Here's Why UMass Beating Notre Dame In The Longest D-1 Hockey Game Ever Matters

By Maxwell Monson / @maxwellmonson

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish and the UMass Minuteman got set to take the ice Friday night in a game that would end up being much more than the opening of a three game series in the first round of the Hockey East Tournament. What neither team knew was that they would be playing much more than three periods of hockey and breaking a couple NCAA records while doing it.

The game started out with ND getting the first tally of the night by junior forward Sam Herr half way through the period. The second period things really started to heat up with five goals being scored between the two teams. ND scored first just before the halfway mark. The Minuteman answered back with a goal by sophomore forward Steven Iancobellis, his first of many. ND kept it going with a goal by junior forward Steven Fogarty. Then Iancobellis got hot and put two more in for UMass to finish the hat trick and tie it up at three. The third period saw no scoring, but fans would not be disappointed with how this game ended up. When you go to a hockey game you know you’re in for three periods of action and with some luck on your side, you may get to watch overtime action to decide a winner.

The fans at the Compton Family Ice Arena Friday night should have bought a lottery ticket.

These teams battled but a winner could not be decided in regulation so overtime ensued.

Then a second overtime...

Then a third...

And a fourth...

Five? Yes, five.

During the fifth overtime, UMass winger Shane Walsh put the puck in the net and ended this marathon of a game. Over five hours of hockey madness had come to its eventual conclusion.

"It felt like it was never going to end. It just felt like the puck was never going to go in." -- Notre Dame defenseman Robbie Russo

This game saw multiple NCAA records broken besides being one heck of a hockey game to start off the Hockey East tournament:

  • Before this game the longest NCAA Division 1 hockey game was 150 minutes and 22 seconds when Quinnipiac and Union (NY) went into a fifth overtime to decide a winner. This game between ND and UMASS broke that record by 42 seconds, lasting 151 minutes and four seconds. To put this in perspective, a normal hockey game that ends in regulation would last 60 minutes. This three game series could have been ended in two games for a total of 120 minutes.
  • UMass lit up Notre Dame with shots all night but freshman goalie Cal Peterson was up to the task. It’s not often you see a young pup freshman breaking NCAA records, but Peterson did it Friday night. He ended the night with a whopping 87 saves. Breaking the previous record held by Dick Greenlaw of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute with 78 saves versus Boston University in 1965.

Your always hoping to see overtime when you go to a hockey game to get a little more bang for your buck but your never expecting five overtime periods. On top of that seeing two NCAA records get broken is one lucky night for a sports fan. Check out the highlights below if you missed this instant classic over the weekend.

Related: An Introduction To William Douglas And The Color Of Hockey

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