March 8, 2002
Notre Dame, Ind. – Notre Dame (0-2) vs. Rutgers (1-3)
Saturday, March 9, 2002
Loftus Sports Complex
Scouting the Irish: Notre Dame will be looking for its first win of the 2002 campaign after dropping consecutive one-goal decisions in its first two outings.
In their season opener at home, the Irish lost a 10-9 overtime decision to Penn State after erasing a three-goal third-quarter deficit. Coach Kevin Corrigan’s squad suffered a 7-6 setback at Pennsylvania as the Quakers scored the game-winning goal with 4:53 left in the contest. Sophomore Dan Berger leads the Irish in scoring with five goals. The Irish attackman netted a career-best four goals in the loss to Pennsylvania on Saturday. Senior Devin Ryan and sophomore Matt Howell each have tallied three goals, while senior midfield John Flandina has dished off four assists.
Sophomore Stewart Crosland has started both games in goals. He played the entire 60 minutes against Penn State and then played the first 30 minutes of the Pennsylvania. He has given up 15 goals and made 23 saves for a .605 save percentage and 7.36 goals against average. Junior Nick Antol played the final 30 minutes against the Quakers, giving up just two goals. Chad DeBolt has handled most of the faceoff duties for the Irish and has won 62.9 percent of those opportunities.
This is Notre Dame’s first 0-2 start since the 1995 when the Irish lost back-to-back road decision at Penn State (15-14) and at North Carolina (11-8).
Scouting the Scarlet Knights: Rutgers is 1-3 on the season after dropping its second straight contest to Albany 8-6 on Tuesday night. The Scarlet Knights, who opened the season ranked #24 in the nation, faced #4 Towson in their first game of the season, losing 15-8. Rutgers then rebounded with a 12-5 win over Manhattan, before falling to Delaware 12-10 and Albany. The second quarter has been the tough one for the Scarlet Knights as they are being outscored 12-7 in that period. Also, opposing goalies have done a good job stopping Rutgers, posting a .638 save percentage through the first four games of 2002.
Rutgers is led by freshman attack Jamie Lovejoy and sophomore middie Tim White, both who have 12 points in 2002. Lovejoy has one goal and 11 assists, while White has six goals and six assists. Junior attack Ken Springer leads the Scarlet Knights with eight goals, while freshman attack/midfielder Leif Blomquist is second on the team with seven goals.
Rutgers goalie play has been a question this season as sophomore Christopher Kenyon is off to a slow start with a 1-2 record and a goals against average of 10.90. He has allowed 32 goals on 66 shots this season. Freshman Craig Lutwyler started the Albany game for the Scarlet Knights, giving up eight goals in 31 shots for a 7.50 goals against average.
Series Record: Today’s matchup will be the fourth meeting between the two teams with the Irish holding a 2-1 advantage in the series. Last season at Rutgers, the Irish jumped out to an early 6-0 halftime time advantage en route to a final 9-4 victory. Both of Notre Dame’s wins in the series have been in Piscataway, N.J. Rutgers victory was in 1998 at Notre Dame as the Scarlet Knights defeated the Irish 13-12.
Home Sweet Home: Notre Dame was undefeated at home last season as the finished with a 6-0 mark. Since back-to-back 5-0 campaigns at home in 1994 and 1995, Irish teams own a 37-9 record for a winning percentage of 80.4 percent. Notre Dame has an all-time 90-28 (76.3 percent) home record since the program’s inaugural season in 1981. Since the ’94 campaign, Notre Dame has been undefeated at home four times.
Great Western Lacrosse League Intact: In 2001, the Great Western Lacrosse League welcomed Fairfield to its league membership. The League once again will be comprised of six teams: Air Force, Butler, Denver, Fairfield, Notre Dame and Ohio State. Notre Dame has won the GWLL five of the last six seasons, including three straight conference crowns.
Looks Familiar: Notre Dame’s 2002 schedule will feature the same 13 opponents it did a year ago. The Irish finished with a 12-1 record during the regular season, its only blemish was an 11-10 overtime loss to Hofstra. The Irish will look avenge that loss to the Pride this season when Hofstra pays a visit to Moose Krause Stadium on March 23.
Friend of Foe?: For the second straight year, Notre Dame will face perennial power Virginia in Charlottesville, Va. The contest once again will be a homecoming for Irish head coach Kevin Corrigan, a 1982 Cavalier graduate and former assistant coach at the school. Corrigan was an assistant during both the 1987 and ’88 campaigns under head coach Jimmy “Ace” Adams. He also enjoyed a three-year stint as a player, totaling five goals and six assists during his career. In his sophomore year (1979), the Cavaliers reached the NCAA final before losing to Johns Hopkins in overtime. This will be the fourth time Corrigan will be taking one of his Irish teams to Charlottesville. Last season, Notre Dame, sixth-ranked at the time, defeated the then seventh-ranked Cavaliers, 11-8, for Corrigan’s first-ever win over his alma mater, which also marked the school’s first win over Virginia.
All in the Family: Craig Bishko, a freshman midfield on this year’s Irish lacrosse team, is the brother of former Notre Dame standout Steve Bishko, a 2001 United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association (USILA) third-team All-America selection and three-year starter. The Bishkos are the fourth brother tandem to play lacrosse at Notre Dame. The others are Todd (1992-96) and Joe Bialous, Jason (1992-94, ’95) and Connor (’98) Pett and David (1998-2001) and Todd (1998-2001) Ulrich.
All in the Family II: Notre Dame’s men’s and women’s lacrosse teams are represented by members of both the Simon and Shearer families. Junior defenseman Eric Simon’s sister, Meredith, is a sophomore on the women’s lacrosse team, while freshman midfield Will Shearer’s sister, Danielle, also plays for head coach Tracy Coyne’s squad.
Making the Grade: Senior Owen Asplundh was recognized at the Academic Excellence Awards Dinner in the spring of 2001 by Notre Dame’s Office of Academic Services for Student-Athletes as the men’s lacrosse player with the highest cumulative grade-point average. Asplundh, who is enrolled in the College of Arts and Letters and is majoring in English and Afro-American studies, owns a cumulative 3.52 GPA following seven semesters.
Irish Face Tough Stretch: Today’s game is the first of three contests for the Irish in the next seven days. Notre Dame travels to Charlottesville, Va., to face Virginia on Tuesday, March 12 at 4:00 p.m. and then hosts the Loyola Greyhounds on Saturday, March 16 at 1:00 p.m.
Dan Berger – 5 goals
John Flandina – 4 assists
Matt Howell – 3 goals
Devin Ryan – 3 goals
Eric Simon – 9 ground balls