NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Reserves of energy appeared in abundance Saturday for Notre Dame as it entered the third period.
Hours after losing to Massachusetts in the longest college hockey game ever, a five overtime bout that went into the wee hours of Saturday morning, the Irish used three third period goals to take a 5-3 win and force a decisive Game 3 in the Hockey East playoff series.
The teams will reconvene at 7:05 p.m. tonight inside the Compton Family Ice Arena.
“We work consistently on mental toughness and I think that’s what it came down to,” forward Thomas DiPauli said. “Mentally, you don’t have to fly around a million miles an hour and do everything. You’ve just got to keep it simple and be mentally more engaged than the other team and that’s what we did and that’s why we capitalized.”
Vince Hinostroza scored twice, both in the third period to turn a 2-2 tie into a 4-2 Notre Dame lead. Steven Fogarty then scored his second goal in as many nights to make it a 5-2 game.
Defenseman Robbie Russo added two assists, running his series total to five after two games. Goalie Cal Petersen finished with 22 saves in the win, fresh off setting the NCAA record for stops with 87 in 151 minutes and 42 seconds the previous night.
“I thought Cal did a good job for us tonight,” head coach Jeff Jackson said. “But I think early on he was giving up some rebounds and I think that was to be expected. I was chirping at our forwards to get back and make sure they’re helping the kid out because he’s saved our bacon a lot in the last month.”
Mario Lucia staked Notre Dame (16-17-5) to a lead at 3:09 of the first period with his 20th goal of the season. Luke Ripley and Andy Ryan collected assists.
Massachusetts (11-22-2) answered with consecutive goals to take a 2-1 lead early in the second period. Frank Vatrano scored his 18th of the season at 10:07 of the first period. Shane Walsh, who scored the game-winner Friday, added another at 3:41 of the second.
Peter Schneider put one past Massachusetts goalie Steve Mastalerz at 11:51 to pull the Irish even at 2-2 heading into the second intermission.
Mastalerz finished with 16 saves before being pulled in favor of Henry Dill in the third period. He made 75 on Friday in victory.
“Early in the season up one or two or tied, it was a dangerous game for us,” Hinostroza said. “We pulled away (Saturday) and we didn’t look back. That’s definitely huge for us going forward. We’re looking forward to playing again (today).”
Hinostroza broke the tie with a power-play goal at 1:02 of the third period and followed with his second not quite three minutes later, at the 4-minute mark. DiPauli and Russo assisted on the first and Lucia helped on the second.
DiPauli picked up another assist on the Fogarty goal at 4:38, which broke it open to a 5-2 game.
Riley McDougall scored a short-handed goal at 16:15 to give Massachusetts its final tally before the result went final.
“I think the games have been pretty similar so far,” Minutemen head coach John Micheletto said. “There’s not a lot of atom splitting that’s gonna be going on (today) that the game is going to significantly change.”