Oct. 2, 2003

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Game Notes – vs. West Virginia (Friday, Oct. 3; 7:00 p.m.)

The second-ranked Notre Dame women’s soccer team (9-0-1; 40-5 scoring edge) is set for the third game of its eight-game homestand at Alumni Field (longest since ’92), with a BIG EAST Conference Mid-Atlantic Division game versus a West Virginia squad (9-0-1) that is ranked as high as 5th in the national polls (per Soccer America, also 8th in the NSCAA coaches poll), with kickoff set for 7:00 p.m. EST on Friday, Oct. 3 … the Irish have not lost a home BIG EAST game since 1995 (a 44-game win streak) and are 120-8-2 (.913) in their last 130 overall home games … ND solidified its spot among the nation’s top teams in mid-Sept. with a dominating defensive effort vs. perennial powers Stanford (0-0) and Santa Clara (2-1) at the SCU Classic before maintaining that momentum with home wins over North Texas (8-1) and Indiana State (3-0) … ND has been ranked in the top two of the NSCAA coaches poll nine of the last 11 years (all but ’01 and ’02), earning No. 1 in ’94, ’95, ’96 and ’00.

INFORMATION HIGHWAY – Live stats will be provided for all Notre Dame home games (and select away games), with a link available via the main page at www.und.com … for schedule and result information on all 26 Notre Dame varsity sports, call the ND Sports Hotline at (574) 631-3000 (press “4” for soccer information and then ‘2″ for women’s soccer results) … see www.msnsportsnet.com for info. on the Mountaineers.

INTERNET AUDIO – Four ND women’s soccer regular-season games (plus possible postseason) will be available via internet audio broadcasts at www.und.com … the audio is available to SportsPass subscribers (see und.com audio/video link), who also can listen to audio from other ND sports and from other schools that are part of SportsPass (Santa Clara will provide a SportsPass broadcast of the ND-SCU game, see link on und.com) … the ND broadcast schedule kicks off this weekend with the games vs. West Virginia (Oct. 3), Villanova (Oct. 5), plus the UConn (Oct. 17) and Michigan (Oct. 29) tilts.

IRISH AMONG TOP ALL-AROUND TEAMS – Notre Dame (4.00 goals per game, 0.49 goals-against avg.) joins North Carolina (3.45, 0.27), Oklahoma State (4.90, 0.30) and Mississippi (3.80, 0.40) as the only teams who enter the weekend ranked 12th or better in the national rankings for team scoring and defense …the Irish are 2nd in scoring and 12th in GAA while UNC is 9th/1st, the Cowgirls are 1st/3rd and the Rebels 6th in both stats … ND, UNC and Oklahoma State join Boston College and Princeton as the only undefeated teams left in all of Division I women’s soccer.

CONFERENCE CALL – ND’s all-time record in regular-season conference games is 87-7-2 (.917), including 68-7-2 (.896) in BIG EAST games (since ’95) … the Irish are 48-1 in all-time home games vs. BIG EAST teams, with 44 straight home BIG EAST wins since a 5-4 OT loss to UConn in ’95 (225-16 scoring edge, 30 shutouts, 13 games with 1 GA) … since joining the BIG EAST, ND’s overall record vs. BIG EAST teams is 87-8-2 (.907; also 1-1-0 vs. UConn in NCAAs).

FRONTRUNNERS – Notre Dame has trailed just once all season – for a span of 7:18 early in the Sept. 5 game vs. Arizona State – with the Irish leading for 68% of the 920 minutes this season while trailing for less than one-percent (0.8%) of the 2003 minutes … ND’s 2000 team held the No. 1 ranking for most of the season while trailing just once in the first 24 games (for 28 minutes, in a 2-1 win over Boston College) before falling behind UNC with eight minutes left to play in the NCAA College Cup semifinals (a 2-1 loss).

PRIMETIME PLAYERS – Notre Dame is 25-8-2 in the last four seasons (’00-’03) when facing an NSCAA ranked team and/or playing in the postseason, with a 71-34 scoring edge in those 35 “big games” … senior F Amanda Guertin has racked up 50 points in those big games (20G-10A) … her classmate Amy Warner owns 8G-5A vs. ranked or postseason opponents (she missed half of the 2000 season due to injury).

