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No. 9 Notre Dame Faces Fifth Conecutive Ranked Opponent As Irish Entertain No. 11 Loyola

March 14, 2003

Notre Dame, Ind. –

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THE WEEK AHEAD – No. 9 Notre Dame plays host to No. 11 Loyola on Saturday, March 15, indoors at the Loftus Sports Center. Game time is 2:00 p.m. Notre Dame is 3-1 on the season after defeating #16 Penn State, #23 Penn and #12 North Carolina to open the season. The Irish then lost to #1 Virginia on Tuesday 14-8. Loyola is also 3-0 on the season winning its first three games of the year (Delaware, Mt. St. Mary’s and #12 Hofstra) before falling to #8 Duke 10-4 on Tuesday.

SCOUTING THE IRISH – Notre Dame has used a balanced scoring attack all season in starting the year 3-0, before falling to Virginia on Tuesday. The last time Notre Dame started the season 3-0 was in 2001, when it advanced to the NCAA Final Four. The Irish are led in the scoring column this season by junior Matt Howell. Howell, who missed most of the 2002 season because of injury and had only five goals in his career coming into the 2003 season, is the top goal scorer with 10 goals in four games this year. Howell recorded a career-high four tallies versus North Carolina and had two more against Virginia. Howell also leads the Irish with 19 points in 2003. Freshman Patrick Walsh has come out of the blocks firing as he has six goals and four assists for 10 points, while sophomore Dan Berger has eight goals and one assist for nine points. Stewart Crosland leads the Irish in goal this season. He has started all four games in 2003 giving up 36 goals in four games.

SCOUTING LOYOLA- Loyola’s attack has been strong this season as junior Stephen Brundage leads the Greyhounds in scoring with seven goals and four assists for 11 points. Seniors Gunnar Goettelmann and Chris Summers have nine and eight points, respectively. Summers eight points have all been goals. Loyola has averaged 11.7 goals per game in their 12 wins spanning the last two seasons, while only scoring 5.2 goals in the losses. Loyola’s defense has also been a key statistic in whether the Greyhounds are on the winning end as they have held their opponents to less than 10 goals in 13 of 17 games since Bull Dirrigl became head coach. The Greyhounds goal keeper is senior Mark Bloomquist who has a 5.75 goals-against average in 2003 and a .641 save percentage.

SERIES RECORD VERSUS LOYOLA – Loyola leads the overall series 11-2, including winning the last meeting 7-6 in double overtime on March 16, 2002, at Moose Krause Stadium in South Bend, Ind. Before last season’s contest, the Irish had won the previous two meetings, including a 15-13 victory in the first round of the 2000 NCAA Tournament. Notre Dame also beat the Greyhounds 10-7 on March 18, 2001, in Baltimore. Md.

THE LAST MEETING VERSUS LOYOLA – Notre Dame lost a heartbreaker to the Greyhounds in 2002. Loyola jumped out to an early 2-0 lead and held a 3-2 advantage at halftime, but former Irish midfielder Devin Ryan tied the game 5:44 into the third quarter before back-to-back goals by the Greyhounds pushed the lead to 5-3. Ryan pulled the Irish within one with 1:24 remaining in the third period and then knotted the game at 5-5 with 9:57 to go in the contest. Loyola grabbed a 6-5 lead, but Notre Dame’s Owen Asplundh score with 2:34 left sent the game into overtime. Neither team got off a shot in the first overtime session, but the Greyhounds put in the game winner with 2:39 left in the second overtime.

IRISH HEAD COACH KEVIN CORRIGAN – Kevin Corrigan is his 15th season at Notre Dame and 17th in the collegiate ranks. The four-time Great Western Lacrosse League Coach of the Year owns a 136-85 (.615) overall ledger and an 126-70 (.642) mark with the Irish. Corrigan has led Notre Dame to 10 NCAA tournament appearances in the last 14 years (including six straight from 1992-97) and 11 (either outright or shared) conference titles. In 2001, he guided the Irish to their first-ever appearance in the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championship national semifinals. Under Corrigan, Notre Dame has been victorious in the first round of the NCAA tournament on three occasions. He has had 12 different players earn USILA All-America honors. Previous to his tenure at Notre Dame, Corrigan served as head coach at Randolph-Macon during the 1985 and 1986 campaign where his teams compiled a 10-15 mark.

IN THE POLLS – Notre Dame is currently ranked ninth in the USILA and Warrior/Inside Lacrosse polls after beginning the season ranked 17th. Ten of Notre Dame’s 14 opponents began the season in the top 25 – Virginia (#4), Maryland (#5), North Carolina (#9), Hofstra (#10), Loyola (#12), Penn State (#16), Ohio State (#19), Harvard (#21), Fairfield (#22) and Pennsylvania (#23). Since the start of the season Virginia has moved to #1 and Maryland, who the Irish play on May 3, is #3.

RANKING FILE – After posting a 1-4 record against ranked teams in 2002, Notre Dame has turned it around in 2003 with a 3-1 record. Notre Dame is 10-6 against ranked opponents over the past two-plus seasons.

WHO MAKES THE SCHEDULE? – Notre Dame opens the season playing six ranked opponents – Penn State, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia, Loyola and Hofstra.

ROAD WARRIORS – Making the first six games of the season even more difficult is the fact the Irish play four of those games are on the road. Notre Dame has had much success on the road lately posting a 16-8 record the last three-plus seasons away from home and has a 2-1 road mark in 2003.

