March 23, 2004
No. 15 IRISH WELCOME No. 13 HOFSTRA FOR WEDNESDAY NIGHT GAME: The 15th-ranked University of Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team (1-3) will try to snap a three-game losing streak on Wednesday when it plays host to #13 Hofstra (2-3) at 7 p.m. (EST) in the Loftus Sports Center. Six of the last eight contests between the schools have been decided by one goal, including a pair of overtime affairs.
FOLLOWING THE NOTRE DAME-HOFSTRA GAME: Fans and media unable to attend Wednesday’s game will be able to obtain a live internet audio broadcast of the contest via the official website of Hofstra athletics, www.hofstra.edu/sports. The radio broadcast will be available in the New York area on WRHU-FM 88.7. For other ways to follow the Irish, see “Keeping Up With ND Men’s Lacrosse” at the end of this release.
HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS NOTES PACKAGE: Below are some of the top points from this notes package. For more details on any topic, consult the remainder of this release.
* Notre Dame has lost three in a row after opening the season with a 17-7 victory over #17 Penn State. Since then, the Irish have lost to #3 Syracuse (19-13), #9 North Carolina (14-11), and #16 Loyola (13-7).
* The Irish fell five spots to 15th in this week’s USILA national rankings.
* The Irish return 20 monogram winners, including eight starters, from last year’s team. Among those are sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.), who led all Division I freshmen in scoring last season en route to setting a Notre Dame rookie scoring record and becoming the first Irish freshman to earn All-America accolades (honorable mention by USILA). In addition, he was the GWLL Newcomer of the Year.
* Hofstra enters the game 2-3 and ranked 13th in the nation. The Pride have wins against #7 Loyola (9-8) and Binghamton (14-9) and have lost to Cornell (14-12), #1 Johns Hopkins (13-6), and #6 Princeton (10-5).
* Hofstra leads the series with the Irish 6-4 and has won each of the last five meetings between the teams.
* Six of the last eight games between Notre Dame and the Pride have been decided by just one goal, including a pair of overtime decisions.
* Of the 43 players on Notre Dame’s roster, 16 are from Long Island, which also features Hempstead, the home of Hofstra University.
* Notre Dame leads the GWLL and ranks eighth in the nation in scoring offense (12.00 goals per game).
* Notre Dame is the top team in Division I in converting extra-man opportunities (10-18, .556). The Irish had a streak of nine consecutive goals on EMOs earlier this season (last six chances vs. Penn State and first three at Syracuse).
* Sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.) is the GWLL’s leading scorer (4.50 points per game), ranking tied for sixth in the nation. He has nine goals and nine assists for 18 points.
* Notre Dame has been plagued by slow starts of late, falling behind 5-1 against North Carolina and 7-1 at Loyola.
* Notre Dame will be playing indoors for the fourth time in five games this season.
* Sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.) was one of 26 players named to the watch list for the 2004 Tewaaraton Trophy, awarded to the nation’s top player at the conclusion of the season.
* Senior A Dan Berger (Phoenix, Md./Boys’ Latin H.S.) and sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.) earned preseason honorable mention All-America honors from Inside Lacrosse magazine.
* Notre Dame boasts one of the most experienced coaching staffs in the nation. Head coach Kevin Corrigan and assistants Kevin Anderson and Guy Van Arsdale combine for 50 years of college and pro coaching experience heading into 2004. Thirty-two of those years have been as head coaches. Only three Division I teams have more years of combined coaching experience than the Irish, and just four have more previous seasons as head coaches.
* This year’s Irish schedule is highlighted by a pair of road trips to Final Four teams from last year (L, 19-13 at Syracuse; May 1 at Maryland) and four home games against ’03 NCAA participants. In all, nine of the 12 Irish opponents are either ranked or receiving votes in this week’s USILA poll.
LAST TIME ON THE FIELD: Notre Dame again suffered from a slow start, falling behind 7-1 en route to dropping a 13-7 decision against #16 Loyola Saturday afternoon at Geppi-Aikens Field. Notre Dame, which was down 5-1 in last Sunday’s loss to #9 North Carolina, was led offensively by sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.), who had two goals and an assist.
The Greyhounds scored the first four goals of the game – including three in a 1:08 span – before the Irish got on the board with a score from sophomore M Brian Hubschmann (Short Hill, N.J./Delbarton H.S.). Loyola then scored three more times to open up a six-goal advantage with nine minutes remaining in the first half. Walsh and senior M Steve Clagett (Chesapeake Beach, Md./DeMatha Catholic H.S.) answered with goals and, after another Greyhound score, senior A Matt Howell (Huntington, N.Y./Huntington H.S.) took a pass from Hubschmann to make the score 8-4 heading into the locker room.