WVU NOTES – The Mountaineers are riding a nine-game winning streak after a season-opening loss to Virginia (1-0) … WVU’s wins have come vs. Michigan State (2-1), New Hampshire (4-0, at JMU), at James Madison (4-0), at Miami (3-1), vs. St. John’s (3-2), at UConn (1-0) and Yale (2-0), vs. Binghamton (5-0) and at Tennessee (2-0) … WVU returned 12 of 16 letterwinners and 8 starters from its 2002 squad that went 18-3-1 overall and lost to UVa in the 2nd round of the NCAAs … top returners include senior F Chrissie Abbott (20G-7A in ’02), senior M Lisa Stoia (8G-10A in ’02) ad junior F Laura Kane (5G-4A in ’02).

ND-WVU SERIES NOTES – Notre Dame won the first eight meetings in the series before a 3-0 home win for WVU midway through the ’02 season … ND held the edge in shots on goal (7-5) and corner kicks (3-1) in that game while WVU held a 14-12 overall shot edge … a short clearance led to Laura Kane’s looping 25-yard shot to open the scoring in the ’02 matchup … a corner kick then produced a Chrissie Abbott shot and Erika Bohn save, with Leslie Barden sending home the uncleared ball … Abbott then slid onto a cross from Kambria Riggins to cap the scoring … the previous three games were 2-1 ND wins, with the 2000 and ’01 regular-season games decided in OT while a late Randi Scheller goal helped the Irish beat WVU in the 2001 BIG EAST title game … days after rising to the No. 1 national ranking in 2000, the Irish nearly were upset at WVU (Amy Warner scored in regulation, as did WVU’s Katie Barnes on a PK, with Amanda Guertin netting the OT gamewinner) … one year later, goals from ND’s Mary Boland and WVU’s Abbott forced another OT – with Guertin’s free-kick cross setting up a double-header sequence by Boland and Mia Sarkesian to end the game … Guertin and Abbott then scored in the 2001 BIG EAST title game, with Guertin’s 76th-minute corner kick and headers by Sarkesian and Tancredi preceding Scheller’s lunging volley for the winning goal.

THORN IN THEIR SIDE – Current senior Amanda Guertin (Grapevine, Texas) has played a key role in ND’s last three wins over WVU (all 2-1), including the overtime goal at WVU in 2000, the free-kick cross from the right flank that led to Mia Sarkesian’s gamewinning OT goal in 2001 (at Alumni Field) and the rightside corner kick that set up Randi Scheller’s game-winning goal in the 2001 BIG EAST title game (in the 76th minute).

NEW FACES AND PLACES – West Virginia will see a noticeably different Notre Dame lineup than the one it faced in 2002 … three current starters – fifth-year left back Vanessa Pruzinsky, sophomore M Annie Schefter and junior F Mary Boland – did not play in the 2002 ND-WVU game (ace defensive M and ’03 grad Ashley Dryer also was sidelined for the game due to injury) … current senior central D Melissa Tancredi still was playing at her former position of forward during the ’02 ND-WVU game while current sophomore F Katie Thorlakson was roaming the midfield in the first half of 2002 … three freshman starters – M Jen Buczkowski, central D Christie Shaner and right backs Kim Lorenzen/Lizzie Reed – round out the new-look Irish lineup for the 2003 ND-WVU matchup.

NCAA STAT LEADERS – ND heads into Friday’s game with the nation’s 12th-best team goals-against avg. (0.49) while WVU is 13th at 0.50 … the Irish also are the nation’s No. 2 scoring team at 4.00 goals per game (behind Oklahoma State’s 4.90, with WVU 28th at 2.60) … ND joins Oklahoma State, Boston College and North Texas as one of four teams with two players who already have posted 20-plus points (junior F Mary Boland is 14th in the nation with 22 points and senior F Amy Warner 21st with 20, while WVU senior F Chrissie Abbott is 16th with 21 pts) .. Boland and Abbott also are tied for 17th in the nation with 9 goals while Warner’s 9 assists are 2nd only to Oklahoma State’s Nikki Wojtowcz (12) … ND’s Erika Bohn (9th, 0.44) and WVU’s Lana Bannerman (11th, 0.51) rank among the national GAA leaders (min. 800 minutes).

