With eight caused turnovers in the BIG EAST Tournament, senior defender Shannon Burke now has a new Notre Dame single-season mark with 36 caused turnovers.

Irish Close Out 2009 Regular Season On May 2 At #19/#19 Cornell

April 30, 2009

Notre Dame, Ind. –

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• The Game: #6/#6 Notre Dame (14-4) at #19/#19 Cornell (9-6)

• Date/Time/Site: Sat., May 2, 2009 • 12:00 noon • Schoellkopf Field • Ithaca, N.Y.

• Internet: The Notre Dame-Cornell game will be streamed live at the Cornell website: cornellbigred.com (subscription required) while livestats are available at the women’s lacrosse website.

REGULAR SEASON FINALE: Notre Dame travels to Ithaca, N.Y., on Saturday, May 2 to face the Cornell Big Red in the 2009 regular season finale. Game time at Schoellkopf Field is 12:00 noon. The Cornell website will stream video live for the game at cornellbigred.com. This is a pay service. The Fighting Irish enter the weekend with a 14-4 record after winning both games of the BIG EAST Tournament last weekend to take their first-ever BIG EAST championship. The Irish defeated Syracuse, 16-10, in the semifinals and then knocked off Georgetown, 12-10, in the title game. The wins moved Notre Dame to sixth in the IWLCA coaches’ poll and sixth in the Inside Lacrosse polls this week. Cornell closes out its regular season schedule this weekend and brings a 9-6 record into Saturday’s game. The Big Red was 1-1 last week, knocking off No. 10 Vanderbilt, 11-4 on April 21 before falling to Harvard, 11-7, on April 25. Cornell is ranked 19th in both the IWLCA poll and the Inside Lacrosse media poll.

IRISH VERSUS BIG RED: Notre Dame and Cornell have met eight times in the all-time series with the Irish holding a 5-3 advantage. The two teams closed out the regular season last May at Notre Dame with the Irish taking a 15-11 victory at Alumni Field. The Irish are 4-1 all-time at home against the Big Red and 1-2 at Ithaca, N.Y. The last time Notre Dame played there was March 4, 2007 with the Irish taking a 13-9 win versus No. 11 Cornell on that day. The Irish have won four straight in the series.

BIG EAST CHAMPIONS:Notre Dame won its first-ever BIG EAST Championship on April 26 at Georgetown’s Multi-Sport Facility, downing the host team Hoyas, 12-10, in the title game. By winning the BIG EAST Championship, Notre Dame takes the BIG EAST’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Irish were led offensively in the game by senior Jillian Byers (Northport, N.Y.) and junior Gina Scioscia (Summit, N.J.) as each delivered five-point games (2g, 3a). Sophomore Kaitlin Keena (Vienna, Va.) led Notre Dame’s goal scorers with three. Kailene Abt (So., Huntington, N.Y.) and Ansley Stewart (So., Alexandria, Va.) scored two goals each while Shaylyn Blaney (So., Stony Brook, N.Y.) added one marker. Freshman Maggie Tamasitis (Boyertown, Pa.) added a pair of assists in the contest. Senior goalkeeper Erin Goodman (Cortlandt Manor, N.Y.) made nine saves in the win, including six in the first half as Notre Dame built a 9-2 lead at halftime and then held on in the second stanza for the 12-10 win. Goodman was named to the all-tournament team and was the tournament’s most outstanding player. Joining her on the all-tournament team were Byers, Scioscia, Abt and defenders Shannon Burke (Sr., Timonium, Md.) and Rachel Guerrera (Jr., Wantagh, N.Y.).

SEMIFINAL RECAP: The Irish recorded their first BIG EAST Tournament win with a 16-10 win over Syracuse in the first semifinal game. Jillian Byers led the Irish with four goals and three assists. Sophomore Kailene Abt (4g, 1a) and Gina Scioscia (2g, 3a) had five-point games. Shaylyn Blaney and Ansley Stewart each had two goals with Jackie Doherty (So., Ellicott City, Md.) and Kaitlin Keena getting one each. Erin Goodman and the Notre Dame defense held the Orange to just two goals in the second half with Goodman making seven saves in the contest. The Irish led 9-8 at halftime and then scored the first five goals of the second half to build a 14-8 advantage on the way to the 16-10 win. Notre Dame’s defense caused 13 of the 19 turnovers committed by Syracuse and limited the Orange to just eight shots in the second half. The win snapped a three-game Irish losing streak to Syracuse and was the first win against the Orange since 2006.