Senior M Owen Mulford (Ocean City, Md./Loyola Blakefield H.S.) scored his first of the season 5:05 into the third period to cut the lead to three. After a Greyhound tally 40 seconds later, senior A Dan Berger (Phoenix, Md./Boys’ Latin H.S.) netted a goal with 7:08 left to make it 9-6. Loyola would score four of the game’s final five goals, with just an unassisted tally from Walsh late in the game breaking up the Greyhound assault.
For the third straight game, Notre Dame lost the ground ball battle. Loyola’s 43 were 10 more than the Irish managed, and the Greyhounds held a 13-6 edge in both the first and fourth quarters. Sophomores D D.J. Driscoll (Downington, Pa./Malvern Preparatory School) and M Matt Ryan (Ridley Park, Pa./Ridley H.S.) led the Irish with four ground balls each.
SNAPSHOT OF THE IRISH: Notre Dame’s men’s lacrosse program has experienced a wealth of success since the arrival of head coach Kevin Corrigan in 1989. In his 15 seasons, Corrigan has guided Notre Dame to a winning record 12 times, including 10 seasons with nine or more victories, compiling a 133-77 (.633) mark. The Irish have earned 10 berths to the NCAA Championship, including quarterfinal apperances in 1995 and 2000 and a Final Four trip in 2001. Notre Dame has 33 victories over ranked opponents, including eight vs. top-10 teams and hold a 69-22 (.758) overall record at home. Notre Dame has won 12 conference titles (9 Great Western Lacrosse League, 3 Great Lakes Conference) in that span. Since the formation of the GWLL in 1994, the Irish are 34-4 (.895) in conference play — including 20-1 (.952) at home — winning at least a share of the league championship in every season except 1998. Notre Dame has had at least one All-American in each of the last 11 seasons, a total of 22 honorees since 1994. In addition, the Irish have garnered 79 all-conference honors, highlighted by four GWLL player-of-the-year awards.
The 2004 Irish team returns 20 monogram winners and eight starters from last year’s squad that was 9-5, won a share of a fifth consecutive GWLL title and finished 18th in the final USILA national rankings.
On paper, there are few teams in Division I that can match the offensive firepower Notre Dame boasts this season, as evidenced by the Irish ranking first in the GWLL and eighth in the nation in scoring (12.00 per game). Headlining that group is sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.), who was the highest-scoring freshman in the country last season en route to setting a Notre Dame freshman scoring record and becoming the first Irish rookie ever to earn All-America honors. His 32 assists matched the Notre Dame record, led the GWLL, and ranked sixth nationally (2.29 per game), including tops by far among freshmen (the second-best mark was 1.73). Walsh leads the conference and is tied for sixth nationally in scoring this season with nine goals and nine assists (4.50 points per game). Junior A Dan Berger (Phoenix, Md./Boys’ Latin H.S.) has been Notre Dame’s leading goal scorer in each of the last two seasons, establishing himself as one of the best finishers in Division I. A two-time first-team all-GWLL honoree and preseason honorable mention All-America selection by Inside Lacrosse, he had 32 goals in 2003, which ranked 18th in the nation (2.29 per game). He already has a pair of hat tricks this spring, bringing his career total to 13. Senior A Matt Howell (Huntington, N.Y./Huntington H.S.) entered the season as one of Notre Dame’s top attackmen for the third straight year, but he was plagued by injuries in each of the two previous campaigns. Despite missing five contests in 2003, he ranked ninth in the nation in points per game (3.78) and eighth in assists per game (2.11). He ranks second behind Walsh in scoring (8 goals, 6 assists) this season. Freshman A Brian Boyle (Derry, N.H./Pinkerton Academy) is the only reserve attackman to have played in each of the first four games.
