Matt Kavanagh

Notre Dame And Denver Set To Meet In NCAA Championship Semifinals

May 20, 2015

NCAA Tournament Central

Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

Notre Dame And Denver Set To Meet In NCAA Championship Semifinals Both teams returns to Championship Weekend for the second straight season.

# 3 DENVER (15-2, 5-0 BIG EAST) (No. 4 seed)


#2 NOTRE (12-2, 4-0 ACC) (No. 1 seed) Saturday, May 23, 2015

  • 1 p.m. (ET)
    Lincoln Financial Field
  • Philadelphia, Pa.


LIVE STATS (Gametracker)


  • No. 1 seed Notre Dame (12-2) is back in the semifinals of Championship Weekend for the second straight year and fifth time in school history. The Fighting Irish will face No. 4 seed Denver in the first of two semifinal matchups at the 2015 NCAA Championship at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa.
  • Faceoff is slated for 1 p.m. (ET). The game will air on ESPN2 and WatchESPN. Eamon McAnaney (play-by-play), Quint Kessenich (analyst) and Paul Carcaterra (reporter) will be on the call.
  • Westwood One will cover the game on Sirius XM Radio and Dave Ryan and Mark Dixon will call the action.
  • Live stats are available on (Gametracker).
  • Saturday’s contest will be the second meeting between the two teams this season and the 20th overall. Notre Dame dropped an 11-10 overtime decision to the Pioneers in Denver on March 7.
  • No. 6 seed Maryland will play Johns Hopkins in the other semifinal game.
  • Both semifinal winners will meet for the title on Monday, May 25 at 1:00 p.m. (ET).
  • A victory would give Notre Dame a berth in the championship tilt for the third time in school history. The previous other four Final Four appearances for the Irish came in 2001, 2010, 2012 and 2014.


  • Notre Dame, Maryland and Denver all played in Championship Weekend a year ago.
  • The Irish defeated the Terrapins 11-6 in the semifinals, while Denver dropped a 15-12 decision to Duke in its semifinal contest.


  • With its 14-10 win over Albany last Saturday in the NCAA Championship quarterfinals, the Irish earned a spot in the semifinals for the fifth time in program history.
  • Notre Dame owns a 2-2 record in its four previous semifinal appearances.
  • Notre Dame is making its fourth Final Four appearance in the last six campaigns, while both Denver and Maryland are returning to Championship Weekend for the fourth time in five years.


  • Notre Dame, winners of the Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season crown, is playing in the NCAA Championship for the 10th straight year and 20th time in school history. Every NCAA appearance that Notre Dame has made has occurred under head coach Kevin Corrigan.
  • The Fighting Irish own an all-time record of 17-19 in their 20 trips to the tournament.
  • A year ago, Notre Dame advanced all the way to the title game for the second time in program history after earning a No. 6 seed. The Irish topped Harvard in the first round, Albany in the quarterfinals and Maryland in the semifinals before dropping an 11-9 decision in the championship contest. It marked the second time in program history that Notre Dame finished as the NCAA runner-up (the other time was in 2010).
  • Notre Dame and Maryland are the only two programs to earn an NCAA berth each of the last 10 seasons.
  • The Irish are the only team to reach the quarterfinals in six straight seasons.
  • The Irish earned a spot in this year’s semifinals following a first-round victory over Towson (12-10) and a quarterfinal win over Albany (14-10).


  • Notre Dame earned the No. 1 seed in this year’s NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championship for the first time in school history. In 2013, the Irish garnered the tournament’s No. 2 seed before falling to Duke 12-11 in the quarterfinals.
  • This is the eighth time overall — and seventh time in the last eight campaigns –the Fighting Irish have earned one of the eight national seeds for the NCAA Championship. The Irish also were seeded for the 2001 (5th), 2008 (6th), 2009 (7th), 2011 (4th), 2013 (2nd) and 2014 (6th) championships.
  • All five teams from the ACC in 2015 were seeded — Notre Dame (No. 1), Syracuse (No. 2), North Carolina (No. 3), Duke (No. 5) and Virginia (No. 7).
  • Heading into this weekend, the Irish have posted a 4-2 mark versus the eight national seeds this season.


