March 24, 2003
- Notre Dame looks to bounce back from tough, one-goal loss versus Yale.
- Abby Owen (three goals) and Lauren Fischer (two goals) lead Irish offense in 7-6 loss to Bulldogs at Orlando, Fla.
THE OHIO STATE GAME: The Irish open the 2003 home schedule on Tuesday, March 25 when they play host to the Ohio State Buckeyes in a 4:00 p.m. game. Weather permitting, the game is set to be played at Moose Krause Stadium. If conditions do not allow that, the Irish will move indoors at the Loftus Center with the game set for 4:00 p.m. Notre Dame comes into the game ranked 12th in the most recent IWLCA poll and are 2-2 on the season. The Irish last played on March 18 versus #13 Yale in Orlando, Fla., where they fell to the Bulldogs by a 7-6 score. Ohio State comes into Tuesday’s game ranked 17th in that same poll and are 5-1 on the season. After dropping their season opener to Stanford by one goal (11-10), the Buckeyes have run off five straight wins including Sunday’s 14-4 win at 20th-ranked Northwestern. Ohio State is now 2-0 in the American Lacrosse Conference. Following Tuesday’s game, the Irish go back on the road for BIG EAST play as they travel to Virginia Tech on Saturday, March 29th. That game will begin at 1:00 p.m.
IRISH VERSUS BUCKEYES: Notre Dame and Ohio State have met six times in the all-time series with the series tied at 3-3. The two teams met twice last season, once in the regular season and once in the NCAA Tournament. On April 9 at Ohio State, the Buckeyes held on for a 12-11 victory. One month later, May 9, in Notre Dame’s first-ever NCAA Tournament game, the Irish won an 11-7 decision at Moose Krause Stadium to send them to the NCAA quarterfinals versus Princeton. The Irish are 2-2 at home versus Ohio State and 1-1 at Columbus, Ohio.
HEAD COACH TRACY COYNE: Notre Dame head coach Tracy Coyne is in her seventh season with the Irish and is the only coach the program has ever known. Coyne owns a 51-38 (.573) record at Notre Dame and is 165-64 (.721) in her 15-year coaching career. She led the Irish to their first-ever NCAA tournament bid in 2002 and advanced to the quarterfinals before losing to eventual champion, Princeton, 11-5. She is 3-3 in her career versus the Ohio State Buckeyes. 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. A 1983 graduate of Ohio University, Coyne has coached on the international level leading the Canadian women’s lacrosse national team to the medal round at the 2001 World Cup in England.
YALE RECAP: The Irish traveled to the Disney Sports Complex in Orlando, Fla. on Tues., March 18th to face the 13th-ranked Yale Bulldogs. In a defensive battle, the Bulldogs held on for a 7-6 win. Abby Owen (Jr., Briarcliff Manor, N.Y.) paced the Irish attack with three goals and Lauren Fischer (Jr., Pittsburgh, Pa.) scored twice while Danielle Shearer (Sr., Hampstead, Md.) chipped in a goal and an assist. The two teams traded goals through the first half until Yale scored twice in the final eight minutes of the half to snap a 3-3 tie and send the Bulldogs into the intermission with a 5-3 lead. Yale got the first goal of the second half just 42 seconds into the second stanza to build the lead to 6-3. Owen made it 6-4 with a free-position goal at 20:36 and they Yale went into a stall. After killing over 12 minutes off the clock, Yale’s Sarah Queener scored with 8:25 left to make it 7-4. Shearer and Owen scored in the final three minutes to make it 7-6. As time ran down, Shearer had one last chance to tie the game, but was fouled. On the ensuing free-position shot, Yale goalkeeper Amanda Laws made the save. Jen White (Sr., Annapolis, Md.) made 10 saves for the Irish in the game.
TEWAARTON TROPHY CANDIDATE: Senior all-American candidate Danielle Shearer is one of 21 nominees for the Tewaarton Trophy that goes annually to the top player in men and women’s lacrosse. She becomes the first Notre Dame women’s player ever nominated for the award. She currently leads the Irish in scoring with eight goals and eight assists through four games. She was the team’s top scorer as a junior with 39 goals and 20 assists for 59 points.