As on attack, Notre Dame’s midfield boasts outstanding depth. Back as a starter for the third consecutive season is junior M Brian Giordano (Princeton, N.J./Hun School), who has been Notre Dame’s top offensive middie over the last two-plus seasons. A first-team all-GWLL honoree last season and an All-America candidate in 2004, he has five goals and four assists through three games. Joining Giordano in starting roles are sophomores M Matt Ryan (Ridley Park, Pa./Ridley H.S.) and M Brian Hubschmann (Short Hills, N.J./Delbarton H.S.), who were top reserves a year ago. Hubschmann matched his season total from ’03 with a six-point (two goals, four assists) performance in this year’s season opener and has six goals and five assists overall. Another sophomore, M Matt Karweck (Penn Yan, N.Y./Penn Yan Academy), had four goals against Penn State and has eight on the season. Among the other top reserves are seniors M Steve Clagett (Chesapeake Beach, Md./DeMatha Catholic H.S.) and M Owen Mulford (Ocean City, Md./Loyola Blakefield H.S.), who are two of just three players on the Irish roster to have already won three monograms. Both got their first goals of the season at Loyola. Sophomore M Drew Peters (Babylon, N.Y./Babylon H.S.) and freshman M Bill Liva (Bryn Mawr, Pa./Malvern Preparatory School) also have been key players off the bench. Another rookie, M Ryan Cunn (West Islip, N.Y./West Islip H.S.), started in the Irish midfield in fall ball before suffering a season-edning anterior cruciate ligament injury in a scrimmage against the MLL’s Boston Cannons on Feb. 14.
Juniors M Craig Bishko (West Islip, N.Y./West Islip H.S.) and M Frank Matarazzo (Franklin Lakes, N.J./Bergen Catholic H.S.) have split time in the faceoff circle for the Irish this spring. Bishko was Notre Dame’s top draw man a year ago and has won 23-35 (.397) this season, while Matarazzo has been successful on 23-31 (.426) attempts, including a career-high 10 won against Syracuse.
Junior M Chris Richez (Freeport, N.Y./Freeport H.S.), senior M Chris Masterson (West Hempstead, N.Y./Chaminade H.S.), and sophomore M Brandon Schultheis (Babylon, N.Y./Babylon H.S.) are Notre Dame’s top longstick midfielders. The role is new for Richez, who had 10 goals and seven assists in his first two seasons as a regular middie, and his athleticism and prior experience make him an occasional offensive threat.
Though Notre Dame’s defense is not quite as experienced as the other Irish units, it nonethless boasts a number of battle-tested players. Senior D Mickey Blum (Garden City, N.Y./Garden City H.S.) is in his third year as a starter on the Irish defense, while another senior, D Brennan Creaney (Baltimore, Md./Loyola Blakefield H.S.), also is back after starting the first 10 games of last season before suffering an injury. Sophomore D D.J. Driscoll (Downington, Pa./Malvern Preparatory School) became the first defenseman and just the second freshman ever to lead Notre Dame in ground balls a year ago, with 61. A second-team all-GWLL honoree, he was a large reason the Irish ranked second in the nation in ground balls per game. He leads the team with 16 in 2004.
The final line of defense has senior G Stewart Crosland (Bethesda, Md./Landon School) manning the cage again in 2004. He got a taste of being the top Notre Dame goalie two seasons ago before establishing himself as not only the best goalkeeper on the Irish, but one of the elite players at the position in the country in 2003. Crosland was fifth in Division I in save percentage (.626) a year ago and ranked 11th in goals-against average (7.49), leading the Great Western Lacrosse League in both categories. In 2004, he has a 13.25 GAA and .509 save percentage.
IRISH vs. PRIDE: Hofstra stands 2-3 and ranked 13th in the most recent USILA rankings after being 11th earlier in the season. The Pride, who had four consecutive home games to kick off 2004, began the year by losing 14-12 to Cornell. Hofstra then beat #7 Loyola 9-8 and Binghamton 14-9 before losing 13-6 to #1 Johns Hopkins and 10-5 to #6 Princeton. Leading the Pride in scoring is junior M Ryan Vilar, who has 15 points (nine goals, six assists). Freshman A Athan Ianucci has 12 (five goals, seven assists), while sophomore M Tim Treubig leads Hofstra with 10 goals (one assist, 11 points). Sophomore D Brett Moyer leads the Pride in ground balls, with 22. Sophomore G Matthew Southard is 2-3 with a 10.80 goals-against average and .565 save percentage.
Hofstra returned 20 letterwinners, including seven starters, from last year’s squad that was 11-6, finished second in the Colonial Athletic Association (4-1, tournament runner-up), and fell 9-6 in the opening round of the NCAA Championship to Massachusetts to end up 10th in the final rankings. Among the returnees is junior D Brian Zuchelli, named honorable mention All-America in ’03. John Danowski is in his 19th season leading the Pride, having compiled a 165-106 (.609) mark. In his 22nd year as a head coach, he is 192-122 (.611).
