Three Hat Tricks by Irish’s Podgajny, Wharton and Hubschmann Throttle Falcons.

Three Hat Tricks by Irish’s Podgajny, Wharton and Hubschmann Throttle Falcons.

Three Hat Tricks by Irish’s Podgajny, Wharton and Hubschmann Throttle Falcons.

Three Hat Tricks by Irish’s Podgajny, Wharton and Hubschmann Throttle Falcons.

From Press Releases Notre Dame (7-3, 2-0) led 4-1 at halftime before tallying four goals in a span of five minutes to open the second half. Back-to-back goals from Wharton began the second-half scoring for the Irish. John Greaney then found the back of the net before Hubschmann made it 8-1 with his third goal of the contest with 10:01 left in the third quarter. Hubschmann has a team-best four hat tricks this season.

Air Force (2-6, 1-1) put a stop to the Notre Dame run as Griffin Nevitt scored a goal with 9:41 left on the clock in the third period. The Fighting Irish responded with an unassisted goal from Podgajny before the Falcons struck back on a tally from Conrad Lochocki to make it 9-3. Notre Dame then went on a 5-0 run to put the game out of reach. Sophomore Ryan Hoff notched consecutive goals followed by tallies from Wharton, Podgajny and freshman Will Yeatman to give the Irish a 14-3 lead by the 11:10 mark of the fourth quarter. Hoff leads the team with 24 goals this season. Following an Air Force goal from Will Meister, sophomore Duncan Swezey and freshman Neal Hicks scored for the Irish to make it a 16-4 final. The goal from Hicks was the first of his college career.

The Irish took a 1-0 lead in the first quarter off a goal from Hubschmann before the Falcons evened the score on tally from Justin Kuchta. Hubschmann struck back to make it 2-1 before goals from Podgajny and Yeatman put the Irish up 4-1 after the first quarter. Neither team would score in the second quarter.

Joey Kemp, a junior, had a solid day between the pipes as he made 12 saves, while allowing only four goals, in 51 minutes of action. Sophomore Scott Rodgers came on in relief of Kemp and made two saves. Dan Gnazzo picked up the loss for the Falcons as he surrendered 10 goals and made 13 saves in 44 minutes of play. Daniel Bellissimo allowed six goals and made four saves the rest of the way for Air Force.

Notre Dame is now 2-0 in the GWLL and hosts Denver Sunday in a match that determines which of these two teams plays Ohio State for the League title.

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