SCORING MACHINE: Junior midfielder Abby Owen came into the 2003 season having played just two games in her career. After scoring a goal in her first two games this season, Owen has become a scoring machine for the Irish getting five goals and two assists for seven points over the last two contests. She turned in a career-best two-goal, two-assist game in Notre Dame’s 13-12 win over Boston College and then followed that with her first career hat trick in the 7-6 loss to Yale last Tuesday.
VERSUS THE BEST: Notre Dame will play its second consecutive game versus a ranked team when they face the 17th-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes. The Irish have lost twice this season to ranked teams, dropping their opener to ninth-ranked Cornell (13-5), before falling to 13th-ranked Yale, 7-6, on March 18. All-time versus ranked teams, Notre Dame is 6-22 versus top 20 teams. The Irish were 4-5 last season versus ranked teams. The highest ranked team the Irish have ever beaten was Yale (7th-ranked) in 2001 and last season at home when they downed 7th-ranked Syracuse (April 3, 12-7).
ONE GOAL LOSSES: Notre Dame’s loss to Yale was its first one-goal loss of the season and makes the Irish 1-1 on the year in tight games after beating Boston College 13-12. A year ago, the Irish were 1-3 in one-goal games including a 12-11 loss at Ohio State. All-time, the Irish are 6-6 in one-goal games.
FISCHER ON THE ATTACK: Junior attack standout Lauren Fischer has picked up where she left off last season in the goal scoring department. Through the first four games this season, Fischer has recorded five goals on 13 shots for the Irish. Included are a pair of two-goal games (Boston College and Yale). That gives her six games in her career with two or more goals in a game. In her first full season of action in 2002, Fischer had 17 goals and two assists for 19 points.
CO-PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Senior midfielder Danielle Shearer was selected as BIG EAST Co-Player of the Week for the week ending March 16. She recorded three goals and two assists in the 19-4 win over Ohio University on March 11 and then followed that with a six-point game (two goals, four assists) in the 13-12 win over Boston College on March 15. For the week, Shearer had five goals and six assists for 11 points. She was named co-player of the week with Georgetown’s Wick Stanwick.
CENTURY MARK: With her third goal of the game versus Ohio University, Danielle Shearer became just the second player in Notre Dame history to reach 100 goals in her career. She currently ranks second all-time in goals with 103 and third in assists (48) and points (151). The school records in each category are held by 2001 graduate Lael O’Shaughnessy who had 122 goals and 68 assists for 190 career points.
SHEAR(ER) SCORER: Danielle Shearer continues her fast start in the scoring department as she leads the Irish with 16 points (8 goals and 8 assists) through the first four games. The senior all-American candidate has now scored two or more points in 15 straight games dating back to last season. She had two or more points in 17 of 18 games a year ago and currently has a 25-game scoring streak that dates back to April 25, 2001.
SIMON SAYS: Meredith Simon (Flemington, N.J.) set a career-high with seven points (3 goals and 4 assists ) in Notre Dame’s 19-4 win at Ohio University. Her previous best coming into this season was a five-point game (3 goals, 2 assists) in Notre Dame’s NCAA first round win over Ohio State (11-7) last May. A clutch scorer late in games a year ago, Simon leads the Irish with four goals and six assists for 10 points in her first two games this season. Last year, she was Notre Dame’s top scorer in the NCAA tournament with five goals and two assists for seven points in two games.