Notre Dame and Hofstra will meet for the eighth year in a row and 11th time overall. The Pride leads the series 6-4 and have won each of the last five. Hofstra took the initial meeting, 10-5 in 1991, before the Irish won four in a row (1992-93, ’97-98). Since then the Pride has won each contest, including a pair in overtime and two one-goal decisions. Six of the last eight times the teams have played, the contest has been decided by just one goal. Notre Dame’s last win was an 8-4 decision against the ninth-ranked Pride in the final game of 1998 at Moose Krause Stadium. The Pride has won in each of its last two trips to Notre Dame after losing in its initial two visits.
Two of the more notable prior meetings between the schools came in 1997 and 2001. In the former matchup, the 13th-ranked Irish upset #4 Hofstra 10-9 at Moose Krause Stadium. That Pride team still stands as the highest-ranked squad ever to lose at Notre Dame. In ’01, unranked Hofstra upset the #2 Irish 11-10 in overtime in Hempstead, N.Y. That was the only regular-season loss in 13 games for that Final-Four-bound Notre Dame team.
Jim Femminella’s seventh goal of the game, with 7:22 remaining, gave 15th-ranked Hofstra a 9-8 win over #11 Notre Dame on March 31, 2003, in Hempstead, N.Y. The Irish, who led 3-1 after one period and scored three straight to take an 8-7 advantage in the third, got a career-high five goals — on six shots — from A Dan Berger (Phoenix, Md./Boys’ Latin H.S.).
IRISH DROP TO 15TH IN USILA RANKINGS: After Saturday’s loss to #16 Loyola, Notre Dame dropped five spots to 15th in this week’s United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Associaion (USILA) Geico/STX Coaches Poll. The current three-game losing streak has seen the Irish plummet 10 spots from its No. 5 ranking two weeks ago. Johns Hopkins remained first, while Maryland is second, Syracuse is third, North Carolina moved up four spots to fourth, and Princeton is fifth. Ten of Notre Dame’s 12 opponents this season are either ranked or receiving votes in the poll. Notre Dame also ranks 15th in the Inside Lacrosse media poll this week.
NOTRE DAME-HOFSTRA CONNECTIONS: Sixteen of the 43 players on Notre Dame’s roster are from Long Island, which also features Hempstead, N.Y., the home of Hofstra University. Additionally, three sets of high school teammates will square off against each other on Wednesday. Notre Dame sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.) and Hofstra senior M Keith Mekeel both went to Wantagh High School, while Irish senior A Matt Howell (Huntington, N.Y./Huntington H.S.) and Pride freshman G Bill Liedke played together at Huntington High School. In a non-Long Island connection, sophomores M Matt Ryan (Ridley Park, Pa./Ridley H.S.) of Notre Dame and D Brett Moyer of Hofstra were in the same class at Ridley High School in southeast Pennsylvania. Other Irish players native to Long Island are seniors D Mickey Blum (Garden City, N.Y./Garden City H.S.), A Paul Cappelli (Garden City, N.Y./Garden City H.S.) and LSM Chris Masterson (West Hempstead, N.Y./Chaminade H.S.); juniors M Craig Bishko (West Islip, N.Y./West Islip H.S.), A Matt Malakoff (Bay Shore, N.Y./Bay Shore H.S.), and LSM Chris Richez (Freeport, N.Y./Freeport H.S.); sophomores G Daniel Hickey (Garden City, N.Y./Chaminade H.S.), M Drew Peters (Babylon, N.Y./Babylon H.S.), G Sean Quigley (Rockville Centre, N.Y./Chaminade H.S.), LSM Brandon Schultheis (Babylon, N.Y./Babylon H.S.), D James Severin (Bayville, N.Y./Chaminade H.S.), and D William Sullivan (Babylon, N.Y./Chaminade H.S.); and freshmen M Ryan Cunn (West Islip, N.Y./West Islip H.S.) and M John Greaney (Babylon, N.Y./Babylon H.S.).
WALSH LEADS GWLL IN SCORING: Sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.) is the leading scorer in the Great Western Lacrosse League, and he is tied for sixth in the nation in points per game (4.50). Through four contests, he has nine goals and nine assists. Butler’s Kyle Tietjen is second in the GWLL in scoring, with 3.86 points per game. Walsh is second to Troy Bamann of Fairfield (2.60) in the conference in assists (2.25) and eighth in the country. A year ago, Walsh led Division I freshmen in scoring (3.71) and assists (2.29) and led all GWLL players in the latter category, while being third in the former.
