BOWLING GREEN, Ohio — Bowling Green and goaltender Tyler Masters bounced back from a three-goal loss on Friday night with an action-packed 4-2 victory on Saturday at the BGSU Ice Arena in CCHA action.
Masters turned away 45 of 47 Irish shots, the second-highest total in his career, and the Falcon offense netted four goals to snap a four-game winless streak for the Brown and Orange.
“We needed a win,” said BGSU coach Buddy Powers. “It was real important for us to win this hockey game.”
Masters and Bowling Green’s defense shut out Notre Dame on their first five power-play attempts, until late in the third period. Masters had 14 saves in the first period, 16 in the second and 15 in the third.
“I was ecstatic with our penalty kill,” said Powers. “I didn’t think they could score on their power play. I thought our PK guys did well.”
Sophomore defenseman Brian Escobedo put Bowling Green on the board first when he knocked in a rebound from teammate Mark Wires’ shot from the left circle. Escobedo’s power-play goal was his third of the year and came at 6:38 in the first period.
Senior forward Greg Day gave the Falcons a two-goal lead in the first period at 13:22 when he stole a pass from an Irish defender, took a wrist shot on goalie Morgan Cey from above the crease, and then backhanded his own rebound above Cey’s glove. Day’s unassisted goal was his team-leading ninth of the year and extended his scoring streak to four games.
Notre Dame finally got on the board at 4:49 of the second period with a Connor Dunlop even-strength goal, cutting BGSU’s lead to 2-1.
But Day and Tyler Knight broke out on a two-on-one fast break later in the period, with Day feeding Knight for a wrister from just inside the right circle. Knight’s goal was his second of the season and came at 13:51 in the second.
A power-play goal by ND’s John Wroblewski at 13:12 in the third period again put the Irish within one. However, Masters and the Bowling Green defense kept the visitors in check until sophomore Roger Leonard stole the puck on a breakaway and scored an empty-netter with just 18 seconds remaining for the final 4-2 decision.
Notre Dame outshot Bowling Green 47-29 while both teams were 1-for-6 on the power play. Masters’ 45 saves were 20 better than Cey’s 25.
Bowling Green improves to 5-9-4 overall and 4-8-2 in the CCHA. Notre Dame drops to 5-7-4 overall and 5-4-3 in the CCHA.