Dec. 22, 2005
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team is ranked 10th in the Lacrosse Magazine preseason Division I rankings. The Irish went 7-4 last season, including a 3-2 mark in the Great Western Lacrosse League. Duke, the defending national semifinalist, tops the rankings, while Johns Hopkins, Virginia, Maryland and Syracuse round out the top-five.
The Fighting Irish will face five teams that appear in the Lacrosse Magazine preseason rankings. Notre Dame opens the season with three straight home games that are all against ranked foes. No. 11 Penn State comes to the Loftus Center for a season-opening showdown on Feb. 26, while sixth-ranked Cornell and 18th-ranked North Carolina will battle the Irish on March 4 and March 11, respectively. The Cornell contest will take place in Chicago, Ill. Notre Dame will have road games at No. 16 Hofstra on March 25 and No. 15 Denver on April 14.
Notre Dame returns 11 starters and 14 monogram winners from last year’s squad and return a core group of young talent to the squad. The Irish narrowly missed out on making the NCAA tournament and finished the season ranked 19th in the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse (USILA) poll and 15th in the Inside Lacrosse poll.
Close losses defined last season as three of Notre Dame’s four losses were determined by a single goal. The other Irish loss, a 9-6 defeat at the hands of Denver on April 7th was the game that determined the eventual GWLL champion. Notre Dame suffered a 12-11 defeat at the hands of Fairfield on April 17th to end their hopes for a NCAA bid. Notre Dame reloads on offense this season, returning a unit that outscored their opponents 131-94.
The Irish return two USILA Honorable Mention All-Americans in standout attackman Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh) and defenseman D.J. Driscoll (Downingtown, Pa./Malvern Prep School). Walsh and Driscoll were also invited to the U.S. men’s lacrosse team tryouts this past summer. Driscoll was also named GWLL Defensive Player of the Year and freshman goaltender Joey Kemp (Potomac, Md./Georgetown Prep School) returns in net after being tabbed Rookie of the Year by the Great Western Lacrosse League. Driscoll was joined on the all-GWLL first team by Walsh, while Kemp, senior attackman Jim Morrison (Fulton, Md./Mount St. Joseph H.S.) and junior midfielder Matt Karweck (Penn Yan, N.Y./Penn Yan Academy) earned second-team accolades.
To stay updated on the Fighting Irish men’s lacrosse team and all of the varsity sports at Notre Dame, please log on to und.com or call the Notre Dame athletics hotline at (574) 631-3000.
Lacrosse Magazine 2006 Preseason College Rankings
NCAA Division I Men Preseason Top 20
2. Johns Hopkins
10. NOTRE DAME
11. Penn State
18. North Carolina
20t. Stony Brook
2006 Notre Dame opponents in italics