Weary Irish stay alive in tourney

Hinostroza's late goals help ND knot up series

Steve Lowe
Tribune Correspondent

SOUTH BEND — After 10 tight periods of tied hockey over the previous 26 hours, Notre Dame's Vince Hinostroza finally had enough.

One night after the Irish made history but came up short against Massachusetts, Hinostroza broke a 2-2 tie in the third period Saturday night with consecutive goals to lead Notre Dame to a 5-2 Hockey East tournament first round victory that knotted the series at one game apiece.

The Irish (16-17-5) found a way to move past the bitter disappointment of coming out on the wrong end of the longest NCAA Division I hockey game in history, 4-3, Friday night. After battling for a record 151 minutes, 42 seconds, the Irish found a way late Saturday to stay alive and force a deciding game three, Sunday night at 7:05.

"We just wanted to come out and be better," Hinostroza said. "We pulled away today and we didn't look back, so that's definitely huge for us."

Goaltender Cal Petersen set the NCAA record with 87 saves in Friday's game, which ended just before 1:30 a.m. Saturday. He followed that up with a decidedly pedestrian performance by comparison, stopping 22-of-25 UMass shots Saturday night. He struggled with rebound control early on, but the Irish didn't need his heroics in this one.

"That shows up with fatigue," said Notre Dame coach Jeff Jackson, who managed just three hours of sleep after the marathon game the night before. "But that kid has saved our bacon a lot in the last month.

"(We) needed to play a good game in front of him. He's been barraged over the last three weeks. The kid needs a break."

As they did in the first game, Notre Dame took a first period lead when Mario Lucia redirected a Luke Ripley shot for his 20th goal of the season, 3:09 into the game. The Minutemen tied it 1-1 seven minutes later when Petersen left a rebound out front for Frank Vatrano to knock in.

Walsh scored his second goal of the day — the first coming early that morning to end game one — when he redirected Steven Iacobellis' pass to give UMass a 2-1 second period lead.

Schneider got it back to even for the Irish when he blasted home a feed from Thomas DiPauli behind the Minutemen net, sending the game into the final regulation period tied again, 2-2.

"For us to come back showed a little character," Jackson said.

Just over a minute into the third period, Hinostroza clanged in a power play goal off the crossbar, then added a top-right-corner bullet three minutes later. Steven Fogarty put ND up by three goals 38 seconds after that as the Irish took control and chased UMass goalie Steve Mastalerz, one night after he recorded 75 saves in the 5-OT win.

"We knew that we were the better conditioned team," said DiPauli, who finished with three assists. "I think that's what it came down to today."

The deciding game three will come down to keeping things simple, according to UMass coach John Micheletto.

"There's not a lot of atom-splitting that's going to be going on tomorrow," Micheletto said. "It's going to be about discipline and attention to detail."

At Compton Family Ice Arena

FIRST PERIOD

ND - Mario Lucia 20 (Luke Ripley, Andy Ryan) 3:09; UM - Frank Vatrano 18 (Brandon Montour) 10:07. Shots on goal: UM 14, ND 5; Penalties: ND 1-2, UM 0-0.

SECOND PERIOD

UM - Shane Walsh 14 (Steven Iacobellis, Ray Pigozzi) 3:41; ND - Peter Schneider 5 (Thomas DiPauli, Robbie Russo) 11:51. Shots: ND 11, UM 6; Penalties: UM 3-6, ND 1-2.

THIRD PERIOD

ND - Vince Hinostroza 10 (DiPauli, Russo) PP, 1:02; ND - Hinostroza 11 (Lucia) 4:00; ND - Steven Fogarty 8 (DiPauli, Schneider) 4:38; UM - Riley McDougall 5 (Dennis Kravchenk) SH, 16:15. Shots: ND 12, UM 5; Penalties: UM 4-8, ND 1-2.

UM 1 1 1 - 3

ND 1 1 3 - 5

Shots: ND 28, UM 25; Saves: ND 22 (Cal Petersen), UM 23 (Steve Mastalerz 16, Henry Dill 7); Power plays: ND 1-6, UM 0-2; Penalties: UM 7-14, ND 3-6; Attendance: 4,289.

Notre Dame coach Jeff Jackson prior to action in the first period of Hockey East playoff action at the Compton Family Ice Arena Sunday March 8, 2015 in South Bend, Ind. (SBT Photo/Joe Raymond)