BURKE FOR THE DEFENSE: A first team all-BIG EAST selection in 2009, senior Shannon Burke (Timonium, Md.) is putting together a monster season for the Notre Dame defense. Her eight caused turnovers in the BIG EAST Tournament gives her 36 for her career which sets a Notre Dame single-season record as she passes Kathryn Lam’s `02 mark of 35 set in 2000. Burke also has 50 ground balls on the year, a career best for her and the seventh-best single-season total in the program’s history (single-season rankings below). In her last seven games, she has 26 ground balls and 18 caused turnovers. She grabbed a career-best six ground balls in the win at Cincinnati (4/3). In 18 games this season, Burke has scored three goals with four assists for seven points. On the defensive side, Burke leads the team with 50 ground balls, is fifth with 29 draw controls and leads the team with 36 caused turnovers.

NCAA SELECTION SHOW: The Irish will find out their NCAA Tournament pairings on Sunday, May 3 at 10:00 p.m. when the tournament selection show is carried on CBS College Sports. The Irish have made the tournament in back-to-back seasons for the first time in the program’s history and the fifth time in the last eight years. The Irish have participated in 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008 and now 2009.

BIG EAST TOURNAMENT HISTORY: With two wins in the 2009 BIG EAST Tournament, the Irish improved to 2-2 overall as they have participated in each of the first three postseason events.

2007 - Georgetown 12,  Notre Dame  12       (at Syracuse, N.Y.)2008 - Georgetown 15, Notre Dame 14 (3ot)       (at Notre Dame, Ind.)2009 - Notre Dame 16, Syracuse 10       Notre Dame 12, Georgetown 10       (at Washington, D.C.)

ON THE DEFENSIVE: Notre Dame’s defense rose to the occasion in the BIG EAST Tournament, shutting down two of the conference’s top offenses for one half in each game. Leading the semifinal game with Syracuse, 9-8 at halftime, the Irish held the Orange to just two goals in the second half, giving up just eight total shots while scoring seven times for the 16-10 win. In the 12-10 championship game win over Georgetown, the Irish gave up just two goals in the first half on the way to a 9-2 lead after 30 minutes. Erin Goodman made six of her nine saves in the win in the opening stanza. From there, Notre Dame held on for the 12-10 victory.

TOP IRISH PERFORMANCE: Jillian Byers’ seven-point night (4g, 3a) in the semifinal win over Syracuse sets a Notre Dame record for points in a BIG EAST Tournament game. The previous mark was five points, set by Caitlin McKinney `08 who had five goals in the 2007 tournament loss to Georgetown and Shaylyn Blaney who had five goals in the loss to the Hoyas in 2008.

WEARING THE GREEN: Notre Dame head coach Tracy Coyne pulled out all stops on Friday night against Syracuse, including issuing her team green kilts prior to the game as a surprise.It has been a tradition for all Irish athletic teams to wear green for important games. This was the second time the Irish women’s lacrosse team has worn green in its history. On April 15, 2006, the Irish wore green jerseys in a game at Georgetown for the first time ever. Up until that game, they had never defeated the Hoyas in the all-time series. That game resulted in an 11-10 overtime loss.

SCORING BARRAGE: While at the BIG EAST Tournament, the Irish set school records for goals in a season 281 and points in a season (412) and did it in 18 games. Going into the Cornell game, the Irish lead the BIG EAST in goals (15.61) and points (22.9) per game. That ranks them fourth in the nation in goals and third in points. NATIONAL LEADERS: Senior captain Jillian Byers enters the final weekend of the regular season with career highs in goals (70), assists (24) and points (94). Her goal and point totals lead the BIG EAST and rank her second in both categories on the national level. Junior Gina Scioscia also is among the BIG EAST and national leaders in scoring with her 47 goals and 38 assists for 85 points (all career highs). The 47 goals are fourth in the BIG EAST while the 38 assists are second and the 85 points are third. Nationally, Scioscia is tied for sixth in assists and is seventh in points.