  • Saturday will be the 20th meeting between Notre Dame and Denver and the Irish hold a 14-5 advantage in the series.
  • The Fighting Irish are 5-2 in the last seven showdowns with the Pioneers. The two teams met earlier this season with Denver earning an 11-10 overtime victory at home on March 7. Three of the last four contests have been decided in overtime.
  • The last five meetings have been decided by a combined seven goals.
  • Notre Dame have suffered setbacks in the last two meetings after winning five straight from 2009-13.
  • While this will be the 20th time the two schools have played each other, it will be the first time that they will meet twice in the same season. It also will mark a first-ever matchup at the NCAAs.


  • Denver advanced to the semifinals following at 15-13 quarterfinal win against Ohio State last weekend at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. It marks the fourth time in five seasons that the Pioneers have earned a spot in Championship Weekend.
  • The Buckeyes got off to a 7-1 start in the contest before Denver went on a 9-0 over the second and third quarters.
  • The Pioneers’ all-time career scoring leader Wesley Berg enters the contest with 247 career points and 180 career goals. Berg enters the game with a 36-game scoring streak.
  • Connor Cannizzaro (55g, 33a) and Wesley Berg (50g, 20a) lead the Pioneers in scoring


  • Notre Dame and Denver have faced five common opponents this season — Duke, North Carolina, Ohio State, Georgetown and Marquette.
  • The Irish are 5-1 versus those team: Duke: 1-1; North Carolina 1-0; Ohio State 1-0; Georgetown 1-0 and Marquette 1-0, while Denver is 5-2 (Duke 1-0; North Carolina 0-1; Ohio State 1-1, Georgetown 2-0 and Marquette 1-0).


  • Notre Dame was 2-1 this season versus teams that currently comprise the BIG EAST Conference. The Irish beat Georgetown (14-12) and Marquette (14-7) and lost to Denver (11-10 in OT).
  • Notre Dame teams are 33-19 all-time versus teams from that conference.


  • Notre Dame will be facing a ranked opponent for the 12th consecutive outing on Saturday in its matchup with the Pioneers.
  • The Irish are 9-2 this season versus ranked foes.
  • The last time Notre Dame did not play a ranked opponent was back on February 28 when the Irish defeated Dartmouth 20-5.


  • Notre Dame won the Atlantic Coast Conference regular-season title in 2015 in just its second season as a conference member. The Irish finished with a 4-0 record.
  • Coach Kevin Corrigan’s squad clinched the title with a thrilling come-from-behind 15-14 win over No. 2 North Carolina on April 18. Both teams entered the matchup with 3-0 records.


  • Six of Notre Dame’s 13 games this season have been decided by two goals or less. The Irish are 5-1 in those games (3-1 in one-goal affairs).
  • Notre Dame has played two overtime contests this season — losing to Denver 11-10 in overtime and defeating Syracuse 13-12 in double-overtime.
  • The 13-8 loss to Duke in the semifinals of the ACC Championship on April 24 was the largest setback suffered by a Fighting Irish squad since dropping a 15-7 decision to Duke at Notre Dame on April 5, 2014.


  • Notre Dame’s win against North Carolina on April 18 marked the second No. 1 vs. No. 2 showdown at Arlotta Stadium in 2015. No. 2 Notre Dame knocked off No. 1 Syracuse 13-12 in double-overtime on March 28.


  • Irish senior midfielder Nick Ossello had a successful homecoming weekend as the Wheat Ridge, Colorado native scored two goals in Notre Dame’s win over Albany.
  • Ossello attended and graduated from Wheat Ridge High School where he was a two-sport standout in lacrosse and football.
  • Saturday’s game marked the fourth time he had played a sporting event at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Ossello sports a 3-1 record playing at the venue.
  • As a high school quarterback, his prep team captured the Class 4A state football championship in 2008 during his sophomore year with a 35-31 victory over Greeley West. Two years later, his squad lost in the championship game to Valor Christian 38-8.
  • In 2013, Ossello and his Irish lacrosse teammates defeated Denver 13-12 in overtime at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.


  • Junior Matt Landis was selected as the Atlantic Coast Conference Defensive Player of the Year.
  • He has started all 12 games for the Irish and anchors a defensive unit that has yielded just 9.08 goals per game in 2015. Landis has collected 24 ground balls and caused eight turnovers.


  • Notre Dame had four players garner all-ACC honors after having two players selected in 2014.
  • Junior attackman Matt Kavanagh earned all-conference honors for the second consecutive season, while senior attackman Conor Doyle, junior defender Matt Landis and sophomore midfielder Sergio Perkovic were first-time honorees.
  • North Carolina and Syracuse each placed five players on the 18-member all-conference team, while Duke placed three and Virginia, one.