MOVING ON UP – Notre Dame’s impressive career record book can be seen in the fact that Amanda Guertin did not crack the Irish top-10 career scoring list until notching her 43rd goal, with that roughly half of the record total racked up by 1999 graduate Jenny Heft (80) … here’s a look at where Guertin and classmate Amy Warner stand on the career points and goals list (see PDG for charts):

QUICK-STRIKE ARTISTS – Notre Dame has scored in the first seven minutes of four games this season, with the team’s quickest goal coming in last Sunday’s win over North Texas (4:28) … other quick-strike goals by ND in 2003 have come vs. Hartford (6:32), Oklahoma (5:58) and Santa Clara (5:03)

HALFWAY HOME WITH NO LOSSES – Notre Dame is unbeaten after 10 games for the seventh time in the program’s history … here’s a look at the other longest season-opening unbeaten streaks in the ND record book:

1994 (24 games) … went 23-0-1 before losing to UNC in NCAA title game (5-0)

1997 (24 games) … again fashioned 23-0-1 record before losing to UConn in NCAA semifinals (2-1)

2000 (24 games) … another familiar record (23-0-1) precedes a 2-1 loss to UNC in the NCAA semifinals

1996 (13 games) … started 13-0-0 prior to 3-1 loss at Santa Clara

1991 (12 games) … twice-tied team (10-0-2) drops 1-0 game at UMass

1995 (10 games) … opened 9-0-1 before losing to UConn (5-4 in OT)

GLORY DAYS – The current 40-5 scoring edge is comparable to the program’s 5-year dominance in the mid-1990s, with those teams owning the following 10-game scoring edges: 44-8 in ’93, 41-5 in ’94, 40-3 in ’95, 58-5 in ’96 and 43-4 in ’97 (average of 45-5) … only three previous ND teams (3 in ’95, 4 in ’97 and 4 in ’00) have allowed fewer goals in the first 10 games than the 2003 squad (5) … ND’s 0.49 team goals-against avg. would rank 3rd in ND history (behind the 0.36 in 1997 and 0.39 in 2000) … ND already has scored 5-plus goals in four games this season.

SCHEDULE & RESULT NOTES – The eight-game homestand includes key BIG EAST battles vs. West Virginia, Villanova and UConn … ND opened with impressive wins at the UConn Classic over Hartford (9-1) and Wake Forest (3-0), with junior F Mary Boland earning BIG EAST offensive player of the week (3G-1A) … the Irish added ND Classic wins over #13 Arizona State (3-1) and Oklahoma (5-1), followed by a BIG EAST cross-divisional victory at St. John’s (2-0) and a 5-0 win over Western Kentucky … freshman M Jen Buczkowski and 5th-year D Vanessa Pruzinsky received the respective offensive and defensive MVP awards at the ND Classic, with Buczkowski named BIG EAST rookie of the week.

PRUZSINKY DRAWS NATONAL MEDIA ATTENTION – Fifth-year D Vanessa Pruzinsky is being spotlighted in a current feature on College Sports Television while the new Sports Illustrated On Campus is highlighting the high achiever in its current issue … Pruzinsky – the national high school player of the year and a 2002 invitee to U.S. Under-21 National Team tryouts – wrapped up her undergrad studies last May with a 4.0 cumulative GPA, becoming just the third chemical; engineering major (and first since ’74) to graduate from Notre Dame with a 4.0.


FURIOUS FORWARDS – ND’s system includes a pressuring “forecheck” from the team’s frontrunners … four of those players – Mary Boland (2), Amanda Guertin, Maggie Manning and Katie Thorlakson – already have posted multiple-goal games this season while Amy Warner scored in five of the first six games and ranks 2nd in the nation with 8 assists.