WEEKLY HONORS: Two Notre Dame players received weekly honors from media covering women’s college lacrosse. Goalkeeper Erin Goodman was named Inside Lacrosse’s Division I player of the week for her play in the BIG EAST Tournament. The senior had 16 saves in the tournament – seven in the win over Syracuse and nine in the victory against Georgetown – on the way to most outstanding player of the tournament honors. Senior defender Shannon Burke was named womenslacrosse.com’s defensive player of the week for her play in the BIG EAST Tournament. In two games, Burke had five ground balls, three draw controls and caused eight turnovers, including five in the win over Syracuse.

BIG EAST HONORS: Three Notre Dame players – Shaylyn Blaney, Shannon Burke and Jillian Byers were named first team all-BIG EAST on Thursday, April 23 at the Annual Awards Banquet while Gina Scioscia was named second team all-BIG EAST. For Byers it was the fourth consecutive year that she was a unanimous first team selection. Blaney and Burke were second team choices in 2008 and Scioscia was a first time honoree. Byers was selected as the league’s co-attack player of the year along with Syracuse’s Katie Rowan. Byers led the BIG EAST in goals (64) while Rowan led in assists and points. The duo finished 1-2 in league scoring with Byers finishing with 42 points in league play and Rowan getting 47.

VERSUS THE RANKED: Notre Dame’s wins over #7 Georgetown and #8 Syracuse improves the Irish to 6-4 versus teams ranked in the IWLCA poll when they face the Irish. The Irish now own wins over #7 Georgetown, #8 Syracuse, #16 Stanford, #13 Dartmouth, #17 James Madison and #13 Loyola. The losses have come to #1 Northwestern, #6 Georgetown, #9 Syracuse and #12 Vanderbilt.

ROAD WINS: The BIG EAST Championship game win at Georgetown improved Notre Dame to 5-2 on the road this season. The Irish also are 2-0 in games played at neutral sites or 7-2 away from Notre Dame. The two road losses came at Syracuse (14-13) and at Vanderbilt (18-11). The Irish close the season on the road, Saturday, May 2 at Cornell.

TEWAARATON NOMINEE: Notre Dame senior captain Jillian Byers is one of 25 nominees for the 2009 Tewaaraton Trophy that is presented annually to the top male and female collegiate lacrosse players in the nation. The award, the most coveted and prestigious award a varsity lacrosse player can receive is a symbol of excellence in college lacrosse. Nominees were selected by coaches across all three divisions. This marks the second time in Byers’ career that she has been named a nominee as she and teammate, Caitlin McKinney `08, were nominated last season. Byers currently leads the Irish in goals and scoring with 70 goals and 94 points through the first 18 games of the season. She leads the BIG EAST in goals and is third in the nation with 3.89 goals-per-game. Byers is Notre Dame’s all-time leader in goals (249), points (319) and draw controls (148) and is fourth all-time in assists (70).

RECORD-SETTING DAY: Senior attack standout Jillian Byers set a Notre Dame and BIG EAST single-game record with 12 points in Notre Dame’s 20-5 win over Connecticut on April 18. Byers equaled a career high with seven goals while setting personal bests in assists (5) and points (12) in the win. Byers had two goals and one assist in the first half and then had a hand in nine of Notre Dame’s 10 second-half goals, getting five goals and four assists – an Irish record for points in a half. The previous Notre Dame mark was 11 points and held by Crysti Foote `06, who had nine goals and two assists on Feb. 24, 2006 versus California. The previous BIG EAST record of 11 points in a conference game was held by Kate McHarg of Loyola who had 11 points in a win over Rutgers (3/12/06) and Katie Rowan of Syracuse who did it against Georgetown (4/5/08).

OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: No surprise here as Jillian Byers was named BIG EAST offensive player of the week as she recorded 11 goals with five assists in games versus Vanderbilt and Connecticut. In the 18-11 loss at Vandy, Byers led the Irish with four goals. She followed that with her record-setting 12-point game versus the UConn Huskies. This marks the second time this season that she received the award (March 8) and she also made the BIG EAST honor roll on three other occasions.

STREAKY IRISH: Six members of the Notre Dame lineup come into Saturday’s game with Cornell with point-scoring streaks:

Jillian Byers - 18 games (70g, 24a, 94 pts)Shaylyn Blaney - 18 games (39g, 3a, 42 pts)Gina Scioscia - 16 games (43g, 35a, 78 pts)Kailene Abt - 11 games (25g, 7a, 32 pts)Kaitlin Keena - 3 games (7g, 1a, 8 pts)Ansley Stewart - 3 games (5g, 1a, 6 pts)
Byers has 15 games this season with three or more goals while Scioscia and Blaney each has eight with three or more.

SUPER SOPHOMORES: The Irish have gotten strong play from their sophomore scorers this season. The group of five – Shaylyn Blaney (39g, 3a), Kailene Abt (38g, 8a), Ansley Stewart (28g, 10a), Kaitlin Keena (17g, 12a) and Jackie Doherty (6g, 10a) have accounted for 128 goals and 43 assists for 171 points. The five have 128 of the team’s 281 goals (45.6%), 43 of 131 assists (32.8%) and 171 of 412 points (41.5%) this season.

ABT TO SCORE: Sophomore midfielder Kailene Abt has become a major scoring threat for the Irish in her second season. The Huntington, N.Y., native is third in scoring with career highs in goals (38), assists (8) and points (46). During the BIG EAST Tournament, she had six goals and one assist, including a five-point game (4g, 1a) in the semifinal win over Syracuse. For her play, she was selected to the all-tournament team. Earlier this year, she recorded a career-high six-point game in Notre Dame’s 20-4 win over California, scoring four goals and two assists. Over the last 11 games, Abt has 25 goals and seven assists for 32 points.

RAPID IMPROVEMENT: As a freshman, Ansley Stewart, now a sophomore, saw action in just two games for the Irish. This season, the Alexandria, Va., native has started all 18 games and ranks fifth in team scoring with 28 goals and 10 assists for 38 points. She teams with senior Jillian Byers (70-24) and junior Gina Scioscia (47-38) for a potent Irish attack trio with 145 goals and 72 assists this season.

NCAA LEADER: Jillian Byers comes into the season’s final weekend leading the conference in goals (70) and points (94). She started the week ranked second nationally in goals and fourth in points. For her career, Byers is the NCAA’s all-time active leading goal scorer with 249 career goals. That ranks her 10th on the all-time goals scored list. She now has 319 career points to rank her third among active players (Rowan and Northwestern’s Hannah Nielsen are ahead of her) and 17th on the all-time point list. She is the 22nd player in NCAA women’s lacrosse history to record 300 points in her career.

Active NCAA Goal Leaders1.  Jillian Byers, ND (2006-09)        2492.  Sarah Dalton, BU (2006-09)         2313.  Katie Rowan, SU (2006-09)          2194.  Mandy Friend, Rich., (2006-09)     2175.  Hilary Bowen, NU, 2006-09)         212
Active NCAA Point Leaders1. Katie Rowan, SU (2006-09) 3742. Hannah Nielsen, NU (2006-09) 3683. Jillian Byers, ND (2006-09) 3194. Mandy Friend, Rich., (2006-09) 3095. Hilary Bowen, NU, (2006-09) 292

A WINNING LEGACY: Notre Dame’s 14 wins this season mark just the second time in the program’s 13-year history that the Irish have had 14 or more wins in a season. Notre Dame also had 14 or more wins in 2006 when the Irish were 15-4. Since the start of the 2006 season, the Irish are 52-21 (.712).

