Nov. 13, 2010
2010 Notre Dame Women’s Soccer — Match 21
NCAA Championship — Second Round
#7/10 [#4 seed] Notre Dame Fighting Irish (16-2-2 / 9-0-2 BIG EAST) vs. #22/- USC Trojans (13-4-3 / 5-3-1 Pac-10)
DATE: November 14, 2010
TIME: 1:00 p.m. ET
AT: Notre Dame, Ind. – Alumni Stadium (2,500)
SERIES: ND leads 1-0
LAST MTG: ND 2-0 (9/1/06)
TICKETS: (574) 631-7356
WEBCAST: UND.com (live) (Patrick Brown, p-b-p / Adam Llorens, color)
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- In the past six years, Notre Dame has won its NCAA Championship second-round matches by a combined 14-1 margin, with five consecutive shutouts from 2004-08 (but three of those were 1-0 victories).
- The Fighting Irish and USC are two of only four NCAA champions since 2004 (the Trojans won their title in 2007).
No. 7/10 Irish Face No. 22 USC Sunday In NCAA Second Round Match
One of college athletics’ most exciting intersectional rivalries will be renewed on the soccer pitch when No. 7/10 Notre Dame plays host to 22nd-ranked USC at 1 p.m. (ET) Sunday in the second round of the NCAA Championship at Alumni Stadium.
The Fighting Irish (16-2-2) advanced to Sunday’s matchup with a 3-0 victory over New Mexico on Friday night, also at Alumni Stadium. Junior forward Melissa Henderson became the 11th Notre Dame player to score 50 career goals with her first-half penalty kick, before senior co-captain Lauren Fowlkes scored twice in the second half to slam the door on the Mountain West Conference regular season champions.
USC (13-4-3) earned its way in the second round of this year’s NCAA Championship with a 3-1 victory over No. 13/18 Illinois in Friday’s opening match on the Notre Dame campus. Ashley Freyer, Ashli Sandoval and Samantha Johnson scored in the Trojans’ victory.
- Notre Dame is No. 7 in the latest NSCAA poll and No. 10 in the final Soccer America poll.
- USC is ranked 22nd in the current NSCAA poll.
A Quick Look At The Fighting Irish
Coming off a rare loss heading into the NCAA Championship, No. 7/10 Notre Dame (16-2-2) bounced back well in its tournament opener on Friday night with a 3-0 win over New Mexico. It was the eighth three-goal match of the season for the Fighting Irish, but their first in nearly a month (3-1 win at Providence on Oct. 17).
Leading Notre Dame’s resurgent offense has been junior forward and BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year Melissa Henderson (15G-7A), who scored her milestone 50th career goal on Friday, and first-team all-BIG EAST senior forward/midfielder Rose Augustin, who is having a career year with nine goals (plus a team-high eight assists) and 26 points, having become the 26th member of Notre Dame’s 20G-20A club (she now has 27G-21A in her career).
On defense, the Fighting Irish shut out 10 of their first 12 opponents, but have only two clean sheets since then. Still, Notre Dame came into the weekend ranked 15th in the nation with a 0.59 goals-against average (GAA), led by co-captains/center backs/second-team all-BIG EAST picks Lauren Fowlkes and Jessica Schuveiller (with Fowlkes contributing offensively on Friday with her first career two-goal match in the postseason).
Playing in the powerful Pac-10 Conference, USC (13-4-3) is a battle-tested club that seems to rise to the occasion when the situation demands, posting a 4-1 record against Top 25 opponents.
The latest ranked victim for USC was No. 13 Illinois, whom the Trojans defeated 3-1 in Friday’s opening round at Alumni Stadium. Junior forward Ashley Freyer gave USC a one-goal lead at the half, before redshirt junior midfielder Ashli Sandoval hit from long distance and sophomore forward Samantha Johnson iced the win with a 76th-minute tally.
