Feb. 20, 2011
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The sixth-ranked Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team opened its season in fine fashion with a 12-7 win over No. 5 Duke on Sunday afternoon in front of 8,152 fans at Everbank Field. The contest was part of the inaugural Sunshine Classic.
Fighting Irish senior midfielder Zach Brenneman registered a career-high five points on three goals and two assists. Andrew Irving (Sr./LSM), Sean Rogers (Jr./A) and Westy Hopkins (Fr./A) all added two goals apiece for the Irish. Notre Dame goalie John Kemp, a sophomore, made 10 saves in his third career start.
Following a scoreless first quarter from both teams, Duke claimed a 2-0 advantage by the 7:34 mark of the second quarter. The Fighting Irish responded with four unanswered goals to take a 4-2 lead into halftime.
“This is a great win because you know Duke is a quality team,” said Notre Dame head coach Kevin Corrigan. “It’s also a good win because we had to battle through the first quarter because we didn’t get any breaks, but we didn’t give them any breaks either. Things then started to come easier for us, but we still had to make plays and we did that and we had a lot of different guys do that. That’s all very encouraging for our first game.”
Notre Dame cracked the scoring column with 5:53 left in the first half as Rogers came from behind the net to deposit the Irish goal. The junior attackman evened the contest 20 seconds later.
Irving gave the Irish a 3-2 advantage with 5:17 showing on the clock in the second quarter. Junior midfielder Max Pfeifer put the Irish up by two (4-2) with just under four minutes left in the first half.
The Irish out-shot the Blue Devils 18-13 in the opening half.
Duke put a halt to the Irish run with a Zach Howell goal at the 10:32 mark of the third quarter. Notre Dame responded with a man-up goal from senior midfielder David Earl, which made it a 5-3 contest with 8:24 left in the third period. Sophomore midfielder Pat Cotter assisted on the score. Cotter deposited a goal of his own less than two minutes later to put the Irish up by three (6-3).
Turri got the Blue Devils back to within two (6-4) with just over five minutes left in the third quarter. Brenneman pushed the Irish lead back to three (7-4) with 2:41 remaining in the third stanza. Notre Dame led 7-4 after three quarters of play.
The back-and-forth affair continued as Howell scored just over three minutes into the fourth quarter to make it a two-goal contest (7-5). Notre Dame scored the game’s next four goals.
Brenneman responded 34 seconds after the Howell tally to put Notre Dame up by three (8-5). Hopkins gave Notre Dame a four-goal lead (9-5) with 11:04 left in regulation as he took a pass from Brenneman and deposited the first goal of his career.
Brenneman completed his hat trick at the 10:06 mark of the final quarter. Hopkins scored again with 7:13 left in the contest.
Turri got the Blue Devils back to within five (11-6) at the 6:14 mark of the fourth period. Duke’s Robert Rotanz made it 11-7 with 1:35 remaining. Irving scored the final goal of the contest.
The Notre Dame defense stymied a Duke offense that posted 20 goals in its season opener against Siena. The Irish held a 38-32 lead in shots. Notre Dame also was 13 of 22 in faceoff attempts. Freshman Liam O’Connor was 7-for-11 in the faceoff circle, while senior Jake Marmul was 6-for-11.
“I felt John Kemp made some big saves that kept them from matching our run in the second half,” added Corrigan. “We also talked about keeping some of their guys out of transition and not only did we do that with them, but Irv (Andrew Irving) scored a couple for us and we turned that around.”
The game’s first goal came with 9:40 left in the second quarter as Duke’s Tom Rynn scored a man-up tally with the assist from Justin Turri. The Blue Devils took a 2-0 lead just over two minutes later on a Justin Offit goal.
Notre Dame has won a program-record nine straight season openers. The Irish defeated Duke 11-7 in last season’s lid-lifter. Today marked the first time Notre Dame had ever defeated a defending national champion. The Irish had been 0-3 versus defending national champs.
The Irish return to action next Sunday at Penn State. Game time is slated for 1:00 p.m. (ET) in University Park, Pa.
February 20, 2011 – Everbank Field – Jacksonville, Fla.
#6 Notre Dame (1-0) – 0 4 3 5 – 12
#5 Duke (1-1) – 0 2 2 3 – 7
Notre Dame Scoring (goals-assists):
Zach Brenneman 3-2, Sean Rogers 2-0, Westy Hopkins 2-0, Andrew Irving 2-0, Pat Cotter 1-1, Max Pfeifer 1-0, David Earl 1-0; Goaltender: John Kemp (W, 60:00, 10 saves, 7 GA)
Duke Scoring (goals-assists):
Justin Turri 2-1, Zach Howell 2-0, Josh Offit 1-2, Tom Rynn 1-0, Robert Rotanz 1-0 ; Goaltenders: Dan Wigrizer (L, 45:00, 6 saves, 7 GA; Mike Rock, 15:00, 1 save, 5 GA)
— ND —