SECOND FIDDLE: Junior attack standout Gina Scioscia has become an offensive force for the Irish this season as she has surpassed her career high in points (55, set last season) and now has 85 (47g, 38a) on the season to rank second to Jillian Byers. She is currently third in the BIG EAST in scoring with 85 points behind Byers (94) and Syracuse’s Katie Rowan who has 90 points. Her 47 goals put her fourth in the conference while her 38 assists rank second to Rowan’s 49. In the BIG EAST Tournament, Scioscia had four goals and six assists for 10 points, getting two goals and three assists each game. She also recorded the game-winning goal in both games, giving her a team high six on the year. In 2008, Scioscia had 20 goals and 35 assists for 55 points, all career highs at the time. That came after a freshman year that saw her get just eight points on four goals and four assists. The 47-point improvement is the most ever for a Notre Dame player from from one season to the next. On March 17 versus Rutgers, Scioscia had a career-high eight-point game, scoring twice with six assists. The six assists tied a Notre Dame single-game record. On March 29 versus Loyola, she had a career-high six-goal game in the 16-13 win over the Greyhounds. Scioscia has one three-point game, three games with four points, seven games with five points, three with six points, one seven-point game and one with eight this season. Scioscia is tied for 11th among active NCAA players with 77 career assists.

FRESHMEN MAKING THEIR MARK: Several members of the Notre Dame freshman class have performed well in their rookie seasons. Maggie Tamasitis leads the class in scoring with 14 goals and 18 assists for 32 points in her first 18 games. Her 18 assists are third on the team. Megan Sullivan (Winchester, Mass.) has scored four goals and an assist, getting a pair of markers in the win over Rutgers on March 17. Kate Newall (Middlesex, England) has a member of the starting lineup at defensive midfield before being diagnosed with mononucleosis on April 10 and had six ground balls, seven draw controls and three caused turnovers before missing the last six games. Kelly Driscoll (Andover, Mass.) has three goals on the season, including a pair versus California.

RECORD BREAKING GOODMAN: Senior goalkeeper Erin Goodman became Notre Dame’s all-time winningest goalkeeper in the 16-13 win over Loyola on March 29. The win was the 32nd of her career and moved her past Jen White `03, who recorded 31 in three seasons as the starting goalkeeper. Goodman has now started 54 consecutive games in her career and owns a 37-17 record for a .686 winning percentage. Besides the win mark, Goodman also ranks among the top goalkeepers in several different categories:

Single Season Goalkeeping RecordsGamesName (Season)                     GP1.  Erin Goodman (2008)           19    Carol Dixon (2006)            193.  Erin Goodman (2009)           18    Jen White (2002)              18
WinsName (Season) Wins1. Carol Dixon (2006) 152. Erin Goodman (2009) 14
Minutes PlayedName (Season) Minutes1. Erin Goodman (2008) 1,117:212. Carol Dixon (2006) 1,111:543. Jen White (2002) 1,097:454. Erin Goodman (2007) 1,034:445. Carol Dixon (2004) 1,022:326. Erin Goodman (2009) 991:55
SavesName (Season) Saves1. Carol Dixon (2006) 1792. Tara Durkin (2000) 1763. Carrie Marshall (1999) 1754. Erin Goodman (2008) 1725. Jen White (2002) 1646. Carol Dixon (2004) 1497. Erin Goodman (2009) 142 Erin Goodman (2007) 142
Goals Against AverageName (Season) GAVG1. Jen White (2002) 7.492. Carol Dixon (2004) 8.573. Jen White (2001) 9.254. Jen White (2003) 9.865. Carol Dixon (2006) 9.986. Erin Goodman (2007) 10.327. Erin Goodman (2008) 10.748. Erin Goodman (2009) 10.83
All-Time Career GoalKeeping LeadersGames Played1. Erin Goodman (2006-) 56 Carol Dixon (2002-06) 563. Jen White (2000-03) 53
Wins1. Erin Goodman (2006-) 372. Jen White (2000-03) 31
Minutes Played1. Erin Goodman (2006-) 3,186:182. Carol Dixon (2002-06) 3,157:36
Saves1. Carol Dixon (2002-06) 4862. Erin Goodman (2006-) 4583. Jen White (2000-03) 432
Goals-Against Average1. Jen White (2000-03) 8.792. Carol Dixon (2002-06) 9.823. Erin Goodman (2006-) 10.59

