SOUTH BEND, Ind. — The Notre Dame Fighting Irish (8-3-2, 7-3-2 CCHA scored three goals in the third period, including two from senior center Rob Globke, as they handed the Northern Michigan Wildcats (5-7-0, 4-6-0 CCHA) their fourth loss in five games, 4-2.
The win by the Irish stretches their unbeaten streak to six, and keeps them in a first-place tie in the CCHA with Ohio State, which blanked Bowling Green tonight, by a score of 7-0.
“That was a great third period for us,” said Irish coach Dave Poulin. “We knew Northern would play better and they did play a lot better.”
Northern Michigan, dominated in Friday night’s loss, came out stronger Saturday, outplaying the Irish at times.
“We played a lot better tonight,” said Northern Michigan boss Walt Kyle. Northern indeed played well, but injuries to defensemen in the second period left the ‘Cats short on the blue line. The short bench finally caught up to them late in the third period.
“We only had five defensemen. We had to put a forward back there,” said Kyle.
While the Irish had a number of standouts on the night, including goalie David Brown, and winger Mike Walsh, the night belonged to Globke. Globke netted the first Irish goal of the night, and later, the game winner. His play clearly was a spark in the resurgence of the Notre Dame offense during the third period.
“He’s been playing like this all year,” said Poulin. “He’s taken his game to the next level. I give him a tremendous amount of credit. He’s one of the best hockey players in the country.”
After a scoreless first stanza, the Wildcats, skating 5 on 3, got on the board 3:36 into the second period. Darin Olver netted his fifth goal of the season, finding the 5-hole of Irish goalie David Brown from just outside the crease. Dirk Southern and Nathan Oystrick assisted on the goal.
The Cats added to their lead just over seven minutes later as Southern tipped a Geoff Waugh shot from the top of the left circle past Brown and into the net for the 2-0 lead. The goal came with both teams skating four to a side, as NMU’s Zach Tarkir and Notre Dames Brad Wanchulak were sent off the ice moments before for slashing penalties.
Notre Dame cut into the NMU lead at the 14:01 mark of the period when Irish senior Rob Globke picked up his ninth goal of the year, a power play marker, to make the score 2-1. Globke picked up a rebound to the right of Craig Kowalski and stuffed it between the pads for the goal. Neil Komadoski and Michael Bartlett assisted on the play.
For Kowalski, who stopped 26 of 30 shots, the tough breaks continued, playing behind a depleted defense in the second and third periods.
“He was good tonight,” said Kyle. “He’s been good for us the whole season.”
The Irish tied the game just 1:29 into the 3rd period. Aaron Gill fed a pass to Mike Walsh between the circles, who wristed one past Kowalski for the tying goal. Cory McLean also assisted on the play.
Notre Dame got the game winner with 5:04 left in the game. Globke netted his second goal of the night, a wrist shot past the Northern goalie for the 3-2 lead. Brent Lebda and Tim Wallace assisted.
Matt Amado sealed the Irish victory with an unassisted goal as he skated the puck to the top of the circle and blasted a shot top shelf for the goal at 16:44.
David Brown stopped 25 of Northern’s 27 shots. Both teams were 1 of 5 on the power play.
Notre Dame will head to Kalamazoo next weekend for a two-game set against the Western Michigan Broncos, while NMU heads to Sault Ste. Marie on Friday night for the front end of a home and home against the Lake Superior State Lakers.