FIRE & ICE – Veterans Amanda Guertin (43 career goals; 6 in ’03) and Amy Warner (33; 6 in ’03) rank as one the nation’s premier pairs of senior forwards, with 27 game-winning goals (17 by Guertin) and five OT goals (3 by Guertin).

BOLAND STEPS FORWARD – Junior Mary Boland spent most of her prep soccer days playing as a forward but her ND career also has included time at outside back and in the midfield … Boland’s quick start to the 2003 season (3G-1A in opener vs. Hartford; 7G in first 8 games) ignited the surging ND offense and solidified her return to forward.

MEET YOU IN THE MIDDLE – Despite the graduation of 4-year starter/defensive ace Ashley Dryer and the season-ending hip surgery to senior Randi Scheller (2nd team all-BIG EAST in ’02), the Irish midfield has been energized by the emergence of two “newcomers” in sophomore Annie Schefter (3G-4A; missed all of ’02 with ACL knee injury) and freshman Jen Buczkowski (2G-4A) – with the pair ranking 4th and 6th on the ND scoring charts.

LORENZEN SETTLES INTO BACK – Versatile freshman Kim Lorenzen (Naperville, Ill.) was impressive in preseason training at forward but has found a home in the defense, with strong play as a starter both centrally and at outside back.


* Notre Dame enters the WVU game as the No. 2-scoring team in the nation, averaging 4.00 goals/gm (behind Oklahoma State’s 4.90) while the 40 total goals already have matched ND’s total goal output from the 2002 regular season … the Irish also rank 10th in the nation (and 1st in the BIG EAST) with an 0.49 season goals-against avg.

* Senior F Amy Warner ranks 2nd nationally in total assists (8) and 21st in total points (21) while junior F Mary Boland is 17th in total goals (9) and 14th in total points (22).

* Sophomore G Erika Bohn has allowed just 7 goals – no games with 2-plus GA – in her last 15 fall games with ND (8 shutouts, 7 with 1 GA) … Bohn enters the weekend 9th in the nation with a 0.44 goals-against avg. (min. 800 minutes).

* ND players have combined to miss 119 games due to injury spanning the ’02 and ’03 seasons (31 games; 22-8-1 record), with seven players already combining to miss 55 games due to injury in ’03.

* The Irish are unbeaten in their last 14 overtime games (10-0-4).

* Senior F Amanda Guertin ranks 3rd in ND history with 17 career GWGs (with an ND record 3 in OT) … Guertin’s 10-game goalscoring streak in ’01 ranks 3rd in NCAA history (former SCU great Brandi Chastain holds the record of 15).

* ND’s all-time playing roster includes 20 California natives (most from any state), led by All-Americans LaKeysia Beene, Cindy Daws, Jen Renola and Rosella Guerrero (plus current World Cup team member Shannon Boxx).

* 5th-year D Vanessa Pruzinsky graduated in May of 2003 with a 4.0 cumulative GPA as a chemical engineering major, becoming just the third Notre Dame student (first since ’74) ever to complete that feat.

* ND’s freshman class was ranked #5 by Soccer America, with M Jen Buczkowski (6th) and D Christi Shaner (22nd) rated in the top 25.

* Three ND freshmen – Buczkowski, fellow M Jill Krivacek and D Kim Lorenzen – helped lead Team Illinois to the 2003 Olympic Development Program national title, defeating New Jersey and future teammate Lizzie Reed in the title game.

* ND has been ranked 1st or 2nd in the NSCAA poll during nine of the last 11 seasons (ranked 1st in four seasons).

* Irish players already have combined for eight multiple-goal games this season, by seven different players (compared to five in all of ’02): Mary Boland vs. Hartford (3) and ASU (2), Maggie Manning and Amanda Guertin vs. Hartford (both with 2), Jen Buczkowski vs. Oklahoma (2), Katie Thorlakson and Annie Schefter vs. Western Kentucky (both with 2) and most recently Melissa Tancredi vs. North Texas (2).

* ND’s ’03 roster includes players from 14 states, two Canadian provinces and Iceland … the program’s all-time roster canvasses 30 states and three foreign countries … ND’s student-athlete population during the ’02-’03 academic year included nearly 800 individuals from 47 states (all but Idaho, Mississippi and Nevada) and 20 foreign countries.

