Nov. 21, 2009
#19 NOTRE DAME (11-7-4)
#18 NORTHWESTERN (10-4-4)
NCAA Championship – Second Round
Sunday, Nov. 22 â€¢ 1:00 p.m. (CT)
Lakeside Field â€¢ Evanston, Ill.
Notre Dame leads series 12-2-1
Live Broadcast on NUsports.com
Live Stats:Ã¢â‚¬Ë†Gametracker on und.com
SETTING THE STAGE … No. 19 Notre Dame will travel to Evanston, Ill. to face No. 18 Northwestern on Sunday, Nov. 22 in the second round of the NCAA Championship. Game time is slated for 1:00 p.m. (CT) at Lakeside Field. The Fighting Irish are coming off a 2-1 victory over Green Bay in the first round on Thursday. Northwestern is the No. 9 seed in the tournament and received a first-round bye. The Wildcats topped the Irish 2-1 in the second round of last season’s NCAA Championship.
GAME WATCH … Sunday’s match can be seen live via a streaming broadcast on NUsports.com … Gametracker is available on und.com.
FIGHTING IRISH AGAINST THE WILDCATS … This will be the 16th meeting all-time between Notre Dame and Northwestern … the Irish own a 12-2-1 advantage in the series … the last meeting came in last season’s NCAA Championship … that was the first meeting between the two schools in the NCAA Tournament … Notre Dame is 8-1-1 in the last 10 meetings against the Wildcats … the two schools first met in 1978 and the Irish won that encounter, 3-2 in overtime, in Evanston, Ill. … Notre Dame is 4-1-1 all-time at Northwestern … the last meeting in Evanston took place in 1999 … the Irish won that match 1-0.
FAMILIAR FACES … Notre Dame and Northwestern did not meet in the regular season, yet the two teams did square off in an exhibition contest back on Aug. 24 at Notre Dame … the Irish claimed a 1-0 victory behind a goal from Steven Perry in the 23rd minute … the two schools also met in exhibition play last spring at Northwestern … that match was a 1-1 draw.
IRISH IN THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP … The Irish are making their ninth straight NCAA Championship appearance and the 13th trip overall in program history … the Irish have a 10-11-1 record all-time in the NCAA Championship … Notre Dame’s high-water mark in the NCAA Tournament were quarterfinal trips in 2006 and 2007 … the Irish have made the tournament’s Round of 16 on five occasions (1996, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007) … Notre Dame owns a 6-2-1 mark at home and a 4-9-0 record on the road in the NCAAs.
ROUND OF 32 … Notre Dame is 5-5 all-time in the NCAA Championship’s Round of 32 … the Fighting Irish have won three of their last four Round-of-32 matches … last season, Notre Dame fell to Northwestern, 2-1, at home during the second round.
WHAT’S AT STAKE … The winner of Sunday’s NCAA Championship second-round match between Notre Dame and Northwestern will advance to play the victor of the Tulsa-Saint Louis game in the third round on Sunday, Nov. 29 … Tulsa is the tournament’s No. 8 seed, while Saint Louis is unseeded.
ABOUT THE IRISH … Notre Dame is 11-7-4 on the season … the Fighting Irish defeated Green Bay 2-1 in the first round of the NCAA Championship on Thursday at Alumni Stadium … senior forward Bright Dike and junior midfielder Jeb Brovsky tallied goals in the win over the Phoenix … Dike, the BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year, leads the team in goals (11) and points (25) … senior midfielder Michael Thomas, a first-team all-league honoree, has a team-best six assists … Notre Dame posted an 8-3 record in the BIG EAST Conference to finish second in the Blue Division … Notre Dame is averaging 1.45 goals per game, while surrendering 0.95 goals per contest … Philip Tuttle and Andrew Quinn both have started 11 games in goal … Tuttle is 7-3-2 with five shutouts … the senior boasts a 0.71 goals-against average and a .743 save percentage … Quinn, a fifth-year senior, is 4-4-2 with two shutouts … Quinn has a 1.14 goals-against average and a .755 save percentage … Quinn earned the victory against Green Bay … head coach Bobby Clark is in his ninth season with the Irish … he has a 117-52-26 (.667) record during his Notre Dame tenure.
