Sept. 11, 2002
Notre Dame, Ind. –
THE MIKE BERTICELLI MEMORIAL TOURNAMENT – The Mike Berticelli Memorial Tournament, in honor of former Notre Dame head coach Mike Berticelli (1990-2000), will take place at Alumni Field on Fri., Sept. 13 and Sun., Sept. 17. This year’s tournament field features Bradley, Furman and Cornell. Last year’s event was cancelled due to the events of Sept. 11. Bradley will play Furman in the first game on Sept. 13 at 5:00 p.m., followed by Notre Dame and Cornell at 7:30 p.m. Cornell and Bradley play the first game on Sept. 15, while Notre Dame and Furman square off at 1:30 p.m. The tournament is being held in honor of former Irish head coach Mike Berticelli who coached from 1990-2000 before his sudden death in January of 2000. A monument (rock) honoring Berticelli’s legacy at the University has been placed at the entrance to Alumni Field.
SCOUTING THE IRISH – Notre Dame heads into the tournament with a 2-0-1 record after Saturday’s 4-0 shutout of Seton Hall in its BIG EAST opener on Sept. 7. Coach Bobby Clark’s Irish are ranked fifth in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) and 14th in the Soccer America polls. The NSCAA ranking is the highest for an Irish soccer team (in any of the two polls) in school history. The Irish are led in scoring by senior forward Erich Braun’s (Frankfurt, Germany) four goals. Braun’s frontline teammate, senior Rafael Garcia (Palmdale, Calif.), is second in the scoring column with two goals and an assist, while junior Justin Detter (White Lake, Mich.) has a goal and two assists. Sophomore Kevin Goldthwaite (Sacramento, Calif.) leads the team with three assists. Sophomore goalkeeper Chris Sawyer (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) owns a 0.93 goals against average and .727 save percentage. Notre Dame has outscored its opponent 8-3.
SCOUTING THE BIG RED – The Big Red will open up the 2002 campaign at this week’s Mike Berticelli Memorial Tournament . Cornell finished with a 9-4-3 record and were fifth in the final Ivy League standings with a 1-3-3 record. The Big Red returns seven starters and 11 letterwinners from last year’s team.
SCOUTING THE PALADINS – Furman heads into this weekend’s tournament with a 3-0-0 record and are ranked 16th in the NSCAA and seventh in the Soccer America polls. The Paladins defeated Citadel 3-0 in the season opener and then posted a 4-0 shutout of Butler. Furman earned a 4-2 victory over Creighton at home on Sept. 8. That game came one week after the Irish and Blue Jays had battled to a 1-1 double overtime deadlock.
SCOUTING THE BRAVES – Bradley enters the game with 3-0-1 record and is unbeaten through four games for just the third time in the program’s history. The Braves are ranked 24th in this week’s NSCAA poll. Joe Dukkie leads the team with four points as he has tallied two goals. Six other Bradley players are tied with a goal each.
RECAPPING THE SETON HALL GAME – Notre Dame recorded a 4-0 shutout of then sixth-ranked Seton Hall in its 2002 home and BIG EAST opener. Senior forward Erich Braun scored two of the Irish’s four goals in the victory as Notre Dame netted three second-half goals. Braun scored both of his goals in just over 10 minutes in the final 45-minute stanza, while the Irish tallied all three of their second-half scores in a 14-minute span to break open a close game. Justin Detter had a goal and an assist in the contest, while Kevin Goldthwaite assisted on the game’s first two scores. Rafael Garcia gave the Irish a 1-0 advantage with his second goal of the season 23:28 into the contest. Detter pushed the lead to 2-0 12:50 into the second half before Braun’s back-to-back goals at the 61:10 and 71:35 marks of the contest. His second goal was assisted by teammate Chad Riley (Houston, Texas). Notre Dame outshot Seton Hall 14-6 in the game, including a 10-4 shot-advantage in teh second half. Notre Dame also owned a 3-1 advantage in corner kicks. Chris Sawyer went the distance in goal in recording the shutout as he made two saves.