* The current senior class carries a 25-8-2 career record when playing in the postseason and/or facing an opponent ranked in the NSCAA top-25.

PERFECT RECORDS BEGIN TO DWINDLE – The first half of the ’03 season has taken its toll on many top teams, as only five Division I teams entered the week with unbeaten records … North Carolina, and Oklahoma State have no losses or ties while Notre Dame and Princeton each have one tie and Boston College sports two ties on its unbeaten record).

PLAYING THE BEST – ND has played some of its best soccer vs. ranked opponents, with a 22-10-3 record vs. NSCAA ranked teams in the Waldrum era (since ’99) … that trend held true in 2001 (5-1-0): 2-1 vs. Penn St., 2-0 vs. Hartford, 2-1 vs. WVU, 3-0 vs. Miami, 0-3 at UConn, 2-1 vs. Michigan … the Irish then posted 2002 wins over #25 Maryland (5-2), #8 UConn (3-1), #13 Michigan (1-0) and #14 Purdue (3-1) and added a tie vs. #24 Stanford (0-0) and a 2-1 win over #16 Santa Clara in the ’03 SCU Classic … over the course of the 2001-03 seasons, ND owns a 10-6-1 record vs. NSCAA top-25 teams (29-5-1 vs. unranked teams).

ROAD WARRIORS – Notre Dame has posted some noteworthy wins on the road during the past two seasons (8-3-0), with the high points including a pair of wins at the 2000 Portland Classic (5-0 vs. Washington, 1-0 vs. the Pilots; lifting ND to the #1 ranking), 2002 wins at Maryland, Michigan and Boston College (plus vs. Hartford, at Maryland), the 2003 season-opening wins over Hartford and Wake Forest (at the UConn Classic) and the pair of solid results at the ’03 Santa Clara Classic (0-0 vs. Stanford, 2-1 vs. SCU).

INJURY WOES CONTINUE – ND’s ’02 season was hampered by injuries to several top players (totaling 64 games missed, plus 55 thus far in ’03 for a total of 119) … the Irish are playing in the ’03 season minus two top players – as junior All-America D Candace Chapman suffered a torn ACL knee injury while training with the Canadian National Team (in preparation for the World Cup) while senior M Randi Scheller underwent preseason hip surgery … junior starting central D Gudrun Gunnarsdottir has returned in a reserve role the last four games (after missing four with a broken arm) while three others – sophomore M Jenny Walz (ACL), freshman D Kari Kennedy (foot) and junior D Kate Tulisiak (back) – are nearing their respective returns after being sidelined for several weeks … veteran D Vanessa Pruzinsky (ankle) made a full-time return at the ND Classic … Scheller will have the option to apply for a 5th year of eligibility in ’04, as will central D Melissa Tancredi (she missed ’00 with an ACL injury) … Pruzinsky is a current 5th-year player (out most of ’02 with ankle injury) while Chapman will be a senior in ’04 and then have her own option at a 5th year in ’05 … here is the updated injury report:

Candace Chapman (Jr., D) … torn ACL while training with Canada for World Cup (out for year)

Randi Scheller (Sr., M) … hip capsule surgery in late August (out for year)

Jenny Walz (So., M) … rehabbing from ACL knee surgery (nearing return)

Kari Kennedy (Fr., D) … preseason foot injury (nearing return)

Kate Tulisiak (Jr., D) … nagging back injury (nearing return)

Gudrun Gunnarsdottir (Jr., D) … broken arm at UConn Classic (missed 4 games, played as reserve last 4)

BOHN ON A ROLL – Sophomore G Erika Bohn (Brookfield, Conn.) is 20-2-1 in her last 23 starts with the Irish (18-1-1 in last 20), allowing just 14 goals in that 23-game stretch (with 11 shutouts and 11 games with 1 GA) … her only losses in that stretch include: a 3-2 game vs. BYU that included a fluke goal (after a clearance deflected off the referee) and a rare late-game PK to break the 2-2 tie; and the season-ending loss at top-ranked Stanford, with the game’s only goal coming in the 81st minute as Bohn turned in possibly her top all-around game of ’02 … Bohn now has logged 20 consecutive games with the Irish (17 fall, 5 spring) without allowing multiple goals (last done by BYU on Oct. 19, 2002).

