Senior defender Rachel Guerrera leads a Notre Dame defense against Louisville on Saturday.  Guerrera and her teammates on defense will look to get the Irish back in the winning column after the loss to Vanderbilt.

Irish Open BIG EAST Schedule Versus Louisville On Saturday, March 27 At Arlotta Stadium

March 25, 2010

Notre Dame, Ind. –

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<>– The Game: #11/#8 Notre Dame (4-2/0-0) vs. rv/#19 Louisville (4-2/0-0)

– Date/Time/Site: Sat., March 27, 2010 – 3:00 p.m. – Arlotta Stadium – Notre Dame, Ind.

– Internet: Fans can follow the Notre Dame-Louisville game on March 27 via GameTracker at the Notre Dame website – There will be no live video streaming for the game versus Louisville this weekend.

BIG EAST OPENER: The Notre Dame women’s lacrosse team opens the 2010 BIG EAST schedule on Sat., March 27 when the Louisville Cardinals visit Arlotta Stadium for a 3:00 p.m. game. The contest is part of a Notre Dame lacrosse doubleheader as the men’s lacrosse team hosts Rutgers in a 12:00 p.m. game. The Irish will be looking to get back on the winning track as they dropped a 10-9 decision to #11/#12 Vanderbilt on March 24th at “the Lot.” Notre Dame is now 4-2 on the season and comes into the weekend ranked 11th in the IWLCA coaches’ poll and eighth in the Inside Lacrosse media poll. For Louisville, Saturday’s game is the lone game of the week as the Cardinals are 4-2 on the season. They got off to a fast start this season, going 4-0, out of the blocks, but have lost two-in-a-row at Ohio State (16-15) and at Vanderbilt (20-13). In just its second year of play in the BIG EAST, Louisville is receiving votes in the IWLCA poll and is ranked 19th by Inside Lacrosse.

NEXT UP FOR THE IRISH: Notre Dame’s two-game home stand will be followed by three consecutive road games next week. On Tues., March 30, the Irish travel to Evanston, Ill., to face top-ranked Northwestern in a 6:00 p.m. (CT) game at Lakeside Field. From there, it’s on to Washington, D.C., for an April 3 game at Georgetown (1:00 p.m.) followed by a game on Mon., April 5 at Loyola (Md.) at 12:00 p.m.

THE IRISH ALL-TIME: In this the 14th season of the Notre Dame women’s lacrosse program, Notre Dame brings a 130-84 all-time record (.607) into Saturday’s game versus Louisville. That record includes a 53-46 road record (.535). At home, the Irish are 63-31 (.670) with a 14-7 all-time ledger on neutral fields.

IRISH VERSUS THE CARDINALS: When Louisville invades Arlotta Stadium on Saturday afternoon at 3:00 p.m., it will be the Cardinals first-ever women’s lacrosse visit to Notre Dame. The two teams met for the first time last year at Louisville as the Cardinals are now in their second season in the BIG EAST. The Irish won the first meeting last season at Louisville by a 20-8 score. Senior Gina Scioscia (Summit, N.J.), junior Shaylyn Blaney (Stony Brook, N.Y.) and sophomore Maggie Tamasitis (Boyertown, Pa.) scored three goals each to lead Notre Dame.

CARDINAL WATCHING: Louisville opens its BIG EAST schedule versus Notre Dame and will be looking to snap a two-game losing streak. The high-scoring Cardinals are averaging 16 goals per game through six games while giving up 10.83 per contest. Leading the attack is preseason all-BIG EAST selection junior Bergan Foley who already has scored 27 goals on the year with three assists for 30 points. She is followed by sophomore midfielder Katie Oliverio (13-15-28), junior midfielder Emily Dashiell (17-4-21) and junior midfielder Lianne Bobal (12-0-12) as that foursome has 69 of the team’s 96 goals. Freshman goalkeeper Danielle Pawliw is 4-2 with an 11.41 goals-against average and a .439 save percentage.

