Feb. 20, 2015
#2 NOTRE DAME (1-0)
Saturday, February 21, 2015 – 1 p.m. (ET)
Oosterbaan Field House – Ann Arbor, Mich.
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame and the University of Michigan share a history across several sports, and now the rivalry moves to men’s lacrosse. The second-ranked Fighting Irish will face the Wolverines at 1 p.m. (ET) Saturday inside the Oosterbaan Field House in Ann Arbor.
The two schools have met on the lacrosse field before when one or both were club programs, but this will be the first showdown since Michigan gained varsity status prior to the 2012 season.
Notre Dame opened its season last Saturday with a 14-12 home win over Georgetown, while Michigan will bring a 2-0 mark into the encounter with the Irish. The Wolverines have posted wins over Bellarmine (16-9) and Detroit (15-6).
“They’ve played very well in their first two games,” Notre Dame head coach Kevin Corrigan says about the Wolverines. “They’ve scored a lot of goals and they have a lot of talent, which it seems everyone does these days.”
The trip to Ann Arbor will have added meaning for at least one Fighting Irish player; sophomore midfielder Sergio Perkovic is the lone Michigan native on Notre Dame’s roster. Perkovic hails from Bloomfield Hills and attended Brother Rice High School.
“I’m excited to go back to Michigan because a lot of my family and friends are coming to the game since it’s only about 40 minutes from where I live,” Perkovic says. “It’ll be special to play in my home state. I played with three or four of their (Michigan) guys in high school so it’ll be fun to play against them.”
Perkovic is coming off a stellar freshman season in which he tallied 28 goals, including five against Duke in the national title game. The first-line midfielder picked up where he left off in May by posting three goals and two assists in the season-opening victory over the Hoyas.
“I thought it (the season opener) went pretty well,” Perkovic states. “Georgetown is a tough team and they played us really well. I made some plays and got in the right spot, but we definitely have a lot that we can improve on and, individually, I do as well.”
Perkovic wasn’t the only offensive star for the Irish on Saturday; freshman attackman Mikey Wynne scored six goals in his college debut. Perkovic and Wynne were among seven Fighting Irish players who found the back of the net against Georgetown.
“Offensively we were pretty good and had a lot of guys contribute, which is a good sign for us,” Corrigan says. “Defensively we have to be better. We have to be better at riding and clearing and not giving up as many opportunities.”
SETTING THE STAGE
– No. 2 Notre Dame (1-0) will travel to Michigan (2-0) for a Saturday afternoon showdown in Ann Arbor. The Fighting Irish and Wolverines will square off at 1 p.m. (ET) inside the Oosterbaan Field House.
– Live audio will be available on MGoBlue.com (free) and live stats will be available via Gametracker on UND.com.
– The Fighting Irish opened their season last Saturday with a 14-12 home victory over Georgetown, while the Wolverines have notched wins over Bellarmine (16-9) and Detroit (15-6).
– This will be Notre Dame’s first matchup with Michigan since the Wolverines gained varsity status prior to the 2012 season.
– The two schools have met on the lacrosse field before when one or both were club programs, but this will be the first encounter since Michigan gained varsity status prior to the 2012 season. The last showdown occurred in 1988, a 17-7 Irish victory.
BATTLING THE BIG TEN
– Saturday will be the first of two regular-season meetings with a Big Ten Conference opponent for Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish will play host to Ohio State on March 21.
– Three ACC teams will face Big Ten squads on Saturday. In addition to the Notre Dame-Michigan showdown, Virginia will take on Rutgers and North Carolina will battle Johns Hopkins.
IRISH HAVE HAD SUCCESS IN MICHIGAN
– While Notre Dame has never faced a varsity Michigan squad, the Irish have experienced success in the Wolverine State. Notre Dame won the 2008 and 2009 Great Western Lacrosse League tournaments, which were held in Birmingham, Mich.
FANTASTIC FEBRUARYS FOR THE FIGHTING IRISH
– Notre Dame is 19-2 in its last 21 games played in February. Fighting Irish head coach Kevin Corrigan is 24-5 in the month of February during his Notre Dame tenure.
FIGHTING IRISH SUPER IN SEASON OPENERS
– Last Saturday’s win over Georgetown improved Notre Dame to 28-7 all-time in season openers, including a 22-5 record in the Kevin Corrigan era.
– The Irish have won a program-record 13 straight season openers.
WHAT A DEBUT FOR WYNNE
– Freshman attackman Mikey Wynne tallied six goals in the 14-12 season-opening win over Georgetown. The six goals were one shy of tying the school record.
– After Notre Dame fell behind 1-0, Wynne scored three straight goals. His fourth goal was on a man-up situation and it gave Notre Dame a 7-6 lead late in the first half. Wynne put the Irish up 13-11 early in the fourth quarter and then secured the victory with his sixth goal, which made it 14-12 with 29 seconds remaining.
SPREADING THE WEALTH
– Seven different Notre Dame players scored in the season opener against Georgetown. Mikey Wynne led the way with six goals, while sophomore midfielder Sergio Perkovic added three goals and two assists. Matt Kavanagh and Conor Doyle both notched one goal and two assists. Jack Near had a goal and an assist, while Nick Ossello and Will Corrigan both chipped in one goal apiece.
PERKOVIC PICKS UP WHERE HE LEFT OFF
– After scoring 28 goals last season, including five in the national title game, sophomore midfielder Sergio Perkovic registered three goals and two assists versus Georgetown in the season opener.
– Perkovic put the Irish up 12-11 early in the fourth quarter and he also assisted on the final goal of the game.
– It was the third time of his career that he scored three or more goals in a game.
— Sean Carroll, Assistant Athletic Media Relations Director
The University of Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team pursues excellence on and off the field through the three pillars in which the program is built: Character, Culture & Community. These three foundational values guide the promise of the program, which is to provide its student-athletes with the most compelling and enriching experience in all of college athletics. Through academics, competition, service and travel, the program aims to immerse its players in situations that enhance their student-athlete experience to help them become the people, students and teammates they aspire to be.
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