Oct. 21, 2001
STORRS, Conn. – Connecticut’s Casey Zimny and Jennifer Amaio scored their first goals of the season while the Notre Dame offense managed just one goal on 15 shots, as the 15th-ranked Huskies beat the fifth-ranked Irish, 3-1, in Sunday-afternoon action at Marrone Stadium.
Notre Dame (11-2-1) – again playing without injured freshman midfielder Mary Boland – dominated possession and scoring chances in the first half but failed to find the net. Connecticut (12-4-0) then scored a pair of goals early in the second half and later answered Amanda Guertin’s goal with a third Huskies goal for the final margin.
The Irish finished with a 15-9 shot edge, including 9-5 in shots on goal. Connecticut registered its first win over Notre Dame in the last seven games of the series, with the Irish now holding a 12-3-2 series edge. Sunday’s game also was UConn’s first win over ND at Marrone Stadium (now 1-3-2).
The game was played outside of the BIG EAST division and cross-divisional schedules, with ND already winning the Mid-Atlantic Division while UConn has clinched the league’s Northeast Division.
UConn’s first goal came via a direct free kick, after Vanessa Pruzinsky was called for a foul on a tackle versus Salla Ranta outside the top of the box. Zimny stepped forward to take the free kick from 19 yards out and placed a low shot to the left of the four-player wall. Irish ‘keeper Liz Wagner dove to her right but the ball skipped inside the left post for UConn’s first lead versus ND since 1997 (49:11).
Ten minutes later, senior forward Alexa Borisjuk surprised the Irish with a 35-yard shot from the left flank. Borisjuk shook free of the Irish defense and launched a shot towards the far post, with the ball bouncing once and skipping into the right sidenetting for her sixth goal of the season (59:42).
Notre Dame tried to jumpstart its offense by shifting to a three-back formation while pushing Monica Gonzalez and Candace Chapman into the midfield. The Irish finally cracked the scoring column in the 81st minute, with Guertin launching a right-flank free kick for her sixth goal of the season. UConn ‘keeper Shanna Caldwell went up for the ball but it glanced off her fingertips and tucked under the center of the crossbar for a 2-1 game (80:45).
Just 67 seconds later, the Huskies restored their two-goal cushion when Kristen Graczyk’s pass sprung Amaio down the right side. Amaio dribbled into the box and converted a crossing shot to the left side for the game’s final goal (81:52).
Notre Dame completes the regular-season with a pair of games versus non-conference opponents,continuing on fall break with a Tuesday-night game at Yale before capping the regular season at home versus Michigan on Sunday, Oct. 28 (1:00 p.m.).
The game marked just the fourth regular-season loss for the Irish to a BIG EAST opponent (since 1995), with ND now owning a 61-4-2 regular-season record vs. BIG EAST teams since joining the league in ’95.
UConn is the first team to register more than two goals versus Notre Dame since the middle of the 1999 season, when the Irish dropped a 4-2 game at then-No. 1 Santa Clara.
Notre Dame has allowed just four goals in the first half this season but the opponents have combined for nine second-half goals versus ND in 2001.
#4 NOTRE DAME (11-2-1) 0 1 - 1#15 CONNECTICUT (12-4-0) 0 3 - 3
UConn 1. Casey Zimny 1 (-) 49:11, UConn 2. Alexa Borisjuk 6 (-) 59:42, ND 1. Amanda Guertin 6 (-) 80:45, UConn 3. Jennifer Amaio 1 (Kristen Graczyk) 81:52.
Shots: ND 7-8-15, UConn 2-7-9
Corner Kicks: ND 1-5-6, UConn 1-5-6
Saves: ND (Liz Wagner) 2, UConn (Shanna Caldwell) 8
Fouls: ND 7, UConn 5
Offsides: ND 1, UConn 9