MAGIC NUMBERS – The three-goal mark has been virtually an automatic win in the program’s history, with the Irish now owning a 194-3-1 all-time record (.982) when scoring three-plus, with losses to N.C. State in the ’92 opener (4-3), to UConn in ’95 (5-4, OT) and at Georgetown in ’02 (4-3), plus a 3-3 tie vs. Vanderbilt in ’91… the Irish had won 88 straight when scoring 3-plus, before the GU loss (now 98-1-0 since Oct. 6, 1995) … ND also is 265-8-11 (.953 in all-time games when holding the opponent to 0-1 goals, including tough 1-0 losses last season to eventual NCAA champ Portland and top-ranked Stanford … prior to the Portland loss, the Irish had been 56-0-3 in the previous 59 games when allowing 0-1 GA (dating back to 1-0 loss to SMU in ’99, with ND playing minus Finnish national teamer Anne Makinen in that game) … the ND women’s soccer program’s 16-year history includes just 281 goals allowed in 352 games (0.80 GA per game) … the Irish have allowed more than one goal in only 68 all-time games (19%) and have yielded 3-plus goals in just 32 all-time games (9%; including two 6-goal games by the opponent, four 5-goal and six 4-goal) … 91% of ND’s all-time games have seen the Irish hold the opponent to 0-2 goals (ND is just 4-27-1 all-time when allowing 3-plus).

NOTRE DAME PLAYER QUICK FACTS (see PDF for stats and bullet notes on top 18 players, in chart form)

HEAD COACH Randy Waldrum – The Irish are 83-16-4 (.825) in the tenure of head coach Randy Waldrum (since ’99), including 71-13-3 in the last 87 games (since losing 4-2 at SCU on Oct. 17, 1999) … Waldrum’s ND record spans the career of 5th-year D Vanessa Pruzinsky … Waldrum – who repeated as BIG EAST coach of the year in 2000 – in ’99 became the only coach in the 18-year history of the NCAA women’s soccer championship to lead a team to the title game in his first season as that team’s head coach … he was the fourth 1st-year coach to take his team to the NCAA semi’s, beating top-ranked and previously unbeaten Santa Clara in their backyard of San Jose … Waldrum’s 21-plus-year record as a college head coach (men’s and women’s teams) is 266-121-23 (.677) … he is 190-66-16 (.728) in 12-plus seasons as a Division I women’s coach, including 61-36-9 in six years at Tulsa (.580) and 46-14-3 in three seasons at Baylor … Waldrum entered ’03 ranked 7th among active women’s coaches for career winning percentage (min. 10 Div. I seasons).

GOING THE DISTANCE – ND is unbeaten in its last 14 overtime games (10-0-4), since the 3-2, double-OT loss to UNC in the ’99 opener … that team went on to post a 2-1, double-OT win at UConn and played to a 1-1 tie at Nebraska in the NCAA quarter’s (adv. on PKs) … the 2000 team had OT wins over Stanford, at West Virginia and vs. Santa Clara in the NCAA quarter’s (all 2-1), also playing to 0-0 at UConn … ’01 featured an unprecedented five OT games (2-1 vs. Indiana, Villanova, WVU and Michigan; 2-2 vs. Wisconsin) while the ’02 team added 1-0 OT wins over Rutgers and BC and the ’03 team played to a scoreless tie with Stanford (at SCU).

