Notre Dame hockey wins Big Ten regular season title with 2-1 win over Ohio State
Jordan Gross scored the go ahead goal midway through the 2nd period and Cale Morris had 30 saves as the #1 ranked Notre Dame hockey team beat #6 Ohio State 2-1 Friday night to capture the Big Ten regular season championship.
"It's an incredible feeling. For me, the reward is watching the kids and watching them celebrate it," said hockey head coach Jeff Jackson. "They worked hard, they battled tonight. That was a playoff game. The intensity Ohio State played with, we matched pretty well. I was really proud of the guys effort tonight and it's an incredible feather in their cap."
The Irish Icers won the Big Ten regular season title in their first year in the league. It's the 3rd regular season championship in school history and the first one the Irish have ever clinched on their home ice. Notre Dame won CCHA regular season titles in 2007 and 2009, but clinched both on the road.
With all seven Big Ten teams making the post-season tourney, Notre Dame will have the only 1st round bye by virtue of winning the regular season title. The Irish will host a semifinal game on March 10th and if they win, would host the Big Ten Tournament Championship Game on March 17th.
Notre Dame is now 16-2-1-1 in Big Ten play and 22-5-2 overall.
Andrew Oglevie scored the game's first goal with seven minutes left in the 1st period on assists from Dylan Malmquist and Cal Burke. It's Oglevie's 12th goal of the season. The Irish led 1-0 after one period.
Ohio State pulled even thanks to a power play goal by Kevin Miller in the 2nd period but two minutes later Jordan Gross put the Irish back ahead with an even strength goal midway through the period. It was Gross' 7th goal of the season. Captain Jake Evans picked up his 23rd assistant on the goal.
"We're definitely feeling great and upbeat. I think we earned this throughout the year," said Evans. "We've all worked hard, we've battled, we've been a pretty consistent team. The guys are in this, we're pretty happy but obviously there's still five games left in the regular season and we're playing for ranking too now and playing towards March and trying to be the best team come March."
Notre Dame led 2-1 after two periods and Morris was fantastic in the 3rd period with 11 of his 31 saves as the Irish hung on the rest of the way for the win.
Notre Dame will host Ohio State again Saturday night with faceoff set for 7pm.