NOTRE DAME HOCKEY RELEASE

NOTRE DAME, Indiana — The University of Notre Dame hockey team makes its fourth appearance in the NCAA Frozen Four on Thursday, April 5, when the Irish take on Big Ten rival Michigan in a national semifinal game.

The puck will drop at 9:30 p.m. ET from the Xcel Energy Center in Saint Paul, Minnesota, home of the NHL’s Minnesota Wild. The contest can be seen on ESPN2 and WatchESPN, with the radio call available on 94.3 FM in South Bend and worldwide on UND.com.

 

Frozen Four Semifinal – No. 1 Notre Dame (27-9-2) vs. No. 2 Michigan (22-14-3)

WHEN   Thursday, April 5 | 9:30 p.m. ET

WHERE Saint Paul, MN | Xcel Energy Center

WATCH ESPN2 | WatchESPN

LISTEN  93.4 FM (South Bend) | UND.com

FOLLOW Live Stats

SERIES  UM leads 76-58-5 | UM leads 10-5-0 on neutral ice

NOTES  Notre Dame

SOCIAL @NDHockey

MORE   Frozen Four Central

Countdown To Puck Drop

157 | Senior defenseman Jordan Gross has skated in 157 consecutive games (each game of his Irish career).

134 | Jake Evans leads all players in the Frozen Four in career points (39-95-134). Evans (31) is also one of 15 players nationally with at least 30 assists on the season.

85 | Junior defenseman Dennis Gilbert ranks fourth nationally with 85 blocked shots this season. He totaled 70 blocks as a freshman and 78 as a sophomore.

29 | The Fighting Irish are outscoring opponents by a combined 29 goals over the second, third and overtime periods this season (84-55).

26 | With a 26-7-1 record, sophomore goaltender and Hobey Baker Top 10 Finalist Cale Morris leads the nation in victories.

21 | Notre Dame is 21-2-2 this season when scoring first.

13 | Head coach Jeff Jackson is in his 13th season behind the Notre Dame bench. He has led the Irish to nine NCAA tournament appearances and four Frozen Fours.

7 | With the 2018 Big Ten tournament and regular season titles, Notre Dame has now won seven conference championships in program history, each under Jeff Jackson (three regular season).

.945 | Hobey Baker Top 10 Finalist Cale Morris has a .945 save percentage, which leads the nation. He has posted the impressive save percentage while playing 21 games against the nation’s top-15 scoring offenses (ranked by goals per game).

 

For Starters

For the second consecutive season and the fourth time in the last 11 years, Notre Dame will compete in the Frozen Four.

Since 2008, the four total Frozen Four trips by the Irish trail only Boston College and North Dakota (five each) in national semifinal appearances.

Notre Dame is the top remaining seed in the tournament and enters the weekend ranked No. 1 in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine poll. This is the seventh week in 2017-28 the Irish have been at the top of either the USCHO or USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine poll.

This is the third consecutive NCAA appearance by the Irish, who are the only program in the 16-team championship field to have won their league regular season and tournament titles.

Notre Dame won the Big Ten regular-season title with a 17-6-1-1 league mark before capturing the tournament championship thanks to a 3-2 overtime win over Ohio State.

Notre Dame had won three previous conference tournament championships including CCHA Tournament titles in 2007, 2009 and 2013.

Hobey Baker Top 10 Finalist Cale Morris leads the nation in save percentage (.945) and victories (26). The sophomore goaltender was named the Big Ten Player of the Year and Goaltender of the Year while collecting first team all-conference accolades. He made 36 saves in Notre Dame’s opening round win over Michigan Tech and saved 19-of-20 Providence shots in the regional final, earning All-Regional honors. The sophomore is a finalist for the Richter Award.

Morris was joined on the All-Big Ten first team by seniors Jake Evans and Jordan Gross. Evans leads the Irish with 42 points (11-31-42) on the season, while Gross has 28 points (10-18-28). The duo connected for the game-winning goal against Michigan Tech, with Gross scoring from Evans and Jack Jenkins. The pair also assisted on Andrew Ogelvie’s equalizer in the regional final win over Providence. Notre Dame is 10-9-0 all-time in the NCAA tournament (10-8-0 under Jeff Jackson).

Notre Dame entered the NCAA tournament having played more games against the field than any other institution (16). The Irish owned a 10-4-2 record (entering the tournament) in games against the other 15 teams in the bracket, a record only topped by Denver’s 11-1-2 record versus the field.

As an athletics department, Notre Dame claimed its 30th team national title on Sunday, March 25, when the Irish fencing team claimed its 10th NCAA championship. That title came a day after the hockey team clinched a Frozen Fourth berth and a day before the women’s basketball squad secured a Final Four trip.

Irish In The Frozen Four

Notre Dame is in its fourth Frozen Four in program history. The Irish advanced to the national title game in 2008, with semifinal defeats in 2011 and 2017.

In 2008, the Irish made their Frozen Four debut in Denver, Colorado, defeating Michigan, 5-4, in overtime. Calle Ridderwall scored the game-winning goal as well as the first Irish goal, while Mark Van Guilder, Ryan Thang and Kevin Deeth added goals for the Irish. Notre Dame dropped the national title game to Boston College, 4-1.

In 2011, Notre Dame returned to the Frozen Four, this time falling to Minnesota Duluth, 4-3, at the Xcel Energy Center.

Last year, the Irish fell to eventual national champion Denver in the semifinals.

Quick Hits

Jake Evans (39-95-134) now ranks tied for 21st all-time in program history for career points and 15th in program history for career assists.

Evans has skated in 129 consecutive games dating back to his freshman season.

Dennis Gilbert is the only defenseman in the country with multiple shorthanded goals this season (two).

Andrew Oglevie and Evans are tied for 16th in the country with four game-winning goals apiece.

The Fighting Irish are ninth in the country in scoring defense with a 2.16 goals against per game mark and their penalty kill ranks second (88.9), trailing only Ohio State’s penalty kill of 89.3 percent.

Jordan Gross, who has played in all 157 games of his Irish career, leads all active defensemen with 118 career points on 36 goals and 82 assists (Mark Auk of Michigan Tech and Garret Cockerill of Northeastern are tied for second with 84 points each).

The Irish are 16-6-2 against ranked opponents this season.

All four of Notre Dame’s postseason games have been one-goal contests, either going to overtime or with the game-winning goal coming in the final minute of the third period. Dating back to the regular season, six of the last seven Notre Dame games have been decided by one goal.

Notre Dame improved to 4-1 all-time in regional finals with the 2-1 victory over Providence in the East Regional Final.

With Notre Dame & Minnesota Duuth in the Frozen Four for the second straight season, it marks the first time since 2008 multiple teams are in the national semifinals for the second consecutive year. This year’s Frozen Four also features three of the same teams from the 2011 Frozen Four, the last time the event was played in St. Paul (Michigan, Minnesota Duluth & Notre Dame), when UMD captured its first national title.