The Notre Dame Fighting Irish had a disappointing end to the 2020-2021 season thanks to some positive tests for COVID-19 that ultimately kept them out of the NCAA Tournament. COVID-19 put its mark on college hockey this past year, and for the Ivy League schools — it forced them to NOT have a season.
Because of the Ivy’s decision, transfers out of those schools became quite common over the last few months. The Irish are now a recipient of one of those transfers in Cornell goalie, Matthew Galajda. Notre Dame sent out this press release:
NOTRE DAME, Ind. — Notre Dame hockey head coach Jeff Jackson has announced the addition of graduate transfer goaltender Matthew Galajda for the 2021-22 season. The 2018 First Team All-American played his first three seasons at Cornell.
“We’re excited to add Matthew to our program,” Jackson said. “He has a very impressive resume both academically and athletically from his career at Cornell and not only is he a great goaltender but also a tremendous young man. He’s a great fit for Notre Dame and for our team culture.”
For his career, Galajda boasts a 60-15-9 record to go along with a .930 save percentage and a 1.64 goals against average.
The Aurora, Ontario, native put together a strong junior campaign in 2019-20, posting a 23-2-4 record for the Big Red to go along with a .931 save percentage and a 1.56 goals against average. He was a finalist for the Mike Richter Award, presented annually to the most outstanding goaltender in the nation, and posted five shutouts on the season. When the COVID-19 pandemic halted the season, Galajda and the Big Red were ranked first in the USCHO.com poll.
As a sophomore in 2018-19, Galajda posted a 16-8-3 record with a .921 save percentage and 1.85 goals against average, tallying five shutouts. His goals against average ranked fifth in the country and he earned All-ECAC Hockey Third Team honors.
As a freshman in 2017-18, he led the nation with a 1.51 goals against average — the lowest in Division I since UMass-Lowell’s Connor Hellebuyck’s mark of 1.37 (2012-13). He posted a 21-5-2 record to lead the nation in victories by a freshman and his .939 save percentage ranked third in the country. He had nine shutouts on the season and was named a CCM/AHCA Hockey All-America First Team (East) selection. He became the first freshman to ever be named among 10 finalists for Hobey Baker Memorial Award, given annually to the best player in all of college hockey. He also earned Ivy League and ECAC Hockey Rookie of the Year honors, as well as being named the Ivy League Player of the Year.
Enrolled in Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration, Galajda played for the Victoria Grizzlies (BCHL) during the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons.
Honors and Awards
— CCM/AHCA Hockey All-America First Team, East Region (2018)
— Hobey Baker Memorial Award finalist (2018)
— Mike Richter Award finalist (2018, 2020)
— Ivy League Player of the Year (2018, 2020)
— Ivy League Rookie of the Year (2018)
— All-Ivy League First Team (2018, 2020)
— ECAC Hockey Rookie of the Year (2018)
— ECAC Hockey All-Rookie Team (2018)
— All-ECAC Hockey First Team (2018)
— All-ECAC Hockey Third Team (2019, 2020)