IRISH LEAD NATION IN MAN-UP OFFENSE: Notre Dame has scored 10 goals in 18 extra-man opportunities this season for a .556 percentage that is tops in Division I. Duke is second in the nation in man-up offense, having scored 15 times on 28 chances (.536). The Irish converted on nine consecutive EMOs at one point early in the season. After an unsuccessful first-quarter attempt in the season opener against Penn State, the Irish scored on all six of their remaining man-up chances against the Nittany Lions, as well as their first three in the following game, at Syracuse. Since that run, though, the Irish have scored on just one of eight EMOs, with Loyola killing all four Notre Dame man-up chances last Saturday. Sophomore M Matt Karweck (Penn Yan, N.Y./Penn Yan Academy) leads the Irish with three man-up goals. Notre Dame was 19-51 (.373) on EMOs last year, finishing 11th in the nation.
NOTRE DAME TOP OFFENSIVE TEAM IN GWLL: Notre Dame is averaging 12.00 goals per game this season, making it the highest-scoring team in the Great Western Lacrosse League and the ninth-highest in Division I. Denver is second with an average of 10.40 per game. The Irish were 13th nationally in scoring offense in 2003 with an average of 10.36 goals per game.
AN EXTENSIVE ARRAY OF WEAPONS: Through four games this season, Notre Dame has seen its offensive production come from a variety of areas, as seven players have six or more points and six have scored five or more goals. Leading the way is sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.) with nine goals and nine assists (18 points), while senior A Matt Howell (Huntington, N.Y./Huntington H.S.) has 14 points (8 g, 6 a), sophomore M Brian Hubschmann (Short Hills, N.J./Delbarton H.S.) has 11 (6 g, 5 a), and junior M Brian Giordano (Princeton, N.J./Hun School) has 11 (6 g, 5 a). In addition, sophomore M Matt Karweck (Penn Yan, N.Y./Penn Yan Academy) has netted eight goals, while senior A Dan Berger (Phoenix, Md./Boys’ Latin H.S.) has seven (plus one assist). Sophomore M Matt Ryan (Ridley Park, Pa./Ridley H.S.) has six points (3 g, 3 a).
DIGGING A HOLE: Slow starts have plagued Notre Dame this season. On Saturday at Loyola, the Greyhounds jumped out to a 7-1 lead and the Irish could never cut the lead to less than three en route to a 13-7 defeat. In the previous Notre Dame game — March 14 vs. North Carolina — the Irish scored first before the Tar Heels netted five straight goals. Notre Dame could never cut the lead to less than two, and UNC went on to win 14-11. The Irish fell behind 4-2 in the first quarter at Syracuse before coming back to lead 10-7 prior to an Orangemen run that put the game away (19-13 final score). Notre Dame trailed 5-4 midway through the second period of the season opener against Penn State before going on to a 17-7 victory. On the season, the Irish have been outscored 17-9 in the first quarter, though their opponents have just two more shots (45-43) in the frame. Notre Dame also trailed 7-2 in the second period of a Feb. 14 scrimmage against Major League Lacrosse’s (MLL) Boston Cannons before scoring 10 straight in a 14-11 triumph.
PUTTING ON THE PRESSURE LATE: Though both Notre Dame and its opponents have scored 12 goals in fourth periods this season, the Irish hold a considerable advantage in shots, 43-30.
GROUND BALLS KEY FOR IRISH: The ground ball battle has been a telling statistic for the Irish this season. In the lone Notre Dame victory — 17-7 against Penn State on Feb. 29 — the Irish collected 13 more ground balls than the Nittany Lions (40-27). Each of the three Notre Dame losses has seen the opponent gather at least eight more ground balls than the Irish. Syracuse had 53-34 advantage, while North Carolina (36-28) and Loyola (43-33) also corralled more loose balls.
IRISH SETTING HOME ATTENDANCE RECORDS: Both of Notre Dame’s first two home games this season featured the largest home crowds recorded since attendance figures have been kept by the University. The season opener against Penn State on Feb. 29 drew 761 fans, while the 927 in attendance for the March 14 contest against North Carolina stands officially as the largest home crowd in school history. In all, the Irish have drawn 8,281 through four games, an average of 2,070 per contest.