SCOUTING NORTHWESTERN … Northwestern will bring a 10-4-4 record into Sunday’s match … the Wildcats are the No. 9 seed in the NCAA Championship and they received a first-round bye … Northwestern is coming off a 2-1 setback to Michigan State in the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinals … the Wildcats finished the Big Ten regular season with a 3-2-1 mark, which was good for third place … the Northwestern offense is averaging 1.39 goals per game, while the defense is surrendering 1.00 per contest … the Wildcats are 6-2-2 at home this season … Matt Eliason leads the team in goals (13) and total points (28) … Oliver Kupe has a team-best seven assists … Misha Rosenthal has played the majority of the minutes in goal and carries a 0.94 goals-against average and a .820 save percentage … Rosenthal is 9-4-3 with six shutouts … Northwestern returned six starters and 15 letterwinners from last season’s squad that went 15-5-3 and advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championship before losing to North Carolina, 1-0 … head coach Tim Lenahan is in his ninth season at the helm of the Northwestern program.
QUOTING CLARK … Notre Dame head coach Bobby Clark discusses the upcoming match against Northwestern … “It was tremendous to move on in the tournament, but we know the enormity of the task ahead of us. Northwestern is a team that put us out at this stage of the tournament last season. We are aware of the challenge ahead of us and we are looking forward to it.”
NOTRE DAME VS. THE BIG TEN … Sunday’s match against Northwestern will mark Notre Dame’s fourth game this season against a Big Ten Conference opponent … the Irish are 1-2 against Big Ten competition this season … Notre Dame topped Michigan 5-0 in the season opener (Sept. 1) … the Irish fell at home to Indiana, 3-0, on Oct. 14 and dropped a 2-1 decision at Michigan State on Oct. 28.
COMMON OPPONENTS … Notre Dame and Northwestern have five common opponents this season (Green Bay, DePaul, Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State) … the Irish topped Green Bay 2-1 in the first round of the NCAA Championship on Nov. 19, while the Wildcats tied the Phoenix (3-3) in the first game of the season (Sept. 1) … Notre Dame defeated DePaul 2-1 on Sept. 18 and Northwestern fell to the Blue Demons 2-1 on Sept. 7 … the Fighting Irish dropped a 3-0 decision to Indiana on Oct. 14 and Northwestern bested the Hoosiers 2-0 on Oct. 25 … Notre Dame claimed a 5-0 decision over Michigan in the season opener (Sept. 1), while the Wildcats suffered a 1-0 double-overtime setback to the Wolverines on Nov. 1 … the Irish fell to Michigan State 2-1 on Oct. 28 and Northwestern defeated the Spartans 1-0 on Nov. 7 before losing to Michigan State 1-0 in the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinals on Nov. 12.
DÃƒâ€°JÃƒâ‚¬ VU … Notre Dame and Northwestern met in the second round of last season’s NCAA Championship … the Wildcats claimed a 2-1 victory at Notre Dame’s Alumni Field … the Fighting Irish grabbed a 1-0 lead in the 24th minute on a goal from Jack Traynor … Northwestern’s Oliver Kupe netted the equalizer in the 66th minute and Kupe then delivered the game winner in the 89th minute.
BEEN HERE BEFORE … Head coach Bobby Clark has led the Fighting Irish to an NCAA Championship berth during all nine of his seasons at Notre Dame … the Irish have advanced to the Round of 16 on four occasions and the quarterfinals twice under Clark (2006 & 2007) … Clark carries a 9-7-1 record in the NCAA Championship during his Notre Dame tenure … Clark steered Dartmouth to the NCAA quarterfinals on two occasions (1990 & 1992) during his nine-year stint with the Big Green … during Clark’s five seasons at Stanford, he led the Cardinal to the NCAA title game in 1998 and to the quarterfinals in 2000.
IRISH AGAINST THE NCAA FIELD … Notre Dame faced eight teams that made this year’s NCAA Championship … the Fighting Irish went 2-5-4 against those squads … the Irish squared off against BIG EAST foes USF, Louisville and St. John’s twice each … a total of five BIG EAST schools received a berth to the NCAA Championship … St. John’s was the only seeded team from the league as the Red Storm earned the No. 13 seed.
