Sophomore midfielder Grant Krebs notched a career-high five points on three goals and two assists in last Sunday's 17-12 win over Ohio State.

Irish And Buckeyes To Battle For GWLL Title On Sunday

May 3, 2008

#10 Ohio State (10-4) vs. #6 Notre Dame (12-2)
GWLL Championship Final
Sunday, May 4 • 12:00 p.m. (ET)
Seaholm High School • Birmingham, Mich.

Notre Dame will meet Ohio State in the championship game of the inaugural Great Western Lacrosse League Tournament on Sunday, May 4 at Seaholm High School in Birmingham, Mich. Game time is slated for 12 noon (ET). The Fighting Irish are the top seed in the tournament and ranked sixth nationally, while the second-seeded Buckeyes are ranked 10th. Notre Dame topped Ohio State, 17-12, last Sunday at home.

SEMINFINAL RECAP: Notre Dame defeated the No. 4 seed Quinnipiac, 10-6, in the first semifinal of the GWLL Tournament on Friday evening … Ohio State followed with a 15-8 victory over third-seeded Denver.

ND-OHIO STATE SERIES NOTES: Sunday’s championship game will be the 32nd meeting all-time between the Fighting Irish and Buckeyes and the second in the past week … Notre Dame topped Ohio State, 17-12, last Sunday (April 27) in the regular-season finale at Alumni Field … the Irish own a 22-9 advantage in the series, which dates back to 1981 … Ohio State is the most commonly faced opponent in the history of the Notre Dame program … the Irish topped the Buckeyes, 12-6, last season in Columbus, Ohio … Notre Dame has won the last four encounters against Ohio State … the Buckeyes’ last win in the series was a 9-8 decision at Notre Dame in 2004 … this will be the second neutral-site meeting between the two schools … Notre Dame topped Ohio State, 14-10, in Baltimore, Md. during the 1982 campaign.

ABOUT THE IRISH: Notre Dame (12-2) concluded the regular season with an 11-2 record, including a 4-1 mark in the Great Western Lacrosse League to finish among a three-way tie for the conference title with Ohio State and Denver … that marked the 11th GWLL title for Notre Dame since the league was founded in 1994 … the Fighting Irish won their fifth straight game with a 10-6 victory over Quinnipiac in the GWLL semis on Friday (May 2)… the Fighting Irish are currently ranked sixth in both the USILA coaches poll and the Nike/Inside Lacrosse media rankings … junior attackman Ryan Hoff leads the Fighting Irish with 37 goals this season … senior attackman Alex Wharton has team-high totals in points (45) and assists (28), both career-best marks … Duncan Swezey, Michael Podgjany and Grant Krebs all have 22 goals this season … the Fighting Irish have had 22 players score a goal this season … Notre Dame has defeated four ranked teams this season (#17 Loyola, 7-6; #13 Albany, 7-6; #11 Drexel, 13-6; #9 Ohio State 17-12) … Notre Dame boasts the nation’s fifth-best scoring offense by notching 12.86 goals per game … the Irish defense ranks in a tie for 10th nationally as they surrender just 7.14 goals per game … senior goaltender Joey Kemp ranks fifth nationally with a 6.71 goals-against average and he is sixth with a .620 save percentage … the Irish have the top faceoff unit in the country with a .651 winning percentage … senior Taylor Clagett has won faceoffs at a .646 (177-274) clip to rank second in the nation … Notre Dame returned seven starters and 17 letterwinners from last year’s team that posted an 11-4 record and captured the GWLL title with a perfect 5-0 conference mark … in 2007, Notre Dame made its second consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and the 12th trip in program history … the Irish fell to eventual national champion Johns Hopkins, 11-10, in overtime during the tournament’s first round … Kevin Corrigan is in his 20th season as the head coach of Notre Dame … he has a record of 179-94 (.656) during his Fighting Irish tenure … Corrigan was named the 2007 GWLL Coach of the Year … that marked the fourth time he has received that honor.

