NOTRE DAME, Ind. — Junior Jack Lynn scored the first hat trick of his career to lead the Irish in Friday’s 4-1 win over Louisville to wrap up the regular season portion of the fall schedule at Alumni Stadium.
With the victory Notre Dame secures the #3 seed in the ACC North Region for the ACC Championship. The Irish will face North Carolina, the No. 2 seed in the South Region in the quarterfinals of the tournament at 2 p.m. ET on Sunday, Nov. 15 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. The match will air on ACCN.
Lynn led the way in the attack with a career-high three goals and junior Ben Giacobello had a career night with a goal and two assists.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Irish were on the front foot from the opening whistle and the early pressure paid off in the ninth minute. Freshman Matthew Radivojsa was taken down in the box to earn a penalty and Lynn produced a cool finish to give Notre Dame the early advantage.
Lynn recorded his first brace of the season in the 25th minute, as Giacobello slipped him in on goal and he slotted his effort through the Louisville keeper’s legs and into the net to double the Irish lead.
Just eight minutes later he secured his first half hat trick. Aiden McFadden played a beautiful cross into the box that set up perfectly for Lynn to put his laces through the half volley and blast the ball into the roof of the net to put the Irish on top 3-0 heading into the halftime break.
The visitors nearly cut the Irish lead to two in the 58th minute after being awarded a penalty. Senior goalkeeper Keagan McLaughlin was up to the task and made an outstretched diving save to his left to keep the Cardinals off the board.
However, Louisville did record their first goal of the night 10 minutes later off a goal from Haji Abdikadir to make the score 3-1.
The Irish quickly answered and put the match on ice in the 72nd minute when Giacobello tallied his first goal of the season on a perfect strike off a deflected shot to give Notre Dame the 4-1 win.
STAT OF THE MATCH
Lynn’s hat trick was the first for the Irish since Jon Gallagher recorded one in a 2017 win over Boston College.
HEAD COACH CHAD RILEY’S TAKE
On the performance…
“Overall it was a good victory. Louisville is a dangerous team that has some very good players that are hard to handle but with that I thought we did a good job most of the game. Some of our attacking moments were fantastic and to get three goals in the first half was a great job by the guys.”
On Jack Lynn’s hat trick…
“He’s been playing well this whole season, really his whole career, since he has been healthy. But I think he has taken his game to another level. He is clinical in the box, his hold up play is good and he works really hard. I think you are seeing that come to fruition. I’m not sure there is a better No. 9 around.”
On the penalty save by McLaughlin…
“It was fantastic. I told the guys that we have plenty of experienced guys and leaders and they need to help us finish this job and I think that was a huge moment for us in the game.”
On Giacobello’s goal…
“Anytime a team is chasing a game down by two and really pushing forward you know there is going to be space if you can connect in the attack and it was a great finish by Ben to give us that extra breathing room to see out the game.”
On what this performance means heading into the ACC Championships…
“Our confidence should be good but each game is going to be new. I think we proved some things to ourselves and I think if we do the simple things well and play with the right intensity we can be quite a good team.”
NOTES OF THE MATCH
- The Irish improve to 13-8-1 against Louisville in the all-time series and remain unbeaten at home against the Cardinals with a mark of 10-0-0.
- Notre Dame’s four goals were the most the Irish have scored during the 2020 campaign.
- The three-goal margin of victory by the Irish is the largest by either side in the series against the Cardinals since a 4-0 win by Notre Dame during the 2009 season, spanning 11 matchups.
- Lynn’s hat trick gives him a team-high six goals in just six matches this season. The junior now has 19 goals in his Irish career.
- Giacobello recorded a career-high four points off a goal and a career-high two assists. The junior now has three goals and three assists in his career.
- McFadden notched his team-best fourth assist of the season.
With the victory, the Irish clinch the No. 3 seed in the ACC North Region and will face UNC, the No. 2 seed of the ACC South Region. The Irish will play the Tar Heels in the ACC Championship quarterfinals at 2 p.m. ET on Sunday, Nov. 15 in Chapel Hill.
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