Sandoval leads a balanced USC attack with six goals and 14 points, pacing 11 players with multiple goals. Senior defender Karter Haug is the Trojans’ top playmaker with six assists, while freshman goalkeeper Shelby Church has played every minute in the USC nets, posting a 0.96 GAA with seven shutouts.
Head coach Ali Khosroshahin is in his fourth season at USC, with a 61-18-10 (.742) record as the Trojans’ boss, highlighted by a run to the 2007 national championship to cap his first year. Including six prior seasons at Cal State Fullerton, Khosroshahin has a career record of 134-58-16 (.683), with Sunday being his first-ever matchup with Notre Dame.
The Notre Dame-USC Series
Sunday will mark just the second meeting between Notre Dame and USC on the soccer pitch.
Back on Sept. 1, 2006, the top-ranked Fighting Irish defeated the No. 19 Trojans, 2-0 at old Alumni Field on the first night of the Inn at Saint Mary’s Classic. Amanda Clark and Amanda Cinalli scored the Notre Dame goals, both via Michele Weissenhofer flip throw-ins, as the Fighting Irish outshot USC, 23-2, including an 8-0 advantage in shots on goal.
Notre Dame vs. The Pac-10
Notre Dame is 16-6-1 (.717) all-time against the current Pac-10 Conference alignment, including a 9-1-0 record at home and an active nine-match winning streak since a 3-0 loss to Stanford on Oct. 4, 1992, at old Alumni Field.
The Fighting Irish also are 5-1-0 all-time against the Pac-10 in the NCAA Championship, including a 3-0-0 record at home. Last season, Notre Dame defeated Oregon State, 1-0 in the third round of the tournament at Alumni Stadium.
USC will be the second Pac-10 opponent for the Fighting Irish this season. Back on Sept. 10, Notre Dame dropped a 2-1 overtime decision at then-No. 13 UCLA.
NCAA Championship Quick Kicks
- Notre Dame is competing in the NCAA Championship for the 18th consecutive year, the second-longest active streak of consecutive berths, trailing only North Carolina (29) in that category.
- Notre Dame has a 54-15-1 (.779) all-time record in NCAA tournament play, including 43-3-0 (.935) in NCAA games played at home.
- With their respective opening-round wins on Friday night, Notre Dame and UNC remain the only teams to have reached the final-32 or further in every NCAA Championship since 1993, and remain 1-2 in virtually all tournament appearance records during that time — round-of-16 trips (UNC-17, ND-15, Portland-15), quarterfinals since 1994 (UNC-14, ND-13, Portland-13), College Cup berths since 1994 (UNC-13, ND-11) and title game appearances since 1994 (UNC-11, ND-7; no one else with more than three).
- The Fighting Irish claimed NCAA titles in 1995 and 2004, joining UNC and Portland as the only repeat winners in the history of the tournament. Notre Dame also has finished as the NCAA runner-up five times (1994, 1996, 1999, 2006 and 2008) as part of its 11 NCAA College Cup berths (also semifinalist in 1997, 2000, 2007 and 2009), all since 1994.
Match #20 Recap: New Mexico (NCAA First Round)
Senior co-captain Lauren Fowlkes scored twice and junior forward Melissa Henderson added her milestone 50th career goal as No. 7/10 Notre Dame rolled to a 3-0 win over New Mexico in the first round of the NCAA Championship on a clear and crisp Friday night before 1,394 fans at Alumni Stadium.
Fowlkes, who came into the contest with one goal and four total points this year, doubled her season point output with a pair of second-half goals less than 15 minutes apart that iced Friday’s win. Henderson had put the Fighting Irish on the board with a penalty kick conversion in the 21st minute, while a pair of freshmen — defender Kecia Morway and midfielder Mandy Laddish — earned the assists on Fowlkes’ goals. For Morway, it was her first career point.
Senior goalkeeper Nikki Weiss worked the first 84-plus minutes in the Notre Dame net, making two saves. Sophomore Maddie Fox was not tested in the final 5:45, as the Fighting Irish recorded their 11th shutout of the season, and the fourth combined clean sheet for Weiss and Fox.
