Freshman goalkeeper Ellie Hilling was named the BIG EAST defensive player of the week for her play in Notre Dame's triple overtime win at Boston University.

Irish Return Home To Face #12/#10 Vanderbilt On Wednesday Then Open The BIG EAST Schedule Versus #19 Louisville Saturday Afternoon

March 23, 2010

Notre Dame, Ind. –

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– The Game: #11/#8 Notre Dame (4-1) vs. #12/#10 Vanderbilt (5-3)

– Date/Time/Site: Wed., March 24, 2010 – 2:30 p.m. – Arlotta Stadium – Notre Dame, Ind.

– The Game: #11/#8 Notre Dame (4-1) vs. rv/#19 Louisville (4-2)

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

– Internet: Fans can follow the Notre Dame-Vanderbilt game and Notre Dame’s home game with Louisville via GameTracker at The home game versus Vanderbilt on March 24 also will be available in live streaming video at the Notre Dame website – There will be no streaming video for Saturday’s contest with Louisville.

TWO-GAME HOMESTAND: The Notre Dame women’s lacrosse team returns home for the first time since March 7th as the Irish playing a pair of home games. On Wed., March 24, Notre Dame will face the Vanderbilt Commodores in a 2:30 p.m. game at Arlotta Stadium. Game two of the week comes on Sat., March 27th when the Irish open the BIG EAST schedule with a 3:00 p.m. contest against Louisville at “the Lot.” Notre Dame returns home with a two-game winning streak after back-to-back overtime road games – first a 14-12 overtime win at California on March 13th – followed by last Saturday’s 7-6, sudden-victory in triple overtime at Boston University. The Irish (4-1 overall) come into the week ranked 11th in the IWLCA coaches’ poll and eighth in the Inside Lacrosse media poll. Long-time women’s lacrosse foe, Vanderbilt, brings a 5-3 record to Arlotta Stadium on Wednesday afternoon and is in the midst of a four-game winning streak, including wins over Louisville (20-13) and Penn State (20-14). The Commodores are ranked 12th in the IWLCA poll and 10th by Inside Lacrosse. Louisville makes its first trip to Arlotta Stadium this weekend, sporting a 4-2 overall record. The Cardinals 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. Following this week’s games, the Irish take to the road to face top-ranked Northwestern in a 6:00 p.m. (CT) game on Tues., March 30 at Lakeside Field in Evanston, Ill.

THE IRISH ALL-TIME: In this the 14th season of the Notre Dame women’s lacrosse program, Notre Dame brings a 130-83 all-time record (.610) into Wednesday’s game versus Vanderbilt. That record includes a 53-46 road record (.535). At home, the Irish are 63-30 (.677) with a 14-7 all-time ledger on neutral fields.

IRISH VERSUS THE COMMODORES: Notre Dame and Vanderbilt have met 14 times in the all-time series that began during the 1998 season, the first year for each program. The Commodores lead the series with a 9-5 record. The Irish are 4-3 at home against Vanderbilt while the Commodores are 6-1 against Notre Dame in Nashville, Tenn. The two teams met twice last season, once in the regular season and once in the NCAA Tournament. In the regular season game at Vanderbilt, the Commodores handed the Irish an 18-11 road loss. In the first round of the NCAA’s, Notre Dame returned the favor with a 19-13 victory at Alumni Field that moved them on to the quarterfinals.

IRISH VERSUS THE CARDINALS: Saturday afternoon’s game with Louisville is the second meeting between the two schools. 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.

A LOOK AT VANDERBILT: The Commodores are coming off an impressive week that saw them score 20 goals in wins over Louisville and Ohio State to improve to 5-3 on the year. They are led offensively by senior attack Sarah Downing (19-9-28), sophomore midfielder Ally Carey (16-10-26) and senior attack Carter Foote (17-4-21). Through eight games, Vanderbilt has six players with 10 or more goals and six with 13 or more points. Sophomore goalkeeper Natalie Wills is 5-3 overall with a 12.16 goals-against average and a .452 save percentage. The Commodores average 13.63 goals-per game and surrender 11.88 per contest.

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 game. 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.

HEAD COACH Tracy Coyne: Tracy Coyne is in her 14th season at Notre Dame and her 23rd year in collegiate lacrosse. Coyne brings a 244-109 (.691) career record into this week’s game. As the only head coach in the Notre Dame program’s history, Coyne is 130-83 (.610) 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 130-83 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 5-9 all-time against Vanderbilt and 1-0 in her coaching career against Louisville.

COAST-TO-COAST WINNING STREAK: Notre Dame’s current two-game winning streak got its start in Berkeley, Calif., and continued in 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 (Jr., Stony Brook, N.Y.) scored a free-position goal and Kailene Abt (Jr., Huntington, N.Y.) 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 (Sr., Summit, N.J.) got the game winner with 38 seconds left in the third overtime. Freshman goalkeeper Ellie Hilling (Rochester, N.Y.) made eight saves in goal for the Irish.

IRISH AND OVERTIME: Notre Dame has now played two consecutive games that have gone to overtime this season and are 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.

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. Hilling has started all five games for the Irish and is 4-1 on the season with a 9.83 goals-against average and a .388 save percentage.

HITTING THE CENTURY MARK: Junior midfielder Shaylyn Blaney scored twice in the win over Boston University on March 20. That gives her a team-high 14 goals on the year. The two goals also make 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 101 career goals for the Irish.

STREAKING IRISH: With a pair of goals versus California, Gina Scioscia extended her point streak to 23 games. Here are the current Irish scoring streaks:

Gina Scioscia - 24 games (58g, 41a, 99 pts)Kailene Abt - 20 games (43g, 13a, 56 pts)Kaitlin Keena - 10 games (10g, 9a, 19 pts)Maggie Tamasitis - 5 games (6g, 8a, 14 pts)Shaylyn Blaney - 2 games (6g, 0a, 6 pts)Jenny Granger - 2 games (2g, 0a, 2 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.

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.

CHANGING ROLES: For the third game in a row, sophomore attack Maggie Tamasitis scored two goals in a game. The three-game goal-scoring streak came after she started the season with six assists in the first two games. On the year, Tamasitis has six goals and eight assists for 14 points. That ties her with Shaylyn Blaney for second on the team in scoring with 14 points. In 25 career games, Tamasitis already has 28 career assists.

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. For the game BU 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 five games, she has 17 ground balls and 15 caused turnovers. She is currently 10th nationally with 3.40 ground balls per game and tied for second in caused turnovers with 3.00 per game.

ABT TO SCORE: Junior Kailene Abt has carried the hot hand for Notre Dame over the last four games, notching 10 goals and five assists for 15 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 five games, she leads Notre Dame in scoring with 11 goals and five assists for 16 points.

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 58-23 (.716).

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 1-1 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.