PERFECT 10 – The Irish are a perfect 3-0 in 2003 if holding is opponents under 10 goals a game. In its only loss this season, Notre Dame gave up 14 goals to Virginia. In 2002, the Irish were 0-4 when giving up 10 or more goals in a game. On the other hand, the Irish are 3-0 when scoring 10 goals or more in 2003. In its only loss, Notre Dame recorded eight goals against Virginia.

BERGER KING – Sophomore Dan Berger started the season where he left off a year ago as Notre Dame’s leading scorer (21 goals, 4 assists). Berger has eight goals and one assist in 2003, starting all four games. In 2002, Berger started 13 games after playing in just six games during his freshman year in which he scored just one goal. He had six multiple-goal games in 2002, including a personal-best four goals in a 7-6 loss at Pennsylvania on March 2. Prior to the Fairfield game (the 11th game of the season in 2002), Berger had scored a goal in the first 10 games of the season. Against the Stags, he did manage to dish off an assist to keep his streak alive of contributing either a goal or an assist in all 11 games. That streak ended though the next game in a loss to Harvard. Overall, Berger has scored in 16 of his last 17 games for the Irish (12 of 13 in 2002 and all four in 2003).

HOWELL YOU DO MR. BERGER – Dan Berger and Matt Howell have figured in the scoring in 23 of Notre Dame’s 42 goals in 2003. Against Penn State, the duo combined for five of Notre Dame’s 10 goals and for five of its seven assists. In a win against Penn, Howell and Berger figured in six goals, while versus North Carolina it was six and Virginia is was five.

FORE: LOOKOUT FOR HOWELL AND BERGER: Junior Matt Howell and sophomore Dan Berger have both had four-goal games for the Irish this season. Howell recorded a career-high four goals against North Carolina last Saturday, after scoring a hat trick against Penn in the home opener. Howell also had five assists vs. Penn State and has scored at least three points in all four games this season. He has also recorded at least one goal in each game and had a season-high six points vs. Penn State. Berger scored his second career four bagger against Penn State in the season opener and has scored at least one goal in each game this season.

HOLD YOUR HATS: Besides the four-goal performances of Matt Howell and Dan Berger this season, Notre Dame scorers have also recorded two hat tricks in 2003. Howell had three goals in Notre Dame’s win over Penn, while freshman Matt Karweck also recorded three tallies against the Quakers in his first game at the Loftus Sports Complex.

GETTING SOME MATT-I-TUDE: The Irish scoring punch has been coming from guys named Matt this season as junior Matt Howell leads the team with 10 goals and 19 points this season, while freshman Matt Karweck has six goals and an assist and freshman Matt Ryan has two goals and two assists. Sophomore Matt Malakoff also has a shot but no points for the Irish in 2003.

FRESHMAN FINESSE: The freshman class has made an immediate impact for the Irish in 2003 as D.J. Driscoll, Brian Hubschmann, Matt Karweck, Drew Peters, Matt Ryan and Patrick Walsh have all seen valuable minutes for Notre Dame. In fact, Walsh is the second-leading scorer for the Irish this season with 10 points in his first four games. In his first game in an Irish uniform, Walsh recorded a goal and an assist and then followed that with two goals and two assists against Penn. He has scored at least one goal in all four games this season, including scoring two goals against #1 Virginia on Tuesday. Karweck has six goals and one assist on the season and is foruth on the Irish in scoring while Ryan has four points and Hubschmann has two points.

THE SIGN OF THE CROSS: Irish goalie Stewart Crosland has been impressive in goal this season in helping the Irish to a 3-1 start this season. Crosland has given up 36 goals in four games this season for a 9.00 goals-against average.

PRESEASON HONORS – Senior longstick midfielder John Souch and senior defensman Eric Simon were both tabbed as preseason honorable mention selections by Inside Lacrosse Face Off Yearbook. So far in 2003, Souch has played in all four games, starting zero, while Simon has started every game and had nine ground balls in his first two contests.

HOME SWEET HOME – Notre Dame owns a 93-31 (.750) mark in home games since 1981 and is 1-0 in 2003. Since back-to-back 5-0 campaigns at home in 1994 and 1995, Irish teams own a 41-15 record for a winning percentage of 73.2 percent. Since ’94, Notre Dame has been undefeated at home four times.

LOOKS FAMILIAR – Notre Dame’s 2003 schedule will feature 11 opponents the Irish faced a year ago – Penn State, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Loyola, Hofstra, Denver, Ohio State, Butler, Air Force, Fairfield and Harvard.

ALL IN THE FAMILY – Craig Bishko, a freshman midfielder on this year’s Irish lacrosse team, is the brother of former Notre Dame standout Steve Bishko, a 2001 United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association (USILA) third-team All-America selection and three-year starter. The Bishkos are the fourth brother tandem to play lacrosse at Notre Dame. The others are Todd (1992-96) and Joe Bialous, Jason (1992-94, ’95) and Connor (’98) Pett and David (1998-2001) and Todd (1998-2001) Ulrich.

ALL IN THE FAMILY II – Notre Dame’s men’s and women’s lacrosse teams are represented by members of the Simon family as defenseman Eric Simon’s sister, Meredith, is a junior on the women’s lacrosse team.