March 23, 2018
NOTRE DAME, Indiana – A week has passed since the Notre Dame women’s lacrosse team (5-5, 1-3) last played and the Irish have used that time to prepare for another opportunity this weekend when a top-10 team comes to Arlotta Stadium. The Irish are set to face No. 7/9 Syracuse (6-2, 0-1) Saturday afternoon with opening draw at 1 pm ET.
The Orange bring the NCAA’s second-highest scoring offense to Arlotta, as they average over 17 goals per game, trailing just Maryland. The Irish defense has played well this season and rank third in the conference, allowing just 10.40 goals per game. The Irish have also shut out teams for long stretches of games this year. They have held their opponent scoreless for a 10-minute or longer span in nine of 10 games. In four of those games, the Irish have held teams off the scoreboard for 20 minutes or longer and are 3-1 in those games.
Notre Dame leads the conference and ranks 14th nationally in save percentage (.507) thanks to their tandem in net. Samantha Giacolone is second in the ACC in save percentage (.491) and saves (84). Bridget Deehan has seen action in five games this season and picked up a career-high nine saves last week against Virginia.
Offensive for the Irish, they have had a balanced attack with six players scoring 10 or more goals and four with 20 or more points. Freshman Maddie Howe leads the way with 21 goals on the season. She is fourth among freshmen in the conference this season in goals and has scored 12 in the past four games.
Fellow freshman Andie Aldave leads the team in draw controls with 58 this season. She is fourth in the conference with 5.80 draws per game and is the highest-ranked freshman in that category. She set the school record earlier this season for most in a game when she won 11 against Stetson.
The last time these two teams squared off, the Irish upset fourth-ranked Syracuse 16-7 at the Carrier Dome. The Irish ended a three-game losing streak that afternoon using two scoring runs (4-0 and 6-0) to take control of the game. Giacolone made 13 saves against the Orange and scooped up four ground balls.
Matt Paras, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since January 2018. In his role, he coordinates all media efforts for the Notre Dame women’s lacrosse and cross country/track & field programs. A native of Warwick, Rhode Island, Paras is a graduate of the University of Louisville where he completed his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Sport Administration. Prior to arriving at Notre Dame, he worked at Vanderbilt University as the sports information contact for the women’s soccer and lacrosse programs.