SOUTH BEND, Ind. - Sophomore center Steven Fogarty scored a pair of goals while Mario Lucia and Peter Schneider notched one goal each to lead Notre Dame to a 4-2 win over Lake Superior State in front of a sellout crowd of 5,022 at the Compton Family Ice Arena.
Alex Globke and Matt Johnson scored for Lake Superior while goaltender Kevin Murdock made over 40 saves (41) for the second consecutive night in the loss. For the weekend, Notre Dame fired 94 shots at the Laker goaltender and he finished with 84 saves in the two games.
The win gives the Irish a four-game winning streak and improves them to 14-8-1 overall. The Lakers have now dropped five straight games to fall to 11-12-1 on the year. Notre Dame improves to 11-3-1 at home this season and since Jan. 26 of last year, the Irish have an 18-3-1 record at the Compton Family Ice Arena.
"I give them (Lake Superior State) credit. They play a smart patient game," said Irish head coach Jeff Jackson.
"I don't think we had as much net presence in the early part of the game as we did last night. You can take all the shots you want, but if he (Lakers' goaltender Kevin Murdock) is seeing them, it's not that challenging to stop them. He's a good goaltender. He competes hard and he made some impressive saves."
The Lakers got the only goal of the first period and it came in the final minute of play when Globke took a pass from the right corner, moved toward the goal and flipped a shot over Steven Summerhays' glove and under the cross bar. The goal was Globke's ninth of the season and made it 1-0. Dan Radke and Garret Clemment picked up assists on the play.
Globke, a freshman at Lake Superior State, is the younger brother of former Irish standout Rob Globke '04 who scored 68 goals with 56 assists for 124 career points in his Notre Dame career.
The Irish were getting their chances through the first half of the game but couldn't get anything past Murdock who nursed the 1-0 lead until the 11:00 mark of the second period.
That's when Fogarty took over, scoring twice in a 36-second span to put the Irish on top to stay at 2-1.
The sophomore from Edina, Minn., got his first goal since goal since Oct. 18, a span of 11 games (he missed seven others due to injury) and he did it unassisted. He took the puck away from a Lake State skater near center ice and broke down the middle on a two-on-one with Schneider. Using his linemate as a decoy, he fired a low wrist shot from between the circles that broke through Murdock's pads for his second goal of the season to tie the game at 1-1.
"It's been frustrating and as long as I was getting my chances, I just stuck with it," said Fogarty.
"It was longer than I wanted. To get that one and then the one right after that - that was a nice play by Peter (Schneider) - I'll take it and the team got the win so it was good."
Fogarty and Schneider were at it again at 11:36. This time Schneider carried the puck down the left wing and blasted a shot that Murdock kicked out in front. Fogarty drove to the net and was able to fire the rebound into a wide-open right side of the net for his third of the year.
"It was good to see Steven (Fogarty) score and Peter Schneider score tonight," said Jackson.
"They get frustrated. It's good to see them get going. It helps their confidence and it helps our depth offensively.
Less than three minutes later, the Irish went on a power play with Lucia capping a pretty passing play with his 12th goal of the season and the eventual game winner.
Costello dug the puck out of the right corner and fed it to Vince Hinostroza on the right side of the goal. The freshman center quickly slid it across the crease to Lucia who was parked on the left post. He jammed it home to make it a 3-1 game. The goal also extended Lucia's team-best point streak to seven games (6g, 5a) since Dec. 6.
The hard-working Lakers weren't done yet. They would cut the Notre Dame lead to 3-2 at the 9:17 mark of the third period as Johnson worked his way down the left wing and let a shot go from near the boards that snuck through Summerhays' pad and the left post for his fourth of the year.
The Irish answered quickly, just 32 seconds later when Schneider scored off a rebound for his fourth goal of the season.
The Irish worked their cycle in the left corner and got the puck back to defenseman Shayne Taker on the left point. He moved it to Stephen Johns on the right side and the senior defenseman hammered a shot on goal that Murdock was able to stop. Schneider worked through the traffic in front and banged the rebound home to make it a 4-2 advantage for Notre Dame.
"We call those momentum goals. The next shift after we score or get scored on is very important," said Schneider.
"You try to play responsible and put pressure on the opponent and try to respond after you have been scored on. We got into the O-zone and cycled the puck back to our D. They took a shot and I just tried to get to the rebound. I got lucky."
From there, Summerhays slammed the door in the Notre Dame goal as he finished the night with 17 saves as he picked up his third consecutive win.
The Irish were 1-for-5 on the power play while Lake Superior was 0-for-4.
Notre Dame now closes out its six-game home stand on Jan. 24-25 when the Irish return to Hockey East play with a weekend series against Northeastern. The Huskies are 14-7-3 overall and are in second place in Hockey East with a 7-4-1 league mark, good for 15 points.
"It's going to get tougher," said Jackson.
"Now we are playing for points and playing the top teams in the conference. We are going to have to be even better. We've had a couple of good weekends to start the second half. We will see goaltenders like we saw tonight and teams that will pressure us more offensively. It's going to be a challenging couple of months coming up."
** IRISH NOTES**
** Notre Dame head coach Jeff Jackson is now 18-3-3 all-time against his former team Lake Superior State since joining the Irish in the 2005-06 season. His record with the Irish now stands at 199-118-34.
** With the power-play goal against Lake Superior on Saturday night, the Irish have now scored at least one power-play goal in 19 of their 23 games this season. They are 28 for 131 for a 21.4% success rate that ranks the Irish fourth in Hockey East and tied for 15th in the nation.
** The Irish had back-to-back sellout crowds of 5,022 for the Lake Superior series. The two sellouts this weekend give Notre Dame four on the season and an average of 4,799 per game at the Compton Family Ice Arena.