Michael Podgajny will be one of 10 Irish seniors playing their last regular-season home game on Sunday. Notre Dame carries a program-record 17-game home win streak into the contest.

No. 7 Notre Dame To Host No. 9 Ohio State On Sunday

April 25, 2008

#9 Ohio State (9-2, 4-0) at #7 Notre Dame (10-2, 3-1)
Sunday, April 27 • 12:00 p.m. (ET)
Alumni Field • Notre Dame, Ind.

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The seventh-ranked Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team will close out its regular season at home against No. 9 Ohio State on Sunday, April 27. The Great Western Lacrosse League clash is scheduled for a 12 noon (ET) start at Alumni Field. The Fighting Irish have won three games in a row, including a 13-5 victory at Air Force on Tuesday (April 22). Ohio State enters the game in first place in the GWLL and Notre Dame is tied for second. The Irish carry their program-record 17-game home win streak into the contest.

HOW TO FOLLOW: Sunday’s top-10 showdown between Notre Dame and Ohio State can be viewed via a live broadcast and live stats on the official Notre Dame athletics web site, und.com … simply go to und.com and find the `Men’s Lacrosse’ page and click on `Schedule’ … once there, find the Ohio State game and there will be links to both `Gametracker’ for live stats and a `Watch’ link that will show the game for free … you can also sign up for `Irish Alert’, a text messaging service designed to give fans up-to-the-minute game updates for all 26 varsity sports at Notre Dame.

ND-OHIO STATE SERIES NOTES: Sunday will mark the 31st meeting all-time between the Fighting Irish and the Buckeyes … Notre Dame owns a 21-9 advantage in the series, which dates back to 1981 … Ohio State is the most commonly faced opponent in the history of the Notre Dame program … the Irish topped the Buckeyes, 12-6, last season in Columbus, Ohio … the Irish are 11-3 against the Buckeyes at Notre Dame … the last time the two teams met at Notre Dame, the Fighting Irish claimed a 10-8 victory during the 2006 campaign.

ABOUT THE IRISH: Notre Dame won three games in a five-day span (April 18-22) to improve its record to 10-2 on the season … the Irish are coming off a 13-5 victory at Air Force on Tuesday (April 22) to move their GWLL record to 3-1 … Notre Dame is currently tied with Denver for second place in the GWLL … junior attackman Ryan Hoff leads the Fighting Irish with 32 goals this season … the Fighting Irish are currently seventh in the USILA coaches poll and 12th in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse media rankings … senior attackman Alex Wharton has team-high totals in points (39) and assists (23), both career-best marks … junior Duncan Swezey has a career-high 19 goals, while senior midfielder Michael Podgajny and sophomore midfielder Grant Krebs both have 17 tallies … Notre Dame has defeated three ranked teams this season (#17 Loyola, 7-6; #13 Albany, 7-6; #11 Drexel, 13-6) … Notre Dame has the nation’s fifth-best scoring offense by notching 12.73 goals per game … the Irish defense ranks seventh nationally as they surrender just 6.83 goals per game … senior goaltender Joey Kemp ranks third nationally with a 6.62 goals-against average and he is fifth with a .627 save percentage … Notre Dame returned seven starters and 17 letterwinners from last year’s team that posted an 11-4 record and captured the GWLL title with a perfect 5-0 conference mark … that was the 10th GWLL crown for the Irish since the league was founded in 1994 … in 2007, Notre Dame made its second consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and the 12th trip in program history … the Irish fell to eventual national champion Johns Hopkins, 11-10, in overtime during the tournament’s first round … Kevin Corrigan is in his 20th season as the head coach of Notre Dame … he has a record of 177-94 (.653) during his Fighting Irish tenure … Corrigan was named the 2007 GWLL coach of the year … that marked the fourth time he has received that honor.

