After splitting last weekend’s home series against the Ohio State Buckeyes, the no. 8 Notre Dame Fighting Irish hosted the Michigan State Spartans to begin their final series of the Fall semester on Friday. Like the Irish, the Spartans are coming off a Big Ten split of their own, with the Penn State Nittany Lions. Entering the contest, the fourth-place Irish and fifth-place Spartans were separated by just one point in the conference standings.
It didn’t take long for the Spartans to get on the board, as Danton Cole’s squad jumped out to an early lead with a pair of goals by Tanner Kelly and Dennis Cesana within the first two minutes of play. However, the Irish penalty kill once again came through when it mattered, erasing a 5-on-3 opportunity to head to close the opening period.
In a stark contrast from the first, the Notre Dame offense fired on all cylinders in the second, outshooting the Spartans a whopping 25-9. Spencer Stastney opened the Irish scoring thanks to a beautiful pass from Jesse Landsdell. After a Michigan State game misconduct later in the period, Stastney scored his second of the night, this time from the point, to tie it up.
After Max Ellis was called for a cross-check, the Irish PK unit once again fended off another power-play and held the Spartans to just one shot. With under twelve minutes left in regulation, Nick Leivermann scored an insane go-ahead goal that went in off the back of MSU goaltender Pierce Charleson.
Michigan State: Tanner Kelly, assisted by No colas Muller and Jagger Joshua at 01:04 in the 1st
Michigan State: Dennis Cesana, assisted by Adam Goodsir and Kristof Papp at 01:51 in the 1st
Notre Dame: Spencer Stastney, assisted by Jesse Lansdell and Hunter Strand at 07:57 in the 2nd
Notre Dame: Spencer Stastney (PPG), assisted by Jack Adams and Chase Blackmun at 12:35 in the 2nd
Notre Dame: Nick Leivermann, assisted by Cam Burke at 08:14 in the 3rd
Notre Dame: Max Ellis for slashing at 14:23 in the 1st
Notre Dame: Jake Boltmann for boarding at 15:59 in the 1st
Michigan State: David Gucciardi for boarding at 02:22 in the 2nd
Michigan State: Christian Krygier for slewfooting, game misconduct at 09:28 in the 2nd
Notre Dame: Ryder Rolston for hooking at 09:57 in the 2nd
Notre Dame: Max Ellis for cross-checking at 02:41 in the 3rd
Michigan State: Jesse Tucker for slashing at 19:30 in the 3rd
Notre Dame: Matthew Galajda, 22 saves
Michigan State: Pierce Charleson, 25 saves
The Irish will conclude their series with Michigan State on Saturday, December 11, at 7:00 PM ET. The game can be seen on NBCSN, or streamed on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app.