Kelli Cornell made six saves while going the distance in goal for UNM, which came into the contest ranked second in the nation in both goals-against average (0.39) and save percentage (.913), having allowed only eight goals all season before arriving in South Bend.
However, Notre Dame (16-2-2) ended up with a 20-7 shot advantage over New Mexico, including a 9-2 edge in shots on goal. The Fighting Irish also earned four of the six corner kicks in the match, while each team was whistled for eight fouls on the night.
Six Irish Nab All-BIG EAST Honors
For the seventh consecutive season, Notre Dame fielded the BIG EAST Conference Offensive Player of the Year, with junior forward Melissa Henderson earning this year’s award as part of the BIG EAST’s annual awards banquet that was held Nov. 4 in Somerset, N.J.
Henderson also was one of six Fighting Irish players who received individual conference accolades this season, joining senior forward/midfielder Rose Augustin as Notre Dame’s first-team all-BIG EAST selections in 2010. The two Fighting Irish center backs and co-captains, senior Lauren Fowlkes and junior Jessica Schuveiller, garnered second-team all-conference citations, while freshman midfielder Elizabeth Tucker was a third-team all-BIG EAST honoree. In addition, Tucker and midfielder Mandy Laddish were chosen for this year’s BIG EAST All-Rookie Team.
Trio Of Irish Earn Academic All-District Honors
Three Notre Dame women’s soccer players — senior defender/co-captain Lauren Fowlkes, senior forward/midfielder Erica Iantorno and junior midfielder Molly Campbell — were named ESPN Academic All-District V selections, it was announced Nov. 2 by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
Fowlkes was chosen as a first-team academic all-district honoree for the second consecutive year, and she advanced to the national ballot for Academic All-America consideration. Both Iantorno and Campbell were second-team academic all-district selections, with Campbell earning her second citation in as many years (she was a first-team choice in 2009) and Iantorno making the squad for the first time.
The trio was chosen for district honors through voting by CoSIDA members in their district, which encompasses Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota, Wisconsin and the Canadian provinces of Manitoba and Ontario. To be nominated, a student-athlete must be a starter or important reserve with at least a 3.30 cumulative grade point average (on a 4.0 scale) at his/her current institution. In addition, nominated student-athletes must have participated in at least 50 percent of the team’s matches at their respective positions.
Fowlkes currently is enrolled in Notre Dame’s College of Science, where she has compiled a 3.657 cumulative GPA as a science-business major, was named to the dean’s list in the fall of 2007 (3.804 semester GPA) and is a three-time BIG EAST All-Academic Team selection.
Iantorno presently is enrolled in Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters, where she has registered a 3.677 cumulative GPA as an English major. What’s more, she was named to the dean’s list in the spring of 2009 after amassing a 3.867 semester GPA.
Campbell also is studying in the College of Arts and Letters, where she has recorded a 3.642 cumulative GPA as a political science major.
No signs of Billy, Jane, Michael or Sydney, but this season, Notre Dame has taken on the look of Mel-Rose Place. Specifically, the offensive duo of junior forward Melissa Henderson and senior forward Rose Augustin have combined for more than half (24) of the 43 Fighting Irish goals and 63 of 120 points through 20 matches.
Henderson A Trend Setter
If you’re looking to spot a trend in Notre Dame’s success during the past three seasons, look no further than junior forward Melissa Henderson. Since the Garland, Texas, native arrived in South Bend, she has scored 50 goals (third-most among active Division I players, and 11th in school history) and added 14 assists, good for 114 career points (16th in school history).
This season, Henderson is once again among the national offensive leaders, ranking eighth nationally in points (37) and 11th in goals (15) coming into this weekend’s action. She also has distributed a career-high seven assists in 2010, matching her combined total from her first two seasons at Notre Dame.
