Penn State Hockey Falls To No. 2 Notre Dame In Shootout
Penn State men’s hockey (13-12-5, 6-9-5) took on the Notre Dame Fighting Irish (21-5-2, 15-2-1) on Saturday afternoon to close out the weekend series in Happy Valley.
Notre Dame got off to a quick start, jumping out to a 2-0 lead in the opening period. Sturtz pulled one back at the end of the opening period, giving the Nittany Lions some momentum before the first intermission. Liam Folkes tied things up at 2-2 at the beginning of the second period, and that was the final goal in regulation.
Neither side could score in overtime, so the game was decided via shootout. Only Notre Dame’s Gross scored in the shootout as Penn State walked away with only one point despite a strong showing.
How It Happened
Despite looking quite good early on, the Nittany Lions would find themselves down before long. Penn State jumped out to a 6-1 advantage in the shots department before Cal Burke gave the Fighting Irish a 1-0 lead. Burke followed in a rebound after a mistake in net by Peyton Jones and made no mistake about it with 14:04 remaining in the period.
The life in Pegula was seemingly sucked out of the building after Malmquist batted one past Jones with 11:38 to play in the opening period of play. The goal was ultimately reviewed, but stood as called. Penn State certainly faced an uphill battle against one of the strongest defenses in the country.
Andrew Sturtz ignited the crowd before the end of the period, however, after racing to a rebound and firing it past Cale Morris in net for Notre Dame, making it 2-1. Guy Gadowsky’s squad had all the momentum heading into the second period despite the strong play from the Irish early on.
The second period didn’t have quite so much action. Liam Folkes netted the lone goal of the period just 2:09 into play, sneaking one by Morris inside his near post. Penn State led a sustained effort at Morris’ goal for nearly all 20 minutes of the second stanza, ending the period with a 39-20 advantage in shots. Guy Gadowksy’s squad really put on a display.
Neither team could find the back of the net in the third period, sending the game into overtime. Overtime ended similarly despite constant pressure from the Nittany Lions. Only Gross scored in the ensuing shootout for Notre Dame, as Penn State walked away with only one point.
Player of the Game
Cale Morris | Sophomore | Goalie
Morris was by far the best player on the ice. He was a brick wall in goal, stopping just about everything including a penalty shot from Sturtz late in the third period. The sophomore and Hobey Baker favorite tallied a career-high 55 saves on the night.
Penn State will head to East Lansing on Friday, February 16 after a week off. The puck will drop at 6:30 p.m. and the matchup will be televised on the Big Ten Network.