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Nov. 1, 1997

Notre Dame Hands MSU Hockey First Loss of Year

Kevin O'Keefe
Kevin O'Keefe scored his fifth goal of the season in a losing effort.

EAST LANSING, Mich. - Michigan State's eight-game unbeaten streak -- equalling the best start in school history -- was halted Saturday night by Notre Dame, 6-1. The Fighting Irish scored four goals in the game's final 10 minutes to turn what had been a hotly contested affair into a rout.

The Irish became just the second team to score a first-period goal against MSU in nine games when Ben Simon found the back of the net first. The ND lead was 2-0 in the second period before the Spartans got on the board. Kevin O'Keefe's team-leading fifth goal of the year came just 22 seconds after Notre Dame's second goal and seemed to give the Spartans life. Notre Dame goaltender Matt Eisler slammed the door, however, as he made a total of 32 saves on the evening.

When Aniket Dhadphale scored with 7:01 remaining in the third, the Spartans hopes of a comeback deflated. Notre Dame kept playing well, however, and took advantage of a pressing MSU defense to make the final 6-1. The Spartans (6-1-2, 4-1-1 CCHA) will see the Fighting Irish (3-2-0, 2-1-0 CCHA) again next Saturday in Munn Arena for what should be the 200th consecutive regular-season sellout in the rink. The Irish face Bowling Green Friday night while Michigan State is off.

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