ABOUT OHIO STATE: The Buckeyes are 9-3 overall, including a 4-0 GWLL mark … Ohio State has won its last five contests … in their last outing, the Buckeyes claimed a 20-13 home victory against No. 17 Denver on April 19 … Ohio State has defeated one other ranked team this season, No. 8 North Carolina, 14-11, on April 12 in Baltimore, Md. … the Buckeyes are averaging 13.83 goals per game this season while surrendering 7.57 per game … Kevin Buchanan leads the team in goals with 35 and total points with 58 … Joel Dalgarno has a team-high 27 assists to go along with 30 goals … Stefan Schroder has started all 12 games in goal and possesses a 7.34 goals-against average and a .588 save percentage … the Buckeyes went 9-5 last season and finished second in the GWLL with a 4-1 record … head coach Joe Breschi is in his 11th season at Ohio State. THE LAST TIME: Last season, Notre Dame defeated Ohio State, 12-6, in Columbus, Ohio … midfielder Lucius Polk (a graduated senior) notched four goals in the win, while current junior Duncan Swezey tallied two goals and three assists … Joey Kemp picked up the win by making 13 saves … Joe Benson scored three goals for the Buckeyes.

NOTRE DAME IN THE GWLL: Notre Dame is 54-10 (.844) all-time in GWLL play with 10 league titles … this is the 15th season for the GWLL … Notre Dame has gone undefeated in GWLL play on seven occasions, including last season’s 5-0 mark … the Irish had their eight-game GWLL win streak snapped in a 9-8 setback to Denver on April 5.

GWLL TOURNAMENT: This season will feature the inaugural Great Western Lacrosse League Tournament … following regular-season play, the top four teams from the conference will advance to the tournament, which is being held at Seaholm High School in Birmingham, Mich. … the semifinals are scheduled to take place on Friday, May 2 and the championship game will be played on Sunday, May 4.

RECAPPING AIR FORCE: Seventh-ranked Notre Dame captured a 13-5 win over Air Force in Great Western Lacrosse League play on Tuesday, April 22 at Cadet Lacrosse Stadium … the Fighting Irish used a balanced offensive attack that featured 10 different goalscorers to claim the victory … Ryan Hoff, Alex Wharton and Neal Hicks all registered two goals and one assist for the Irish … Notre Dame put the game out of reach early by jumping out to a 7-0 lead with 7:21 remaining in the first half … the Irish were up 5-0 by the end of the first quarter … that marked the fifth time this season that the Notre Dame defense has held an opponent scoreless in the first quarter of play … the five goals allowed were the fewest surrendered by the Fighting Irish this season … Kelly McKenna started the scoring for the Irish with a goal at the 11:46 mark of the first period … Dan Gibson followed with a tally 32 seconds later … Krebs delivered his first goal of the game to make it 3-0 and it was soon a four-goal advantage thanks to a man-up score from Wharton … a goal from Hicks concluded the first-quarter scoring … the Irish run continued into the second period with tallies from Hoff and Wharton … Air Force finally reached the scoring column with 5:27 left in the half with a goal from Dan Gnazzo … after the Falcons made it 7-2, Notre Dame scored six straight goals … Michael Podgajny and Zach Brenneman notched scores to make it 9-2 at the intermission … goals from Hoff and Hicks made it an 11-2 Fighting Irish lead at the end of the third quarter … a man-up goal from Peter Christman was followed by a Billy Maloney score to give Notre Dame an 11-goal advantage, its largest lead of the afternoon … Air Force deposited the final three scores of the contest … the Falcons held a 39-37 shot advantage for the game … Notre Dame senior goaltender Joey Kemp earned the win by making nine saves and allowing two goals in 50:04 of play … sophomore Brendan Moore surrendered three goals and made one save in relief of Kemp … Brian Wilson picked up the loss by giving up eight goals in 48:11 of action.

ARLOTTA GROUNDBREAKING: The official groundbreaking ceremony for Arlotta Stadium was held on Friday, April 18 … the stadium will be the new home for the Notre Dame men’s and women’s lacrosse teams … conceptual plans suggest a 2,000-seat, lighted stadium that would include an artificial-turf field, locker rooms, restrooms and concession areas … the state-of-the-art facility is named after Notre Dame graduate John Arlotta, president and chief executive officer of Denver-based Coram Inc. … he and his wife, Bobbie, pledged the lead gift toward the stadium to be built to the east of the Joyce Center as part of the University’s new athletics quadrangle … the Arlotta children – Mindy, Andy and Jon – also have pledged an additional gift from The Arlotta Family Foundation toward the project … in addition to their generous donation, alumni and friends of the lacrosse programs have donated over two million dollars … completion is scheduled for June of 2009.

