March 23, 2006
Notre Dame, Ind. –
â€¢ The Game: #10/#10 Notre Dame (7-1/1-0) vs. Canisius College (5-3/0-0)
â€¢ Date/Site/Time: Sat., March 25, 2006 – 1:00 p.m – Moose Krause Stadium – Notre Dame, Ind.
IRISH FACE GOLDEN GRIFFINS FOR FIRST TIME: The Notre Dame women’s lacrosse team returns home on Saturday, March 25 to face the Canisius College Golden Griffins in a 1:00 p.m. game at Moose Krause Stadium. For the Irish this will be their first home game outdoors and their last home game for over a month. They next play at home on Saturday, April 29 versus Syracuse. Notre Dame comes into its first-ever meeting with Canisius sporting a 7-1 record after losing last Sunday (March 19) at No. 1 ranked Northwestern, 21-12. That snapped the second-longest season-opening win streak (seven games) in the program’s 10-year history. Earlier in the week, the Irish opened BIG EAST play with a 13-9 win over No. 19 Loyola (Md.) in Wellington, Fla., as part of CSTV’s Spring Fling. Canisius College, located in Buffalo, N.Y., comes into the game with a 5-3 overall record and has yet to play a conference game in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC). The Golden Griffins have won three of their last four games, taking wins versus St. Francis (Pa.), Robert Morris and Binghamton, before dropping a 13-8 decision at Maryland-Baltimore County on Tuesday, March 21. The Irish come into the game ranked 10th in both the IWLCA poll and the Inside Lacrosse poll.
NOTRE DAME VERSUS CANISIUS COLLEGE: The Irish and Golden Griffins meet for the first time in the program’s history. Irish head coach Tracy Coyne is no stranger to two members of the Canisius College team. Sophomore Alana Chan played for Coyne as a member of Team Canada at the 2005 World Cup last summer and fellow sophomore, Whitney Card, spent time with Team Canada during the year but was not on the World Cup roster.
HEAD COACH Tracy Coyne: Notre Dame head coach Tracy Coyne is in her 10th season as the head coach of the Irish and is the only coach in the program’s Division I history. Coyne owns a 79-61 (.564) record at Notre Dame and is 193-87 (.689) in her 19-year coaching career. Her 2006 Irish squad has started the season with a 7-0 record, quite a turnaround from last year’s 3-12 overall mark and 1-4 record in the BIG EAST. The Irish lost seven games by three goals or less, including four, one-goal decisions. The year before, 2004, Coyne led the Irish to a 12-5 overall record and second place in the BIG EAST with a 4-2 record. She was selected the 2004 BIG EAST coach of the year. Notre Dame advanced to the NCAA tournament for the second time in the program’s history, dropping a 10-8 decision at Northwestern. The Pittsburgh, Pa., native led Denison (1988) and Roanoke (1990, 1991, 1992, 1994, 1996) to the NCAA Division III tournament during stops at those schools. A 1983 graduate of Ohio University, Coyne has coached on the international level as the head coach for the Canadian women’s lacrosse national team since 1999. Last year, she led Team Canada to a fourth-place finish at the 2005 World Cup, her second fourth-place finish (2001) as Canada’s field boss. This is Coyne’s first meeting against Canisius.
STREAK BUSTERS: The No. 1 Northwestern Wildcats handed Notre Dame its first loss of the season on March 19 in Evanston, Ill., rallying from a 9-8 halftime deficit on the way to a 21-12 win. Notre Dame got off to a fast start in the game, taking 6-2 and 8-4 leads before Northwestern cut the lead to one goal at the intermission. The Wildcats then scored nine unanswered goals to open the second half to build a 17-9 lead on the way to the final of 21-12. Senior Crysti Foote (Suffern, N.Y.) paced the Notre Dame attack with six goals in the game. Jillian Byers (Fr., Northport, N.Y.) added two goals and an assist and Heather Ferguson (So., Newtown Square, Pa.) also had three points with a goal and two assists. Caitlin McKinney (So., Lafayette Hill, Pa.) score once and set up a goal while Alicia Billings (Fr., Potomac, Md.) and Meghan Murphy (Jr., Centennial, Colo.) each had a goal for the Irish. Northwestern out shot the Irish, 40-24, in the game. Carol Dixon (Sr., Pennsauken, N.J.) faced all 40 shots and made 12 saves in goal for the Irish. The win was the fourth straight for Northwestern over Notre Dame.