  • Prior to its April 18 game against North Carolina, Notre Dame had only trailed for 19:29 the entire season.
  • Entering their showdown against Marquette on April 7, the Fighting Irish had only trailed for 1:10 in their previous six games. The Golden Eagles jumped on top 2-0 and held a lead for 8:23 during that time.
  • Against the Tar Heels, the Fighting Irish trailed for 2:01 through three quarters before North Carolina opened up a two-goal advantage in the fourth quarter. Notre Dame trailed from the 13:54 mark of the final stanza until tallying the game-tying goal with 33 seconds left in the contest.
  • In the loss to Duke at the ACC Championship, Notre Dame never led in the game as the Blue Devils jumped out to a 3-0 advantage in the second quarter after a scoreless first period.
  • The Irish netted the game’s first goal against Towson 33 seconds into the contest and then the Tigers went on to score six of the next seven goals to build a 6-2 lead with 2:50 remaining in the second quarter. Notre Dame closed the half with a 3-0 run to pull within 6-5 at the break. The Irish knotted the contest at 6-6 eight seconds into the third quarter and then took the lead for good with 10:49 remaining in the period.


  • When Notre Dame trailed Towson 2-1 after the first quarter on Saturday, it marked the first time in 2015 that the Irish have not led or were tied. They have outscored their opponents 46-16 in the first quarter this season.
  • Notre Dame’s 6-5 halftime deficit against the Tigers marked just the second time this season the Irish trailed at the half, having outscored their opponents 91-49 in the first half up to that point in the season.
  • Notre Dame has led after the first, second and third quarters in all but three games this season — North Carolina, Duke and Denver. Against the Tar Heels, the Irish were tied following the first three quarters. Notre Dame was tied after the first quarter versus Denver last Saturday and trailed by one (9-8) following the third period.
  • In the 13-8 loss to the Blue Devils, neither team scored in the first quarter and Notre Dame subsequently trailed at the end of the second (5-1) and third (10-2) quarters.
  • Notre Dame did outscore Duke 6-3 in the final 15-minute stanza.


  • Notre Dame finished a perfect 7-0 at home in 2015 for the 10th in school history and first since the 2011 campaign (6-0).
  • The seven wins matched a program best at home. The Fighting Irish 1992 squad finished with a 7-1 home record.
  • Since 2006 (spanning nine seasons), Notre Dame has finished undefeated at home on five occasons. The Irish were a perfect 6-0 during three consecutive seasons from 2006-08.


  • Seven of Notre Dame’s 11 regular-season opponents currently appear in both the USILA (coaches) and Cascade/Maverik (media) polls, including four in the top 10.
  • The Fighting Irish are 9-2 versus ranked opponents this season.


  • Notre Dame’s 13-8 loss to Duke dropped the Irish from the top of the national rankings after spending four weeks holding down the number-one spot.
  • After beating No. 1 Syracuse on March 28, Notre Dame moved to the top of the USILA (coaches) and Cascade/Maverik (media) polls.
  • The Irish had been in the top spot for four weeks, which marked the program’s longest run at No. 1.
  • Since the program’s inception in 1981, Notre Dame has been ranked No. 1 in both polls for eight weeks. Here are Notre Dame’s appearances at No. 1:
    April 18 — May 2, 2011 (USILA & media polls — 2 weeks)
    March 25 — April 1, 2013 (USILA & media polls — 1 week)
    April 22 — April 29, 2013 (USILA & media polls — 1 week)
    March 30-April 20, 2015 (USILA & media polls — 4 weeks)


  • Through the first 10 games of the season, senior midfielder Will Corrigan had scored two goals and dished off one assist.
  • In each of Notre Dame’s last four games versus Duke, Army, Towson and Albany, Corrigan has had at least one goal in each of those four contests which has resulted in seven points.
  • In the win over Towson, he registered the second multiple-goal game of his career as he netted two goals.
  • Corrigan’s current four-game scoring streak is the longest of his career.


  • Sophomore goalie Shane Doss is 16th nationally in save percentage (.550) and 19th in goals-against average (8.93).
  • Doss made a career-high 17 saves in the win at Duke (April 4). He has made 10 or more saves in eight of his 13 starts this season.
  • He was named the USILA Division I Defensive Player of the Week and the ACC Defensive Player of the Week after the Irish shut out Ohio State, 9-0. He earned the ACC honor once again along with being the Defensive Player of the Week for his career-high 17 save effort in the 15-10 win at Duke.
  • Doss has an 11-2 record this season and a 16-5 career mark.


