Jan. 11, 2017
By Dan Colleran
NOTRE DAME, Ind. -- The 13th-ranked Fighting Irish return to Hockey East play this weekend with a two-game series at Merrimack (Jan. 13-14).
Notre Dame will now play 13 league games to close out the regular season. The Irish are currently tied for fifth in the Hockey East standings (11 points), while Merrimack is tied for eighth (5 points).
Last season, Notre Dame swept the Warriors at home by scores of 7-2 and 5-1 (Jan. 15-16). Andrew Oglevie had two goals and an assist to lead the Irish to the game one win, while Anders Bjork had a goal and two assists in game two.
OVERVIEW | GAMES 22 & 23
Matchup: Notre Dame at Merrimack
Date: Friday, Jan. 13 | Saturday, Jan. 14
Time: 7:00 p.m. (ET) | 6:00 p.m. (ET)
Site: North Andover, Massachusetts
Arena: Lawler Arena (2,549)
Live Streaming: merrimackathletics.tv
Live Radio | Audio: WZOC 94.3 FM | WatchND
Play-by-Play: Darin Pritchett
Live Stats: HockeyEastonline.com
Live Updates: @NDHockey
Series History: ND leads, 7-4-1 (12 games)
NOTES TO KNOW
- Junior goaltender Cal Petersen ranks 10th in the country with a 2.06 goals against average, while his .922 save percentage ranks 13th.
- Petersen is also tied for the national lead with four shutouts on the season.
- At .566, the Irish head into the weekend leading the country in faceoff winning percentage (689W-529L).
- Junior Jake Evans (99 GP) is expected to skate in his 100th career game this weekend against the Warriors. Evans currently ranks second in Hockey East with a .633 faceoff winning% (280W - 162L).
NOTRE DAME SCORING STREAKS/TRENDS
- Jake Evans has a career-long, seven-game point streak (4-4-8).
- Andrew Peeke has a career-long, three-game point streak (0-4-4).
- Joe Wegwerth has four points (1-3-4) over the last six games after recording five points (4-1-5) in the first 14 games of the season.
- Jack Jenkins has two goals in the last three games after scoring one goal in his first 14 games this season.
NOTRE DAME-MERRIMACK SERIES NOTES
- The Notre Dame-Merrimack series dates back to a 5-1 Irish win on Dec. 18, 1969.
- Six of the 12 all-time meetings have come over the past three seasons in Hockey East play, with the Irish posting a 4-1-1 record in those six games.
- The teams also met in the first round of the 2011 NCAA Tournament at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire.
- Anders Lee netted the overtime winner as the Irish came back from a two-goal deficit to defeat Merrimack 4-3.
- Notre Dame then defeated UNH, 2-1, to advance to the 2011 Frozen Four.
BJORK PLAYS LEADING ROLE
- Junior forward Anders Bjork, a 2014 fifth-round pick by Boston, is one of the country’s leading scorers with 14 goals and 19 assists for 33 points.
- Bjork has been held without a point in just five of Notre Dame’s 21 games this season (one of which was the 0-0, two-period tie at Northeastern on Nov. 13).
- Bjork has posted 11 multi-point games this season, including four-point games against ASU (Oct. 8) and UConn (Oct. 28).
- The Irish are 12-3-1 on the season when Bjork notches at least one point (7-2-0 when he scores at least one goal).
- Bjork reached the 25-point plateau in his 15th game of the season, marking the fastest any Notre Dame player has reach 25 points in the Coach Jackson era (and dating back to at least 2001-02).
THIRD PERIOD SURGE
- This season, Notre Dame is outscoring opponents by a 29-16 margin (+13) in the second period and by a 29-13 (+16) margin in the third period.
- Notre Dame’s 29 third period goals are tied for fourth in the country.
- The Fighting Irish are averaging 1.45 goals per third period, which ranks fourth in the country (Notre Dame has played only 20 third periods this season due to the shortened game at Northeastern on Nov. 13).
- Anders Bjork is tied for second in the country with 14 third-period points (8-10-14).
-- ND --
Dan Colleran, associate athletics communications director at the University of Notre Dame, has been a part of Fighting Irish Media since August 2015 and coordinates all media and publicity efforts surrounding the Notre Dame hockey and golf programs. A native of Walpole, Massachusetts, Colleran spent the previous three years working with the men’s hockey and soccer programs at Providence College. Colleran also spent two years as an Assistant Executive Director of Communications & Championships at the Ivy League and is a graduate of Providence College (’06 & ’08G).