ABOUT OHIO STATE: The Buckeyes carry a 10-4 record into Sunday’s contest … Ohio State topped No. 19 Denver, 15-8, in the GWLL semifinals on Friday … the Buckeyes have won six of their last seven games, with the only loss coming against Notre Dame last Sunday (April 27) … Ohio State has defeated two ranked teams this season, including Friday’s win over Denver … the Buckeyes topped No. 8 North Carolina, 14-11, on April 12 in Baltimore, Md. … the Buckeyes are averaging 13.79 goals per game this season while surrendering 8.26 per game … Ohio State had a league-high eight players earn All-GWLL honors this season … Kevin Buchanan, the 2008 GWLL Player of the Year, has a team-high 39 goals in addition to 27 assists … Joel Dalgarno has a team-high 67 points on 36 goals and a team-best 31 assists … Dalgarno scored five goals in the league semifinal win over Denver … Stefan Schroder has started all 14 games in goal and possesses an 8.15 goals-against average and a .582 save percentage … the Buckeyes went 9-5 last season and finished second in the GWLL with a 4-1 record … head coach Joe Breschi is in his 11th season at Ohio State.

THE LAST TIME (recap of ND-OSU game on 4/27): In a showdown between two top-10 teams, No. 7 Notre Dame defeated No. 9 Ohio State, 17-12, on Sunday, April 27 at Alumni Field … the Fighting Irish were led by three-goal efforts from midfielders Michael Podgajny and Grant Krebs … Notre Dame jumped out to an early 3-0 lead behind scores from Peter Christman, Adam Felicetti and Ryan Hoff … Ohio State responded with four straight goals, including two from Chris Friel to take a 4-3 lead with 2:23 remaining in the first quarter … Krebs put a halt to the Buckeye surge with his first goal of the game … a goal from Peter Schell put Ohio State on top, 5-4, at the end of the opening period … Podgajny knotted the game (5-5) with a man-up tally at the 10:42 mark of the second quarter … the Buckeyes reclaimed an advantage with a goal from Jeff Ryan less than a minute later, however that would be their last lead of the contest … Notre Dame would score six of the game’s next seven goals to take an 11-7 lead by the 7:56 mark of the third quarter … the uprising started with a goal from Podgajny with 7:39 left in the first half and Duncan Swezey followed to give the Irish the lead back at 7-6 … Podgajny completed his hat trick to give Notre Dame a two-goal edge before Ohio State’s Peet Poillon scored the final goal of the half to make it an 8-7 game in favor of the Irish at the intermission … Notre Dame scored the first three goals of the second half as Neal Hicks, Swezey and Alex Wharton all found the back of the net to expand the lead to four (11-7) … after a score from Poillon, Matt Ciambella deposited a man-up goal to give the Irish a 12-8 lead with 2:54 remaining in the third period … back-to-back goals from Ohio State’s James Green sliced the Fighting Irish lead to two (12-10) with 11:42 left in regulation … Zach Brenneman briefly halted the Buckeye surge with a goal for Notre Dame, yet Green responded with his team-leading third score of the game to make it 13-11 in favor of the Irish with 8:49 on the clock … three unanswered goals from Notre Dame would put the game out of reach for Ohio State … the run featured the second goals of the game for Krebs, Hicks and Hoff … Buchanan scored the final Buckeye goal of the afternoon to make it 16-12 with 3:24 remaining … Krebs then completed his second career hat trick to produce the final result and give the Irish their fourth straight win … Notre Dame dominated the statistical categories by claiming a 47-31 advantage in shots and winning 24-of-32 faceoffs … Taylor Clagett took every faceoff for the Irish … Notre Dame also went 3-for-5 in man-up opportunities … Joey Kemp earned the win by making 12 stops and playing all 60 minutes between the pipes for the Fighting Irish … Stefan Schroder made 18 saves in the loss.

GWLL HONORS: Six Fighting Irish players received All-Great Western Lacrosse League honors for the 2008 campaign … Michael Podgajny (Sr., M), Sean Dougherty (Sr., D), Ross Zimmerman (Sr., D) and Joey Kemp (Sr., G) earned first-team accolades, while Ryan Hoff (Jr., A) and Alex Wharton (Sr., A) were named to the second team … this marked the third all-league first-team honor for Kemp and the second for both Dougherty and Zimmerman … Podgajny was a second-team pick last season … Hoff earned a first-team nod last season, while this is Wharton’s first all-conference honor.

NOTRE DAME IN THE GWLL: Notre Dame is 55-10 (.846) all-time in GWLL regular-season play with 11 league titles, including this season’s co-championship … the Irish have won the title outright seven times, while earning a share of the crown four times … this is the 15th season for the GWLL … Notre Dame has gone undefeated in GWLL play on seven occasions, including last season’s 5-0 mark … the Irish had an eight-game GWLL win streak snapped earlier this season in a 9-8 setback to Denver on April 5.