These markers have been particularly valuable to Fighting Irish fortunes. In fact, during Henderson’s career, Notre Dame is 33-0-2 when she scores a goal, something she’s done in 12 matches this year, including eight of the past 11 outings. The Fighting Irish also are 40-0-2 all-time when Henderson tallies a point, which she has done in 15 matches this year and 22 of the past 30 contests, dating back to last season.
Quickstrike Offense, Part I
Junior forward Melissa Henderson and senior forward Rose Augustin scored 47 seconds apart (at 23:51 and 24:38) midway through the first half of the Sept. 5 win over Texas Tech at Alumni Stadium. It was the fastest two-goal flurry for Notre Dame since Sept. 28, 2008, at Cincinnati, when Henderson scored 33 seconds after Courtney Rosen found the back of the net.
Quickstrike Offense, Part II
Junior forward Melissa Henderson’s goal just 1:11 in Notre Dame’s win at Loyola Marymount on Sept. 12 was the fastest opening tally by the Fighting Irish since Dec. 7, 2008, when Kerri Hanks scored only 16 seconds into the NCAA national championship match against North Carolina in Cary, N.C. (setting an NCAA College Cup record in the process).
Henderson’s goal against LMU also was the sixth-fastest opening score in the 12-year Randy Waldrum era (1999-present).
Getting The Jump On The Opposition
In nine matches this season, Notre Dame has scored the opening goal inside the first 15 minutes of play.
In addition, the Fighting Irish have scored within the opening 30 minutes in 14 of their last 18 matches, after waiting until the second half to find the back of the net in their first two contests of the year.
Lead, Follow Or Get Out Of The Way
With the potency of the Notre Dame offensive attack, most opponents have chosen the third option. In fact, the Fighting Irish have led or been tied for 1,786:59 of 1,844:02 minutes this season (96.9% of the elapsed game time). The only times Notre Dame has trailed this season were for 25:06 (19:09-44:15) at No. 13 UCLA on Sept. 10, and for 31:56 (58:04-90:00) against Connecticut on Oct. 31.
Department of Defense
Notre Dame opened this season with four consecutive shutouts, marking the second time in three years (just the third time in school history) that the Fighting Irish have started with four clean sheets. The other instances occurred in 1995 (eight in a row) and 2008 (four in a row).
This season, Notre Dame has allowed just 12 goals (two of which were own-goals), entering the weekend, it ranked 15th in the nation in goals-against average (0.59) and 22nd in shutout percentage (0.55/match).
Looking at the larger picture, Notre Dame has allowed 0-1 goals in 32 of its last 35 matches, dating back to Oct. 4, 2009, at Pittsburgh. Prior to a 2-1 overtime loss at 13th-ranked UCLA on Sept. 10, the Fighting Irish had a 19-match streak of allowing one goal or fewer, the fifth-longest streak in school history and their longest since Oct. 25, 2002-Oct. 26, 2003, when the Fighting Irish yielded a goal or fewer in 24 consecutive matches.
During this current 35-match defensive run (which coincided with the installation of senior Nikki Weiss as Notre Dame’s full-time starting goalkeeper), the Fighting Irish are 29-3-3 with 21 shutouts (14 solo and seven shared by Weiss), an 81-19 scoring margin and a 0.53 goals-against average (GAA).
In the program’s 23-year history, Notre Dame is 405-10-17 (.957) when holding the opposition to 0-1 goals.
ND Seniors Among Nation’s Best
The 2010 Notre Dame senior class currently is second only to its North Carolina counterpart as the most successful group in the country on the basis of total victories, with a four-year record to date of 82-12-5 (.854) that includes three consecutive trips to the NCAA College Cup and an appearance in the 2008 national title match.
The .854 winning percentage compiled by the Fighting Irish seniors is fourth-best on the national scene.