LET’S TAKE THIS INDOORS: Including Wednesday’s game, Notre Dame will play only one of its first five contests of 2004 outside. The Irish have played home games against Penn State, North Carolina, and Hofstra in the Loftus Sports Center and made a trip to the Carrier Dome to face Syracuse. Notre Dame was outside last Saturday against Loyola at Geppi-Aikens Field in Baltimore. The Irish likely will play their final seven contests outdoors, as well.
AVOIDING THE FATAL FOUR: Notre Dame enters Wednesday’s contest having lost three in a row. Only once in the 24-year varsity history of the program have the Irish dropped four consecutive games. That April 5-25, 1998, stretch featured losses to #15 Butler (6-5), #12 Georgetown (13-7), #10 Massachusetts (8-7), and #17 Harvard (9-6). It ended with Notre Dame upsetting #9 Hofstra 8-4 at Moose Krause Stadium in the season finale.
CROSLAND SEVENTH ON IRISH CAREER SAVES LIST: Notre Dame senior G Stewart Crosland (Bethesda, Md./Landon School), a second-team all-Great Western Lacrosse League selection and the conference leader in goals-against average and save percentage in 2003, has 55 saves in four games this season to bring his career total to 251, which places him seventh on the Irish career saves list. Crosland, who could apply for a fifth year of eligibility, made 42 saves a sophomore (played in six games, starting three) before registering 154 a year ago as the Irish starter in all 14 contests. Next up is 1994 graduate Ryan Jewell, who had 342 saves during his career. The complete top eight is below.
Rank Name Years Saves
1. Rob Simpson 1982-85 623
2. Alex Cade 1995-97 621
3. Kirk Howell 1997-2001 498
4. Matt McQuillan 1985-86, ’88 452
5. Chris Parent 1990-93 416
6. Ryan Jewell 1992-94 342
7. Stewart Crosland 2002-04 251
CAREER DAYS: A number of Irish players have set career highs already this season. Some of the more notable performances are listed below.
* Senior A Matt Howell (Huntington, N.Y./Huntington H.S.) had a career-high seven points (three goals, four assists) in the season opener vs. Penn State. He also took a career-high eight shots against North Carolina, scoring twice.
* Sophomore M Matt Karweck (Penn Yan, N.Y./Penn Yan Academy) scored four goals in the season opener against Penn State after registering multiple scores just once in his initial collegiate season. His four points also were a career best.
* After never notching more than two points in a game in 2003, sophomore M Brian Hubschmann (Short Hill, N.J./Delbarton H.S.) had two goals and four assists in the opener against Penn State. It also was the first multiple-goal performance of his career. Hubschmann also had two goals against North Carolina and registered a career-high three ground balls vs. the Nittany Lions.
* Sophomore M Matt Ryan (Ridley Park, Pa./Ridley H.S.) registered the first multiple-goal game of his career with a pair of scores against North Carolina. Additionally, he corralled a personal-best five ground balls and matched his career high with three points. His two assists against Syracuse tied his career high in that category.
* Junior M Frank Matarazzo (Franklin Lakes, N.J./Bergen Catholic H.S.) took a career-high 24 faceoffs against Syracuse, winning a personal-best 10 of them. He also set a career high with five ground balls against North Carolina.
* Junior M Craig Bishko (West Islip, N.Y./West Islip H.S.) had a career-best five ground balls against Penn State, all on faceoffs he took.
* Sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.) fired a career-high 10 shots in the season opener against Penn State, finding the net three times.
WALSH ON TEWAARATON TROPHY WATCH LIST: Sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.) was one of 26 players named to the watch list for the 2004 Tewaaraton Trophy, awarded to the nation’s top player at the conclusion of the season. The award will be presented at a banquet in Washington, D.C. on June 3. Walsh, who led all Division I freshmen in scoring a year ago, is the first Irish player ever named the to watch list for the Tewaaraton Trophy, which is in just its fourth year, though A Tom Glatzel was a finalist for the award in 2001.
BERGER, WALSH EARN PRESEASON ALL-AMERICA MENTION: Senior A Dan Berger (Phoenix, Md./Boys’ Latin H.S.) and sophomore A Pat Walsh (Wantagh, N.Y./Wantagh H.S.) earned preseason honorable mention All-America honors from Inside Lacrosse magazine. Berger was Notre Dame’s leading goal scorer in each of the last two seasons, while Walsh led all Division I freshmen in scoring last year en route to setting an Irish freshman scoring record and becoming the first Notre Dame rookie to earn All-America honors, copping honorable mention accolades.
