Freshman goalie Cal Petersen accomplished something Saturday not seen in more than a decade around the Notre Dame hockey program.
Petersen made 55 saves in a 3-1 win over No. 10 Boston College, guiding Notre Dame to a series split and helping solidify a No. 5 seed in the upcoming Hockey East playoffs. He became the first Irish goaltender to cross the 50-save barrier since Morgan Cey did so in 2004.
Cey made 50 saves in a 3-2 win, also against Boston College.
“He’s been in the zone here for about a month now,” head coach Jeff Jackson said of Petersen. “When you’re playing a team of that caliber you’re gonna have to have that kind of goaltending. I know our defensive zone coverage got a lot of practice. But he gives us stability back there.”
Petersen turned away 22 shots in the first period while Notre Dame (15-16-5) managed just seven shots total but mustered a 1-0 lead when Anders Bjork beat Thatcher Demko at 4:56.
Defenseman Jordan Gross then scored at 2:13 of the second period to give the Irish a 2-0 lead. Vince Hinostroza assisted on both goals, running his total to 30 helpers on the season. Mario Lucia assisted on Bjork’s goal as well.
Petersen made 14 saves in the second period and another 19 in the third while allowing the only Boston College goal to Cam Spiro with 15:25 left in the game.
Austin Wuthrich scored his ninth goal of the season at 16:35 of the third period to seal victory. Ali Thomas assisted as the Irish sealed a win on senior night.
“It was great,” Wuthrich said. “It was a great atmosphere. Our team played really well. Then being able to score a goal on this night was pretty special. But I mean, I have to give all the credit to Ali Thomas. He played great tonight and gave me a few opportunities to score. I was glad I could capitalize on one of them.”
Boston College (20-11-3) took control of the series Friday with two goals in the first period en route to a 2-0 win.
Ian McCoshen scored at 13:31 and Alex Tuch at 16:45 to give the Eagles a two-goal lead, which they maintained over the ensuing two periods as Demko recorded his first shutout of the season. He made 35 saves.
“The whole outcome of the game happened in the first period,” forward Thomas DiPauli said. “We came out a little flat footed. But I think the second and third period we played really well, almost better than them. We got a lot of scoring chances but they weren’t bouncing in. They got two bounces that went in early and kind of set us on our heels.”
Demko had plenty to do with the Irish coming up short on their scoring chances with 21 saves over the first two periods. He made 14 more in the third as Notre Dame pressed for a goal, including in the final two minutes against an extra attacker.
Notre Dame went on the power play at 17:37 of the third after Michael Sit went off for tripping. Jackson chose to pull Petersen in favor of a 6-on-4 advantage, although it yielded nothing.
Demko preserved the shutout and the Boston College penalty killers remained perfect on the night. Notre Dame finished 0-for-3 on the power play with seven shots on goal total. It managed three shots on Demko during the final stretch.
“It was a real dangerous situation at the end with a 2-0 lead,” Eagles head coach Jerry York said. “But we took a late penalty and things can change so quickly in college hockey. Worst case scenario for us is they score a goal then they pull the goaltender and are right back in the mix there. I thought our penalty killing stayed well structured and did an excellent job through the last minute and a half of the game.”