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Hockey

Notre Dame trounces Nebraska-Omaha on the road in two game series

| Monday, October 22, 2018

No. 1 Notre Dame’s performance over the weekend was reminiscent of last year’s historic season, as the Irish (3-0-1) reaffirmed their top national ranking when they trounced Nebraska-Omaha on the road in a two-game series.

The Irish put on a solid showing on Friday, swiftly handling the Mavericks (0-3-1) by scoring four goals on 41 shots to win 4-1.

Connery McFadden | The Observer

The Irish got ahead early in Friday’s contest. A little over four minutes into the first period, junior forward Cam Morrison gave the Irish a 1-0 lead off a pass from junior defensemen Tory Dello. Senior defenseman Bobby Nardella also assisted on the play.

The Mavericks would go on to tie the game at a goal apiece later on in the first period, but the Irish would strike back with under three minutes to play in the first. Junior forward Mike O’Leary scored his first goal of the season on a tip off a shot from Dello, and Notre Dame took back the lead.

Scoring was sparse in the first half of the second period, but just near the halfway mark freshman forward Michael Graham slotted a shot into the back of the net after a crisp set of passes between Morrison and O’Leary. The goal was the first of Graham’s career, and his efforts gave the Irish the momentum they needed to run away with the contest. The game having swung in their favor, the Irish offense stayed hot, and senior forward Jack Jenkins slotted his first career short-handed goal to close the door, handing the Irish their second win of the season.

Notre Dame continued its strong play on Saturday, when the Irish put a beating on the Mavericks, claiming their third win of the season by a final score of 8-2.

In the offensive show, senior forward Joe Wegwerth, junior forward Cal Burke, senior forward Dylan Malmquist and senior defenseman Bobby Nardella carried the torch, each tallying two goals while Burke and Nardella also recorded three assists apiece.

Wegwerth and Malmquist lit the spark for the Irish in the first period, as Wegwerth gave the Irish their initial lead a little over three minutes into the first when the senior put one past Mavericks goalie Matej Tomek in the low slot from his knees. Malmquist would follow with a goal about three minutes later, and Wegwerth would strike against with just under three minutes to play in the first, leaving the Irish with a 3-0 lead at the end of the first period.

The second period was all Burke on the offensive side, as the junior scored twice on two separate breakways — one just over a minute into the second period and another later on when Burke intercepted a pass and blew by Omaha’s defenders.

The Irish went on to run away with it in the third, as Malmquist slotted a wrist shot just under a minute into the period and Nardella scored twice to all but seal the deal. The offensive display handed the Irish their third win of the season before they return home to take on Minnesota-Duluth this weekend at Compton Family Ice Arena. The two-game series will serve as a rematch of last season’s national championship game against the Bulldogs (4-1-1), which the Irish lost 2-1.

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