Oct. 25, 2004
Freshman Joe Lapira was named the BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Week and senior Chris Sawyer earned the league’s Goalkeeper of the Week Award on Monday, Oct. 25, after leading Notre Dame to a 2-0 week on the road. The Irish actually completed a three-game road swing in seven days, finishing 2-0-1 and securing the program’s first BIG EAST regular-season title.
Lapira stepped in at forward for the Irish and scored his second BIG EAST game-winning goal of the year at Seton Hall on Oct. 20. The Lake Charles, La., native scored at 80:06 to push the Irish to an eventual 1-0 victory. Lapira made his first three starts of the season last week, subbing into the lineup for injured forward Tony Megna. The weekly award is the first of Lapira’s career.
Sawyer nabbed his second BIG EAST Goalkeeper of the Week award on Monday as well. The senior All-American picked up his seventh shutout in the last nine games (which also includes a shared shutout) and ninth of the year as Notre Dame defeated Seton Hall and Rutgers 1-0. Sawyer made eight saves during the week, including one memorable game-saving play in each match. He has dropped his goals-against average this year to 0.42 and helped Notre Dame hold its opponents to one or zero goals in 15 of 16 matches this season. In fact, the only opponent to score twice on the Irish this season was #1 Indiana – and that game was played on the Hoosiers’ home field.
Notre Dame will get a week off of action this week to recover from its challenging road trip through the BIG EAST. The Irish have already secured the BIG EAST regular-season title, finishing ahead of St. John’s and Boston College. The fourth-place team is yet to be determined. Notre Dame will host a BIG EAST quarterfinal match on Saturday, Nov. 6, at Alumni Field against the eighth-place team in the final conference standings.
Notre Dame’s next contest is Saturday, Oct. 30, against Connecticut at 7:30 p.m. (Alumni Field).