RECAPPING QUINNIPIAC: Top-seeded Notre Dame broke out of a third-period 4-4 tie with five unanswered goals, holding number-four seed Quinnipiac scoreless for more than 23 minutes in the process, as the Irish prevailed 10-6 in the first semifinal of the inaugural Great Western Lacrosse League Postseason Tournament … Ryan Hoff scored three goals for Notre Dame, while sophomore Grant Krebs and senior Michael Podgajny each scored two – with Krebs also adding a pair of assists to pace the Irish in scoring … Quinnipiac opened the scoring less than three minutes into the game (that was delayed 15 minutes at the start by heavy rain and lightning) on a Ted Dimond goal. Podgajny notched his first goal unassisted less than three minutes later, but the Bobcats held a 2-1 after the opening period, thanks to an unassisted Zach Dendas tally at the 2:28 mark … Notre Dame then ran off three straight goals – one by Hoff (from junior Duncan Swezey at 11:04 of the second), one from Krebs (at 9:59 from junior Peter Christman), then another by Hoff (again from Christman at 6:40) … Quinnipiac responded with another Dimond goal (from Mitch Cooper with 1:44 in the second period) for a 4-3 halftime score, then tied it at 4-4 less than three minutes into the third period on a Kaiser goal from Gary Messina … from there it was all Notre Dame … with Notre Dame senior goalie Joey Kemp and the Irish defense limiting the Bobcats without a goal from the 12:05 mark of the third period to the 3:30 stop in the fourth period, the Irish took control … rookie Zach Brenneman gave the Irish the lead for good at 5-4 on an unassisted tally at the 5:08 mark of the third period … Hoff notched his third goal less than three minutes later (from Alex Wharton), then Krebs put up his second goal (unassisted) to make it 7-4 for Notre Dame at the end of three … the Irish scoring continued to open the final period, as sophomore Neal Hicks scored on a Krebs feed at 14:53, and Podgajny made it 9-4 at the 13:09 juncture, again from Krebs … the Bobcats got two more goals from Dendas in the final 3:30, sandwiched around a Swezey goal from Hicks for Notre Dame (at 2:19) … Kemp finished with eight saves for the Irish, four in each half … Notre Dame outshot Quinnipiac 35-24 and also led in ground balls (41-30) … Taylor Clagett won 13 of 17 face-offs, helping the Irish as a team win 14 of 20 … David Earl paced the Irish with six ground balls … the only odd-man goal came on a man-advantage opportunity by Quinnipiac on the Bobcats’ last score.

AN EVEN DOZEN: Notre Dame’s 12 victories this season marks the most for the program since the 2001 campaign … the Fighting Irish went 14-2 that season and advanced to the NCAA Tournament semifinals.

ANOTHER HAT TRICK FOR HOFF: Ryan Hoff led the Fighting Irish with three goals in the 10-6 win over Quinnipiac in the GWLL semifinals … that marked the seventh game this season in which Hoff, a junior attackman, has scored three or more goals … that is the most for any Fighting Irish player this season … Hoff leads Notre Dame with 37 goals this season after pacing the team with 40 goals last year … his six goals against Penn State (Feb. 24) were just one shy of the school record that he shares with Randy Colley (class of 1995) … Hoff netted seven goals in a 16-5 win over Drexel last season … Hoff also notched a five-goal game this season in a 16-6 triumph of Villanova (March 4)

HOFF MOVING UP THE RECORD BOOKS: Junior attackman Ryan Hoff currently ranks fifth in the Notre Dame record books with 98 career goals … he is eight goals away from moving into the top-four … Randy Colley (1992-95) is the program record-holder with 173 tallies.

CAREER DAY FOR KREBS: Sophomore midfielder Grant Krebs posted a career-best five points on a career-high tying three goals and a career-high two assists in the 17-12 victory over Ohio State on April 27 … this season, Krebs has 22 goals, which ties him for second on the team … he totaled three goals last season as a freshman.

RECORD-SETTING CAREER: Senior goaltender Joey Kemp notched his school-record 33rd career victory in the 19-7 win over Bellarmine on March 29 … Kemp is now 38-13 overall during his Irish career … in addition, Kemp is currently first in Irish history with a 7.24 goals-against average and with 3007:14 minutes played for a goaltender … he is also first in games started for a goaltender (53) … the two-time All-American currently ranks third in school history in saves (588).

KEMP AMONG NATIONAL LEADERS: Joey Kemp ranks in the top-six nationally in both goals-against average (5th, 6.71) and save percentage (6th, .620) this season … last season, he ranked fourth nationally in both goals-against average (6.78) and save percentage (.614) en route to being named the 2007 Great Western Lacrosse League player of the year and an honorable-mention All-American.

