March 15, 2017
By Dan Colleran
BOSTON, Mass. — The No. 4 seed Notre Dame Fighting Irish hockey team will face No. 1 seed UMass Lowell at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, March 17 at the TD Garden in the first Hockey East Championship semifinal.
After a quarterfinal series sweep of Providence College, the Irish return to the semifinals for the first time since their only other appearance in 2014.
As head coach Jeff Jackson put it earlier this week, “Hopefully, being in Boston, nicknamed the Irish, playing on St. Patrick's Day will work in our favor."
Boston College and Boston University will play in Friday night’s second semifinal game, with the winners advancing to the championship game, which is slated for 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 18.
Matchup: Notre Dame vs. UMass Lowell
Date: March 17
Time: 5:05 p.m. (ET)
Site: Boston, Massachusetts
Arena: TD Garden
Play-By-Play: Alex Faust
Analyst: Billy Jaffe
Rinkside: Nikki Reyes
Live Streaming: ESPN3
Live Radio | Audio: WZOC 94.3 FM | WatchND
Play-by-Play: Darin Pritchett
Live Stats: HockeyEastOnline.com
Live Updates: @NDHockey
Series History: UMass Lowell leads, 8-2-2 (12 games)
Notes To Know
- The Fighting Irish are 7-1-2 over their last 10 games.
- UMass Lowell and Notre Dame have not met since splitting their regular-season series at the Compton Family Ice Arena on Nov. 17-18 when each team posted a 4-1 win.
- After an impressive performance against Providence, Cal Petersen was named the Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week (March 13).
- Petersen now has a .930 save percentage (first in Hockey East, sixth in the NCAA) and a 2.05 goals against average (first in Hockey East and eighth in the NCAA) on the season.
- Petersen has started 86 consecutive games in the Irish net dating back to a 5-1 win over Maine on Feb. 7, 2015. It is the fourth-longest streak in NCAA history (men’s DI).
- In a trend that continues versus UMass Lowell, nine of Notre Dame’s last 11 games have come against teams ranked #13 or better in the national polls (Notre Dame is 7-2-2 in those 11 games).
- Junior forward Anders Bjork is just the second player to be named a Hockey Humanitarian Finalist and a Hobey Baker Top-10 Finalist in the same season, joining Cody Reichard of Miami (2012).
Luck of the Irish
- The Irish are 1-1-0 all time in games played on St. Patrick’s day (1-0-0 under head coach Jeff Jackson).
- Notre Dame’s first game on St. Patrick’s day was a 4-0 CCHA semifinal loss to Michigan State in 2000 (Joe Louis Arena).
- Then 10 years ago on March 17, 2007, the Irish skated to a 2-1 win over Michigan in the CCHA Championship game (Joe Louis Arena).
Regular-Season Series Recap Versus UMass Lowell
- Notre Dame hosted the River Hawks for a regular-season series on Nov. 17-18, with each team posting a 4-1 win to split the series.
- After jumping out to a 2-0 lead early in the second period, UMass Lowell won game one, 4-1.
- C.J. Smith scored twice in that win, including an empty net tally.
- Anders Bjork, Andrew Peeke and Bobby Nardella each found the back of the net during a three-goal second period to lead the Irish to a 4-1 win in game two.
- Nardella added two assists to go along with his goal in the second stanza, while Bjork and Peeke each finished with a goal and an assist on the night.
- Petersen stopped 21 of the 22 shots he faced on the night to earn the win.
Notre Dame in the Playoffs Under Jeff Jackson
- Notre Dame is 32-26-0 in playoff games under 12th-year head coach Jeff Jackson, including trips to the Frozen Four in 2008 and 2011.
- Hockey East: 8-7-0
- CCHA: 18-12-0
- NCAA Tournament: 6-7-0
- Total: 32-26-0
-- 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).