THE WALL: Notre Dame goalkeeper Jen White made a career-high 16 saves in Notre Dame’s 13-5 loss to Cornell on March 2nd. Her previous best was a 15-save performance in a 10-9 Irish loss to Duke last season (April 12, 2002). In the Cornell game, White became Notre Dame’s all-time save leader with 314 passing Carrie Marshall (’98-’01) who had 309 in her Irish career. White now has 340 saves in her Notre Dame career. She is also the school’s all-time leader in games played (42) and goals-against average (8.77). As a junior, White was 13-5 with a 7.49 goals against average and gave Notre Dame the seventh-best defense in the nation. A first-team all-BIG EAST selection, White led the Conference in goals-against average and save percentage. She set a BIG EAST record when she limited Rutgers to just two goals in Notre Dame’s 9-2 win on April 28. For the season, the Irish all-America candidate was named the BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Week three times (March 17, April 1, April 28).For her career, White is Notre Dame’s all-time saves leader with otre Dame’s 13-5 loss
OPENING DAY LOSSES: Notre Dame’s 13-5 loss to Cornell on March 2, marked the first season-opening loss for the Irish in the seven-year history of the program. The game was also the first season opener for Notre Dame versus a nationally ranked team. The Irish are now 6-1 in season openers.
CAREER DAY: Senior midfielder Eleanor Weille had the best day of her career in the 13-12 win over Boston College as she scored three goals and added two assists for a career-high five-point game. Weille is fourth in team scoring through four games with four goals and three assists for seven points.
MULTIPLE POINTS: Several Irish players had multiple-point games in the win over Ohio University. Freshman Crysti Foote scored three goals while Anne Riley (Sr., Marblehead, Mass.) had a two-goal game. Senior attack Angela Dixon (Pennsauken, N.J.) added a goal and and two assists in the game while sophomore Jackie Bowers (Springfield, Pa.) scored the first goal and the first assist of her career for two points in the win.
IRISH FIRSTS: Several Notre Dame players recorded “firsts” in the Irish victory at Ohio University. Besides Crysti Foote (3 goals) and Jackie Bowers (1g, 1a), midfielder Abby Owen (Briarcliff Manor, N.Y.) scored her first collegiate goal. Sophomore Lindsay Shaffer (Seneca Falls, N.Y.) played in her first collegiate game and picked up her first collegiate assist. And, freshman Corey Samperton (Bethesda, Md.) scored her first collegiate goal in her first game for the Irish. Goalkeeper Carol Dixon (So., Pennsauken, N.J.) also saw her first collegiate action playing the final 17 minutes of the game.
A LOOK AT THE IRISH: Notre Dame returns seven starters and 11 monogram winners from its 2002 team. The Irish must replace five four-year starters including their top three defenders in Tina Fedarcyk, Maureen Henwood and Kathryn Lam and midfielders Natalie Loftus and Alissa Moser. Among Notre Dame’s top returnees are senior midfielder Danielle Shearer, who is the team’s top returning scorer after a 39-goal, 20-assist campaign last season. Seniors Kelly McCardell (West Chester, Pa.) and Elizabeth Knight (Baltimore, Md.) are the leaders of the defense while Angela Dixon (Sr., Pennsauken, N.J.) and Lauren Fischer (Jr., Pittsburgh, Pa.) are the top returnees at attack. All-American candidate Jen White played all 18 games last season and set school records for wins (13), goals-against average (7.49) and save percentage (.545).
RECORD SETTING SEASON: The 2002 women’s lacrosse season will go down as the finest season in the program’s six-year history. Going into the NCAA quarterfinals at Princeton, the Irish have set program-bests for wins (13), for BIG EAST wins (5) and for the highest ranking (7th) that the program has ever achieved. The Irish have also set records for lowest goals against (7.49), save percentage (.545) and ground balls (516). Notre Dame also won its first game at home versus a ranked team when the Irish defeated 7th-ranked Syracuse, 12-7, on April 3. The Irish also won their first-ever NCAA tournament game when they defeated Ohio State on May 9 by an 11-7 score.
2003 SCHEDULE: Notre Dame’s 2003 schedule features nine games versus teams ranked in the IWLCA poll. They are: Georgetown (#4), Duke (#5), Cornell (#6), Syracuse (#7), Vanderbilt (#13), Stanford (#16), Yale (#17), Ohio State (#18) and Northwestern (#19). The Irish came into the season ranked in the top 10, as they were picked seventh in the IWLCA poll and fifth by Inside Lacrosse Magazine.