SHOOTING IT OUT … All three of Notre Dame’s BIG EAST Championship matches went to a penalty kick shootout … the Irish bested USF in penalty kicks, 5-4, in the quarterfinals after both teams were tied 2-2 following regulation and two overtime periods … the Irish defeated Louisville in a shootout, 4-3, in the semifinals after a scoreless draw … in the final, Notre Dame fell to St. John’s in a shootout, 5-3, following a 0-0 tie.
CLOSE ENCOUNTERS … Six of Notre Dame’s past nine matches have been decided by one goal … the other three games in that stretch were draws … the Fighting Irish have played a total of 12 one-goal games this season … the Irish are 7-5 in those contests.
ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM … Jeb Brovsky, a junior midfielder, Michael Thomas, a senior midfielder, and sophomore Aaron Maund, a sophomore defender, were named to the BIG EAST Championship all-tournament team.
DIKE NAMED BIG EAST OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR … Notre Dame senior forward Bright Dike was named the 2009 BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year … Dike, who was voted the conference’s preseason offensive player of the year, finished the regular season as the league’s points leader with 23 … his 10 goals tied him for the conference lead … Dike is the second Notre Dame player ever to be tabbed as the BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year … Joseph Lapira took home the honor in 2006.
IRISH HONORS … Six Notre Dame players garnered all-BIG EAST honors at the league’s annual awards banquet on Nov. 12 … joining Bright Dike, the league’s offensive player of the year, on the all-BIG EAST first team was Irish senior midfielder Michael Thomas … fellow senior Justin Morrow, a defender, was a second-team pick … junior forward Jeb Brovsky and sophomore defender Aaron Maund were selected to the third team … freshman midfielder Dillon Powers was named to the BIG EAST All-Rookie Team.
TOPDRAWER ACCOLADES … Three Fighting Irish players have received accolades from TopDrawerSoccer.com … seniors Michael Thomas (M) and Bright Dike (F) were named to the national first team, while freshman Dillon Powers (M) was a second-team All-Rookie selection.
ASSISTING THE TEAM … Freshman midfielder Dillon Powers has collected an assist on three of Notre Dame’s past five goals … the rookie is second among all Fighting Irish players with five assists.
NOTRE DAME IN BIG EAST PLAY … Notre Dame owns an overall record of 91-53-18 (.617) in BIG EAST regular-season play since joining the conference in 1995 … the Irish have posted nine straight winning seasons within the conference, including this season’s 8-3-0 mark … the eight wins in BIG EAST play tied for the most ever for the Fighting Irish … Notre Dame also won eight BIG EAST matches in 2004 (8-1-1) and 2006 (8-3) … the Irish have three regular-season BIG EAST titles … Notre Dame won the championship outright in 2004 and 2008 (Blue Division) and shared the Blue Division trophy with Connecticut in 2007 … the Fighting Irish captured BIG EAST tournament crowns in 1996 and 2003.
THOMAS NAMED ACADEMIC ALL-AMERICAN … Fighting Irish senior midfielder Michael Thomas has earned third-team Academic All-America honors from ESPN the Magazine and the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) … Thomas becomes the seventh player in program history to be selected as a CoSIDA Academic All-American … Notre Dame has produced an Academic All-American in four of the past five seasons.
IRONMAN … Notre Dame senior left back Justin Morrow has played in a team-best 67 consecutive games, including 53 straight starts.
COMING BACK … Despite falling behind USF by two goals, Notre Dame came back to force a 2-2 draw in their BIG EAST Championship quarterfinal match on Nov. 8 … it was the first time Notre Dame had come back from a two-goal deficit since Oct. 13, 2007 when the Irish fell behind Connecticut 2-0 before claiming a 3-2 lead … that match would end in a 3-3 tie.
DOUBLE DIGITS … Since head coach Bobby Clark took over the Fighting Irish program in 2001, he has steered the Irish to a double-digit win total in each of his nine seasons … Notre Dame currently is 11-7-4 … the most wins for the Irish under Clark came in 2003 as they went 16-3-4.
GOLDEN MOMENTS … Notre Dame has netted a golden goal three times this season … Bright Dike produced a game winner in the 110th minute against Providence on Oct. 10 … junior right back Bilal Duckett tallied a golden goal in the 97th minute versus Georgetown on Oct. 21 … Dike then delivered his second golden tally of the season when he scored in the 91st minute against Connecticut on Oct. 31.
