Junior forward Melissa Henderson scored twice in last year's 3-3 exhibition draw with Virginia in Maple City, Mich.

#4 Irish To Tangle With #17 Virginia In Friday Exhibition

Aug. 12, 2010

2010 ND Women’s Soccer — Exhibition 1
#4 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (21-4-1 in 2009 / 10-0-1 BIG EAST) vs. #17 Virginia Cavaliers (10-6-6 in 2009 / 4-4-2 ACC)

DATE: August 13, 2010
TIME: 1:00 p.m. ET
AT: Maple City, Mich. (Myles Kimmerly Park)
SERIES: UVa 1-0 (regular season) // ND 3-1-1 (exhibition)
TWITTER: @NDsoccernews
TEXT ALERT: Sign up at UND.com
TICKETS: Free for exhibitions


  • Notre Dame is 9-2-2 in exhibitions vs. college teams during the Randy Waldrum era (1999-present).
  • The Fighting Irish are averaging 2.4 goals per game in 12 exhibitions vs. college programs since Waldrum came to town 12 seasons ago.

#4 Fighting Irish And #17 Virginia To Tangle In Friday Exhibition
For the third consecutive season and the fourth time in the past five years, Notre Dame and Virginia will meet in a top-20 preseason match, as the fourth-ranked Fighting Irish venture to Maple City, Mich., on Friday for a 1 p.m. (ET) contest against the 17th-ranked Cavaliers at Myles Kimmerly Park. These exhibitions have become commonplace in recent years, with Notre Dame making the five-hour trek north to UVa’s preseason camp site.

This will be the lone 2010 exhibition match for the Fighting Irish, who will begin regular season play on Aug. 20 at home against Minnesota. It’s also the first preseason contest for Virginia, which will quickly head home for its second exhibition match on Sunday afternoon against James Madison.


  • Notre Dame is ranked fourth in the preseason NSCAA poll.
  • Virginia is ranked 17th in the preseason NSCAA poll.

The Notre Dame-Virginia Series
Officially, Notre Dame and Virginia have met only once on the soccer pitch, with the Cavaliers defeating the Fighting Irish, 2-0, on Oct. 21, 1989, in Charlottesville. However, the teams will be squaring off in exhibition play for the sixth consecutive year, with Notre Dame winning three of the previous five matchups (and another ending in a draw) and posting an aggregate 12-6 score against UVa in those five preseason contests.

Friday’s game also will mark the fourth time the Fighting Irish and Cavaliers have played a preseason contest in the Traverse City area, all in the past five seasons. In 2006, Notre Dame earned a 3-0 win before Virginia came back to log a 2-1 victory in 2008. Last season, the teams played a 3-3 draw in nearby Maple City, Mich.

The Last Time Notre Dame And Virginia Met In Exhibition Play
Melissa Henderson scored twice, while Erica Iantorno and Jessica Schuveiller each recorded a pair of assists as No. 3 Notre Dame scored three times in the first 14 minutes before ninth-ranked Virginia rallied late against the Fighting Irish second- and third-string reserves to forge a 3-3 tie in an exhibition game on Aug. 14, 2009. at Myles Kimmerly Park in Maple City, Mich. (located northwest of Traverse City).

Courtney Barg scored the other goal for the Fighting Irish, who improved to 3-1-1 in preseason games against Virginia during the past five seasons. The game was played in three 30-minute periods, with the teams mutually agreeing to play their starters and top reserves in the first two periods, before getting the chance to evaluate their second and third teams during the final 30 minutes.

Caroline Miller scored twice for the Cavaliers, including the game-tying goal with two minutes remaining. Kiley Naylor also had a score for UVa.

Notre Dame played all three of its goalkeepers against Virginia, with Kelsey Lysander, Nikki Weiss and Maddie Fox each getting a period in the Fighting Irish net. Lysander made one save in the first frame, Weiss did likewise in the middle period, and Fox turned aside two shots in the closing half hour.

Notre Dame wasted little time in getting on the scoreboard, finding the back of the net in the fifth minute. Schuveiller sent a long ball over the top to Iantorno at the left edge of the penalty area. She turned and served a low cross through the 18′ to Barg on the right side, and the second-year attacker settled the ball before snapping a low drive inside the left post past Virginia goalkeeper Chantel Jones.

Iantorno continued to pressure the Cavaliers’ backline and it paid off again in the 12th minute, as she smartly tackled the ball away from UVa defender Kika Toulouse on the right edge of the box. Iantorno quickly fired a shot on Jones, who was able to knock the ball down, but couldn’t control it, and Henderson was there to convert the rebound into an empty net.

Schuveiller came up big again in the 14th minute, latching on to a ball on the right side at midfield and switching the point of attack with a pinpoint lead pass down the left channel. Henderson trapped the ball with her left foot, cut back to her right to get a better angle and drilled a 15-yard rocket into the upper right corner of the net to give Notre Dame a 3-0 lead.

The Fighting Irish defense looked sharp for the most part in the first period. Virginia’s first (and only) dangerous offensive threat came in the 28th minute, when Caitlin Miskel teed up a rising free kick from 25 yards out that Lysander parried off the crossbar and the Notre Dame backline cleared away the rebound.