NOT WASTING ANY TIME: Freshman Mary McGrath (Bryn Mawr, Pa.) wasted little time getting on the scoresheet for the Irish as she scored her first collegiate goals versus Cornell with 12:57 left in the first half to tie the game at 2-2. She scored again in Notre Dame’s 19-4 win at Ohio University.
PRESEASON ALL-AMERICANS: Two members of the Notre Dame women’s lacrosse program have been selected to Inside Lacrosse Magazine’s preseason all-American teams. Midfielder Danielle Shearer was a first-team selection while goalkeeper Jen White was chosen to the second team. Shearer, along with graduated defender Kathryn Lam were the first two all-Americans in Notre Dame history last season as both were chosen to the second team. Shearer was the BIG EAST midfielder of the year as she led Notre Dame with 39 goals and 20 assists for 59 points. White was a first-team all-BIG EAST selection as she set school records for wins (13), goals-against average (7.49) and save percentage (.545) in her junior year.
THE CAPTAINS: The Irish will have three new players serving as captains this season. Seniors Elizabeth Knight (Baltimore, Md.), Kelly McCardell (West Chester, Pa.) and Danielle Shearer will serve as the team’s captains this season.
ALL IN THE FAMILY: Lacrosse runs in the Simon family as junior Meredith Simon is joined at Notre Dame by brother, Eric, who is a member of the Notre Dame men’s lacrosse program. The senior is one of three team captains in the 2003 season. The women’s team also includes one set of sisters as senior attack player Angela Dixon and sophomore goalkeeper Carol Dixon are the second set of sisters to play for the Irish. They join Amy and Mara Grace who were team members in the first year of the program (1997-98).
VERSUS THE IVYS: The Irish were 1-2 versus teams from the Ivy League last season. Notre Dame lost a 10-9 game to Cornell, defeated Yale 11-8 and then lost to Princeton, 11-5, in the NCAA Quarterfinals at Princeton. With two losses to Ivy League school’s this season (Cornell and Yale), the Irish are now 6-9 all-time versus teams from the Ivy League
NEW ASSISTANTS: Irish head coach Tracy Coyne added two new assistants to her staff during the summer. Brooke Crawford, a 1999 graduate of North Carolina where she was a three-time all-American on defense. She served as an assistant last season at George Mason and prior to that was at the University of Connecticut for two seasons. Jen Newitt, a 2002 graduate of Dartmouth where she led the Big Green in scoring with 39 goals and 18 assists on the way to all-American honors. Crawford will work with the defense while Newitt handles the offense.
THE LONGEST GAME: Notre Dame’s heartbreaking 10-9 loss to 7th-ranked Duke (April 12) in three overtimes goes down as the longest game in the history of the women’s lacrosse program. The total time for the game was 71:45 as Duke got the winning goal with 15 seconds left in the third overtime period. In that game the Irish trailed 8-6 and got goals from Maureen Henwood and Meredith Simon with 1:40 left to send the game to overtime. Simon’s goal came with 19 seconds left in the game. The Irish have played three overtime games in their history and are 2-1 in those games.
BIG SHOES TO FILL: Coach Tracy Coyne and her coaching staff will be looking to replace two key midfielders lost to graduation. Natalie Loftus (first team all-BIG EAST) and Alissa Moser (second-team all-BIG EAST) combined for 56 goals and 19 assists last season. Loftus had a career-high 40 points on 27 goals and 13 assists and Moser had career-bests in goals (29), assists (6) and points (35). Notre Dame’s heartbreak. The Irish will be looking for seniors Anne Riley (Marblehead, Mass.) and Eleanor Wielle (Garden City, N.Y.) and freshman Crysti Foote (Suffern, N.Y.) to fill those shoes.
TEAM USA: Notre Dame is represented on the U.S. National Developmental Team by four players. Current Irish standout Danielle Shearer is the only active team member on the squad. She is joined by defender Kathryn Lam (’02) who is a two-year member of the team. Current Irish assistant coaches, Brooke Crawford and Jen Newitt, are also team members.