  • Notre Dame ranks eighth nationally in scoring offense (13.50 gpg) and 18th in scoring defense (9.21 gpg).


  • Matt Kavanagh has compiled three or more points in 10 of 14 games this season.
  • The junior attackman has notched six or more points in three games this season and in 11 games during his career.
  • Kavanagh’s career 3.63 points-per-game average is eighth among all active Division I players.
  • Kavanagh had his career-best 17-game goal streak snapped against Marquette, but he did have three assists versus the Golden Eagles.
  • With his four-goal effort against Army on May 2, he became the sixth 100-plus goal scorer in school history. In addition to Kavanagh, the five others players to to reach the 100-goal plateau have been Randy Colley (173), Ryan Hoff (134), Joe Franklin (119), Chris Dusseau (115) and Tom Glatzel (106).
  • Kavanagh did not score a goal or have an assist against Towson in Notre Dame’s first-round win over the Tigersq. It marked the first time since a 15-7 loss to Duke at Arlotta Stadium on April 5, 2014 that he failed to register a point.


  • Notre Dame boasts the nation’s fourth-best man-up offense (.525). The Fighting Irish are 21-of-40 in extra-man opportunities this season. Matt Kavanagh has a team-best six man-advantage goals this season while Mikey Wynne and Sergio Perkovic each have five man-up tallies.


  • The Fighting Irish rank seventh nationally in shooting percentage (.339). Individually, Mikey Wynne is fifth in the nation in shooting percentage (.471) and Conor Doyle is seventh (.462).


  • Senior attackman Conor Doyle had his 31-game point streak snapped against Duke on April 24 as he failed to record a goal or an assist in the game.
  • Heading into the matchup against the Blue Devils, Doyle had registered 89 points (57g, 32a) during the streak. It began on May 2, 2013 versus Syracuse.
  • Doyle has notched 19 goals and 13 assists in the last six games. He tied a career-high mark of four goals in the win over Marquette after producing seven points on three goals and four assists in the victory at Duke.
  • In Notre Dame’s win over Army on May 2, he scored three goals and dished off a career-high five assists while finishing with a personal-best eight points.
  • Doyle has accounted for six goals and three assists in Notre Dame’s two NCAA tournament games.


  • Notre Dame has produced significant scoring runs in each of the last 12 games.
  • Trailing 9-8 following the third quarter against Albany, the Irish scored the first five goals of the final stanza to break open the game.
  • After falling behind Towson 6-2 with 2:50 to play in the second quarter, Notre Dame scored six unanswered goals to take an 8-6 advantage with 10:01 to play in the third quarter. The Tigers tied the game with 4:31 to play in the third period on back-to-back scores before the Irish rattled off a 4-0 burst to take a 12-8 lead. In all, Notre Dame would score 10 of 12 goals in a run that covered 22:12.
  • Against Army, the Fighting Irish led 6-0 after the fourth quarter and scored eight of the contest’s first nine goals.
  • After trailing Duke 12-2 in the the semifinals of the ACC Championship with 12:04 remaining, Notre Dame rattled off six straight goals to pull the Irish to within four (12-8) with 4:14 to play.
  • The Irish tallied the final three goals of the game in a span of 1:15 to secure a 15-14 come-from-behind victory over North Carolina.
  • Marquette claimed a 2-0 lead over Notre Dame before the Fighting Irish scored seven straight goals en route to the 14-7 win.
  • The Irish netted seven of the game’s first nine goals in the 15-10 victory at Duke.
  • The Fighting Irish extended their 5-3 halftime lead against Syracuse with four straight second-half scores to claim a six-goal advantage (9-3) before going on to win 13-12 in double-overtime.
  • Notre Dame scored every goal in the 9-0 win over Ohio State on March 21.
  • The Fighting Irish scored the first seven goals in the 11-9 victory at Virginia.
  • Notre Dame surrendered the first goal to Denver before scoring five straight times, but the Irish would suffer an 11-10 overtime setback.
  • After Dartmouth tied Notre Dame, 2-2, the Fighting Irish rattled off 14 consecutive tallies in the 20-5 victory.
  • The Irish overturned a 1-0 deficit at Michigan with nine straight goals en route to the 17-8 victory.


  • Notre Dame has had at least six different goal scorers in 11 of 14 games this season.
  • Notre Dame had a season-high 10 goal scorers in wins over Dartmouth and Michigan.
  • The Irish had a season-low four goal scorers in the win at Virginia.


