College Hockey Scoreboard from CHN

Monday, March 19, 2007

Notre Dame takes CCHA championship


Notre Dame topped Michigan, 2-1, Saturday night at Joe Louis Arena to win the Mason Cup and CCHA playoff championship.

With the victory, the Fighting Irish earned an automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament.

Kevin Porter gave the Wolverines a 1-0 lead at 19:54 of the first period, but Notre Dame rallied with goals from Michigan natives Erik Condra (Livonia) and Jason Paige (Saginaw) in the second and third periods.

Billy Sauer stopped 35 shots for Michigan (26-13-1) and Hobey Baker favorite David Brown made 31 saves for the Irish (31-6-3).

"It was a game that took different directions," Michigan head coach Red Berenson said. "I liked our first period, I thought we had some good chances, even though we killed some penalties and they got us on our heels. But, the second period was all Notre Dame. And in the third period, it was anyone’s game. It was a close game. Notre Dame is a hard-working team, and a good defensive team. The goals we can score against them are very precious in a game like this."

Porter and T.J. Hensick joined Condra as the forwards named to the All-CCHA Tournament team. Jack Johnson and the Irish’s Wes O’Neill made up the defensive pairing, and Brown completed the team in net.

In the consolation game earlier Saturday, Tyler Howells' overtime winner gave Michigan State a 7-6 win over Lake Superior State.

Nathan Perkovich and Trent Campbell scored extra-attacker goals in the final 90 seconds of regulation for LSSU to send the game to overtime, where Howells won it at 3:37 on a power play.

"I saw (Daniel) Vukovic wind up and I thought there might be a big rebound, so I headed towards the net," Howells said. "The puck ended up right on my stick and all I had to do was push it in there."

Vukovic scored twice for MSU (22-13-3) along with singles from Bryan Lerg, Jim McKenzie, Chris Mueller and Matt Schepke. Perkovich had a hat trick for the Lakers and Steve Oleksy scored a pair.

"I guess it was an entertaining game," LSSU head coach Jim Roque said. "There were lots of goals and lots of action. It's a tough way to lose a game in overtime, on a power-play goal. I thought we weren't mentally sharp at times, but I thought our effort was great and our guys never quit. We could have quit at any time during that game but our guys wanted to put on a good show for our fans that made the trip."

Jeff Lerg finished with 40 stops for MSU, while Jeff Jakaitis wrapped up his collegiate career with a 29-save outing for the Lakers (21-19-3).


Photo courtesy CCHA.com

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