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  1. #1

    Irish Place Three On CCHA All-Rookie Team

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    Kevin Deeth, Ryan Thang and Kyle Lawson among conference's top six rookies.

    March 5, 2007

    Notre Dame, Ind. - For the first time in Notre Dame's CCHA history and just the seventh time since the conference began naming an all-rookie team, the Fighting Irish have had three players chosen by the coaches to the all-rookie team.

    Named to the team are center Kevin Deeth (Gig Harbor, Wash.), left wing Ryan Thang (Edina, Minn.) and defenseman Kyle Lawson (New Hudson, Mich.). The trio has played major role in Notre Dame's first-ever CCHA regular-season title and top national ranking.

    The Irish trio makes Notre Dame just the third school to have three players named to the all-rookie team, joining Michigan (five times) and Michigan State (once). The 1993-94 Michigan team had the most players ever named when they had four rookies chosen that season.

    Kevin Deeth joins teammates Ryan Thang and Kyle Lawson as members of the 2007 CCHA all-rookie team. He is tied with Thang for second on the team in scoring with 16 goals and 18 assists for 34 points.

    Joining Deeth and Thang at forward is Western Michigan's Mark Letestu while Nebraska-Omaha's Eddie Del Grosso joins Lawson on defense. The all-rookie goaltender is Western Michigan's Riley Gill.

    Deeth goes into the second round of the CCHA playoffs tied for second on the Notre Dame roster with 34 points on 16 goals and 18 assists. He has scored six times on the power play, owns one short-handed goal and has scored three game winners. His .219 shooting percentage (16 goals on 73 shots) leads the team. In 28 CCHA games, the Gig Harbor, Wash., native has nine goals and 14 assists for 23 points. His overall +22 tied him for second among all CCHA players along with teammate Erik Condra (So., Livonia, Mich.).

    Thang finished the regular season tied with Deeth in points with 34 and tied for the team lead in goals with 17. He paced the Irish with eight power-play goals and his five game winners ranked him third in the CCHA. In 28 conference games, Thang had 11 goals and 15 assists for 26 points to finish second to Condra in that category. For the season, Thang was +17 to tie for third on the team while tying for eighth overall in the CCHA.

    Lawson joined the Irish and quickly became one of the team's top defensemen at both ends of the ice. In 32 games, he had three goals and 13 assists for 16 points and was +19 on the year to finish third on the squad. Two of his goals came on the power play and his three goals tied for the team lead among Notre Dame blueliners. In 26 CCHA games, Lawson had three goals and 11 assists for 14 points. A 2005 draft choice of the Carolina Hurricanes, the New Hudson, Mich., native missed four games this year while playing for the U.S. Junior National Team in the World Championships at Christmas. Lawson was an alternate captain for the bronze medal winning U.S. team.

    Previous Notre Dame players to take CCHA all-rookie honors include: Erik Condra (2005-06), Brett Lebda (2003-04), David Inman (1998-99), Mark Eaton (1997-98), Joe Dusbabek (1996-97) and Jamie Ling (1992-93).

    The Irish, 27-6-3 overall and 21-4-3 in the CCHA, return to action this weekend when the play host to Alaska in the second round of the CCHA tournament. The best-of-three series begins on Friday, March 9 at the Joyce Center, beginning at 7:35 p.m.

  2. #2

    Irish To Face Alaska In Second Round Of CCHA Playoffs

    Best-of-three series begins on Friday, March 9th at the Joyce Center

    March 4, 2007

    Notre Dame, Ind. - The Notre Dame hockey team's bye week officially came to an end on Sunday night as the final three games of three opening round series of the CCHA playoffs were decided and due to a pair of upsets, the Irish will face the Alaska Nanooks in the quarterfinal round.

    Alaska, the CCHA's 11th-place team, defeated sixth-place Western Michigan, 3-1, on Sunday night in Kalamazoo, giving the Nanooks the opening round win, two games to one. The series at the Joyce Center will begin on Friday, March 9 at 7:35 p.m. Game two is set for Saturday, March 10 at 7:05 p.m. and game three, if necessary, will be played on Sunday, March 10 at 7:05 p.m. The winner advances to the CCHA Championship series at Joe Louis Arena with the two semifinal games set for Friday, March 16.

    Northern Michigan, the 10th-place team, defeated seventh-place Ohio State, 3-2 on Sunday to take that series and Lake Superior downed Ferris State, 3-2 on Sunday evening to win that series.

    Alaska (11-20-6 overall and 7-16-5 in the CCHA) is no stranger to the Irish and the CCHA playoffs as the two teams met in the first round in the 2006 with the Nanooks taking the series with 3-1 and 1-0 wins at the Joyce Center.

    This season, the two teams are cluster partners and have already met four times with Notre Dame winning all four meetings. The Irish, 27-6-3 overall and 21-4-3 in the CCHA, won twice at the Joyce Center in December (3-1 and 6-2) and twice in Fairbanks on Feb. 16-17 (winning 1-0 and 3-2).

    The two teams have met 43 times in the all-time series that is tied at 20-20-3. At Notre Dame, the Irish have an 11-8-1 edge against the Nanooks, but are 0-2 in CCHA playoff action.

    The other three playoff series look like this:

    #2 Michigan plays host to #10 Northern Michigan as the Wildcats upset #7 Ohio State in Columbus, two games to one.

    #3 Miami plays host to #8 Lake Superior as the Lakers defeated #9 Ferris State, two games to one.

    #4 Michigan State will host #5 Nebraska-Omaha as the Mavericks swept #12 Bowling Green, two games to one.

    All four second round series will be played March 9-11 and are best-two-of-three series.

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