On Friday, the no. 7 Notre Dame Fighting Irish entered the Big Ten quarterfinals at Compton Family Ice Arena looking to avenge an early exit in last year’s conference tournament. Standing in their way was the Wisconsin Badgers, who the Irish took three of four from during the regular season. The Irish, who earned the 3 seed in the tournament, brought a five-game winning streak into the matchup.
The Irish controlled the tempo of the opening period, out-shooting the Badgers 20-11. Their best scoring chance came when a Justin Janicke shot hit the crossbar, but it was Wisconsin who took a 1-0 lead into intermission thanks to a Brock Caufield shot off the far post.
After two unsuccessful power-plays, third time was the charm for the Irish when a Graham Slaggert one-timer evened it up at one. However, the tie wouldn’t last long, as Dominick Mersch tipped one past Matthew Galajda to make it 2-1 Badgers after two.
Despite being out-shot 40-25 at that point in the contest, Wisconsin took a commending 3-1 lead when Zach Urdal scored on a two on one. Despite bringing the extra attacker on at the end of the period, Notre Dame failed to capitalize, falling 3-1 in a game in which they posted 50 shots on net and had 5 power-plays.
Wisconsin: Brock Caufield at 15:22 in the 1st, assisted by Mathieu De St. Phalle and Carson Bantle
Notre Dame: Graham Slaggert (PPG) at 13:52 in the 2nd, assisted by Nick Leivermann and Ryder Rolston
Wisconsin: Dominick Mersch at 14:30 in the 2nd, assisted by Tyler Inamoto and Corson Ceulemans
Wisconsin: Zach Urdahl at 05:57 in the 3rd, assisted by Sam Stange
Wisconsin: Dominick Mersch for tripping at 15:52 in the 1st
Wisconsin: Roman Ahcan for slashing at 04:57 in the 2nd
Wisconsin: Tyler Inamoto for boarding at 12:24 in the 2nd
Notre Dame: Adam Karashim for elbowing at 19:23 in the 2nd
Wisconsin: Ryder Donovan for holding at 07:20 in the 3rd
Wisconsin: Dominick Mersch for tripping at 13:22 in the 3rd
Notre Dame: Matthew Galajda, 24 saves
Wisconsin: Jared Moe, 49 saves
The Irish will take on the Badgers in game 2 of their series on Saturday, March 5, at 6:00 PM ET. The game can be streamed on Big Ten Network Plus.