Irish hockey team sweeps Michigan State

Tribune Staff Report
ND Insider

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Andrew Oglevie scored 90 seconds in, Cal Burke scored with 14 seconds left and goaltender Cale Morris recorded his fourth shutout in the last 22 days as third-ranked Notre Dame beat Michigan State, 2-0, for its 11th straight victory Saturday night at the Munn Ice Arena.

A 6-1, 190-pound sophomore from Larkspur, Colo., Morris made 23 saves in his latest shutout — the others were by 1-0 scores against Penn State (Nov. 11), Rensselaer (in overtime Nov. 18) and Minnesota (Nov. 24). The record for shutouts in a season is eight by Jordan Pearce during the 2008-09 season.

After each shutout, Morris was named the Big Ten’s First Star award winner. He is 13-1 in goal for the Irish and has started every game of the winning streak that started with a 5-4 home victory over Omaha on Oct. 27.

Saturday’s victory lifted Notre Dame to 14-3-1 overall and 8-0-0-0 in its first Big Ten season. The Irish end the first semester on the road next Friday and Saturday at Wisconsin. Friday’s game starts at 9:05 p.m. ET.

Sophomore goalie John Lethemon made 27 saves for the Spartans, who fell to 7-8-1 overall and 1-6-1-1 in the Big Ten.

The winning streak is currently the longest in the nation and Notre Dame’s longest since a 14-game winning streak by Ric Schafer’s 1987-88 team against an independent schedule that included opponents Dayton, Arizona, Army, North Dakota State, Kent State, Air Force and Villanova.

This one — beginning with a 5-4 victory over Omaha on Oct. 27 and followed by sweeps of Big Ten rivals Ohio State, Penn State, Minnesota and Michigan State with two road victories over Rensselaer sprinkled in — is a lot more impressive. During it, Notre Dame has scored 34 goals and surrendered just 14.

In the third period, Morris had back-to-back saves on MSU’s Zach Osburn and Sam Saliba with six minutes to play. In the final 90 seconds, the Spartans pulled Lethemon.

After Irish center Jake Evans came up with an MSU turnover, he fed Burke, whose team-high ninth goal settled into the empty net with 14.8 seconds left to play.