OT MASTERS – Senior Amanda Guertin holds the ND record for career OT goals (3), with her classmate Amy Warner and ’96 national player of the year Cindy Daws ranking second with two (including Daws’ goal vs. Portland in the ’95 NCAA title game) … Guertin (3G-2A) owns eight career points in OT, followed by Warner (6; 2G-2A) … Guertin’s other OT goals came at WVU in 2000 and at home vs. WVU in ’01 (both 2-1) … in addition to her double-OT goal on Sept. 20, 2002, vs. Rutgers (1-0), Warner scored in OT vs. Villanova (’01) and had the primary assist on Kelly Tulisiak’s OT goal in ’01 vs. Indiana (both 2-1) … she also had the cross that produced an OT own-goal to beat Stanford in ’00 and assisted on Guertin’s OT goal in ’02 at BC (1-0), playing a key role in five of ND’s last nine OT goals (Guertin on five of the last eight).

ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE – Fifth-year D Vanessa Pruzinsky in May 2003 became the third chemical engineering major (and first since ’74) to graduate from ND with a 4.0 cumulative GPA … Pruzinsky is a two-time Academic All-American, with ND’s other top candidates for that award in ’03 including junior F/M Mary Boland (3.87, psychology), sophomore M/D Annie Schefter (3.67, College of Science) and sophomore G Erika Bohn (3.67, College of Business).

HAT TRICK OPENERS – Mary Boland is the 5th ND player ever to register a hat trick in a season opener and now has scored in all three openers of her Irish career (including ND’s first goal in ’01 and ’03), with a diving header to open the scoring in the ’01 vs. Penn State (2-1) and the final goal in the ’02 win at Providence (3-0) … previous Irish players with hat tricks in openers: Rosella Guerrero as a freshman vs. N.C. State in ’92 (4-3 loss), Guerrero and sophomore Michelle McCarthy in ’93 at LaSalle (12-0 win), and senior Amy Van Laecke and sophomore Monica Gerardo in ’96 at PC (14-0).

SEVEN-POINT START – Mary Boland’s seven points in the opener vs. Hartford (3G-1A) are most by an ND player since Jenny Streiffer had 3G-1A vs. Miami on Oct. 1, 1999, in the first year of the Randy Waldrum era … Streiffer holds the ND record for points in a game, with 9 (3G-3A) in the ’96 win over Providence (14-0).

ALUMNI UPDATE – Several former Notre Dame women’s soccer players have been in the news during recent weeks:

* D Kate Sobrero (’98) and M Shannon Boxx (’99) were named to the 18-player U.S. National Team roster that is competing in the World Cup (Sept. 23-Oct. 12), with both ND alums serving as starters … Sobrero played for the U.S. team that won the ’99 World Cup and was on the ’00 Olympic team … Boxx was the surprise of the roster, with no previous National Team experience but an impressive ’03 season in the WUSA (she became the first player ever to score in her first three games with the National Team, in two tuneup games and the 3-1 World Cup opening win over Sweden).

* Sobrero and Boxx were two of five former ND players who played in the Women’s United Soccer Association 2003 all-star game, with others including Washington Freedom D Jen Grubb (’00), Boston D Monica Gonzalez (’02) and San Jose CyberRays G LaKeysia Beene (’00) … Sobrero and Gonzalez helped Boston win the WUSA regular-season title while Grubb – who has not missed a single minute of action in the first three WUSA season – captained the Freedom to the 2003 WUSA Founders Cup title after a 2-1 overtime win over the Atlanta Beat … four other ND alums played in the WUSA during the 2003 season: M Anne Makinen (’01; Philadelphia Charge), D Lindsey Jones (’02; N.Y. Power), D Kelly Lindsey (’01; San Jose) and M Monica Gerardo (’99; Washington).

* Three of the above players recently became college assistants: Gerardo at University of Pittsburgh (where former ND assistant Sue-Moy Chin is the first-year head coach), Lindsey at the University of Colorado and Boxx at Cal State Dominguez Hills … Boxx also is enrolled in graduate school at Pepperdine and is one of several former ND players who are set to be married in coming months (as are Sobrero and former midfield great Holly Manthei).

FAR AND WIDE – Notre Dame’s 2003 roster includes players from 14 states, two Canadian provinces (British Columbia and Ontario) and Iceland … the states on the ’03 roster touch all corners of the nation: Arizona, California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas and Washington.