VERSUS NO. 1: When Notre Dame faced No. 1 Northwestern on March 19, it marked just the second time in the program’s history that the Irish faced the No. 1 team in the country. On May 12, 2002, the Irish faced No. 1 ranked Princeton in the NCAA Quarterfinals at Princeton where they dropped an 11-5 decision to the eventual national champions. Notre Dame is now 0-2 all-time versus No. 1 ranked teams.
UNLUCKY 21: The 21 goals scored by Northwestern equaled the most goals ever given up by a Notre Dame women’s lacrosse team. On April 13, 1997, the Irish gave up 21 goals in a 21-10 loss at St. Joseph’s. Notre Dame has surrendered 20 or more goals in a game just three times in the program’s history.
GOAL-SCORING RAMPAGE: Notre Dame comes into the game with Canisius ranked second in the nation in goals per game with 15.88 per game (Northwestern is first with 17.33). Through eight games, the Irish have scored more goals (127) than any team in the country. The Notre Dame record for goals-per-game in a season is 13.56 (nine games) and was set in the program’s first season, 1997. The school record in a 15-game season is 13.33 and was set in 1999. Last season, the Irish scored 145 goals in 15 games for a 9.67 goals-per-game mark.
FAST START: Notre Dame’s 7-1 start is tied for the second-best start after eight games in the program’s 10 seasons. The 2002 team was also 7-1 after eight games while the 2004 team was 8-0 on the way to a 10-0 start.
TERRIFIC TRIO: Notre Dame’s high-scoring trio of Crysti Foote, Jill Byers and Caitlin McKinney ranks second, 12th and 23rd respectively in points-per-game nationally. Through the first eight games of the season, the trio has combined for 82 goals and 41 assists for 123 points. Foote leads the way with 35 goals and 16 assists. Byers is second with 28 tallies and 11 assists for 39 points while McKinney has 19 goals and 14 assists for 33 points. Byers has two game-winning goals and Foote has one on the season.
BYERS BEWARE: Freshman attack standout Jillian Byers continued her outstanding rookie season with five goals and one assist last week in games versus Loyola (Md.) and Northwestern. Already this year, Byers has set a Notre Dame freshman record for points in a game after recording nine points (5g, 4a) versus Lehigh. Byers had five goals and an assist in the first half and then set up three goals in the second half of the game. Byers nine-point game also tied an Irish record for points in a home game, matching the nine points recorded by Kerry Callahan `99 (6g, 3a) on March 24, 1997 versus Stanford and Lael O’Shaughnessy `01 (6g, 3a) on March 28, 1999 vs. Connecticut. On the year, Byers has 28 goals and 11 assists for 39 points in eight games. She needs just three points to set the Notre Dame freshman mark for points in a season.