BIG EAST OPENERS: The Irish open the 2010 BIG EAST schedule on March 27 when they face Louisville at Arlotta Stadium. This is Louisville’s first visit to South Bend as the Cardinals began conference play in 2009. In this the 10th season of BIG EAST women’s lacrosse, Notre Dame has a 6-3 record in league openers.

CLOSE ONES: The 10-9 loss to Vanderbilt on Wednesday afternoon was the third, one-goal game of the season and first one-goal loss for the Irish as they fall to 2-1 in close games. All-time, Notre Dame has been involved in 35 one-goal games in 14 seasons and is 17-18 overall. In 2006, the Irish played in six, one-goal games, going 4-2 in that season.

HEAD COACH Tracy Coyne: Tracy Coyne is in her 14th season at Notre Dame and her 23rd year in collegiate lacrosse. Coyne brings a 244-110 (.689) career record into this week’s games. As the only head coach in the Notre Dame program’s history, Coyne is 130-84 (.607) and has guided the Irish to five NCAA tournaments (2002, 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2009) where her teams have advanced to the Final Four once (2006) and the quarterfinals twice (2002, 2009). The Irish have been in all three BIG EAST Tournaments to date, beginning in 2007 and they recorded their first BIG EAST title last season with wins over Syracuse (16-10) and Georgetown (12-10). A 1983 Ohio University graduate, Coyne was 23-5 in two seasons at Denison (1988-89), 91-21 in seven years at Roanoke (1990-96) and 130-84 in this, her 14th 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 1-0 in her coaching career against Louisville.

CLOSE, BUT NO CIGAR: The Irish opened their current two-game home stand on Wed., March 24 with a visit from Vanderbilt. The Commodores would rally from a four-goal deficit in the second half to defeat Notre Dame, 10-9, at Arlotta Stadium. The Irish jumped out to a 7-4 lead at halftime paced by Kailene Abt’s (Jr., Huntington, N.J.) three goals and single goals from Ansley Stewart (Jr., Alexandria, Va.), Shaylyn Blaney, Megan Sullivan (So., Winchester, Mass.) and Gina Scioscia. The lead would go to 8-4 when Stewart opened the second half with her second goal of the game. From there, Vanderbilt out scored Notre Dame, 6-1, on the way to the one-goal win. Katherine Denkler had two of her game-high four goals in the Commodores’ rally. Sarah Downing, Ally Carey, Carter Foote and Hannah Clark had single goals in the comeback. The Irish out shot Vanderbilt, 25-20, in the game. Junior goalkeeper Natalie Wills had 11 saves, while Ellie Hilling (Fr., Rochester, N.Y.) had six for Notre Dame.

COMMANDING COMMODORES: Vanderbilt has had Notre Dame’s number in recent seasons as the Irish have now lost four consecutive regular-season games to the Commodores. The streak started in 2007 and includes two losses at home and two in Nashville. The lone win in that span came on May 10, 2009, a 19-13 Irish win in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Since the last win in 2006, the Irish are 1-4 against Vanderbilt and are now 5-10 all-time.

NO HOME SWEET HOME: The loss to Vanderbilt dropped Notre Dame’s record to 1-2 at home this season with both losses coming at Arlotta Stadium where the Irish have yet to win a game this season. The lone win came against Duquesne on Feb. 27 by a 15-10 margin at the Loftus Sports Center.

COAST-TO-COAST WINNING STREAK: Prior to the loss to Vanderbilt, Notre Dame had a two-game winning streak that got its start in Berkeley, Calif., and continued to Boston, Mass., on March 20th as the Irish won consecutive overtime games. On March 13, Notre Dame rallied from a 10-7 deficit versus California to tie, 10-10, in regulation before moving on to the 14-12 victory. Last Saturday in Boston, the Irish again rallied from a three-goal, second-half deficit to tie in regulation and win it in the third overtime. Notre Dame led 2-1 at halftime on goals by Maggie Tamasitis (So., Boyertown, Pa.) and freshman Jenny Granger (East Setauket, N.Y.). The Terriers ran off the first four goals of the second period to take a 5-2 lead.With 10:03 left in the game, Shaylyn Blaney scored a free-position goal and Kailene Abt scored 21 seconds later to make it 5-4. Traci Landy made it 6-4 for BU with 3:57 left before Blaney and Tamasitis scored in a 27-second span to make it 6-6 with 2:15 left on the clock. The teams would play 71:22 before Gina Scioscia got the game winner with 38 seconds left in the third overtime. Freshman goalkeeper made eight saves in goal for the Irish.

