Junior midfielder Mandy Laddish scored in the 58th minute, but Notre Dame dropped a 4-1 decision to the NWSL's Chicago Red Stars in a spring exhibition on Wednesday night at Alumni Stadium.

Irish Women's Soccer Drops Spring Exhibition To Chicago Red Stars, 4-1

April 3, 2013

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Junior midfielder Mandy Laddish (Lee’s Summit, Mo./Lee’s Summit) scored in the 58th minute, but it would not be enough to hold back a talented Chicago Red Stars club, which scored twice in each half to post a 4-1 victory over the Fighting Irish in a spring exhibition match on Wednesday night at Alumni Stadium.

Former Notre Dame All-American Lauren Fowlkes (’11) scored twice in a little more than two minutes midway through the first half for the Red Stars, who are a member of the newly-formed National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) that will begin play later this spring. Ella Masar and Zakiya Bywaters added second-half goals for Chicago, which featured a roster that featured a number of players with U.S. Soccer experience, including former U.S. Women’s National Team standouts Lori Chalupny and Leslie Osborne.

Chicago finished with a 22-5 edge in total shots, inculding a 9-2 advantage in shots on goal, and an 11-3 margin on corner kicks. Freshman goalkeeper Naomi Willett (San Clemente, Calif./San Clemente) got the starting nod in the Fighting Irish cage on Wednesday, recording five saves while going the distance. Taylor Vancil made one save in the Red Stars’ goal.

“Setting the score aside, I thought we did some really positive things tonight,” Notre Dame head coach Randy Waldrum said. “Of course, we also made some mistakes, and as all good teams do, especially ones at the professional level like the Red Stars, they punish you. We’ll learn quite a lot from a game like this, much more than if we were to play a lesser opponent, and that will be important to continuing our development, not only during the spring, but on into next season as well.”

The Fighting Irish will be back in action at 7 p.m. (ET) Friday when they square off with the Mexico Under-20 National Team at Alumni Stadium. The Mexico U-20s played an international friendly earlier on Wednesday at Alumni Stadium, edging the Haiti National Team, 1-0.

Tickets for Friday’s Notre Dame-Mexico exhibition, as well as all Fighting Irish soccer matches, can be purchased by calling (574) 631-7356 or going on-line to UND.com/tickets. In addition, tickets will be on sale at the Alumni Stadium ticket windows on match night.

For more information on the Fighting Irish women’s soccer program, follow Notre Dame on Twitter (@NDsoccer or @NDsoccernews), like the Fighting Irish on Facebook (facebook.com/NDWomenSoccer) or sign up for the Irish ALERT text-messaging system through the “Fan Center” pulldown menu on the main page at UND.com.

— ND —

Chicago Red Stars 2 – 2 — 4
Notre Dame 0 – 1 — 1

CRS 1. Lauren Fowlkes (-) 17:28. CRS 2. Fowlkes 2 (-) 19:36. CRS 3. Ella Masar (-) 56:18. ND 1. Mandy Laddish (-) 57:40. CRS 4. Zakiya Bywaters (-) 77:59.

Total Shots: Chicago Red Stars 22 (11-11), Notre Dame 5 (1-4)
Shots On Goal: Chicago Red Stars 9 (4-5), Notre Dame 2 (0-2)
Saves: Chicago Red Stars 1 (Taylor Vancil 1 in 90:00), Notre Dame 5 (Naomi Willett 5 in 90:00)
Corner Kicks: Chicago Red Stars 11 (5-6), Notre Dame 3 (2-1)
Offsides: Chicago Red Stars 2, Notre Dame 1

Next Match: Notre Dame vs. Mexico Under-20 National Team, 7 p.m. (ET) Friday (April 5) at Alumni Stadium