COACHING EXPERIENCE: With the addition of assistant coach Guy Van Arsdale, Notre Dame boasts one of the most experienced coaching staffs in the nation. Head coach Kevin Corrigan and assistants Kevin Anderson and Van Arsdale combine for 50 years of college and pro coaching experience heading into 2004. Thirty-two of those years have been as head coaches. Only three Division I teams have more years of combined coaching experience than the Irish, and just four have more previous seasons as head coaches.
TOUGH SLATE: Notre Dame will face a difficult road to the 2004 NCAA Championship. This year’s Irish schedule is highlighted by a pair of road trips to Final Four teams from last year (March 11 at Syracuse; May 1 at Maryland) and four home games against ’03 NCAA participants. In all, 10 of the 12 teams on the Notre Dame schedule are either ranked or receiving votes in this week’s USILA rankings.
GWLL DOMINANCE: For the 11th year in a row, the Irish will compete in the Great Western Lacrosse League, along with Air Force, Butler, Denver, Fairfield, and Ohio State. Notre Dame has won nine GWLL titles, including at least a share of each of the last five. Ohio State, Denver, and the Irish were co-champions in 2003. Notre Dame has a 34-4 (.895) all-time record in GWLL play, including 20-1 (.952) at home.
THE GREAT WESTERN LACROSSE LEAGUE, WITH AN EMPHASIS ON “GREAT”: The Great Western Lacrosse League, which has never had more than one team earn a berth to the NCAA Championship, has had an outstanding start to the 2004 season. Both Denver and Air Force registered upsets of the defending national champions, Virginia, over the season’s first weekend, propelling both schools into the first set of USILA national rankings, joining Notre Dame and Ohio State. It was the first time ever that four schools from the GWLL were in the nation’s top 20. This week, Notre Dame is 15th, the Pioneers are 16th, and the Buckeyes are 19th, while the Falcons fell out due to a loss to Delaware after being 20th last week. The six GWLL teams (also Fairfield and Butler) have combined for a 19-13 (.594) this spring, including four wins against ranked opponents.
Notre Dame has won at least a share of the Great Western Lacrosse League title in nine of the 10 years since the conference was formed. The Irish hold a 34-4 (.895) record in GWLL play, including 20-1 (.952) at home.
IRISH IN OVERTIME: Should the game be tied at the end of regulation, Notre Dame will try to snap a five-game losing streak in overtime affairs after having won six in a row prior to that. The Irish have not taken part in an overtime game since a 7-6 loss at Harvard on April 27, 2002. Notre Dame lost three overtime contests in ’02, one in ’01, and one in ’99. The last Irish overtime win was a 10-9 result at home against Hobart on March 29, 1997. Notre Dame has an 8-7 all-time record in overtime games in the 24-year varsity history of the program. The Irish have played just one double-overtime game, a 7-6 defeat at home against Loyola on March 16, 2002.
Notre Dame has played overtime games against four teams on the 2004 schedule. In addition to the double-overtime contest with the Greyhounds, the Irish lost to Penn State 10-9 at home in the 2002 season opener, beat Ohio State 11-10 in 1983 in Columbus, and have lost a pair at Hofstra (10-9, 1999; 11-10, 2001).
SEVEN NAMED TO DEAN’S LIST IN FALL 2003 SEMESTER: Seven Irish lacrosse players earned Dean’s List mention for academic excellence in the fall 2003 semester. Leading the way was junior A Dan Straka (Upper Arlington, Ohio/Upper Arlington H.S.), a pre-professional studies major in the College of Science, who made the Dean’s List for the fourth time with a 3.938 grade-point average to up his cumulative mark to 3.747. Senior G Stewart Crosland (Bethesda, Md./Landon School), a management entrepreneurship and history double major, posted a 3.926 GPA last fall to gain his fourth mention on the Dean’s List, while senior A John Mulflur (Easton, Md./Peter and Paul H.S.), an economics and history double major, had a 3.917. Mulflur, who carries a team-high 3.765 has been on the Dean’s List in all seven of his collegiate semesters and has had a GPA of better than 3.910 in four consecutive semesters, highlighted by a 4.000 in sprin 2002. M Bill Liva (Bryn Mawr, Pa./Malvern Preparatory School) was the lone freshman on the Dean’s List with a 3.800 GPA, while junior science pre-professional major M Tyler Krummenacher (St. Louis, Mo./MICDS H.S.) had a 3.750. Junior chemical engineering major D Mike Hagerty (Niskayuna, N.Y./Niskayuna H.S.) made the Dean’s List with a 3.718, as did senior accounting major LSM Chris Masterson’s (West Hempstead, N.Y./Chaminade H.S.) 3.600. Overall, the Irish had a team GPA of 3.177, ranking them fourth among Notre Dame’s 13 men’s varsity sports.