And Juniors Aren’t Half Bad Either
Like their senior teammates, the Fighting Irish juniors are among the national leaders in total wins by the Class of 2011, trailing only Stanford and North Carolina with a three-year record to date of 63-7-3 (.884), including two trips to the NCAA College Cup and a berth in the 2008 title match. The Notre Dame junior class also currently ranks fourth in the nation with an .884 winning percentage.
That record could be even more impressive when one considers that three of those seven losses occurred in a nine-day span (Sept. 4-13) last season. The only other losses were late-game one-goal setbacks to North Carolina in the past two College Cups (2-1 in the ’08 final, 1-0 in the ’09 semifinals) and earlier this season at 13th-ranked UCLA (2-1 in OT on Sept. 10) and against Connecticut (2-0 on Oct. 31 in the BIG EAST Championship quarterfinals), along with a 0-0 draw at Pittsburgh last year (a match in which Notre Dame outshot the Panthers, 25-7) and 1-1 draws this season at Connecticut and Georgetown.
Part of Notre Dame’s success this season can be traced to the poised and rapidly maturing play of its freshmen, four of whom are now among the starting XI for the Fighting Irish.
Midfielders Mandy Laddish and Elizabeth Tucker both collected BIG EAST Conference All-Rookie Team honors this season, having earned starting nods in virtually every match this season (Laddish all 20, Tucker 18). Laddish ranks fourth on the team in total minutes (1,711) by a field player, while Tucker (who also was a third-team all-conference pick and a two-time BIG EAST Rookie of the Week selection) is third on the team — and tops among all conference freshmen — with seven goals, three assists and 17 points, while standing second on the team with four game-winning goals (all of those marks are among the top 10 in the BIG EAST).
On Sept. 12 at Loyola Marymount, defender Kecia Morway became the third rookie in the starting lineup (she has gotten the call 13 times this season), while forward Adriana Leon got her first starting nod on Oct. 1 vs. Syracuse. Leon, who has started six times to date, potted her first career goal on Sept. 24 against Cincinnati and added the game-winning score on Oct. 22 at Villanova.
Morway and Laddish played a significant role in Friday’s NCAA Championship first-round win over New Mexico, each earning an assist on one of Lauren Fowlkes’ second-half goals. For Morway, it was her first career point.
One other Notre Dame freshman note: during the final 10 minutes of the first half at Northwestern on Sept. 19, the Fighting Irish had five freshmen on the pitch at the same time, as starters Laddish, Tucker and Morway were joined by Leon and midfielder Rebecca Twining, the latter of whom was making her college debut.
Notre Dame is unbeaten in 17 of its last 18 matches on Sunday (15-1-2), having its 17-match unbeaten streak snapped with the Oct. 31 loss to Connecticut in the BIG EAST Championship quarterfinals. Still, the Fighting Irish own a 34-3-3 (.888) record in the past 40 contests when closing out the weekend, dating back to September 2007 (when Notre Dame lost three consecutive Sunday matches to nationally-ranked Stanford, Oklahoma State and Penn State, all by 2-1 scores and the first two in overtime).
Irish Were Thinking Pink In October
Following the success of this past spring’s jersey auction at the Mexico exhibition match to benefit Camp Whatcha-Wanna-Do (which raised nearly $3,000 for the Fort Wayne camp for children with cancer), the Notre Dame women’s soccer team once again gave fans the shirts off their backs.
During its home matches against Seton Hall and Rutgers on the weekend of Oct. 8-10, the Fighting Irish wore special white/pink uniforms to support Kicks Against Breast Cancer, a national soccer initiative to raise funds for breast cancer research. From Sept. 24-Oct. 11, fans had the opportunity to bid on these autographed, game-worn jerseys by going to the official Notre Dame athletics auction web site at www.UND.com/auctions.
Proceeds from this auction (which topped $5,000) will go directly to Kicks Against Breast Cancer. For more information on this worthwhile cause, visit www.kicksagainstbreastcancer.org.