LOCKING DOWN: While the Notre Dame offense has reached double digits 10 times this season, the Irish defense has only surrendered a double-digit tally on one occasion (12g, Ohio State) … the Fighting Irish are surrendering just 7.14 goals per game this season, which ranks in a tie for 10th nationally … the Irish have held opponents to six goals on six occasions and allowed a season-low five goals against Air Force on April 22 … Notre Dame boasted the nation’s fourth-best scoring defense in 2007 by allowing a school-record 6.66 goals per game … several key components to the Irish defense are back this season, including goaltender Joey Kemp and starting defensemen Sean Dougherty, Ross Zimmerman and Regis McDermott.

DOMINATING THE X: As a team, Notre Dame boasts the nation’s top faceoff percentage (.651) … senior Taylor Clagett ranks second nationally in that category with a .646 (177-274) win percentage … Clagett has been a valuable asset for the Irish during his Notre Dame career as he has won over 60-percent (.609) of his faceoff opportunities … injuries have hampered Clagett over the past two seasons, yet he has kept Notre Dame among the nation’s best in faceoffs … last season, Clagett ranked 16th nationally as he won 164 of 189 faceoff attempts … in 2006, he won 126 of 205 attempts for a .615 percentage, which would have ranked him sixth in the country had he appeared in enough games.

GETTING OFFENSIVE: The Fighting Irish are averaging 12.86 goals a game, which ranks fifth nationally … in 2007, Notre Dame had the nation’s fourth-best offense by averaging 11.65 goals per game … Notre Dame’s scoring margin of +5.72 is the third-best mark among all NCAA Division I squads this season.

FAST STARTS: Notre Dame has out scored its opponents 49-17 during the first quarter of play this season … the Fighting Irish have held opponents scoreless in the first quarter on five occasions (Loyola, Penn State, Albany, Dartmouth, Air Force).

SPREADING THE WEALTH: The Fighting Irish have had 22 different players notch at least one goal this season … the season-high total was 13 players with a goal in a 19-7 victory over Bellarmine on March 29 … the Irish used 12 goalscorers in a 19-7 win against Dartmouth on March 15 … last season, the Irish had 18 players score a goal … Notre Dame has had at least 10 goalscorers in a game on six occasions this season and most recently in a 17-12 win over No. 9 Ohio State (April 27)… 10 Irish players scored a goal in that contest.

STREAKING: Junior attackman Ryan Hoff has a team-best 11-game goal streak … Hoff has notched a goal in 22 of the last 23 games dating back to last season … the junior attackman was held without a goal in a 7-6 win over Albany on March 1 … that snapped an 11-game goal streak … fellow junior attackman Duncan Swezey had his team-best 11-game goal streak end in a 13-5 win at Air Force on April 22.

OFFENSIVE OUTPUT: Notre Dame’s 19-goal performance in a 19-7 win over Bellarmine on March 29 matched a season-high total that was also achieved in a 19-7 victory against Dartmouth on March 15 … this marked the first time since 1994 that the Irish have produced two games with 19-plus goals in one season … overall, Notre Dame has reached double figures in 10 of 14 games this season … the Irish reached double figures 11 times last season.

NOTRE DAME IN THE POLLS: Notre Dame is currently sixth in both the USILA coaches poll and the Nike/Inside Lacrosse media rankings … the Irish have been as high as fifth in the USILA poll this season … that happened on two occasions, in the March 3rd and March 17th polls … Notre Dame’s highest Inside Lacrosse ranking is sixth on March 17 and in the current poll.

QUALITY COMPETITION: The Fighting Irish are 4-2 against ranked opponents this season … Notre Dame opened the campaign with a 7-6 victory over No. 17 Loyola … the Irish topped No. 13 Albany, 7-6, on March 1 … Notre Dame fell at No. 4 North Carolina, 8-6, on March 8 … Notre Dame defeated No. 11 Drexel, 13-6, on March 25 … the Irish fell to No. 19 Denver, 9-8, on April 5 … Notre Dame bested No. 9 Ohio State, 17-12, on April 27 … the Irish will have a rematch against the Buckeyes, who are now ranked 10th, in the GWLL title game on Sunday.