HOME SWEET HOME: Notre Dame has won a program-record 17 straight games at home … the Irish are 4-0 at home this season … the current streak stems back to a 14-13 overtime win against Air Force on April 10, 2005 … Notre Dame’s last loss at home was a 9-6 setback to Denver on April 7, 2005 … the Irish went a perfect 6-0 at home during the 2006 campaign and followed it up with a 6-0 mark in 2007 … four of the games during the streak have been played in the Loftus Sports Center, while 12 have taken place outside at Moose Krause Stadium … one has taken place at School Field in South Bend (Quinnipiac-2008) … Notre Dame owns an overall home record of 118-35 (.773) during the 28 years of varsity lacrosse at the University.

NO MORE MOOSE: The win over Drexel on March 25 marked the final game at Moose Krause Stadium for the Notre Dame men’s lacrosse program … the stadium is being torn down to make room for the state-of-the-art Arlotta Stadium that will be the new home for the Irish.

RECORD-SETTING CAREER: Senior goaltender Joey Kemp notched his school-record 33rd career victory in the 19-7 win over Bellarmine on March 29 … Kemp is now 36-13 overall during his Irish career … in addition, Kemp is currently first in Irish history with a 7.17 goals-against average and with 2887:14 minutes played for a goaltender … he is also first in games started for a goaltender (51) … the two-time All-American currently ranks second in school history in saves (568).

KEMP AMONG NATIONAL LEADERS: Joey Kemp ranks in the top five nationally in both goals-against average (3rd, 6.62) and save percentage (5th, .627) this season … last season, he ranked fourth nationally in both goals-against average (6.78) and save percentage (.614) en route to being named the 2007 Great Western Lacrosse League player of the year and an honorable-mention All-American.

STREAKING: Junior attackman Duncan Swezey had his team-best 11-game goal streak snapped against Air Force on April 22 … fellow junior attackman Ryan Hoff now holds the team’s top goal streak at nine games … Hoff has notched a goal in 20 of the last 21 games dating back to last season … the junior attackman was held without a goal in a 7-6 win over Albany on March 1 … that snapped an 11-game goal streak.

OFFENSIVE OUTPUT: Notre Dame’s 19-goal performance in a 19-7 win over Bellarmine on March 29 matched a season-high total that was also achieved in a 19-7 victory against Dartmouth on March 15 … this marked the first time since 1994 that the Irish have produced two games with 19-plus goals in one season … overall, Notre Dame has reached double figures in eight of 12 games this season … the Irish reached double figures 11 times last season.

LOCKING DOWN: While the Notre Dame offense has reached double digits eight times this season, the Irish have not surrendered a double-figure tally … the Fighting Irish are surrendering just 6.83 goals per game this season, which ranks seventh nationally … the Irish have held opponents to six goals on five occasions and allowed a season-low five goals against Air Force on April 22 … Notre Dame boasted the nation’s fourth-best scoring defense in 2007 by allowing a school-record 6.66 goals per game … several key components to the Irish defense are back this season, including goaltender Joey Kemp and starting defensemen Sean Dougherty, Ross Zimmerman and Regis McDermott.

GETTING OFFENSIVE: The Fighting Irish are averaging 12.75 goals a game, which ranks fifth nationally … in 2007, Notre Dame had the nation’s fourth-best offense by averaging 11.65 goals per game … Notre Dame’s scoring margin of +5.92 is the fourth-best mark among all NCAA Division I squads this season.

FAST STARTS: Notre Dame has out scored its opponents 44-10 during the first quarter of play this season … the Fighting Irish have held opponents scoreless in the first quarter on five occasions (Loyola, Penn State, Albany, Dartmouth, Air Force).

HOFF STAYING HOT: Ryan Hoff’s six goals against Penn State (Feb. 24) were just one shy of the school record that he shares with Randy Colley (class of 1995) … Hoff, a junior attackman, netted seven goals in a 16-5 win over Drexel last season … Hoff also notched a five-goal game this season in a 16-6 triumph of Villanova (March 4) … he leads the Irish with 32 goals after pacing the team with 40 goals one season ago … he has notched three or more goals on six occasions this season.