Weiss replaced Lysander in the Fighting Irish goal for the second period, which was largely played in the middle third of the field. Julie Scheidler had three probing runs and crosses from the right flank, but the Cavaliers’ defense held fast and prevented a clear shot on goal. Meanwhile, UVa’s Meghan Lenczyk had a decent look from the top of the box in the 52nd minute, but Weiss dove to her left to swallow up Lenczyk’s low left-footed shot to the right post.

Virginia finally broke through in the 68th minute (a little more than seven minutes into the final period) after earning a corner kick. Molly McKeon played a ball in from the right corner flag, with Fox coming out to punch the ball to her right out of the six-yard box. However, Naylor found herself in the right place at the right time, and driving a header back into the crowded goalmouth, with the ball snaking through the Fighting Irish defense and into the net.

Ten minutes later, the Cavaliers trimmed the margin to 3-2, as Toulouse settled a Notre Dame clearing attempt at the center line. She then chipped the Fighting Irish backline, where Miller collected the ball, dribbled around an onrushing Fox and scored into the vacated goal.

With momentum clearly on Virginia’s side, the Cavaliers completed their comeback in the 89th minute. Miller won a 50-50 ball in the air 25 yards out in front of the Notre Dame goal. She then took a pair of touches to her left to clear space and lifted a rising shot that tucked under the crossbar for the equalizer.

Exhibition Success
Notre Dame is 8-2-2 in exhibition games against college teams under 12th-year head coach Randy Waldrum. Of those 12 games, more than half have come at neutral sites with the Irish going 4-2-1 in those contests (with three wins and the lone draw coming against Virginia).

Defense also has been a key for Notre Dame in the preseason, as the Irish have allowed just 16 goals in those 12 Waldrum-era college exhibitions (with six scores coming at the hands of UNC, which defeated Notre Dame, 4-2 in 2002 in Fort Wayne, and tied the Irish, 2-2 in 2007 at old Alumni Field).

It should be noted the Irish did not play any preseason games in 1999 (Waldrum’s first year), 2000, 2003 or 2004, with the ’00 and ’04 squads heading to Brazil for training trips. The ’04 team took full advantage of that trip, going 5-0-1 to set the stage for a 25-1-1 season and the program’s second national championship.

Oh Captain, My Captain
The 2010 Notre Dame squad will be led by their two center backs, as senior Lauren Fowlkes and junior Jessica Schuveiller were selected as co-captains via a vote of their teammates.

Schuveiller is in her second season with the armband, having been the first Fighting Irish non-senior to earn the captain’s honor since 2002, when Amy Warner was a tri-captain as a junior. Meanwhile, Fowlkes is a first-year team captain, but has experience as a leader, having helped backstop the defense for the United States U-20 and U-23 National Teams during the past three seasons.

Three Notre Dame Players Named To Hermann Trophy Watch List
Senior defender/midfielder Lauren Fowlkes, junior midfielder Courtney Barg and junior forward Melissa Henderson have been named to the 45-player watch list for the 2010 Missouri Athletic Club Hermann Trophy, it was announced Wednesday by the National Soccer Coaches Association of American (NSCAA). The Hermann Trophy is presented annually to the nation’s top Division I women’s soccer player.

Notre Dame was one of only five schools (along with Boston College, Portland, Stanford and UCLA) to place three players on this year’s Hermann Trophy watch list. Both Fowlkes and Henderson also appeared on last year’s Hermann Trophy preseason chart, while Barg was a midseason addition to the candidate list and wound up being selected as one of 15 semifinalists for the ’09 award. The BIG EAST Conference had a total of five players named to the 2010 Hermann Trophy watch list, tying the Big Ten and Big 12 conferences for the third-most selections from one league behind the Atlantic Coast Conference (9) and Pac-10 Conference (7).

Notre Dame is one of only two programs to field four or more different recipients of the prestigious Hermann Trophy since its inception in 1988, with Cindy Daws (1996), Anne Makinen (2000) and Kerri Hanks (2006 & 2008) taking home the crystal ball award. The 2010 Hermann Trophy winner will be selected by Division I head coaches who are current members of the NSCAA. The list of 15 semifinalists will be chosen by a coaches committee, with the three finalists revealed in early December. All three will be invited to a news conference on Jan. 7, 2011, at the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis, where the winner will be announced, with a presentation banquet to follow.

Fowlkes earned NSCAA third-team All-America honors and ESPN The Magazine second-team Academic All-America accolades last season after piling up career highs of 10 goals and four assists (24 points) following an early-season move to forward due to various injuries on the Notre Dame roster. Fowlkes also was named the BIG EAST Co-Offensive Player of the Year and BIG EAST Championship Most Outstanding Offensive Player, as well as a NSCAA first-team all-region and first-team all-conference selection, and she could become the first player in BIG EAST history (since league play started in 1995) to collect both the conference’s offensive and defensive player-of-the-year awards during her career.