HOME SWEET HOME: Notre Dame has won a program-record 18 straight games at home … the Irish are 5-0 at home this season … the current streak stems back to a 14-13 overtime win against Air Force on April 10, 2005 … Notre Dame’s last loss at home was a 9-6 setback to Denver on April 7, 2005 … the Irish went a perfect 6-0 at home during the 2006 campaign and followed it up with a 6-0 mark in 2007 … four of the games during the streak have been played in the Loftus Sports Center, while 12 have taken place outside at Moose Krause Stadium … the last two home victories have taken place at School Field and Alumni Field, respectively … Notre Dame owns an overall home record of 119-35 (.773) during the 28 years of varsity lacrosse at the University.

NO PLACE TO CALL HOME: This season, Notre Dame has played its five home games at four different locations … the Irish defeated Penn State and Albany inside the Loftus Sports Center … Notre Dame topped Drexel at Moose Krause Stadium … a victory over Quinnipiac occurred at School Field, which is located just south of the Notre Dame campus … the Irish returned to campus to top Ohio State at Alumni Field.

NO MORE MOOSE: The win over Drexel on March 25 marked the final game at Moose Krause Stadium for the Notre Dame men’s lacrosse program … the stadium is being torn down to make room for the state-of-the-art Arlotta Stadium that will be the new home for the Irish.

ARLOTTA GROUNDBREAKING: The official groundbreaking ceremony for Arlotta Stadium was held on Friday, April 18 … the stadium will be the new home for the Notre Dame men’s and women’s lacrosse teams … conceptual plans suggest a 2,000-seat, lighted stadium that would include an artificial-turf field, locker rooms, restrooms and concession areas … the state-of-the-art facility is named after Notre Dame graduate John Arlotta, president and chief executive officer of Denver-based Coram Inc. … he and his wife, Bobbie, pledged the lead gift toward the stadium to be built to the east of the Joyce Center as part of the University’s new athletics quadrangle … the Arlotta children – Mindy, Andy and Jon – also have pledged an additional gift from The Arlotta Family Foundation toward the project … in addition to their generous donation, alumni and friends of the lacrosse programs have donated over two million dollars … completion is scheduled for June of 2009.

KEMP ON TEWAARATON WATCH LIST: Senior goaltender Joey Kemp was named to the 51-man watch list for the Tewaaraton Award, which is presented annually to the nation’s top player … this marks the second straight season that Kemp has been named to the award’s watch list.

IRISH EARN PRESEASON HONORS: Seven Notre Dame players earned preseason All-America recognition from Inside Lacrosse Magazine and its Face-Off Yearbook … headlining the group for the Fighting Irish were second-team honorees Taylor Clagett (M/FO), Sean Dougherty (D), Joey Kemp (G) and Will Yeatman (A) … joining the quartet of second-team picks for the Irish were third-team member Michael Podgajny (M) and honorable mention selections Ryan Hoff (A) and Ross Zimmerman (D).

IRISH TABBED TO WIN GWLL: Notre Dame was selected to win its second straight GWLL title according to the league’s head coaches … Ohio State, Denver, Air Force, Quinnipiac and Bellarmine followed Notre Dame in the voting, which appeared in Inside Lacrosse’s Face-Off Yearbook.

FOUR IRISH PLAYERS AMONG IL TOP 50: Four Irish athletes were named to the Inside Lacrosse top-50 players list for the 2008 season … senior goaltender Joey Kemp was the highest-ranked Fighting Irish player as he was 13th overall and the second-ranked goaltender on the list … sophomore attackman Will Yeatman was 15th, while senior defenseman Sean Dougherty and senior midfielder Michael Podgajny were 35th and 37th, respectively.

KEMP AND WHARTON NAMED `08 IRISH CAPTAINS: Seniors Joey Kemp (G) and Alex Wharton (A) are the Fighting Irish team captains for the 2008 season … Kemp was one of three captains for the Fighting Irish last season, while this will mark Wharton’s first year as a co-captain.

KEEPING UP WITH FIGHTING IRISH MEN’S LACROSSE: For results of Notre Dame men’s lacrosse games, call the Notre Dame Sports Hotline at (574) 631-3000 and choose #5 and #1 … the hotline provides schedules and result information for all 26 varsity sports and serves as a supplement to the match recaps and weekly releases provided on the official athletic website, … in addition, media members and fans may be added to the sports information e-mail release list by contacting assistant sports information director Sean Carroll at … all requests for story ideas, interview access, match credentials, and further information on Irish men’s lacrosse should similarly be directed to Carroll … credential and interview requests should be made at least 24 hours in advance.