Oct. 16, 2004
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Sophomore midfielder Jen Buczkowski registered another clutch goal, scoring in the 80th minute for the game’s only scoring as the top-ranked Notre Dame women’s soccer team clinched the BIG EAST regular-season title with a 1-0 win over No. 20 Boston College, in Saturday-night action at Alumni Field.
Notre Dame (15-0-0, 8-0-0 BIG EAST) – which has won 53 straight home games versus BIG EAST opponents and now is just one win shy of matching the best start in the program’s history (16-0-0, in 2000) – finished with a 14-2 edge in total shots while limiting Boston College (10-5-0,5-3-0) to one shot on goal. The Irish had all 12 shots in the first half, including three that required saves from Kate Taylor and another that clanged off the left post.
Buczkowski was the last-minute hero in Notre Dame’s previous game at Georgetown (2-1) and again delivered in the lategoing for another 1-0 win. Freshman midfielder Ashley Jones served the ball near the left corner, showing her ability with both feet on a sharp strike with her left foot. Sophomore Kim Lorenzen was sprinting into the box from the far right side and volleyed the ball near the top of the box, with Buczkowski then quickly scoring on a low shot from 10 yards out. Taylor was unable to make a play on the shot as it carried into the center of the net for Buczkowski’s sixth goal of the season and 10th of her young Irish career (79:06).
The Irish now have won nine BIG EAST regular-season titles during 11 seasons in the conference, with a 103-9-2 overall record (.912) vs. BIG EAST teams since joining the league in 1995.
Notre Dame continued to play stellar team defense, limiting the Eagles to a handful of counterattack chances. The veteran back line – comprised of senior central defenders Melissa Tancredi and Gudrun Gunnarsdottir and sophomore outside backs Lorenzen and Christie Shaner – helped hold the visitors without a shot until the 61st minute of play.
BC’s only shot on goal came with 2:27 left to play, after a long service from the left flank. The ball skipped to the far side of the box and five-foot forward Laine Ceddia managed to head the bouncing ball over Irish ‘keeper Erika Bohn, but freshman midfielder Ashley Jones was in position to clear the ball out of trouble.
NOTES – Buczkowski has tripled her goal total from the 2003 regular season (2; 4 total) … the Irish are 35-1-1 in their last 37 regular-season games … ND is in the midst of playing four of five games at home, including a BIG EAST quarterfinal at the end of the month (likely vs. Georgetown or St. John’s) … ND and BC potentially could meet again in the BIG EAST semifinals (reprising the ’03 matchup, won 2-1 by BC) … Saturday’s game is ND’s only action in an 11-day span … since a rare deficit vs. Pittsburgh on Sept. 24, ND has outscored the opposition 17-2 … the Irish now are (109-19-4/.841) in the 6-year Randy Waldrum era … ND owns 36 consecutive wins when scoring first … ND now leads the BC series 9-1-0 (25-5 scoring edge) … in addition to a 41-9 season scoring edge, the Irish also hold a 325-98 edge in total shots (avg. 22-7), 168-47 in shots on goal (11-3) and 84-29 in corner kicks (6-2) … ND has faced just three deficits in ’04 and has trailed for just 239 total minutes the past two-plus seasons (7% of the minutes, spanning 44 games) … the Irish have allowed just 25 first-half goals (3 in ’04) in the past four seasons (80 games) … ND has limited 29 of its last 36 overall opponents to 0-3 shots on goal … the Irish have seen just five of the last 44 opponents come back to tie the game … ND is 27-11-3 vs. NSCAA top-25 teams in the Waldrum era (since ’99) … ND owns an all-time record of 43-4-1 as the top-ranked team in the NSCAA poll (27-1-1 in regular-season play) … this marks the fifth time ND has gone unbeaten after 15 games into the season (three seasons with a tie).
#20 Boston College (10-5-0, 5-3-0 BIG EAST) 0 0 – 0
#1 Notre Dame (15-0-0, 8-0-0 BIG EAST) 0 1 – 1
ND 1. Jen Buczkowski 6 (Kim Lorenzen, Ashley Jones) 79:06.
Shots: BC 0-2 – 2, ND 12-2 – 14.
Corner Kicks: BC 1-3 – 4, ND 0-2 – 2.
Saves: BC 4 (Kate Taylor), ND 0 (Erika Bohn).
Fouls: BC 17, ND 11.
Offsides: BC 0, ND 1.
Yellow Cards: None.