Junior Ryan Hoff notched a hat trick for the Irish on Saturday.

No. 7 Notre Dame Edged By No. 19 Denver, 9-8, In GWLL Play

April 5, 2008

Box Score

BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. – An Ilija Gajic goal with 40 seconds remaining in regulation gave No. 19 Denver a 9-8 victory over seventh-ranked Notre Dame in Great Western Lacrosse League (GWLL) play on Saturday afternoon at Toyota Park. Junior attackman Ryan Hoff (Baldwin, Md./Dulaney) led the Irish with three goals, while sophomore midfielder Grant Krebs (Annapolis, Md./St. Mary’s) had two scores.

Notre Dame (7-2, 1-1) jumped out to a 6-1 lead with 5:02 remaining in the first half, yet Denver (7-4, 1-0) would score five straight goals to knot the game at the 3:58 mark of the third quarter. The game’s next four goals alternated between both teams before Gajic put home the game-winner for the Pioneers.

The Fighting Irish opened the contest with a 3-0 lead behind goals from Krebs, Duncan Swezey (Ambler, Pa./Hatboro-Horsham) and Hoff. Denver’s Jamie Lincoln scored his first of three goals to make it a 3-1 game at the end of the first quarter.

A goal from Michael Podgajny (Ridley Park, Pa./Ridley) ignited another 3-0 run for Notre Dame. Hoff followed to make it 5-1 and Krebs capped off the surge with his second tally of the day. The first of the Pioneers’ five unanswered goals came from Mike Anderson with 1:31 left in the opening half. The Irish led 6-2 at the intermission.

Goals from Lincoln, Brett Koll, John Dickenson and Cliff Smith for Denver evened up the contest (6-6) with just under four minutes left in the third period. Notre Dame regained the lead with a goal from Dan Gibson (Germantown, Tenn./Memphis University School), yet the Pioneers came back with tally from Smith to make it a 7-7 game after three quarters.

Hoff completed his hat trick with 9:26 remaining in regulation to give the Irish an 8-7 edge. Lincoln responded with his third goal to tie the game for the third time in a 12-minute span before Gajic scored to give Denver its first lead of the game and produce the final result.

Notre Dame held a 39-35 advantage in shots on the afternoon. Senior goaltender Joey Kemp (Potomac, Md./Georgetown Prep) tied a season-high with 13 saves, while Austin Konkel had 12 stops in the victory. Senior Taylor Clagett (Chesapeake Beach, Md./DeMatha) once again dominated the faceoff X for the Irish as the won 15-of-21 attempts. The Notre Dame loss snapped an eight-game GWLL win streak, which dated back to the 2006 season.

The Fighting Irish return to the field with a conference tilt against Quinnipiac on Friday, April 18. The contest is slated for a 4:00 p.m. (ET) start and will be played at School Field in South Bend, Ind.

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#19 Denver (7-4, 1-0) – 1 1 5 2 – 9
#7 Notre Dame (7-2, 1-1) – 3 3 1 1 – 8

Denver Scoring (goals-assists):
Jamie Lincoln 3-1, Cliff Smith 2-1, Ilija Gajic 1-1, Brett Koll 1-0, John Dickenson 1-0, Mike Anderson 1-0, Joey Murray 0-1; Goaltender: Austin Konkel (60:00, 12 saves, 8 GA)

Notre Dame Scoring (goals-assists):
Ryan Hoff 3-0, Grant Krebs 2-0, Duncan Swezey 1-0, Michael Podgajny 1-0, Dan Gibson 1-0, Alex Wharton 0-1, Peter Christman 0-1, Mike Creighton 0-1, Kelly McKenna 0-1, David Earl 0-1; Goaltender: Joey Kemp (60:00, 13 saves, 9 GA)