SETTING THE PACE … Notre Dame is 7-1-1 this season when Bright Dike scores a goal … Dike leads the Irish in goals (11) and points (25) … the Irish are 5-0-1 when Michael Thomas nets a goal … Thomas is second on the Irish squad with six goals to go along with a team-high six assists.
CORNERING THE MARKET … The Fighting Irish have gained 37 more corner kicks (135-98) than their opponents … Notre Dame’s 135 corner kicks lead the BIG EAST.
FIRST TIMERS … Four Notre Dame players have scored their first career goal in recent matches … junior right back Bilal Duckett tallied the golden goal in the 97th minute in a 2-1 win at Georgetown on Oct. 21 … sophomore midfielder Michael Rose netted the lone goal (48th minute) in Notre Dame’s 1-0 win at Pittsburgh on Oct. 24 … sophomore midfielder Adam Mena scored the only Irish goal (37th minute) in a 2-1 setback against Michigan State on Oct. 28 … sophomore central defender Aaron Maund netted the equalizer in the 83rd minute in a 2-2 draw against USF in the BIG EAST Championship quarterfinals on Nov. 8.
SECOND HALF SUCCESS … Notre Dame has out scored its opponents 23-12 in the second half and overtime periods this season.
SHOOTING DOWN THE COMPETITION … Notre Dame has out shot 17 of its 22 opponents so far this season … the Irish hold a 321-228 advantage in shots, including 134-90 in shots on goal, over their opponents … Notre Dame’s 321 shots lead the BIG EAST.
NIGHT OWLS … Notre Dame is 6-1-2 this season when playing at night … last season, the Fighting Irish were 7-4-2 during night games.
ROAD WARRIORS … The Fighting Irish are 5-2 in true road games this season … Notre Dame went 2-4-1 on the road in 2008.
TAKING DOWN A TOP-FIVE … The 2-1 overtime win against fifth-ranked Connecticut on Oct. 31 marked Notre Dame’s first victory over a top-five team since they defeated No. 5 USF 5-0 last season (Sept. 7, 2008).
TOUGH SLATE … Notre Dame faced four teams this season that were ranked in the top-five nationally at the time of the match … the Irish took on #3 Wake Forest (T, 1-1) and #1 St. John’s (L, 0-2) at the adidas/IU Credit Union Classic (Sept. 4 & 6) … the back-to-back games against Wake Forest and St. John’s was the first time ever the Fighting Irish had faced back-to-back top-three teams … Notre Dame fell at #5 South Florida, 2-1, on Sept. 20 … the Fighting Irish took down #5 Connecticut, 2-1 in overtime, on Oct. 31 … Notre Dame is 3-3-4 this season versus teams ranked in the national top-25.
IRISH EXPLOSION … The four goals scored in the second half against Louisville on Sept. 25 were the most goals scored in a single period by the Irish since they netted four in the first half in a 5-0 win over USF last season (Sept. 7, 2008).
OFFENSE AT ALUMNI … Notre Dame has scored three or more goals three times this season at the brand new Alumni Stadium … those performances have occurred against Michigan (5-0), Seattle (3-0) and Louisville (4-0) … Notre Dame scored the first nine goals at the stadium before surrendering a score to New Mexico in the 38th minute during the game on Sept. 13 … the scoreless streak in the new venue reached 217:54.
MAUND AND POWERS AT U-20 WORLD CUP … Sophomore defender Aaron Maund and freshman midfielder Dillon Powers were members of the United States Under-20 National Team that recently competed at the U-20 World Cup in Egypt … the U.S. went 1-2 and finished in 17th place, one slot shy of advancing to the Round of 16 … Powers started the first contest of group competition, a 3-0 loss to Germany on Sept. 26, and played the entire first half … in a 4-1 win over Cameroon on Sept. 29, he came on in the 73rd minute and completed the game for the United States … Powers and Maund did not enter the final match of Group C play, a 3-0 loss to Korea Republic on Oct. 2 … Maund did not see match time during the tournament … Notre Dame and UCLA were the only two schools with multiple representatives on the team … the duo returned to the Irish for the match at Marquette on Oct. 7 … Notre Dame went 3-2 in their absence.