HEAD COACH BOBBY CLARK – Bobby Clark is in his second season at Notre Dame after being named the fifth head coach in the program’s history on Jan., 19, 2001. In his 16th season as a collegiate coach, Clark has an overall record of 167-70-26 for an overall winning percentage of .684 and is 14-7-1 (.659) at Notre Dame. Heading into the 2002 campaign, he ranked 16th all-time among active Division I coaches in terms of winning percentage. Last season, he guided the Irish to a 12-7 mark and their first NCAA tournament appearance since 1996. Prior to coming to Notre Dame, he spent five seasons guiding the Stanford Cardinal to a 71-21-12 mark and .740 winning percentage from 1996-2000. Clark also was head coach at Dartmouth from 1985-93 where he led the Big Green to an 82-242-13 record (.646). Seven of Clark’s teams have advanced to NCAA tournament play with his ’98 Stanford squad finishing as the NCAA runnerup that season. In between his coaching stints at Dartmouth and Stanford, he was head coach of the New Zealand National Team (1994-95).
CLARK LEADS THREE DIFFERENT TEAMS INTO NCAAs – As a head coach, Bobby Clark is certainly NCAA tournament tested. With Notre Dame’s appearance in the 2001 championship, he has now guided three different schools to the NCAA postseason. At Dartmouth, he led the Big Green to two appearances in nine years, while his Cardinal teams at Stanford earned four berths in the five seasons he spent on Palo Alto, Calif., campus. Clark is the first Notre Dame coach to lead the Irish to the NCAAs in his first season.
SERIES RECORD VS. BERTICELLI TOURNAMENT FIELD – Cornell is one of two first-time opponents for the Irish as Friday’s matchup will be the first-ever meeting between the two schools. Furman and Notre Dame will meet for the second time ever in Sunday’s second game of the tournament. Last season, the two teams met in the first round of the Umbro/Spinx Furman Invitational with the #5 Paladins earning a 3-2 decision. The game-winning goal for the host team came 3:59 into the second overtime session.
THE CAPTAINS – Seniors Erich Braun and Justin Ratcliffe and junior Greg Martin are serving as captains for the 2002 men’s soccer team. Braun and Ratcliffe will be serving as captains for the first time in their career, while Martin has been selected as one of the Irish leaders for the second consecutive year. In 2001, Martin was the first sophomore in the 25-year history of the program to serve as a captain and becomes just the 10th player ever to serve as a two-time captain.
GOLDTHWAITE HONORED WITH WEEKLY BIG EAST AWARD – Sophomore Kevin Goldthwaite was honored as the BIG EAST Co-Defensive Player of the Week as he shared the honor with Chris Wingert of St. John’s. Goldthwaite was instrumental in leading the Irish to their 4-0 win over #6 Seton Hall in the BIG EAST opener. Against the Pirates, he was part of a defensive effort that limited the Pirates to just six shots on goal. In addition, he assisted on Notre Dame’s first two goals of the contest. It was the second career BIG EAST weekly honor for Goldthwaite who last year earned rookie-of-the-week honors during the final week of the regular season.
BRAUN NAMED TO COLLEGE SOCCER NEWS TEAM OF THE WEEK – Erich Braun was named to the 11-member College Soccer News National Team of the Week for his two-goal performance against Seton Hall. Other players named to the team were: Mat Ney (Holy Cross), Chad Severs (Penn State), Roger Levesque (Stanford), Scott Hoch (Furman), Diego Walsh (SMU), Sedrick Chin (Boston University), Matt Ahumada (Duke), Seth Stammier (Maryland), Chris Wingert (St. John’s) and Jim Greco (Drexel). The two-goal outing was his second of the season and sixth of his career.
