April 19, 2003
Fairfield, Conn. – For the third straight outing, the 19th-ranked Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team turned in a stellar defensive effort as the Irish held an opponent to under five goals for the third time in as many games. Behind three goals by both senior Travis Wells (Severna Park, Md.) and junior Dan Berger (Phoenix, Md.), Notre Dame won its third straight Great Western Lacrosse League contest with a 14-4 road win at Fairfield.
With the victory, Notre Dame improves to 8-4 on the season and finished its GWLL season with a 4-1 mark. The win avenges last year’s 11-10 setback to the Stags at Moose Krause Stadium. The Irish will close out the 2003 regulars season with two non-conference matchups against Harvard on April 26 and Maryland on May 3.
Wells’ three goals marked his second career hat trick, while Berger pushed his season goal total to 31 as he registered his fourth three-goal effort in the last four games.
Notre Dame has now outscored its opponents 36-10 in its last three games. The Irish defeated Butler 9-2 on April 10 and Air Force 13-4 on April 12. The 10 goals allowed are the fewest ever given up by a Notre Dame team in three straight outings since the 1984 campaighn when Notre Dame defeated Mount Union (15-0), Wooster (11-6) and Wittenburg (23-4).
The Irish took little time in establishing the tempo of the contest in jumping out to a 4-0 advantage in the first quarter. Freshman Matt Karweck (Penn Yan, N.Y.), who finished with a goal and an assist, got the Irish on the scored 1:01 into the contest with an unassisted goal. Sophomore Brian Giordano (Princeton, N.J.) and junior Owen Mulford (Ocean City, Md.) scored Notre Dame’s next two goals and junior Steve Clagett (Chesapeake, Md.) added the final Irish score of the quarter with 34.7 seconds remaining.
Fairfield got on the scoreboard with 8.3 seconds left in the first-quarter stanza when AJ Califano knocked in his only score of the game off an assist from Matt Buecker.
Notre Dame then scored the next four goals of the second quarter to jump out to an 8-1 advantage with 3:41 remaining before the intermission. Senior Kyle Frigon (Salem, Mass.), one of eight goal scorers in the contest, scored the Irish’s first goal of the second quarter He finished the game with two goals and an assist in his most productive offensive outing of the of the season. Freshman Matt Ryan (Ridley, Pa.) then tallied his fourth goal of the season before Wells put in the final two Notre Dame goals of the quarter. Wells second goal of the game came off an assist from sophomore Dan Straka (Upper Arlington, Ohio.).
Peter Vlahakis tallied the Stags’ second goal of the game with 3:17 remaining in the second quarter as Notre Dame led 8-2 at the break.
The Irish outscored Fairfield 2-0 in the third period on two goals by Berger as Notre Dame headed into the final quarter of play leading 10-2.
Coach Kevin Corrigan’s squad tallied the first four goals of the fourth quarter on scores by Frigon, Berger, Giordano and Wells.
Rory McCarthy and Buecker scored the game’s final two goals of the game for the Stags.
Junior Stewart Crosland (Bethesda, Md.) played 46:10 of the contest and finished with four saves and allowed two goals. Senior Nick Antol (Baldwin, Md.) closed out the game with a pair of stops and allowed the final two goals of the contest. Fairfield’s CJ Kemp recorded 16 saves and played in playing 49:30 minutes.
Fairfield drops to 5-5 and 1-3 in GWLL play with the loss.