A nominee for the 2010 Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award, Fowlkes also is in the unique position of possibly being just the 13th student-athlete in Notre Dame athletics history (and the third Fighting Irish women’s soccer player) to couple All-America and Academic All-America honors in the same season on two different occasions. The 1996 NSCAA Player of the Year, goalkeeper Jen Renola, was the first to pull off that feat in 1995 and 1996, and more recently, midfielder/forward Brittany Bock (now with the Washington Freedom of Women’s Professional Soccer) matched that double in 2007 and 2008.

An NSCAA first-team All-American and Hermann Trophy semifinalist last season, Barg started all 26 games for the Fighting Irish, expertly controlling the Notre Dame attack from her holding midfield position while collecting a goal and two assists. She was named the BIG EAST Midfielder of the Year, and later was chosen for a place on both the NCAA College Cup and BIG EAST Championship all-tournament teams.

Henderson rang up 18 goals and five assists (41 points) last year, leading the conference in both goals and points, as well as gamewinning goals (a school-record nine). She collected first-team MVP honors (equivalent to All-America status) from Soccer America, as well as first-team NSCAA all-Northeast Region and second-team all-BIG EAST accolades, and she was dominant in the 2009 postseason, registering 10 goals (including two hat tricks, a Notre Dame first in postseason play) and dishing out three assists as the Fighting Irish reeled off seven consecutive wins en route to the program’s 11th BIG EAST tournament title and fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA Women’s College Cup (as well as the fifth in six years and 11th overall).

Notre Dame Picked To Win BIG EAST National Division
For the 16th consecutive season, Notre Dame was a near-unanimous selection as the favorite to win the BIG EAST Conference National Division title, according to a vote of the league’s 16 head coaches released Tuesday afternoon. The Fighting Irish picked up 119 points (one shy of the maximum), including 14 of a possible 15 first-place tallies (coaches may not vote for their own teams), in the balloting, as they seek their 14th BIG EAST regular-season crown and eighth in a row — nine of the previous 13 (1999-2001, 2003, 2005-09) have been divisional championships (including the past five), while the other four were overall regular-season titles (1995-97, 2004).

Notre Dame returns 16 monogram winners, including nine starters, from last season’s team that posted a 21-4-1 record and advanced to the NCAA Women’s College Cup for the fourth consecutive season (and fifth in the past six seasons as well as the 11th time overall). The Fighting Irish also went 10-0-1 in the BIG EAST a year ago, capped off with a 2-1 victory over Marquette in the conference title match to secure Notre Dame’s 11th BIG EAST postseason crown.

The Fighting Irish will enter the 2010 season with an NCAA Division I-record 66-game unbeaten streak (63-0-3) against BIG EAST opponents, a run that started on Oct. 2, 2005, with a 4-0 win at South Florida. The NCAA all-division record for the longest unbeaten streak against conference opponents (including postseason play) is held by Division III member Oneonta State (N.Y.), which posted a 101-game unbeaten streak from Sept. 8, 1999-Oct. 6, 2007 — a record that is being threatened by fellow D-III entity Hardin-Simmons (Texas), which in the midst of an active 99-game unbeaten streak dating back to Sept. 20, 2003.

Fighting Irish Nearly Sweep BIG EAST Preseason Awards
Along with their preseason poll, the conference coaches chose junior forward Melissa Henderson as the BIG EAST Preseason Offensive Player of the Year for the second consecutive season. That also marks the sixth consecutive year that a Notre Dame player has earned that distinction (Katie Thorlakson – 2005; Kerri Hanks – 2006 & 2007; Brittany Bock – 2008).

The two Notre Dame team captains for 2010 shared BIG EAST Preseason Defensive Player of the Year honors, as senior defender/midfielder Lauren Fowlkes and junior defender Jessica Schuveiller each earned six votes from the league’s coaches to split the preseason award. The pair, who also were preseason all-conference selections this year, are the first Fighting Irish players chosen as the BIG EAST Preseason Defensive Player of the Year since 2007, when Carrie Dew claimed that distinction.

The trio of Henderson, Fowlkes and Schuveiller have not only been mainstays on the college circuit, but also were important contributors on the United States Under-23 National Team that won the Four Nations Tournament last month in England. Henderson and Fowlkes started two of the three games for Team USA, with Henderson assisting on the lone goal in the clinching 1-0 win over Sweden in the tourney finale. Schuveiller saw action in two games, the first international caps (appearances) of her career, and started against Sweden.

Rounding out Notre Dame’s four-player contingent on the preseason all-BIG EAST squad was junior midfielder Courtney Barg.

Next Game: Minnesota
The Fighting Irish will kick off the regular season at 5:30 p.m. (ET) next Friday, Aug. 20 against Minnesota at Alumni Stadium. This will be the third meeting between the clubs, who have split their prior two matchups. Notre Dame won the most recent encounter on Nov. 21, 2008, claiming a 1-0 decision over UM in the third round of the NCAA Championship on Kerri Hanks’ penalty kick 6:54 into the first overtime.

The Golden Gophers went 12-5-3 last season, including a 5-3-2 mark in Big Ten Conference play, good for a fourth-place tie on the league table. Minnesota does not have a public exhibition game scheduled prior to next week’s opener at Notre Dame.

— ND —