Freshman Scoring Leaders:
1. Courtney Calabrese (1998) 38- 3-41 Lael O'Shaughnessy (1998) 27-14-413. Caitlin McKinney (2005) 28-12-404. Jillian Byers (2006) 28-11-395. Crysti Foote (2003) 27-11-38
FOOTE LOOSE: Senior Crysti Foote is on her way to a record-shattering season for the Irish. Through the first eight games this season, Foote has already recorded career highs in goals (35) and points (51) while equaling her career best with 16 assists. As of March 20, she led the nation in all three categories and while being second in the NCAA rankings in points per game with 6.38 per game. In the Irish record books, here’s where she ranks:
Career Goals: 1. Danielle Shearer `03 130 2. Lael O'Shaughnessy `01 122 Crysti Foote `06 122
Career Points: 1. Danielle Shearer `03 196 2. Lael O'Shaughnessy `01 190 3. Crysti Foote `06 174
Career Assists: 1. Lael O'Shaughnessy `01 68 2. Danielle Shearer `03 66 3. Kerry Callahan `99 63 4. Crysti Foote `06 52
Draw Controls: 1. Alissa Moser `02 126 2. Tina Fedarcyk `02 96 3. Meredith Simon `04 91 4. Kathryn Lam `02 90 5. Crysti Foote `06 78
IRISH STREAKS: Several Notre Dame players have scoring streaks going into the game with Northwestern. Some carry over from last season, the others just started in 2006:
Crysti Foote - 18-game streak (61-28-89)Caitlin McKinney - 11-game streak (27-15-42)Jill Byers - 8 games (28-11-39)Brittany Fox - 3 games (5-2-7)Kaki Orr - 3 games (5-2-7)Jane Stoeckert - 3 games (2-3-5)Heather Ferguson - 2 games (2-3-5)Alicia Billings - 2 games (1-1-2)
Former Irish attack standout, Danielle Shearer `03 holds the Notre Dame record by scoring in 36 consecutive games between 4/25/01 and 5/1/03, getting 85 goals and 51 assists for 136 points in her streak. The streak was still active when her collegiate career ended.
BIG EAST HONOR ROLL: Crysti Foote was selected to the BIG EAST honor roll for the week ending March 19. In two games, Foote scored eight goals (six versus Northwestern and two versus Loyola). She has been named BIG EAST offensive player of the week twice this season and to the conference honor roll in the other two weeks.
LARGE MARGIN: Notre Dame’s 20-4 win over Lehigh was the third-largest margin of victory in the program’s 10-year history. The Irish own a 19-goal win over Ohio (22-3 in 2000) and an 18-goal win against Denver (20-2 in 2001).
BEST IN THE NATION: Notre Dame’s freshman class was rated No. 1 in the nation by Inside Lacrosse magazine in its November, 2005 issue. The story had this to say about the 10-player class: “Coming off a disappointing 3-12 season, the Fighting Irish have high hopes for 2006 with Jill Byers leading a powerful class that includes immediate contributors Jane Stoeckert (Mendham, N.J.), Mary Veith (Silver Springs, Md.) and Alicia Billings (Potomac, Md.). Goalie Erin Goodman (Cortlandt Manor, N.Y.) adds strength for the future.” As part of the story, the magazine’s list of “Blue Chip” recruits listed Jill Byers and Jane Stoeckert among its top 10 incoming freshmen.
THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT: Notre Dame’s freshman class has lived up to its top billing in 2006. Jillian Byers has led the way with 28 goals and 11 assists for 39 points in eight games, including a sudden-death overtime game winner versus Stanford and the game winner against Lehigh. Jane Stoeckert has five goals and five assists for 10 points, collecting the game-winning goal against Cornell and then setting up the game winner versus James Madison. Alicia Billings (Potomac, Md.) has four goals and two assists on the year and has been a force in the midfield. Shannon Burke (Baltimore, Md.) has seen action on defense in three games as has Kelly Gaudreau (Annapolis, Md.). Annemarie McGrath (Wayne, Pa.) has played in two games and Beth Koloup (Phoenix, Md.), Lauren deMello (Manlius, N.Y.) and Erin Goodman each saw their first action versus Lehigh.
STICKLER FOR STOECKERT: Freshman Jane Stoeckert turned in a career-high three-point game (2g, 1a) in Notre Dame’s 13-9 win over Loyola on March 16. That came one game after setting up the game-winning goal in the 12-11 win over James Madison on March 12. She has five goals and five assists for 10 points in her first eight games.
KILLER DEFENSE: Senior defender Katie Killeen (Manhasset, N.Y.) turned in a career high four ground balls and four caused turnovers in the loss to Northwestern. Killeen is one of the team’s top defenders off the bench this season after missing most of her first three years at Notre Dame due to injuries.
