Sept. 27, 1999
NOTRE DAME, IND. – The Notre Dame men’s soccer team (3-4-1, 1-1-1) will look to end its three-game slide as the Irish begin a four-game homestand this week. Notre Dame returns home for the first time since September 14 when its plays host to Eastern Michigan on Wednesday, September 29 at 7:00 p.m. Coach Mike Berticelli’s squad resumes conference play when it entertains Syracuse on Saturday, October 2 at 7:30 p.m.
San Diego: Ryan Coiner scored three times to lead 14th-ranked San Diego to a 3-0 win over Notre Dame in the first game of the Saint Mary’s Tournament in Moraga, Calif. Coiner scored twice in the final 10 minutes of the contest. Coiner’s hat trick was the first scored against a Notre Dame team since the 1995 campaign when Medufia Kulego of St. John’s netted three goals in leading the Red Storm to a 6-0 victory on October 17, 1995. Coiner’s first goal came 10 minutes into the contest off a Brian O’Connor assist. His second and third goals came less than five minutes apart and were scored with just under 10 minutes to play in the contest. Coiner’s second score on the afternoon came off of a Garrett Turk assist at 81:14, while the third tally was an unassisted goal at 86:03. San Diego outshot Notre Dame 17-6 in the game. Irish goalkeeper Gerick Short (Mobile, Ala.) came up with a career-high nine saves in goal, marking the second straight game he has achieved a personal best in that category. Short had six saves on nine San Diego shots in the first half. Saint Mary’s: Notre Dame was shutout for the second straight game as the Irish dropped a 2-0 decision to Saint Mary’s in the second round of the Saint Mary’s Tournament. Notre Dame outshot Saint Mary’s 13-7 in the contest, but could not capitalize on any of its scoring chances. The game remained scoreless until the 78:41 mark of the contest when Jon Gordon booted in Oscar Bueno’s cross from the left side of the goal to give the home team a 1-0 advantage. Tony Cota added an insurance goal eight minutes later when his shot from the right corner of the goal got past Short with 3:05 remaining in the contest. Short turned in another solid performance with five saves in goal.
HEAD COACH MIKE BERTICELLI: Notre Dame head coach Mike Berticelli is in his 10th season at Notre Dame and his 24th as a collegiate coach. He has led Notre Dame to three of the school’s four NCAA tournament appearances (1993, 1994 and 1996). In 1996, his Irish squad won the school’s first-ever NCAA tournament game when it defeated second-seeded UNC Greensboro in the first round. Berticelli has a 99-75-17 (.563) mark at Notre Dame and is 286-130-40 (.671) overall. He coached his 450th career game against Boston College on September 4 and needs just one more victory to claim his 100th coaching win with the Irish. In three of the last six seasons, his Notre Dame teams have won conference tournament titles. Under Berticelli, the Irish claimed the 1996 BIG EAST tournament crown in just its second year as a member of the league with consecutive wins over ranked opponents Connecticut and Rutgers. During the 1993 and 1994 campaigns, the Irish won back-to-back MCC tournament crowns and earned berths in the NCAA tournament. Prior to coming to Notre Dame, he spent six seasons (1984-89) at Old Dominion where his teams compiled a 76-27-16 record for a .706 winning percentage. Berticelli coached for four years at UNC-Greensboro (1980-83) with his teams compiling a 70-9-5 record (.863) and winning two Division III national crowns in 1982 and 1983. His first head coaching stint was at Thomas College where he coached from (1976-79) with his teams posting a 41-19-2 mark during that four-year span. The Irish have won 10-plus games in six of his nine seasons at the Notre Dame helm.
IRISH FIND IT TOUGH TO SCORE: Scoring goals has been tough for the Irish in their first eight games. The five goals in the first eight games are the fewest scored by any Notre Dame team. Notre Dame has been shutout three times and suffered back-to-back losses this past weekend in losing to 14th-ranked San Diego (3-0) and Saint Mary’s (2-0). The Irish had not gone scoreless in two consecutive games since the opening two contests of the 1997 campaign.
SERIES RECORDS VS. UPCOMING OPPONENTS: Eastern Michigan: This will be the first-ever meeting between the two schools. Syracuse: Notre Dame holds a 3-2 advantage in the series and has won three of the four meetings between the two schools. Last year, the Irish posted a 3-1 victory over the Orangemen in Syracuse, N.Y. The Orangemen are 1-1 in the two games they have played at Alumni Field. Their last win over Notre Dame occurred at Alumni Field two years ago in a 1-0 victory.
BERTICELLI JUST ONE WIN AWAY FROM 100: Mike Berticelli, in his 10th season at Notre Dame, is just one win shy of his 100th coaching victory with the Irish. His current record stands at 99-75-17. Just the third coach in the 22-year history of the program, Berticelli would become the second Notre Dame coach to garner 100 wins. Rich Hunter, the program’s first head coach from 1977-83, produced a 128-32-8 mark during his seven-year tenure.
