Oct. 19, 2004
Notre Dame sophomore left back Christie Shaner (Ambler, Pa.) has been named the BIG EAST Conference women’s soccer defensive player of the week, after helping limit No. 20 Boston College to one shot on goal in a 1-0 victory on Oct. 16. Shaner – considered by Irish head coach Randy Waldrum to be the team’s “most consistent defender” this season – is the third Notre Dame defensive player to be honored by the BIG EAST in the 2004 weekly awards, joining fifth-year central defender Melissa Tancredi (a three-time honoree, on Sept. 6, 13 and 27) and senior outside back Kate Tulisiak (Sept. 20) in that distinction.
Shaner – whose 2003 honors included BIG EAST rookie of the year and 2nd team all-BIG EAST – ranks second on the team in minutes played (1,240, or 83 per 90-minute game; behind only Tancredi’s 1,279) and has helped the Irish lead the BIG EAST with a 0.60 goals-against average, good for 16th in the nation. A member of the U.S. Under-21 National Team player pool, Shanerhas combined with the other veteran members of the Irish backline – Tancredi, senior central defender Gudrun Gunnarsdottir and sophomore right back Kim Lorenzen – to help allow just 47 shots on goal all season (3.3 per game), including 10 of 15 games with 0-3 opponent shots on goal. Notre Dame also has while yielded just 29 corner kicks all season (1.9 per game) and has faced only three deficits, spanning 53 minutes of game time (the Irish have trailed for just 4% of the total minutes in ’04).
Notre Dame players now have combined to earn nine of the 17 BIG EAST offensive (4) and defensive (5) player-of-the-week honors this season, including at least one honoree in all eight weeks of the season. Junior forward Katie Thorlakson earlier received the offensive honor on Aug. 30, Sept. 6 and Oct. 4 while freshman forward Amanda Cinalli was the Oct. 11 honoree. Connecticut is the only other team with more than two offensive/defensive awards from the BIG EAST this season (3 offensive, 1 defensive) while Rutgers has produced two awards (both defensive) and three other teams have one offensive/defensive honoree.
The dominating defensive effort versus Boston College saw Shaner and her teammates hold the Eagles without a shot in the first 60 minutes while BC’s only shot on goal (and one of two total in the game) came with less than three minutes left to play.
Since facing a rare deficit vs. Pittsburgh on Sept. 24, Notre Dame has outscored the opposition 17-2 over the span of six-plus games – with the Irish allowing just the pair of goals in that stretch of nearly 600 minutes.
In addition to ranking 16th nationally in goals-against average, Notre Dame also stands 22nd in the nation with 2.73 goals per game. Just three others – No. 2 North Carolina and unranked teams Central Florida and South Alabama – currently are listed among the NCAA top-25 stat leaders in both scoring and GAA.