We Love The New Digs
Alumni Stadium is quickly earning a reputation as not only one of the nation’s finest college facilities, but also a truly intimidating place for visiting teams. In fact, following Notre Dame’s loss to top-ranked North Carolina in its first match at the new stadium (Sept. 4, 2009), the Fighting Irish have won 24 of their last 25 at home, outscoring their opponents, 65-8 in that span while recording 19 shutouts. Notre Dame also had a 23-match home winning streak before it was snapped on Oct. 31 with a 2-0 loss to Connecticut in the BIG EAST Championship quarterfinals.
Streaks For The Ages
All good things must come to an end, and with a 2-0 loss to Connecticut on Oct. 31 in the BIG EAST Championship quarterfinals, Notre Dame saw its NCAA Division I-record 77-match unbeaten streak (72-0-5) against BIG EAST opposition stopped.
This incredible run dated back to a 4-1 loss at No. 15 Marquette on Sept. 30, 2005. In that time, the ties were scoreless draws at Connecticut (Oct. 13, 2006) and Pittsburgh (Oct. 4, 2009), and 1-1 deadlocks at No. 12 West Virginia in the 2007 BIG EAST final (won by the Mountaineers on penalties, 5-3, but the result is recorded as a tie), as well as this season at Connecticut (Oct. 15) and Georgetown (Oct. 24).
Not only was Notre Dame’s conference unbeaten streak an NCAA Division I record, but it was the fourth-longest in NCAA history across all divisions.
Division III Hardin-Simmons University (Texas), is the current all-division record holder with a 114-match unbeaten streak against conference opponents, dating back to 2003 (the Cowgirls also have an active 131-match unbeaten run in regular season league play).
Since joining the BIG EAST 15 years ago, the Fighting Irish are 143-8-7 (.927) all-time in regular-season conference matches, 35-3-1 (.910) in the BIG EAST Championship, and hold a 742-94 scoring edge dating back to that first league season in 1995.
The loss to Connecticut on Oct. 31 also ended another mammoth streak for Notre Dame, as its 15-year, 99-match home unbeaten run (98-0-1) against BIG EAST teams was stopped. UConn is still the lone conference team ever to defeat the Fighting Irish at home, having also earned a 5-4 overtime win on Oct. 6, 1995, at old Alumni Field.
During this BIG EAST home unbeaten streak (which stretched through three American presidencies and four Summer Olympics), the only result separating Notre Dame from a 99-match conference home winning streak was a 0-0 draw with Rutgers on Oct. 22, 2004, also at old Alumni Field.
Our Fearless Leader
Now in his 12th season at Notre Dame, head coach Randy Waldrum ranks fourth on the NCAA Division I all-time winning percentage list with a .790 (355-86-23) mark in his 21 years in the women’s game. He also is third among active coaches for career winning percentage, while his 355 career wins rank fifth on the all-time NCAA Division I charts — Waldrum earned his 350th career victory on Oct. 3 vs. St. John’s at Alumni Stadium.
A two-time National Coach of the Year (2008 by the NSCAA, 2009 by Soccer America), Waldrum has led Notre Dame to seven NCAA College Cups, four NCAA finals and the 2004 national championship. He is second in NCAA Division I history with seven College Cup appearances and four title-game berths in his storied career.
The 2-0 Guarantee
Notre Dame is 325-0-1 all-time when claiming a 2-0 lead and is unbeaten in its past 302 contests when going ahead 2-0 (dating back to a 3-3 tie with Vanderbilt on Sept. 15, 1991, in Cincinnati).
In fact, just two of the past 214 Fighting Irish opponents to face a 2-0 deficit have forced a tie, something achieved by four opponents in Notre Dame history: Duke on Oct. 17, 1993, in Houston (Irish won 3-2), Connecticut on Nov. 10, 1996, in the BIG EAST final at old Alumni Field (ND led 2-0, later tied 2-2 and 3-3, ND won 4-3), Duke on Nov. 30, 2007, in the NCAA quarterfinals at old Alumni Field (Irish won 3-2), and most recently, Villanova on Oct. 12, 2008 in Villanova, Pa. (ND won 3-2 in OT).