DIKE DEPOSITS HAT TRICK … Senior forward Bright Dike had a stellar start to the 2009 season as he registered the first hat trick of his career in a 5-0 win over Michigan … the hat trick was the first for a Notre Dame player since Dave Donohue scored three times against Marquette last season.
OFFENSIVE OPENER … Notre Dame’s five-goal outburst against Michigan in the season opener was the first for the Fighting Irish since a 5-0 triumph of USF on Sept. 7, 2008 … the five tallies are the most in a season opener for Notre Dame since a 5-0 victory over Villanova in 2001, which was head coach Bobby Clark’s first game with the Irish.
ALUMNI STADIUM … The 2009 season signifies a new era for Fighting Irish soccer as Notre Dame begins play in Alumni Stadium … the Irish opened the facility with a 5-0 victory over Michigan on Sept. 1 … the $5.7 million venue resides just east of the Joyce Center on the Notre Dame campus and features a natural grass field, lights, locker rooms, restrooms, concession areas and permanent seating for over 2,000 spectators … the lead benefactors for the facility are former Irish soccer players Tom Crotty and Rob Snyder.
ONE FOR THE RECORD BOOK … Jeb Brovsky’s goal in the 26th minute of the season-opening 5-0 win over Michigan was the first goal scored in Alumni Stadium … Michael Thomas collected the assist on the play.
POWERS EARNS NATIONAL HONORS … Freshman midfielder Dillon Powers was named the 2008-09 Gatorade Boys Soccer Player of the Year … in addition, he was selected as the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Co-Player of the Year in July.
RETURNING FIREPOWER … Notre Dame returned 38 of 41 goals scored from last season … leading the way was senior forward Bright Dike, who led all BIG EAST players in goals (12) and points (29) one year ago … Michael Thomas was the top scoring midfielder in the league with 21 points on eight goals and five assists … junior forward Jeb Brovsky is back after totaling five goals and six assists as a sophomore … seniors Dave Donohue (5g, 5a) and Justin Morrow (2g, 4a) registered 15 and eight points, respectively, one season ago … sophomore Brendan King and senior Tamba Samba chipped in two goals apiece for the Irish … King also added three assists.
COLLEGE SOCCER NEWS WATCH LISTS … Two Notre Dame freshmen were named to the College Soccer News `100 Freshmen To Keep An Eye On’ list for the 2009 season … midfielder/defender Danny O’Leary and midfielder Dillon Powers were selected to the list and are part of a very talented six-man freshman class for the Irish.
FRESHMAN CLASS NATIONALLY RANKED … Notre Dame’s freshman class was ranked ninth according to College Soccer News … Bob Novak (M), Danny O’Leary (M/D), Dillon Powers (M), Kyle Richard (M/F), Grant Van De Casteele (D) and Eric Tilley (M/D) make up the stellar class.
IRISH CAPTAINS … Senior midfielders Dave Donohue, Justin Morrow and Michael Thomas along with fifth-year senior midfielder/defender Cory Rellas were named team captains for the 2009 campaign … this is the second straight season in which Thomas has been an Irish captain, while the other three are first-time captains.
SEASON IN REVIEW … Last season, Notre Dame posted a 12-7-2 mark, including a 7-2-2 record in conference play, en route to capturing its second straight BIG EAST Blue Division title … the Fighting Irish garnered the 12th seed for the NCAA Championship … the Irish fell to Northwestern, 2-1, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at Alumni Field … the Fighting Irish concluded the season ranked 16th in the final National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) poll … Notre Dame averaged 1.95 goals per game last season, while allowing 1.10 per contest … Bright Dike led the BIG EAST in goals (12) and total points (29) … the forward copped first team all-league and all-region honors in 2008 … central defender Matt Besler was named a first-team All-American and first team Academic All-American in addition to being tabbed as the NSCAA Scholar-Athlete of the Year … Besler became the highest MLS SuperDraft pick in program history as he was selected eighth overall by the Kansas City Wizards … the New York Red Bulls drafted his backline mate, Jack Traynor, with the 29th overall selection.
SIGN UP FOR IRISH ALERT … Go to und.com and sign up for Irish ALERT, a text messaging service designed to give fans up-to-the-minute game updates for all 26 varsity sports at Notre Dame … men’s soccer fans can sign up to receive scores after each half of every game.