Nov. 15, 2010
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Notre Dame received the No. 9 seed and a first-round bye for the upcoming NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Championship. The Fighting Irish will play host to the winner of the Dartmouth-Monmouth match in the second round at 6:00 p.m. (ET) on Sunday at Alumni Stadium.
The Irish will be making their 10th straight NCAA Championship appearance and the 14th trip overall in program history. This signified the sixth time in which the Fighting Irish have earned one of the 16 national seeds in the 48-team field. The No. 9 seed is the highest for the Irish since they were the fifth seed in 2004.
Head coach Bobby Clark has led the Fighting Irish to an NCAA Championship berth during all 10 of his seasons at Notre Dame. Under Clark, the Irish have advanced to the Round of 16 on four occasions and the quarterfinals twice. Notre Dame’s all-time NCAA Championship record is 10-12-1 and 9-8-1 during Clark’s tenure.
“It’s exciting to be in the tournament,” says Clark. “I always say you can categorize it as a good season if you make the NCAA tournament. The trick is to make it a great season by advancing in the tournament. But first and foremost we will be concentrating on Dartmouth and Monmouth. Every game now is difficult to win, so we have to be ready.”
Last season, the Irish topped Green Bay at home 2-1 in the first round before falling at Northwestern 3-1 in the second round.
The Fighting Irish will carry a 10-5-4 record into this year’s NCAA Championship. Notre Dame is coming off a 1-0 setback to top-ranked Louisville, the No. 1 seed in the NCAA field, on Friday in the semifinals of the BIG EAST Championship. Notre Dame is 8-1-1 at home this season. The Fighting Irish are 4-1-1 in their past six matches.
“I’m really happy for our group of guys,” adds Clark. “They’ve worked extremely hard this season. They were a very sad team after losing to Northwestern last year (in the NCAA tournament) and they’ve used that as a driving force for this season.”
Monmouth has a 14-1-4 mark this season, while Dartmouth is 10-6-1. Monmouth will play host to Dartmouth at noon (ET) on Thursday.
Seven BIG EAST Conference teams earned berths into the NCAA Championship field. Joining Notre Dame and Louisville are Connecticut (#11 seed), Providence, Georgetown, West Virginia and USF.
Rounding out the top-five seeds are Maryland, Akron, North Carolina and SMU, respectively. The Fighting Irish faced a total of 10 teams, including six seeded squads, that qualified for this year’s tournament and they posted a 3-5-3 mark against those schools.
For more information on the NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Championship, including a full bracket, log on to NCAAsports.com. Stay up-to-date on the Fighting Irish men’s soccer team by logging on to UND.com. For ticket information, call the Notre Dame ticket office at (574) 631-7356, visit und.com/tickets or stop by the Notre Dame ticket office inside Purcell Pavilion.