OHIO STATE GAME TO BE TELEVISED BY CSTV: On Wednesday, March 31 at 4 p.m., two of the Great Western Lacrosse League (GWLL) tri-champions from last year will face off at Krause Stadium. The contest between Notre Dame and Ohio State, which earned the conference’s automatic bid to the 2003 NCAA Championship via tiebreaker policy, will be televised on a tape-delayed basis by College Sports Television (CSTV). The contest will be shown later that day.
MEN’S LAX GOLD GAME TO BE MARCH 31 vs. GWLL RIVAL OHIO STATE: The Notre Dame-Ohio State game, slated for Wednesday, March 31 at 4 p.m. in Krause Stadium, will be the men’s lacrosse “Gold Game” this season. The distinction was created by the Student-Athlete Advisory Council to encourage the entire Notre Dame community to attend designated contests, each determined to be the most significant home event of the season for the respective team.
HEAD COACH Kevin Corrigan: Irish head coach Kevin Corrigan is in his 16th season at the helm of the Notre Dame program. He has led the Irish to a 133-77 (.633) mark, while holding a 143-92 (.609) overall record. Corrigan’s Notre Dame teams have earned 10 NCAA tournament berths since 1990, highlighted by quarterfinal appearances in 1995 and 2000 and a Final Four trip in 2001. Only six other Division I schools have as many postseason appearances in that span, while Corrigan and Princeton’s Bill Tierney are the only two mentors in the country to have led their current teams to 10 NCAA tournaments since ’90. Corrigan’s teams have had 12 winning seasons, including 10 with nine or more victories. He has had at least one player earn All-America honors in each of the last 11 seasons for a total of 22 All-Americans since 1994. In addition, 79 players have garnered all-conference mention under Corrigan. The Irish also have claimed at least a share of 12 conference titles (9 Great Western Lacrosse League, 3 Great Lakes Conference), including five in a row. In a three-year playing career as a midfielder at Virginia, Corrigan helped the Cavaliers to the NCAA final in 1979. He previously was an assistant at Notre Dame in 1983 and served as head coach of Randolph-Macon College for two years (1985-86).
IRISH TO WELCOME NINE FOR NEXT SEASON: Irish men’s lacrosse head coach Kevin Corrigan announced recently that nine players will enroll at the University of Notre Dame in the fall and join his squad for the 2005 season. Next year’s freshman class will consist of D David Caperna (Fallston, Md./The Gilman School), M Taylor Clagett (Chesapeake Beach, Md./DeMatha Catholic H.S.), D Sean Dougherty (Malvern, Pa./Malvern Preparatory School), M Anson Fraser (Summit, N.J./Summit H.S.), G Joey Kemp (Potomac, Md./Georgetown Preparatory School), M Michael Podgajny (Ridley Park, Pa./Ridley H.S.), A/M Sloan Smith (Concord, N.H./Phillips Exeter Academy), A Alex Wharton (Baltimore, Md./The Gilman School), and D Ross Zimmerman (Shelby Township, Mich./Brother Rice H.S.).
“As a group, this is a great class that really addresses our needs because it includes quality players at each position.” said head coach Kevin Corrigan. “At the same time, it builds on the athleticism highlighting our last couple of classes. We’re very excited about these additions to our program.”
More information on all the members of the Irish lacrosse class of 2008 can be found on Notre Dame’s official athletic website, www.und.com.
KEEPING UP WITH ND MEN’S LACROSSE: For the fastest results of Notre Dame men’s lacrosse games, call the Notre Dame Sports Hotline at (574) 631-3000 and choose #5 and #1. The hotline provides schedules and result information for all 26 varsity sports and serves as a supplement to the match recaps and weekly releases provided on the official athletic website, www.und.com. The hotline is the first medium updated with results of each Notre Dame men’s lacrosse match.
In addition, media members and fans may be added to the sports information e-mail release list by contacting sports information assistant Bo Rottenborn at Rottenborn.email@example.com. All requests for story ideas, interview access, match credentials, and further information on Irish men’s lacrosse should similarly be directed to Rottenborn. Credential and interview requests should be made at least 24 hours in advance.