HEAD COACH Tracy Coyne: Tracy Coyne is in her 13th season at Notre Dame and her 22nd year in collegiate lacrosse. Coyne brings a 238-107 (.690) career record into this week’s games. On Sunday, Feb. 17, 2008, she recorded her 100th career win at Notre Dame with a 16-4 win over Duquesne. As the only head coach in the Notre Dame program’s history, Coyne is 124-81 (.605). She has guided the Irish to each of the first three BIG EAST Tournaments and saw her team record its first BIG EAST Tourney win on April 24, a 16-10 verdict over Syracuse. A 1983 Ohio University graduate, Coyne recorded her 200th career win at the end of the 2006 season with a 16-8 win over Cornell in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament. She has guided Notre Dame to four NCAA tournament appearances (2002, 2004, 2006, 2008) in the last seven seasons, including the school’s first-ever NCAA finals appearance in 2006. In her first 22 years of coaching, Coyne was 23-5 in two seasons at Denison (1988-89), 91-21 in seven years at Roanoke (1990-96) and 121-79 in this, her 13th season at Notre Dame. The Pittsburgh, Pa., native led Denison (1988) and Roanoke (1990, 1991, 1992, 1994, 1996) to the NCAA Division III tournament during stops at those schools. Coyne also has coached on the international level as the head coach for the Canadian women’s lacrosse national team from 1999-2005. In June of 2005, she led Team Canada to a fourth-place finish at the 2005 World Cup, her second, fourth-place finish (2001) as Canada’s field boss. Coyne is 5-3 all-time against Cornell.

SECRET WEAPON: Freshman midfield/attack Maggie Tamasitis (Boyertown, Pa.) continued her strong freshman season with her second three-goal game of the season in the win over Connecticut (4/18). She now has seven games with three or more points on the year. Tamasitis has come off the bench in all 18 games and leads the freshmen class in scoring with 14 goals and 18 assists for 32 points. Her 18 assists rank third on the team in scoring. She picked up career-high four point games in back-to-back wins against Cincinnati and Louisvile (Apr. 3 and 5). Against the Bearcats, Tamasitis had two goals and two assists for four points. Versus the Cardinals, she had a career-high three-goal game with an assist for four points.

BLANEY-MANIA: Sophomore midfielder Shaylyn Blaney has now scored at least one goal in 17 of Notre Dame’s 18 games this season. A first team all-BIG EAST selection, Blaney is third on the team with 39 goals and fourth with 42 points this season. Fourteen of her 39 goals this season have come off free-position shots. Blaney is coming off a freshman year that saw her score 43 goals with nine assists for 52 points. That was the second- best total for a Notre Dame freshman, trailing just Jill Byers’ 78-point campaign (52g, 24a) in 2006. Her 43 goals were the eighth best single-season output for the Irish. She already has 82 goals and 12 assists for 94 points in her career. The 82 goals rank her eighth all-time at Notre Dame and the 94 points are 10th on the all-time list. She also is ninth all-time with 82 draw controls in less than two full seasons with the Irish.

THAT 70’S SHOW: All-American and Tewaaraton Award candidate Jillian Byers scored six goals and had six assists for 12 points during the BIG EAST Championship. The six goals gives her 70 goals for the season, making her just the second Notre Dame player to ever score 70 goals in a season (Crysti Foote `06 had 74 in 2006). The 70 goals are a career high while her 24 assists equal her career best set in 2006.The 94 points through the first 18 games makes her just the second Notre Dame player to score 90 or more points in a season (joins Foote, who had 114 in 2006). Byers has scored 50 or more goals in each of her seasons at Notre Dame and is the only player to achieve that feat. Her 12-point game against UConn was a Notre Dame and BIG EAST single-game record. She also now has three seasons for the Irish with 70-or-more points and two campaigns with 80 or more. Byers now owns four of the top five goal-scoring seasons (Crysti Foote `06 with 74 goals is only one with more) and three of the top four point seasons (Foote with 114) in the program’s history.