HEADS OF THE CLASS – Notre Dame has plenty of quality options in the air, led by senior central D Melissa Tancredi (6 of 10 career goals on corner or free-kick headers, including all four in ’02) … junior Mary Boland also has converted several header goals in her career while 5-10 freshman defensive M Jill Krivacek could emerge as a devastating presence in the air (her classmate, central D Christie Shaner, also is noted for her play in the air) … senior F Amanda Guertin’s pinpoint corner kicks (8) and free kicks (1) led to nine of her 11 assists in ’02 (plus two in last week’s win over North Texas).

FRESHMAN CLASS RANKED AMONG BEST IN NATION – Soccer America rated Notre Dame’s current 10-player freshman class as the fifth-best group of incoming recruits, behind Santa Clara, UCLA, Texas and Portland … Jen Buczkowski (Elk Grove, Ill.) is No. 6 on the list of top individual recruits (second among midfielders, behind Nebraska’s Brittany Timko, who is No. 2 overall) … Notre Dame D Christie Shaner (Ambler, Pa.) is No. 22 on that list, making the Irish one of seven schools with multiple players on that top-25 list … M/D Lizzie Reed (Franklin Lakes, N.J.) joins the above two players as ND freshmen who were prep All-Americans.

SCORING BOOST – The Irish headed into ’03 looking for increased goal production, with several “newcomers” among top candidates to provide that boost: sophomore M/D Annie Schefter (dnp in ’02; 47G as prep senior at West Valley, Wash., HS), freshman midfielders Jen Buczkowski (69G in three seasons at Elk Grove, Ill., HS) and Jill Krivacek (set Rosary HS record with 78G in career), and freshman D/M Lizzie Reed (2nd in Ramapo, N.J., Regional HS history with 126 career goals) … junior F Mary Boland (Hudson, Ohio) also has emerged as a goalscoring boost (team-leading 9G in first 10 games), besting her combined total from ’01 and ’02 (7G, after totaling 27 as a senior at Hudson HS).

1ST-HALF FORTRESS – The ND defense has been particularly stingy in the first half during the past three seasons, allowing just 20 goals in the first half of those 52 games … the first half in ND’s 2002 games featured little scoring by either team (12-10 ND edge) but the Irish have erupted for a 22-3 first-half scoring edge in 2002.

OVER THE CENTURY MARK, FAR FROM TOP 10 – Senior Amanda Guertin’s career point total (113; 43G-27A) would rank near the top of the record book at many schools but she stands just 12th in Notre Dame history – 22 points shy of the top 10 (her 43G have just cracked that top-10 list) … Guertin just passed Suzie Zilvitis (112, 43G-26A, ’88-’91) and next on the scoring list is another early frontrunner, All-American Alison Lester (126, 45G-36A; ’90-’93) … the 10th spot is held down by Shannon Boxx (135, 39G-57A; ’95-’98), a hard-nosed defensive midfielder with the WUSA’s New York Power who was a surprise addition to the 2003 U.S. World Cup roster … Guertin’s nine points in the ’02 NCAAs moved her past M Jody Hartwig (87; ’91-’94), F Amy VanLaecke (90; ’94-’96) and All-America M Tiffany Thompson (91; ’91-’94).

STREAKY PLAYER – Amanda Guertin scored a goal in the final 10 games of 2001 – third-longest in Div. I women’s soccer history (SCU’s Brandi Chastain had a 15-game goal streak in ’90, Hartford’s Maria Kun an 11-game streak in ’97) … Guertin also scored goals in an ND-record seven straight postseason games, spanning ’01 and ’02 (she has 9G in 15 career postseason games) and had points in eight straight games (7G-6A) before the 1-0 loss at Stanford in ’02.

GETTING THE GWGs – Amanda Guertin continues to add clutch goals and assists to her career totals (43G-24A, in 77 GP) – with her 16 gamewinning goals ranking 3rd on the ND all-time list (2 shy of Jenny Heft’s record) … 7 of Guertin’s GWGs have come in one-goal games, including three in OT (ND record) … nearly half of Guertin’s career goals (17 of 43, or 39%) have been gamewinners – well ahead of the others on the GWG list (see PDF):

Also see PDF for 2003 game capsules, with linescore stats and notes.