May 2, 2015
WEST POINT, N.Y. — Eight days ago in the semifinals of the Atlantic Coast Conference Championship, a slow start by the University of Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team against Duke proved to be too much for the Fighting Irish to overcome as their offense was held in check for most of the game. On Saturday afternoon against No. 18 Army, No. 2 Notre Dame got off to the quick start it needed and wanted as the Irish closed out the regular season with an impressive 17-8 victory over the Black Knights at Michie Stadium in West Point, New York before a record crowd of 12,133.
With the victory, the Irish, who were facing a ranked opponent for the ninth consecutive game, improved to 10-2 on the season, while Army concludes its season at 10-7.
“I thought we played a really solid game today and that is just what we needed after last week,” head coach Kevin Corrigan said. “We started with good energy and we were really focused. They had a record crowd at the game and this was a great day for us to grab the lead early, get control and take the crowd out of the game.
“We talked about regaining our confidence and that is what we did. I was really pleased with how we responded today.”
Junior attackman Matt Kavanagh recorded his fifth hat trick of the season, and second in the last three games, as he netted four goals and dished off an assist, while senior Conor Doyle added a hat trick of his own and finished with a career-high five assists to lead a balanced Irish scoring attack. In all, 11 different Irish players scored in the contest as the 17 goals matched the second-most by the Irish this season.
Sophomore midfielder Sergio Perkovic was the other multiple-goal scorer in the contest for Notre Dame as he tallied two scores on the afternoon.
Senior midfielder Will Corrigan got the Irish on the scoreboard first as he netted the contest’s first goal and his fourth of the season just 1:42 into the contest. It marked the second straight game in which Corrigan found himself in the scoring column. Five other players would contribute goals in the first quarter as Notre Dame jumped out to a 6-0 first-quarter advantage after outshooting the Black Knights 12-5.
Kavanagh tallied the first of his four goals at the 7:58 mark of the first quarter as Doyle dished off the first of his five assists. Freshman Brendan Collins added his third score of the season (and first since the Ohio State game back on March 21) that gave the Irish a 3-0 advantage. Perkovic followed with his 23rd goal of the 2015 campaign before Mikey Wynne and Doyle closed out the first-quarter scoring.
Army struck first in the second quarter when John Glesener tallied his 29th goal of the season at 13:43. Notre Dame, which built a 9-2 halftime advantage, quickly responded with back-to-back goals from captain Jim Marlatt, his eighth of the season, and senior midfielder Nick Ossello, his 17th goal on the year at 12;38 and 4:41, respectively, of the second quarter. Glesener connected on the second of his game-high three goals for the Black Knights with 2:10 before Kavanagh added the final goal of the half with 20 seconds left before intermission.
The Irish got off to a quick start as they scored three goals in the first 7:06 of the third quarter to jump out to a commanding 12-2 advantage. Kavanagh tallied his third goal of the game off an assist from Doyle 41 seconds into the second half. Doyle assisted on Notre Dame’s next goal when junior midfielder Trevor Brosco tossed in his fourth goal on the year.
Army registered back-to-back scores 21 seconds apart on goals by Glesener and Michael Larrabee to cut the deficit to 12-4 with 3:44 to play in the third quarter. Senior Jack Near tallied Notre Dame’s 13 goal of the game with 1:48 to play before Army’s Connor Cook scored with 40 seconds remaining in the third quarter.
Notre Dame outscored Army 4-3 in the final 15-minute stanza. Cole Johnson’s man-up goal 12 seconds into the fourth quarter as his 37th of the season and cut the Irish lead to 13-6. Goals by Kavanagh and Doyle opened up a 15-6 lead for the Irish with 10:27 to play before Cook tossed in the Black Knights’ seventh score on the day with 8:15 remaining.
Perkovic rounded out the scoring for the Irish with his second goal of the afternoon and 24th on the season thanks to Doyle’s fifth assist on the afternoon. Alex Newsome closed out the scoring for Army with 1:53 to play in the contest.
Sophomore goalie Shane Doss picked up his ninth win on the season, allowing seven goals and recording 14 saves in the 51:45 that he played.
“We finished the regular season off in the right way and that is what we talked about before the game,” Corrigan said. “This was a confidence-builder for us heading into the NCAAs.”
Notre Dame will find out its NCAA opponent on Sunday when the pairings of the 2015 NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championship are announced at 9 pm (ET). The Irish will be play host to a first-round contest on either Saturday (May 9) or Sunday (May 10).
May 2, 2015
Michie Stadium – West Point, N.Y.
#2 Notre Dame (10-2) – 6 3 4 4 — 17
#18 Army (9-2) – 0 2 3 3 — 8