BRAUN FINDS THE GOAL AGAIN: Freshman Erich Braun has been the only multiple-goal scorer for the Irish. The rookie from Frankfurt, Germany, one of two Germans on the team, had the game-tying goal against Connecticut on September 19 in the eventual 2-1 overtime loss to the Huskies.
FRESHMEN OF INFLUENCE: Four of Notre Dame’s 10 freshman have started all eight games this season. Five rookies were in the starting lineup against Northwestern in the season opener, and in a four-game stretch in games versus Western Michigan, Pittsburgh, Cleveland State and Connecticut, there were six rookies starters. Seven of the 10 have played seen significant playing time and have appeared in six or more games. The seven freshman are: Justin Ratcliffe (Miami, Fla.), Andreas Forstner (Gerlinden, Germany), Erich Braun, Rafael Garcia (Palmdale, Calif.), Paul Rodriguez (San Antonio, Texas), Alan Lyskawa (Novi, Mich.) and Shea Helmle (Valrico, Fla.).
FRESHMAN SCORING BONANZA: Four of the five goals Notre Dame has scored this season have come from members of its freshman class. Erich Braun has scored twice as he produced the game-winner in a 1-0 shutout of Boston College and tallied the game-tying score in the eventual 2-1 overtime loss at Connecticut. Rafael Garcia scored the first goal of the season in the 1-0 win at Northwestern in the season opener, while midfielder Alan Lyskawa also had a goal in Notre Dame’s 1-1 tie at Pittsburgh.
HOME COOKIN’: After four consecutive road games, Notre Dame returns home and will play seven of its remaining 10 games at home. The Irish have a four-game homestand beginning with Eastern Michigan on September 29, which includes a stretch of six of seven games at Alumni Field. In fact, Coach Mike Berticelli’s squad will not leave the state of Indiana to play again until Wednesday, October 20 when it travels to West Virginia. Notre Dame is at Valparasio on Tuesday, October 12 in its only road contest before October 20.
GOING OVERTIME: Three of Notre Dame’s eight games this season have gone to overtime. The Irish own an 0-2-1 mark in those contests. Overtime games are something Notre Dame grew accustomed to a year ago as the Irish played six overtime contests in 1998. At one point during last season, Coach Mike Berticelli’s squad played a school-record five consecutive overtime contests.
SHORT IN GOAL: Prior to the start of the season, fifth-year player Gerick Short had only seen action in six total games throughout his career and had made just two starts. He also had not played in a game since midway through the 1996 campaign. This season, Short has played all 767:00 of the season and has recorded three shutouts. He has made 35 saves in ’99, including a personal best nine versus 14th-ranked San Diego. Short has a 1.06 goals against averaged and .795 save percentage.
McNEW GETS HIS STARTS: Graduation took its toll on the Notre Dame backfield with the losses of defenders Phil Murphy and David Cutler, central midfielder Matt Johnson and goalkeeper Greg Velho. The only returning starter in the backfield was sweeper Matt McNew, a three-year starter and second-team all-BIG EAST selection in 1998. He has started 65 of the 68 games he has played in during his Irish career, nearly double that of any other returnee in ’99. Only two other players on this year’s roster have started more than 25 games: Andrew Aris (36) and Ryan Cox (29).
HOME SWEET HOME: Notre Dame finished 5-1-2 at home last season and is 2-1 in 1999 as the Irish suffered a 1-0 overtime defeat to Western Michigan in the second home game of the season. This marks the 10th year for the Irish playing at Alumni Field where Notre Dame owns a 60-21-7 mark overall for a 72.2 winning percentage.
SETON HALL POSTPONEMENT: The inclement weather conditions in the Northeast because of Hurricane Floyd forced the postponement of Notre Dame’s game at Seton Hall on Friday, September 17. The contest has tentatively been rescheduled for Wednesday, November 3.
ND-RUTGERS CONTEST TO BE TELEVISED BY WHME: WHME-TV will televise tape-delayed Notre Dame’s matchup at Alumni Field against Rutgers on Sunday, October 17. The game, which is scheduled for 1:00 p.m., will be shown that same evening at 11:00 p.m. on WHME (TV 46).
1999 BIG EAST STANDINGS
BIG EAST Overall Record Record 1. West Virginia 3-0-1 (7) 7-2-1 2. Seton Hall 3-0-0 (6) 6-1-0 3. Rutgers 2-0-1 (5) 4-1-2 St. John's 1-1-3 (5) 3-1-3 5. Connecticut 2-0-0 (4) 5-2-0 6. Providence 2-2-0 (4) 3-3-1 7. Georgetown 1-1-1 (3) 4-3-1 8. NOTRE DAME 1-1-1 (3) 3-4-1 9. Syracuse 1-2-0 (2) 2-5-0 Boston College 1-3-0 (2) 3-3-0 11. Pittsburgh 0-3-1 (1) 2-4-2 12. Villanova 0-4-0 (0) 2-6-0