (8-7-2, 8-4-2) the edge in the three-game season series with Notre Dame (9-5-2, 7-5-1) while pushing OSU into a tie for second in the CCHA standings. The Irish posted a 3-0 win over the Buckeyes in the first meeting of the season series, Oct. 23 at Notre Dame, with OSU drawing even in the series with a 4-3 home win on Friday night.
The Buckeyes extended their winning streak at the OSU Ice Arena to 15 games, with Saturday's game serving as the 556th varsity hockey game in the history of the facility.
The game was not without its ugly moments while adding to the growing rivalry between the teams. Players from both teams suffered injuries that held them out for significant stretches of time and the squads combined for 68 minutes of penalties.
The CCHA's top six teams were separated by just three points heading into Saturday night. Michigan and Ferris State entered the night tied for first, with the Wolverines (9-1-1) winning 4-2 at seventh-place Bowling Green (5-6-1) while FSU (8-3-2) played to a 2-2 tie with eighth-place Western Michigan (1-7-6). The night's only other CCHA matchup saw Alaska Fairbanks (4-8-0) rally for a 5-4 win at Lake Superior (2-7-2) in a matchup of the teams tied for 10th place. Fifth-place Michigan State (6-2-2) posted a 3-1 win over Nebraska-Omaha in non-confernce action while Northern Michigan (7-6-0) and Miami (2-10-3) were idle.
Notre Dame next takes a 27-day break from competition and will return to action with a pair of games at the nation's No. 1-ranked team North Dakota on Jan. 2 and 3.
OSU scored a pair of shorthanded goals in the final period--the first allowed by the Irish this season--after also scoring the only shorthanded goals vs. Notre Dame during the entire 1997-98 season (the Buckeyes had two SHGs in a 5-3 win on Feb. 13, 1998).
The only Irish goal came with 4:19 left to play, when freshman center Brett Henning kept the puck on an odd-man rush and fired a low shot that kicked off the left post and back into play. The goal judge did not signal for a goal but the linesman ruled that the puck had cleared the goalline.
Notre Dame had a chance to forge a 2-1 game late in the second period, when OSU freshman defenseman Jason Crain took down Urick on a shorthanded breakaway. The Irish had the option of taking a penalty shot or power play and opted for the free shot. Urick skated from mid-ice to the top of the left circle and slanted into the slot before attempting to slide a shot between the pads of OSU sophomore goaltender Jeff Maund. But Maund squeezed his pads and made th pivotal save (17:37).
OSU suffered a tough break seven minutes into the game when first-line right wing Eric Meloche went down after being slammed into the boards behind the Irish net. Meloche, who missed the first game of the series but had a goal and an assist in Friday night's 4-3 win, did not return to action until the third period.
Just moments after Meloche's injury, OSU scored on a rebound power-play goal by Crain. Hugo Boisvert set up the goal with a pass between the circles and his fellow junior center Louie Colsant then put a rising shot on net. Irish senior goaltender Forrest Karr batted the puck between the circles but Crain quickly sent a shot over Karr's glove hand for his second goal of the season (7:31).
Notre Dame played without two of its first-line forwards for the final five minutes of the opening period. Junior center and Irish leading scorer Ben Simon--who had a pair of goals in Friday's loss--went down with an injury and did not return to play in the period while senior left wing Aniket Dhadphale was whistled for a 10-minute misconduct penalty with 5:09 left in the period, after throwing his stick in frustration over a slashing penalty called against him.
OSU claimed a 2-0 lead shortly before the first intermission with their fourth power-play goal of the weekend, after a high sticking penalty on freshman center Brett Henning. Sophomore left wing Jean-Francois Dufour sent a pass from the top of the right circle to the center of the blueline and junior defenseman Ryan Jestadt uncorked a low shot. Karr made the save to his left but freshman left wing Nick Ganga was there to poke home the rebound for just his second goal of the season (18:38).
Dhadphale's penalty extended into the first 4:51 of the second period while Simon returned to the ice beginning with an Irish power-play chance 2:55 into the second period. The Irish then played for much of the second period and all of the final period without sophomore defenseman Ryan Clark, who got banged up after deflecting an OSU shot early in the period.
OSU ended Karr's night with the pair of shorthanded goals early in the third period. Boisvert set up the first goal of the season for junior left wing Jason Selleke by forcing a turnover at mid-ice and racing down the left side before dropping the puck into the slot for Selleke, who planted a shot between Karr's legs (0:43).
Senior right wing Brandon LaFrance then caused a turnover and broke free down the right side before planting a shot over Karr's left shoulder (3:10), giving LaFrance his fourth goal of the season and providing Irish freshman goaltender Jeremiah Kimento with his first game action of the season. Kimento made 14 saves for an impressive debut.
NOTRE DAME 0 0 1 - 1
OHIO STATE 2 0 2 - 4
1st: OSU 1. Crain 2 (Colsant, Bosivert), PP, 7:31; OSU 2. Ganga 2 (Jestadt, Dufour) 18:38.
3rd: OSU 3. Selleke 1 (Boisvert), SHG, 0:43; OSU 4. LaFrance (unassisted), SHG, 3:10; ND 1. Henning (Cotnoir) 15:41.
Shots on Goal: ND 9-11-7/27; OSU 12-6-17/35.
Saves: ND (Forrest Karr) 10-6-1/17, ND (Jeremiah Kimento) x-x-14/14; OSU (Jeff Maund) 9-11-6/26.
Power Plays: ND 0 for 8, OSU 2 for 11.
Penalties: ND 15 for 38:00, OSU 12 for 30:00.