Notre Dame competes against Denver, splits with Sacred Heart
Observer Sports Staff | Tuesday, October 24, 2017
No. 5 Notre Dame experienced many ups and downs during its fall break home stand. During the weekend of October 13–14, Notre Dame (3-2-1, 0-0-0 B1G) recorded a tie and a loss to defending National Champion Denver. In its two game series against Sacred Heart on Thursday and Friday, Notre Dame fell by a score of 6-4 Thursday night, but rebounded to defeat the Pioneers 3-1 Friday night.
On Oct. 13, No. 4 Notre Dame hosted No. 1 Denver at the Compton Family Ice Arena. It was the first meeting between the two teams since Denver defeated Notre Dame 6-1 in the semifinals of the 2017 Frozen Four in Chicago back in April. The Irish struck first when senior forward Jake Evans scored his third goal of the season to give the Irish a 1-0 lead. The lead would last for 15 seconds, however, when Denver responded with a goal of their own to tie the game 1-1. The score would remain the same until the third period when Denver took a 2-1 lead on a power play goal with 5:22 left in regulation. The Irish would get a power play opportunity shortly after and made the most of it, as junior forward Andrew Oglevie scored his third goal of the season to knot the score at 2-2.
The game would go to a five-minute overtime period to try and decide a winner. Notre Dame recorded seven shots in the overtime frame but couldn’t get any past Denver goaltender Tanner Jaillet.
After neither team scored during the overtime, Denver won a four round shootout by converting two goals to Notre Dame’s one. However, the result will go down nationally as a tie. Notre Dame freshman goaltender Dylan St. Cyr recorded 46 saves while facing 48 shots.
Both teams looked to earn a win the next night in the second game of the series. Denver took a 2-0 lead during the first period and would hold that lead all the way to the third period. Sophomore forward Cam Morrison put Notre Dame on the board with his first goal of the season to cut the deficit 2-1 with 5:16 left in the third period. Just 24 seconds later, senior defenseman Jordan Gross scored a power play goal to tie the score at 2-2. The tie wouldn’t last long, however, as Denver took the lead again on a goal that came 24 seconds after Gross’ goal. Denver would add an empty net goal with 1:20 left to seal the win.
Sophomore goaltender Cale Morris recorded 30 saves while facing 34 shots. The Irish converted on one of their three power play opportunities on the night.
Against Sacred Heart on Thursday, Notre Dame got off to a quick start. Sophomore forward Cal Burke buried his first goal of the season just a minute into the first period to give the Irish an early 1-0 lead. Sacred Heart responded about six minutes into the second period with a goal of their own to even the score 1-1. Notre Dame responded with a goal of its own just two minutes later as senior forward Dawson Cook recorded his first goal of the season to give the Irish a 2-1 lead.
After the Pioneers evened the score again six minutes later, junior forward Andrew Oglevie continued his hot start by scoring a power play goal, his fourth goal of the season, to once again give the Irish a one goal lead with 2:27 left in the second period.
The Pioneers came out for the third period scoring two goals during the first 7:30 of the period to give themselves a 4-3 lead. Junior forward Joe Wegwerth tied the game when he scored a power play goal with 7:42 left in the game to even the score at 4-4. Sacred Heart would pull ahead again, however, just a minute after Wegwerth’s goal to take the lead for good. The Pioneers would add an empty net goal with one second left to seal the win.
Notre Dame freshman goaltender Dylan St. Cyr recorded 22 saves on 28 shots. 11 Notre Dame players recorded a point during the game and the Irish scored on two of their three power play opportunities.
Looking for revenge on Friday night, Notre Dame got to work early. Wegwerth scored his second goal in as many nights and second of the season just 3:51 into the first period to give the Irish an early 1-0 lead. Gross and sophomore defenseman Andrew Peeke recorded the assists on the goal. Each team was held scoreless until the 12:54 mark of the second period, when senior forward Dawson Cook scored to give the Irish a 2-0 lead. Junior forward Jack Jenkins and senior forward Bo Brauer assisted on the goal. With 3:33 left in the second period, Wegwerth scored his second goal of the game and third of the season to give Notre Dame a 3-0 cushion. Peeke and freshman forward Colin Theisen recorded the assists on Wegwerth’s second goal.
Sacred Heart could only respond with a third period goal to cut the deficit to two, as sophomore goaltender Cale Morris shut the door to a 3-1 victory. Morris recorded 24 saves on 25 shots. Wegwerth finished with two goals on the night, while Peeke recorded two assists during the game.
The Irish will continue their month-long home stand this weekend when they host Nebraska–Omaha at the Compton Family Ice Arena on Thursday and Friday night.