Friday, November 23, 2012

North Dakota vs. Notre Dame: Notes & Links

  • North Dakota: 5-3-2 Overall (3-1-2 WCHA)
  • Notre Dame: 8-3-0 Overall (5-1-0 CCHA)
  • Gametime: Friday 6:35 CST/Saturday 4:05 CST
  • Both games will be broadcast across the UND Radio Network, and as always, here's the standard broadcast information. While neither game of this series will be on TV, Notre Dame is one of just a few schools out there to provide free webcasts of their games. Use the Live Video link on the Notre Dame hockey scoreboard page to access the live stream.
  • Series Notes (PDF): North Dakota and Notre Dame
  • For all of the GF Herald stories, check out Brad Schlossman's Friday Morning Reading.
  • South Bend Tribune: Notre Dame's Bryan Rust on Verge of Breakout Campaign
  • The Observer: Irish Face North Dakota in Top 10 Matchup
  • College Hockey News: Notre Dame, Team of the Week
  • UND Sports: Men's Hockey Travel Blog
  • Series Numbers: The all-time series is tied at 16-16-3, with Notre Dame holding a 6-9-1 edge in South Bend. Notre Dame has won just one time in the last 15 meetings, with North Dakota holding an 11-1-3 advantage over that stretch. Their last meeting came in 2010 over Thanksgiving weekend, with North Dakota earning a win and a tie at Engelstad Arena. The bulk of the matchups between the Irish and UND came while the two schools were members of the WCHA (1971-72 through 1980-81). In their 35 game history, they have met just five times as non-conference foes. 
  • North Dakota's Danny Kristo is the reigning WCHA Offensive Player of the Week, while defenseman Robbie Russo and goaltender Steven Summerhays earned weekly CCHA honors for Notre Dame.
  • Scoring will not come easily this weekend against Notre Dame. The Irish rank second in the nation in scoring defense, allowing just 1.64 goals per game, while Summerhays' 1.51 GAA is the fourth best in the nation. Notre Dame has also killed 90.9% of its opponent's power play opportunities, good for fifth nationally.
  • Offensively, Notre Dame is led by Anders Lee (11 gms - 5G, 4A) and Bryan Rust (11gms - 3G, 5A) while defensemen Stephen Johns (11gms - 0G, 7A) and Robbie Russo (11 gms - 3G, 4A) are regular contributors to the offensive attack of the Irish. Star forward TJ Tynan (11 gms - 2G, 3A) is off to a slow start this season, but the dynamic center remains a threat. 
  • Because Notre Dame's webcasts are free (combined with the fact that they've appeared on national TV a few times), I've had the opportunity to watch them play several times. Lee has been consistently impressive upfront for the Irish. His combination of size, strength, and the ability to finish makes him very hard to handle. Tynan's play, as indicated by his dip in production this season, has been inconsistent. While he still displays the flashy skills that have made him a point-per-game player during his career (95 games, 100 points), there have also been significant stretches during which he is far too uninvolved in the play. Defensively, Johns has impressed the most. Both he and Russo are good offensively, but Johns has been more sound in his own zone. As for the goaltending, it usually takes a special play to get one by Summerhays. He has been very good all season for the Irish.
  • Last week, forward Michael Parks returned to the UND lineup for the first time since suffering a lower body injury in the exhibition game against Manitoba, but he left Friday's game after apparently aggravating the injury. He will not play this weekend against Notre Dame and his status is considered to be week-to-week. Notre Dame freshman forward Mario Lucia made his collegiate debut during last weekend's sweep at Michigan. Lucia suffered a broken leg in the preseason, and he is expected to see increased ice-time this weekend against North Dakota. Mario, of course, is the son of Minnesota head coach Don Lucia, who is a Notre Dame alum himself.
  • Twelve members of this season's Notre Dame squad are NHL draft picks, while 14 North Dakota players have heard their names called by NHL clubs.
  • USCHO's This Week in the WCHA
  • USCHO's Weekend Picks
  • CHN's Tale of the Tape
  • CHN's WCHA Power Rankings
  • CHN's WCHA 3 Up, 2 Down
  • CHN's Three Things
  • WCHB Weekly WCHA Preview
  • WCHA Weekly Press Release
  • The Hockey Writer's Combine: UND vs. Notre Dame Series Notes
  • Sioux Sports Series Preview

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