SPREADING THE WEALTH: The Fighting Irish have had 21 different players notch at least one goal this season … the season-high total was 13 players with a goal in a 19-7 victory over Bellarmine on March 29… the Irish used 12 goalscorers in a 19-7 win against Dartmouth on March 15 … last season, the Irish had 18 players score a goal.

FACING OFF: As a team, Notre Dame boasts the nation’s top faceoff percentage (.636) … senior Taylor Clagett ranks third nationally in that category with a .622 win percentage … Clagett has been a valuable asset for the Irish during his Notre Dame career as he has won over 60-percent (.601) of his faceoff opportunities … injuries have hampered Clagett over the past two seasons, yet he has kept Notre Dame among the nation’s best in faceoffs … last season, Clagett ranked 16th nationally as he won 164 of 189 faceoff attempts … in 2006, he won 126 of 205 attempts for a .615 percentage, which would have ranked him sixth in the country had he appeared in enough games.

NOTRE DAME IN THE POLLS: Notre Dame is currently 7th in the USILA coaches poll and 12th in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse media rankings … the Irish have been as high as fifth in the USILA poll this season … that happened on two occasions, in the March 3rd and March 17th polls … Notre Dame’s highest Inside Lacrosse ranking was sixth on March 17.

QUALITY COMPETITION: The Fighting Irish are 3-2 against ranked opponents this season … Notre Dame opened the campaign with a 7-6 victory over No. 17 Loyola … the Irish topped No. 13 Albany, 7-6, on March 1 … Notre Dame fell at No. 4 North Carolina, 8-6, on March 8 … Notre Dame defeated No. 11 Drexel, 13-6, on March 25 … the Irish fell to No. 19 Denver, 9-8, on April 5 … Notre Dame hosts No. 9 Ohio State on April 27.

KEMP ON TEWAARATON WATCH LIST: Senior goaltender Joey Kemp was named to the 51-man watch list for the Tewaaraton Award, which is presented annually to the nation’s top player … this marks the second straight season that Kemp has been named to the award’s watch list.

IRISH EARN PRESEASON HONORS: Seven Notre Dame players earned preseason All-America recognition from Inside Lacrosse Magazine and its Face-Off Yearbook … headlining the group for the Fighting Irish were second-team honorees Taylor Clagett (M/FO), Sean Dougherty (D), Joey Kemp (G) and Will Yeatman (A) … joining the quartet of second-team picks for the Irish were third-team member Michael Podgajny (M) and honorable mention selections Ryan Hoff (A) and Ross Zimmerman (D).

IRISH TABBED TO WIN GWLL: Notre Dame was selected to win its second straight GWLL title according to the league’s head coaches … Ohio State, Denver, Air Force, Quinnipiac and Bellarmine followed Notre Dame in the voting, which appeared in Inside Lacrosse’s Face-Off Yearbook.

FOUR IRISH PLAYERS AMONG IL TOP 50: Four Irish athletes were named to the Inside Lacrosse top-50 players list for the 2008 season … senior goaltender Joey Kemp was the highest-ranked Fighting Irish player as he was 13th overall and the second-ranked goaltender on the list … sophomore attackman Will Yeatman was 15th, while senior defenseman Sean Dougherty and senior midfielder Michael Podgajny were 35th and 37th, respectively.

KEMP AND WHARTON NAMED `08 IRISH CAPTAINS: Seniors Joey Kemp (G) and Alex Wharton (A) are the Fighting Irish team captains for the 2008 season … Kemp was one of three captains for the Fighting Irish last season, while this will mark Wharton’s first year as a co-captain.

KEEPING UP WITH FIGHTING IRISH MEN’S LACROSSE: For results of Notre Dame men’s lacrosse games, call the Notre Dame Sports Hotline at (574) 631-3000 and choose #5 and #1 … the hotline provides schedules and result information for all 26 varsity sports and serves as a supplement to the match recaps and weekly releases provided on the official athletic website, www.und.com … in addition, media members and fans may be added to the sports information e-mail release list by contacting assistant sports information director Sean Carroll at Carroll.64@nd.edu … all requests for story ideas, interview access, match credentials, and further information on Irish men’s lacrosse should similarly be directed to Carroll … credential and interview requests should be made at least 24 hours in advance.