May 12, 2016
— #6/#6/#5 NOTRE DAME (10-3, 3-1 ACC) at #12/#13/#14 AIR FORCE (15-2, 7-0 Southern Conference)
— Saturday, May 14, 2016 – 7:30 p.m. EDT
— Arlotta Stadium – Notre Dame, Indiana
Rankings are Inside Lacrosse (media)/USILA (coaches)/Lacrosse magazine
Notre Dame (10-3) Saturday makes its 11th straight NCAA Championship appearance, playing host to a first-round home game for the eighth time in nine years. Notre Dame earned the No. 3 national seed and will play host to Air Force (15-2).
–Notre Dame claimed a share of the Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season title; Air Force won the Southern Conference Championship in its first season in that league.
–This marks the third-highest seed received by the Irish in the NCAA bracket. Notre Dame was the top seed a year ago and a No. 2 seed in 2013.
–The winner of Notre Dame’s first-round contest against Air Force will take on the winner of the first-round tilt between No. 6 seed Marquette and North Carolina in the quarterfinals May 22 in Columbus, Ohio.
–Notre Dame has advanced to at least the quarterfinal round of the last six NCAA Championships (the only school to do that).
–Notre Dame and Maryland are the only two programs to earn an NCAA berth each of the last 11 seasons.
–Notre Dame owns a 17-20 record in 20 previous trips to the NCAA Championship.
–The Irish in 2015 were the No. 1 seed and topped Towson in the first round and Albany in the quarterfinals before falling in overtime to eventual NCAA champion Denver in the semifinals.
–This is the ninth time overall–and eighth time in the last nine seasons–the Irish have earned one of the eight national seeds for the NCAA Championship. The Irish also were seeded for the 2001 (5th), 2008 (6th), 2009 (7th), 2011 (4th), 2012 (4th), 2013 (2nd), 2014 (6th) and 2015 (1st) tournaments. Notre Dame advanced to NCAA Championship Weekend in 2001, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2015–and played in the title game in 2010 and 2014.
–The 18-team NCAA Championship field is comprised of 10 automatic-qualifying teams and eight at-large squads. The top eight teams in the bracket are seeded. Four ACC programs made the field and two are seeded–Notre Dame No. 3 and Syracuse No. 8.
–Notre Dame faced four of the other seeded teams this season (posting a 3-1 mark) and six programs overall that made the NCAA field. The Fighting Irish went 4-3 against those six squads (victories over No. 1 seed Maryland, No. 6 Marquette, No. 8 Syracuse and Duke, with losses to No. 2 Denver, Duke and North Carolina).
–For ticket information, call the Notre Dame ticket office at 574-631-7356 or visit www.UND.com/buytickets. Ticket office hours are 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. EDT.
— Notre Dame and Air Force have met 22 previous times, but this is the first time the Falcons have come in with a national ranking.
Live on ESPNU (Chris Cotter, Matt Ward)
2016 NOTRE DAME SCHEDULE AND SCORES (10-3, 3-1 ACC)
IRISH AND THE 2016 RANKINGS
The Irish have spent nine weeks in 2016 ranked number one in at least one of the three major polls-including nine weeks atop the Nike/Lacrosse magazine poll, eight in the top spot of the Cascade/Maverik/Inside Lacrosse media poll and two in first place according to the USILA (coaches) listing.
— Notre Dame began the 2016 season rated first in both the Lacrosse magazine and Inside Lacrosse preseason polls, while the Irish were second (behind 2015 NCAA champion Denver) in the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association preseason poll of coaches.
— The Irish held the top spot in all three major polls in the the Feb. 15 and April 18 rankings.
NOTRE DAME IN THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP
Notre Dame in 2015 played in the NCAA Championship for the 10th straight year and 20th time in school history. Every NCAA appearance Notre Dame has made has occurred under current head coach Kevin Corrigan.
— The Irish own an all-time record of 17-20 in their 20 trips to the tournament. Notre Dame finished as the NCAA runner-up in 2010 and 2014 and also advanced to the NCAA Championship semifinals in 2001, 2012 and 2015.
— The Irish earned a spot in the 2015 semifinals following a first-round victory over Towson (12-10) and a quarterfinal win over Albany (14-10).
HISTORIC TOP SEED IN 2015
Notre Dame earned the #1 seed in the 2015 NCAA Championship for the first time in school history. In 2013, the Irish garnered the tournament’s #2 seed before falling to Duke 12-11 in the quarterfinals.
— So 2015 marked the eighth time overall–and seventh time in the last eight campaigns–the Irish earned one of the eight national seeds for the NCAA Championship. The Irish also were seeded for the 2001 (5th), 2008 (6th), 2009 (7th), 2011 (4th), 2013 (2nd) and 2014 (6th) championships.
— All five teams from the ACC in 2015 were seeded–Notre Dame (#1), Syracuse (#2), North Carolina (#3), Duke (#5) and Virginia (#7).
IRISH NCAA VICTORIES
The 2015 Notre Dame NCAA Championship wins over Towson and Albany pushed the Irish NCAA victory total to 17. The only teams with more are Cornell, Duke, Johns Hopkins, Maryland, North Carolina, Princeton, Syracuse and Virginia.
— The Irish are 12-6 over the last six NCAA events combined (2010-2015), including national semifinal appearances in 2012 and 2015 and title game appearances in 2010 and 2014.
LOTS OF CLOSE NCAA CALLS
Notre Dame’s last six NCAA losses (2010-2015) have come by a combined nine goals, including three two-goal losses and three one-goal defeats (two of those in overtime).
MORE IRISH POSTSEASON NOTES
Notre Dame has lost to the eventual NCAA champion in eight of its last 10 appearances in the postseason, including four seasons in a row:
Click here to view the Complete Game Notes