HONOR ROLL: Junior defensive standout Meaghan Fitzpatrick (Farmingdale, N.Y.) was named to the BIG EAST honor roll for her play on the defensive side of the ball for the week ending March 5. She had seven ground balls, three draw controls and five caused turnovers in the two Irish wins. For the year, she leads the Irish with 21 ground balls and is third in caused turnovers with eight.
DIXON IN GOAL: Senior goalkeeper Carol Dixon has now started 40 straight games for the Irish since taking over the goalkeeping duties in the 2004 season. In that streak, Dixon has missed just 43:20 minutes of playing time. For her career, Dixon is now 22-18 with a 10.02 goals-against average and a .478 save percentage. On the year, she is 7-1 with an 11.28 goals against and a .470 save percentage.
FOR STARTERS: Freshman Jill Byers didn’t take long to adapt to the college game after an outstanding high school career at Northport (NY) High School. It took less than two minutes (1:59) for her to get her first career assist and then less than six minutes to score her first two career goals. In her first game versus California, the lightning-quick Byers set Irish records for goals in a first game by a freshman (5) and points in a first game with 8. She finished her first weekend as a collegiate player with 10 goals and 3 assists for 13 points. She was selected by womenslacrosse.com as their player and rookie of the week for Feb. 28.
COMEBACK KIDS: Even with a 7-1 record to start the year, Notre Dame has had to come from behind in three of those games. Versus Stanford (2/26), the Irish trailed 5-1 at halftime, tied the game in regulation and took their only lead with the winning goal in overtime. Against James Madison, the Irish trailed 7-3 at halftime, but rallied for a 12-11 win. In the 13-9 victory versus Loyola (3/16), the Irish trailed 5-2 in the first half and were tied 7-7 at halftime. The loss to Northwestern is the first for the Irish when leading at halftime.
VERSUS THE BEST: Nine teams currently ranked in the top 20 in this week’s IWLCA poll are on the Notre Dame schedule this season. The list includes No. 1 Northwestern, No. 2 Duke and No. 4 Georgetown. Those three are followed by Syracuse (No. 14), Cornell (No. 16), James Madison (No. 17), Stanford (No. 18), Vanderbilt (No. 19) and Loyola (No.20). This season, the Irish are 4-1 against those teams with the lone loss to No. 1 Northwestern. Only Cornell, Loyola and Northwestern were ranked in the IWLCA poll when the Irish faced them this season. All-time, Notre Dame is 17-39 versus teams ranked in the IWCLA polls.
GETTING BETTER EVERY DAY: Sophomore Caitlin McKinney (Lafayette Hill, Pa.) is well on her way to having a career season in her second campaign with the Irish. Through eight games, the fleet-footed McKinney has 19 goals and 14 assists for 33 points to rank third on the team in scoring. As a freshman, she just missed the Irish freshman scoring record (41 points) as she had 28 goals and 12 assists for 40 points. She finished the year by being named second team all-BIG EAST selection, the lone freshman on that team, and was a second-team all-Mid-Atlantic region choice. Following the season, the speedster was named to the U.S. National Developmental Team.
IRISH GOAL MARK: Notre Dame’s 23-goal outburst versus California on Feb. 24, set a school record for goals in a game for the Irish. The previous mark was 22 and was done twice in the past. On March 10, 2000, the Irish scored 22 goals in a 22-3 home win versus Ohio University. They followed that with a 22-11 win on May 1, 2003 at Vanderbilt.
CLOSE ONES: In 2005, Notre Dame lost seven games by a total of three goals or fewer. Four of those games were one-goal losses and two came in overtime. In seven of the 12 losses, the Irish lost by a combined 13 goals (1.86 goals per game) and in the 12 losses for the season, they were out scored by a total of 42 goals (3.50 per loss). This season, the Irish have turned the tables, already winning two games by one goal – a 12-11 overtime win at Stanford and a 12-11 win over James Madison on March 12.