Three … Is The Magic Number
Scoring three goals has meant virtually an automatic win in Notre Dame women’s soccer history, with a 294-3-1 (.988) record in those games, including a 196-1-0 (.995) mark since Oct. 6, 1995.
Golden Domers Golden In OT
Overtime has usually been the right time for Notre Dame, as the Fighting Irish are 20-4-11 (.729) all-time in the Randy Waldrum era (since 1999) when going to an extra period or two, with the Sept. 10 loss at 13th-ranked UCLA snapping a seven-game unbeaten streak (5-0-2) in added time, dating back to the 2007 season.
Since the UCLA loss, Notre Dame has drawn twice in overtime (at Connecticut on Oct. 15 and at Georgetown on Oct. 24, both 1-1 finals), making the Fighting Irish unbeaten in nine of their last 10 extra-time contests.
Three current Notre Dame players have scored “golden goals” in their college careers — senior forward/midfielder Rose Augustin (Oct. 12, 2008 at Villanova), junior forward Melissa Henderson (Nov. 9, 2008 vs. Connecticut in BIG EAST final) and junior defender Jessica Schuveiller (Nov. 6, 2009 vs. St. John’s in BIG EAST semifinal).
Senior defender/midfielder Lauren Fowlkes and junior defender Jessica Schuveiller have been selected to serve as Notre Dame’s captains this year, according to a preseason vote of their teammates. Fowlkes is in her first season as a team captain, while Schuveiller is a second-year captain after becoming the first non-senior to wear the armband for the Fighting Irish since Amy Warner in 2002.
New Ways To Follow The Fighting Irish
The Notre Dame women’s soccer program has expanded its reach this season through a number of media outlets. Most notably, the Fighting Irish have created three Twitter accounts for fans to follow the team on a daily basis — one is operated by head coach Randy Waldrum (@NDCoachWaldrum), a second by assistant coach Ken Nuber (@NDSoccer) and a third by associate media relations director Chris Masters (@NDsoccernews).
In addition, the official Notre Dame athletics web site (www.UND.com) is featuring live in-game blogs for all Fighting Irish home matches this season, allowing fans to ask questions, make comments and share in the excitement of Notre Dame women’s soccer right from their own computers.
These blogs, along with live in-game stats (courtesy of the CBSSports.com College Gametracker) and other special features, are available through the UND.com Women’s Soccer Gameday Central page, which is posted on-line within 24 hours of each home contest.
ND Supporters Group Debuts In 2010
Fans are encouraged to be a part of the new Notre Dame soccer supporters’ group, The Rakes of Mallow. This student-based organization is attending all Fighting Irish home games this year and aims to create a special home pitch atmosphere unlike any in college soccer. To learn more, visit The Rakes of Mallow web site (www.rakesofmallow.net).
Next Up: NCAA Third Round
Should Notre Dame defeat USC on Sunday, the Fighting Irish would move on to the third round of the NCAA Championship next weekend to play either North Carolina (the top seed in this quadrant of the bracket) or James Madison, with those teams squaring off at 1 p.m. (ET) Sunday in Chapel Hill, N.C. The date, time and site of that third-round contest will be determined following Sunday’s results.
The Notre Dame-North Carolina rivalry is arguably the most well-known in women’s college soccer, particularly in the NCAA Championship, where the teams have met nine times before (the Tar Heels lead 7-2 in the postseason and have knocked the Fighting Irish out in three of the past four NCAA College Cups).
Overall, UNC holds a 12-4-2 series edge on Notre Dame, although the Fighting Irish are 3-1 all-time against the Tar Heels in Chapel Hill, including a 3-2 victory over North Carolina in the third round of the 2007 NCAA Championship.
The Fighting Irish never have faced James Madison on the soccer pitch.
— ND —