South Bend, Ind. Mike Voran scored a pair of goals and teammates Mario Lucia, T.J. Tynan and Vince Hinostroza added one goal each as Notre Dame defeated the University of Guelph, 5-2, Sunday evening in preseason hockey action at the Compton Family Ice Arena.
Jordan Mock and Michael Charbonneau scored for the Gryphons as the Irish out shot Guelph by a 52-27 margin. Goaltender Andrew Loverock finished the night with 47 saves for the Gryphons while senior Steven Summerhays and freshman Chad Katunar split time, combining for 25 stops.
The preseason tilt for Notre Dame came on just the second day that the Irish were able to practice as a team under NCAA rules with the common start date being Saturday, Oct. 5. They will open the regular season at 8:05 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 11 when the Western Michigan Broncos visit the Compton Family Ice Arena.
For one night though, Irish head coach Jeff Jackson got to see most of his roster get some game action.
“I got a good feel for some guys tonight; the chemistry of lines was what we are looking for,” said Jackson.
“I was experimenting with different people on lines and I thought we found some good combinations. Special teams are a work in progress. Finding guys to kill penalties who aren’t on the power play would be a good thing for our team and I think we found a few.”
With 10 seniors, the Irish have a veteran lineup and the first goal came off a mix of young and old as Voran, a senior converted a pass from Hinostroza, a freshman to start the scoring at 8:28 of the opening period.
Voran came up with a loose puck in the neutral zone and fed it ahead to the speedy Hinostroza who turned it into a two-on-one with linemate Thomas DiPauli. The freshman drove the goal and made a nice pass across the crease to a wide-open Voran who trailed the play to make it 1-0.
“It’s nice for me (playing with Hinostroza and DiPauli) because I like playing in the corners and I know they are going to be right behind me,” said Voran.
“I can pin the puck and they are behind me. I get it to them and they do a couple of 360’s, make a couple of backhand passes and I just have to go back door. I probably should have had another one from Vinny in the third period. It just shows what kind of skill they have. They are elite players.”
Notre Dame built the lead to 2-0 at 13:12 of the first as Lucia rifled a one-timer from the right face-off dot past Loverock on the five-on-three power play. Bryan Rust moved the puck to Tynan who skated off the left boards and found Lucia alone in the right circle where he drilled a shot past Loverock for the two-goal lead.
The Irish out shot Guelph, 20-11, in the opening period.
Notre Dame built the lead to 4-0 with two goals in the second. Hinostroza got his first collegiate goal at 8:00 of the second period on the power play.
Center Steven Fogarty deflected a shot on Loverock who made the save. The rebound found its way to the right side of the crease where Austin Wuthrich tried to tuck the puck between the goaltender’s legs. That rebound ended up on Hinostroza’s stick in front and the fired it home to make it 3-0.
“Special teams have to be a focal point for us this season,” said Jackson.
“We have the personnel, it’s just a matter of inserting the right people. If we can share the ice time, it would really be good for the power play to be able to use different guys on the penalty kill.”
Tynan scored the fourth Irish goal of the night at 10:40 when he lashed a centering pass from the slot past Loverock. Defenseman Stephen Johns picked off an errant Gryphon pass at the blue line and moved it in on goal, finding Tynan inside the left circle where he popped it home.
Soon after that, Jackson replaced Summerhays in goal with the freshman Katunar. Summerhays played 28:36 and made 15 saves on the night.
In the third period, the Guelph finally broke through scoring on a bang-bang play in front of Katunar on the power play. Mock swatted a rebound out of the air past the Irish netminder at 7:20 with assists going to Nicholas Trecapelli and Robert DeFulviis to break the shutout bid.
Voran answered that one back just 22 seconds later when linemate Sam Herr found him all alone on the left side of the goal and fed a pass across the crease where the senior right wing fired it home at 7:42 for his second of the night to make it 5-1.
“Scoring goals never gets old. It definitely felt good to get on the scoresheet,” said Voran.
“Everyone was involved to night, everyone was contributing. That’s great to see.”
Charbonneau closed the scoring at 18:27 when he backhanded the rebound of a Daniel Broussard shot over Katunar for the 5-2 final score. On the night, Katunar stopped 10-of-12 shots he faced.
The Irish were 2-for-7 on the power play while the Gryphons were 1-for 6. Notre Dame had two five-minute power plays as a pair of Guelph players received majors for contact to the head and checking from behind. In all, the Gryphons were whistled for nine penalties and 40 minutes while the Irish had seven for 14.
Sunday’s game marked the third time that Notre Dame and Guelph have tangled on the ice. The Irish lead the series, two games to one with wins in 2010 and 2013. The lone Gryphon win came in 1995.