  • Freshman attackman Mikey Wynne has a team-high 33 goals this season, breaking Matt Kavanagh’s single-season mark for a freshman that he set during the 2013 campaign.
  • Wynne has posted two or more goals in eight of 14 games this season.
  • He scored six goals versus Georgetown in his collegiate debut.


  • Sophomore Sergio Perkovic is Notre Dame’s leading midfield scorer this season with 29 goals and seven assists.
  • Perkovic has 19 multiple-goal games during his career (10 this season), including five games of three-plus tallies.
  • He tied a career-high mark of five points with three goals and two assists April 7th versus Marquette. He had a hand in four straight Fighting Irish goals (2g, 2a) during the second quarter of that contest.
  • Perkovic netted 28 goals last season, including five in the national title game. The 28 goals were the most ever for a freshman midfielder at Notre Dame.


  • Junior attackman Matt Kavanagh’s 174 career points (101g, 73a) rank fifth in the Notre Dame record book.
  • Kavanagh’s 101 goals are the sixth-most in school history and the 73 assists are the fifth most.
  • Kavanagh produced Fighting Irish single-season records for points (75) and assists (33) in 2014.
  • Kavanagh’s 42 goals last season were the most for a Notre Dame player since Randy Colley netted a school-record 49 goals in 1995.
  • Kavanagh is the only player in Notre Dame history to register 30 goals and 30 assists in the same season (42g, 33a in 2014).
  • He has 30 multiple-goal games during his career (17 with three-plus goals).
  • Kavanagh matched a school record with seven goals in last season’s win at Ohio State.


  • Senior midfielder Nick Ossello has registered a career-high three points in four of the last nine games. He scored three goals against Ohio State and then tallied two goals and one assist versus Syracuse. Ossello deposited three goals against Duke and Marquette.
  • Ossello was named to the ACC Championship All-Tournament Team after scoring two goals in the loss to the Blue Devils.


  • Sophomore midfielder Nick Koshansky tallied his first career goal in Notre Dame’s win over Towson. It came in his 31st career game played.


  • Notre Dame posted the second shutout in program history with the 9-0 blanking of No. 15 Ohio State on March 21 at Arlotta Stadium.
  • Notre Dame sophomore Shane Doss started between the pipes and stopped 11 Buckeye shots, while senior Conor Kelly came off the bench to play the final 4:25 of the game and made two saves to preserve the shutout. Notre Dame’s only other clean sheet in program history came in a 15-0 win over Mt. Union on April 10, 1984.
  • Notre Dame’s man-down defensive unit halted all five of Ohio State’s man-up chances.


  • Matt Kavanagh (Jr./A) is one of five finalists for the 2015 Tewaaraton Award, presented by Under Armour.
  • The four other finalists include Wesley Berg (Denver), Myles Jones (Duke), Kevin Rice (Syracuse) and Lyle Thompson (Albany).
  • Barbara Sullivan from the Fighting Irish women’s lacrosse team is also a finalist on the women’s side. Notre Dame and Syracuse are the only two schools to have both a male and female finalist.


  • Matt Kavanagh has three overtime game-winning goals during his career. He netted the deciding goal in last season’s triumph over Albany in the NCAA quarterfinals. During his freshman campaign, he scored in overtime against Penn State and North Carolina (3ot).


  • Members of the Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team have been recognized as Atlantic Coast Conference/United Way “Game Changers” and were honored during the 2015 New York Life ACC Tournament. The “Game Changers” initiative was introduced this year as part of the Atlantic Coast Conference’s unique and longstanding partnership with United Way. It seeks to recognize and highlight specific ACC team involvement with its local United Way chapter.


  • Notre Dame is the only school to advance to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championship in each of the last six campaigns.
  • Notre Dame and Maryland are the only two programs to earn a spot in the NCAA Championship field in each of the last nine seasons.
  • The Fighting Irish are 10-5 in the NCAA tournament over the last five seasons.


  • The University of Notre Dame athletics department will commemorate the legacy of long-time University president Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C., in a number of ways. Father Hesburgh died February 26 at age 97. He served as University president from 1952-87.
  • Notre Dame athletic teams will wear “Father Ted” patches or stickers on some combination of their uniforms, warm-ups or helmets.
  • Moments of silence will be observed prior to home events in each of Notre Dame’s 26 varsity sports.
  • In the near future, there will be commemorative signage created for each Notre Dame home athletic venue — to be featured either on the field or court itself or displayed elsewhere at the facility.