HELPING HAND: With three assists in the loss to Vanderbilt, sophomore attack Maggie Tamasitis now has four games this season with two or more assists in game, including a career-best, four-assist game on Feb. 27 versus Duquesne. For the season, she now has 11 assists on the year and in just 26 career games, already has 31 career assists to move to just two assists behind the 10th spot on Notre Dame’s all-time assist list. Tamasitis is currently second on the team with six goals and 11 assists for 17 points on the year.

HITTING THE CENTURY MARK: Junior midfielder Shaylyn Blaney scored twice in the win over Boston University on March 20 and added a single goal versus Vanderbilt. That gives her a team-high 15 goals on the year. The two goals at BU made her the seventh player in the history of the women’s lacrosse program to score 100 or more goals for her career. Blaney now ranks seventh all-time with 102 career goals for the Irish.

ABT TO SCORE: Junior Kailene Abt has carried the hot hand for Notre Dame over the last five games, notching 13 goals and five assists for 18 points. Her five-point game against California was a season high for points and her three assists in the contest were a career high for Abt. After six games, she leads Notre Dame in scoring with 14 goals and five assists for 19 points.

BIG TIME STOPPER: Freshman goalkeeper Ellie Hilling was named the BIG EAST defensive player of the week for the week ending March 22. Against Boston University, Hilling helped the Irish to a 7-6 overtime win. The Rochester, N.Y. native made eight saves in the win with the biggest coming with 1:44 left in the third overtime to preserve the tie prior to the Irish scoring the winning goal. She also had four ground balls and one caused turnover. The 5-2 netminder added six saves in Wednesday’s 10-9 loss to Vanderbilt. For the year, Hilling has started all six games for the Irish and is 4-2 on the season with a 9.86 goals-against average and a .380 save percentage.

IRISH AND OVERTIME: Notre Dame has now played two overtime games this season and is 2-0 in those contests. In the 14-year history of the program, the Irish have played overtime 16 times and are now 8-8 in those games.

WORTH THE WAIT: Notre Dame’s 7-6 overtime win against Boston University is the second longest game ever played by Notre Dame. The 7-6 victory lasted 71:22 and trails only the April 13, 2003 game at home against Stanford. The Irish lost the game, 14-13, and played a full 72 minutes.

ON THE DEFENSIVE: Notre Dame’s defense has risen to the occasion several times this season in limiting scoring chances. Against Boston University, the Irish held the Terriers to just six shots in the first half, resulting in just one goal. Boston University had 17 shots in the game, scoring just six goals. Junior Jackie Doherty (Ellicott City, Md.) has been a guiding force for the Irish. Through six games, she has 19 ground balls and 18 caused turnovers. She is currently 10th nationally with 3.33 ground balls per game and tied for second in caused turnovers with 3.00 per game.

STREAKING IRISH: With a pair of goals versus Vanderbilt, Gina Scioscia extended her point streak to 25 games. Here are the current Irish scoring streaks:

Gina Scioscia - 25 games (60g, 42a, 102 pts)Kailene Abt - 21 games (46g, 13a, 59 pts)Maggie Tamasitis - 6 games (6g, 11a, 17 pts)Shaylyn Blaney - 3 games (7g, 0a, 7 pts)

ROAD WARRIORS: With the win at Boston University on March 20, Notre Dame is now 3-0 on the road this season. Last year, the Irish were 6-3 away from home with the six road wins equaling the most the Irish have ever won on the road in the program’s 14-year history. In 2008, Notre Dame was 6-3 in nine road games. For the last two-plus seasons, the Irish are 15-6 on the road for a .714 winning percentage away from South Bend. Last season, the three road losses came at Syracuse (14-13) and at Vanderbilt (18-11) in the regular season and at North Carolina (16-10) in the NCAA Tournament.

