CHARLOTTESVILLE, Virginia — The seventh-ranked Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team dropped a hard-fought contest at No. 11/12 Virginia, 13-11, to open Atlantic Coast Conference play on Saturday afternoon. The setback dropped the Fighting Irish to 3-2 on the season and 0-1 in the league, while the Cavaliers improved to 5-2 (2-0 in ACC play).
Brian Willetts, Charles Leonard and Wheaton Jackoboice scored two goals apiece for the Irish, with Jackoboice adding a pair of assists. Brendan Gleason also recorded a pair of assists. Matt Schmidt made 11 saves in the cage for Notre Dame. The Irish won the faceoff battle, taking 15-of-26 in the category.
How It Happened
After Quinn McCahon opened the scoring to give the Irish a 1-0 lead, the Cavaliers rattled off the next three goals to hold a 3-1 advantage after the first quarter.
The teams traded goals early in the second quarter before the Irish attack took over and notched the next five goals to take a 7-4 lead into the half. Willetts opened the run with a pair of goals just 41 seconds apart to tie the game before Timmy Phillips found the back of the cage to give Notre Dame a 5-4 lead. Jackoboice then netted consecutive scores 52 seconds apart to give Notre Dame a 7-4 halftime lead.
The Cavaliers cut it to 7-5 just 18 seconds into the second half, but the Irish hit back with a three-goal run. First was Bryan Costabile, then Leonard added-on just eight seconds later. Connor Morin capped the outburst to make it 10-5.
Virginia came storming back, scoring the game’s next five goals to tie the score at 10 with 11:11 to play. Less than five minutes later, UVA regained the lead for the first time since midway through the second quarter (4-3) when Ian Laviano made it 11-10. The Cavaliers kept the momentum going, making it 12-10 with 5:12 to play.
McCahon cut the deficit to one with 2:54 left, but the Cavaliers responded to make it 13-11 with 54 seconds left in the contest. The teams traded turnovers in the closing seconds, but the Irish were unable to generate another shot.
Notre Dame will travel to Ann Arbor, Michigan, for a midweek showdown against Michigan. The game is set for 5 p.m. ET and can be seen on ESPNU.
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The University of Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team pursues excellence on and off the field through the three pillars in which the program is built: Character, Culture & Community. These three foundational values guide the promise of the program, which is to provide its student-athletes with the most compelling and enriching experience in all of college athletics. Through academics, competition, service and travel, the program aims to immerse its players in situations that enhance their student-athlete experience to help them become the people, students and teammates they aspire to be.
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