Jan. 10, 1998
Notre Dame Hockey Takes Series at Alaska Fairbanks, 5-1
FAIRBANKS, Alaska - The defensive pairing of junior Benoit Cotnoir and freshman Mark Eaton combined for two goals and five assists while Notre Dame scored four power-play goals, as the visiting Irish defeated Alaska Fairbanks, 5-1, to take the season Central Collegiate Hockey Association series Saturday at the Carlson Center.
Notre Dame (12-10-3, 7-7-3 CCHA) improved to 9-5-0 on the road and moved into a tie for sixth place in the CCHA with Ferris State (7-7-3), which dropped a 5-3 game Saturday at Ohio State. The Irish stand just one point behind Lake Superior (7-6-4) and two points behind fourth-place Northern Michigan (8-6-3), heading into a 13-day break from competition that will resume will games at Bowling Green (Jan. 24) and Ohio State (Jan. 25).
Alaska Fairbanks (7-15-2, 6-14-1)--which has just nine games remaining in the 30-game CCHA schedule--remains ninth in the CCHA, three points behind OSU (8-9-0) in the race for the eighth and final spot in the CCHA Tournament.
Notre Dame won Thursday's game, 4-2, before suffering a tough 3-2 loss Friday in the final minute of overtime. The Irish used a dominating 51-20 shot advantage Saturday to cap a 120-62 shot edge in the three games with UAF.
In other CCHA action Saturday, Michigan needed overtime to beat Western Michigan, 4-3, allowing the frontrunning Wolverines (13-2-1) to maintain their five-point cushion over Michigan State (10-3-2), which won 6-1 at home Saturday over Northern Michigan. Miami (9-4-2) used a 3-3 tie with Lake Superior to move past NMU into sole possession of third place. Ferris State fell into the tie with Notre Dame after dropping a 5-3 game at OSU while WMU (4-12-1) remained in 10th, ahead of idle Bowling Green (2-11-2).
Notre Dame launched a total of 87 shots in Sunday's game, including 51 on goal (more than UAF's total launch total of 34).
Irish junior goaltender Forrest Karr improved to 5-1-1, turning away 19 UAF shots on goal while helping thwart two Nanook power-play chances.
The game turned ugly in the final period, as the teams combined for 53 of the 76 total penalty minutes in the final 20 minutes (UAF had 44 penalty minutes in the game, Notre Dame 32). Five penalties were handed out at the 14:11 mark of the third period, with UAF's Scott McIlroy receiving a five-minute major for high-sticking while two players from both teams--UAF's Jeff Trembecky and Sjon Wynia and Notre Dame junior right wing Brian Urick and sophomore center Ben Simon--left the game with 10-minute misconduct penalties.
UAF goaltender Ian Perkins earned star of the game honors for the third straight night, after stopping 46 of 51 Notre Dame shots (he had 110 saves and 10 goals allowed in the series).
Junior left wing Aniket Dhadphale put the Irish on the board with his 16th goal of the season--second most in the CCHA--early in the second period. The 4-on-4 goal was set up by Cotnoir and sophomore defenseman Nathan Borega, with Dhadphale racing up the ice and getting a clear look before sending a shot from the top of the left circle inside the far right post (1:04).
The Irish went ahead 2-0 at the 12:12 mark of the second period, on Urick's 11th goal of the season. Cotnoir and Eaton set up the power-play score, with Urick scoring from the center of the right circle.
UAF made things interesting with a goal moments before the second intermission, when Mike Jaros chipped in a shot during a 4-on-4 situation to forge a 2-1 game (19:25).
The visitors stretched to a 4-1 lead with a pair of power-play goals in a two-minute stretch midway through the final period. A holding penalty on Richard Latimer and a slash by Pat Hallett yielded a two-man Irish advantage for 51 seconds and Eaton responded 18 seconds later with a wrister from the slot, his second goal of the season and first since the season-opening win over Western Ontario (8:18).
Freshman left wing Dan Carlson--who combined with Simon to assist on Eaton's first goal--then scored his seventh goal of the season, taking a pass from Eaton and sending a slapshot from the right point that bounced off Perkins and found the net (10:26).
Eaton closed the scoring with two minutes to play, on a power-play shot from the left point that was set up by Cotnoir.