ARLOTTA STADIUM OPENER: The Notre Dame women’s lacrosse team played its first-ever game at Arlotta Stadium on Sunday, March 7 and the final results weren’t quite what the Irish were looking for as they dropped a 12-8 decision to No. 20 Dartmouth. 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. 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 men’s and women’s lacrosse programs have made significant contributions. The stadium was dedicated on Oct. 17, 2009. The previous afternoon, the Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team defeated the Iroquois National Team, 14-8, in the first game played at Arlotta Stadium. The stadium features over 2,000 permanent seats, lights, an artificial-turf field, locker rooms, team lounges, restrooms and concession areas.

A WINNING LEGACY: Notre Dame’s 16 wins in 2009 are the most in a single season for the Irish, surpassing the mark of 15-4 set in 2006. Since the start of the 2006 season, the Irish are 58-24 (.707).

TEWAARATON WATCH LIST: Two members of the Notre Dame roster have been selected among a group of 52 players to the 2010 Tewaaraton Trophy Watch Lists. The duo – junior midfielder Shaylyn Blaney and senior Gina Scioscia – are two of eight players from the BIG EAST to be named to the Watch List. Blaney was selected to the Watch List last season while this is the first time for Scioscia. Both players were second team IWLCA All-Americans last year. Both were preseason all-BIG EAST selections for 2010 while Scioscia was named by the conference coaches as the preseason offensive player of the year.

VERSUS THE BEST: The Irish face two games this week versus nationally ranked teams. Vanderbilt enters Wednesday’s game ranked 12th by the IWLCA and 10th in the media poll. Louisville is ranked 19th by Inside Lacrosse to start the week while the Cardinals are receiving votes in the coaches’ poll. After defeating No. 11/No. 12 Boston University on March 20, Notre Dame is now 1-2 on the year versus ranked teams. During the 2009 season, the Irish were 8-5 a year ago against ranked teams.

LOW-SCORING AFFAIR: Notre Dame’s 7-6 overtime win against Boston University marked the fewest goals scored by both teams in a game since April 10, 2005, when the Irish dropped a 6-5 decision at home to Stanford. Notre Dame led 2-1 at halftime of the BU game. The last time that Notre Dame gave up one goal or less in the first half of a game came on April 18, 2009 when the Irish held Connecticut scoreless in the first half (10-0 lead) on the way to a 20-5 win.

SLOW START: Notre Dame’s one goal in the first half of the 12-8 loss to Dartmouth was the fewest goals scored by the Irish in a half since April 9, 2008 when they were held scoreless (11-0) in the first half of a 16-2 loss at Northwestern.

NORTH OF THE BORDER: Irish assistant coach Kateri Linville will serve as an assistant coach for Canada’s Under-19 team that will compete in the World Cup in Hannover, Germany in August of 2011. She was named to the position in January. She will serve as an assistant to Canisius head coach Scott Teter. A 2003 graduate of the University of Delaware, Linville is in her fifth season as an assistant at Notre Dame.

VERSUS THE RANKED: As of March 23, eight teams that are on the 2010 Notre Dame women’s lacrosse schedule are ranked in the IWLCA coaches’ poll’s top 20. This season, the Irish will face: No. 1-ranked Northwestern followed by No. 6 Syracuse and No. 9 Georgetown. That group is followed by No. 12 Vanderbilt, No. 13 Boston University, No. 15 Loyola, No. 16 Dartmouth and No. 19 Hofstra. Ohio State and Rutgers enter the week receiving votes. A year ago, Notre Dame played 13 games versus ranked teams and was 8-5 on the season.

FOR OPENERS: Notre Dame’s win over Duquesne improved the Irish to 9-5 in home openers in the 14 years of the program. The win at Hofstra (Feb. 23) improved the Irish to 12-2 all-time in opening games. In road openers, the Irish are 13-1.