BRAUN MOVING UP THE CHARTS – With his four goals this season, Erich Braun has moved to 10th on the all-time Irish goals scored list with 29. His 70 points (29 goals, 12 assists) places his 13th on the all-time scoring list.
BIG EAST PLAY BRINGS OUT THE BEST IN SAWYER – Chris Sawyer’s knack for playing well in BIG EAST games continued on Saturday with Notre Dame’s 4-0 shutout of Seton Hall. It marked the fifth shutout for Sawyer in nine regular-season league games. He has played 820:23 minutes in those nine conference games and allowed just four goals for a 0.44 goals against average. In addition, Sawyer has made 32 saves and owns a 88.9 save percentage.
IRISH MAINSTAYS – Four Irish veterans have started better than 89.0 percent of Notre Dame’s games during their careers: Erich Braun (Sr.) – 53 of 55 (.964); Justin Ratcliffe (Sr.) – 52 of 58 (.897); Justin Detter (Jr.) – 38 of 39 (.974); and Chad Riley (Jr.) – 36 of 39 (.923).
QUICK FLICKS – Notre Dame wasted little time in getting on the scoreboard in its first three games. Erich Braun tallied the season’s first goal 17 seconds into the contest in the season opener against Southwest Missouri State, while Rafael Garcia put in the Irish’s lone goal versus Creighton at the 7:12 mark. Against Seton Hall, Garcia scored Notre Dame’s initial goal 23:28 into the contest.
GETTING HIS STARTS – Freshman Dale Rellas (Plano, Texas) has been in the starting lineup for Notre Dame’s first three games. He was the only Irish rookie to see action against Southwest Missouri State in the season opener.
PLAYING THE BEST – The ’02 men’s soccer schedule features nine teams that advanced to NCAA tournament play a year ago. Those teams featured on the 18-game slate include: Akron, Boston College, Connecticut, Creighton, Furman, Michigan State, Rutgers, St. John’s and Seton Hall.
IRISH TABBED THIRD IN BIG EAST PRESEASON POLL – The Notre Dame men’s soccer team has been chosen to finish third in the Preseason BIG EAST Coaches Poll. Connecticut, the 2001 regular-season champion, has been chosen first by a vote of the league’s head coaches, while St. John’s, last year’s tournament champion, has been chosen second. Chris Sawyer has been selected as the Preseason Goalkeeper of the Year, while he, Erich Braun and Justin Detter were named to the Preseason All-BIG EAST squad.
25 AND COUNTING – The 2001 campaign marked the 25th season of varsity competition for the Notre Dame men’s soccer program. Since its inaugural season in 1977, Irish teams have compiled a 329-165-43 record for a .653 winning percentage. Notre Dame has won 20-plus games on three occasions and 15 or more contests 11 times. In the program’s history, only five teams have had a losing season.
ALL IN THE FAMILY – Freshman defender John Stephens (Woodbridge, Ill.) is no stranger to athletics at Notre Dame. His grandfather, Colonel John Stephens, served as Notre Dame’s longtime associate athletics director until the mid-80’s. His father, John, is a graduate of Notre Dame and received a law degree from the University.
HOME SWEET HOME – Notre Dame will play nine of its 18 regular season contests at the friendly confines of Alumni Field during the 2002 season. The Irish finished 7-1 last year at home (its only loss was to Rutgers). The Irish own a 77-28-7 mark all-time for a .719 winning percentage. The ’02 campaign will mark the 12th for Notre Dame at Alumni Field.
LEADER OF THE PACK – For the first time in the history of the BIG EAST Conference, six teams represented the league in the 2001 NCAA Men’s Soccer Championship. The BIG EAST led all conferences with six selections. In addition to Notre Dame, Boston College, Connecticut, Rutgers, St. John’s and Seton Hall earned spots in the 48-team field.
BIG EAST FORMAT – With the addition of Virginia Tech at the start of the 2001 campaign, the BIG EAST created a change in its regular-season format with a 10-game conference format instituted. Notre Dame will not play West Virginia and Syracuse this season.
FIRST-TIME OPPONENTS – Notre Dame will be playing Southwest Missouri State and Cornell for the first time in the 25-year history of the program. The Irish will face both teams in the opening round of tournaments. Notre Dame met the Bears in the first game of the Diadora Challenge in Omaha, Neb., on Aug. 31 and then faces the Big Red in its first contest of the Mike Berticelli Memorial Tournament on Sept. 13.
DIADORA CHALLENGE ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM – Notre Dame had four players named to the all-tournament team at the Diadora Challenge – Erich Braun, Greg Martin, Jack Stewart (Torrance, Calif.) and Luke Boughen (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.). In addition, Braun was selected as the tournament’s MVP as the Irish also won the tournament crown.
SCOTTISH CORNER KICKS – The Notre Dame men’s soccer team reported back to campus on July 21 to begin an intense 10 days of workouts in preparation for their 14-day trip to Scotland. The squad left for the native homeland of head coach Bobby Clark on Aug. 2 and returned back to Indiana on Aug. 16. The Irish made their headquarters on the University of Aberdeen and Edinburgh University campuses. Junior midfielder Greg Martin recorded the events of the trip in a diary which appeared on Notre Dame’s website (www.und.com) during the trip. Former Notre Dame men’s soccer player Thomas Crotty (1977-79) who contributed $50,000 – the entire amount needed for the cost of the trip. The Irish finished 4-0-1 while playing five games in 11 days. Game #1 (August 4) – Notre Dame 6, Formatine United 1 Notre Dame opened its Scotland Tour with a 6-1 victory over Formatine United. Erich Braun scored two first-half goals and Paul Rodriguez added another as the Irish built a 3-1 halftime advantage. Devon Prescod gave the Irish a 4-1 lead early into the second, while Rafael Garcia and Justin Ratcliffe also added scores. Chris Sawyer started and played the entire first half, while Greg Tait played the entire second half. Game #2 (August 6) – Notre Dame 8, Banks of Dee 1 Notre Dame was impressive in its second game as the Irish registered an 8-1 win victory over the Banks of Dee. The Irish claimed a 3-0 halftime advantage on goals by Kevin Goldthwaite, Rafael Garcia and Erich Braun. Second-half scores from Chad Riley, Justin Ratcliffe and Devon Prescod pushed the Irish lead to 6-0. After the Banks of Dee scored its lone goal of the contest, Justin Detter and Prescod added the contest’s final two scores. Game #3 (August 8) – Notre Dame 1, Ross County 0 Notre Dame improved to 3-0 with a 1-0 win in Dingwall over the Ross County under-21 squad. The game-winning Irish score came from Filippo Chillemi 10 minutes into the second half. The opposition nearly tied the game with three minutes remaining in the contest on a questionable call that resulted in a penalty kick, but Greg Tait’s save preserved the win. Game #4 (August 12) – Notre Dame 2, Aberdeen FC Under-21 0 Notre Dame posted its most noteworthy victory of its two-week summer tour and improved to 4-0 with a 2-0 shutout over the Aberdeen under-21 squad. Erich Braun scored his fourth goal of the trip early in the second half with Filippo Chillemi adding the second goal midway through the half. Devon Prescod set up both goals in the game. Goalkeeper Chris Sawyer played the entire 90 minutes of the contest. The victory marked the first time in four games that one of Clark’s teams had produced a win over that squad. Previously, he had brought to Scotland two of his Dartmouth and one of his Stanford teams. Game #5 (August 14) – Notre Dame 1, Dundee United 1 Playing its fifth game in 11 days, Notre Dame tied Dundee United 1-1 in its fifth and final game of its Scotland tour. Erich Braun netted the contest’s lone goal off an assist from Devon Prescod. Dundee United tallied the equalizer with three minutes left in the contest.