Ryan Hoff

Notre Dame Set For Showdowns Against Quinnipiac And Lehigh

April 16, 2008

Quinnipiac at #10 Notre Dame
Friday, April 18 • 4:00 p.m. (ET)
School Field • South Bend, Ind.

#10 Notre Dame at Lehigh
Sunday, April 20 • 1:00 p.m. (ET)
Ulrich Field • Bethlehem, Pa.

Complete Release in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

The Notre Dame men’s lacrosse team returns to action following a 12-day layoff to take on Quinnipiac in a Great Western Lacrosse League (GWLL) tilt on Friday, April 18 at School Field in South Bend, Ind. Game time is slated for 4:00 p.m. (ET). The Irish, who are ranked 10th nationally, will then travel to Bethlehem, Pa. to face Lehigh in a non-conference showdown on Sunday, April 20 at 1:00 p.m. (ET).

VENUE: Friday’s game against Quinnipiac will be played at School Field, which is located just south of the University of Notre Dame campus on Eddy Street … fans should enter the stadium through the northeast entrance.

ABOUT THE IRISH: Notre Dame enters play this weekend with a 7-2 record, including a 1-1 mark in the GWLL … the Fighting Irish are currently tied for 10th in the USILA coaches poll and 13th in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse media rankings … Notre Dame is coming off a 9-8 setback to No. 19 Denver on April 5 in Bridgeview, Ill. … that loss snapped an eight-game GWLL win streak for the Irish … junior attackman Ryan Hoff leads Notre Dame with 22 goals … senior attackman Alex Wharton has team-high totals in points (28) and assists (17), both career-best marks … junior Duncan Swezey has a career-high 16 goals, while senior midfielder Michael Podgajny has 15 tallies … Notre Dame has defeated three ranked teams this season (#17 Loyola, 7-6; #13 Albany, 7-6; #11 Drexel, 13-6) … the Irish have had 20 different players score at least one goal … Notre Dame has the nation’s sixth-best scoring offense by notching 12.22 goals per game … the Irish defense ranks eighth nationally as they surrender just 7.11 goals per game … senior goaltender Joey Kemp has played 515:24 of a possible 540:00 minutes between the pipes … the two-time All-America honoree ranks second nationally with a .633 save percentage and he is seventh with a 6.75 goals-against average … 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 174-94 (.649) 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.

ND-QUINNIPIAC SERIES NOTES: Friday will mark the third meeting all-time between Notre Dame and Quinnipiac … the Fighting Irish have won the first two encounters with the Bobcats … Notre Dame captured a 19-7 home victory over Quinnipiac in 2006 and followed that up with a 14-9 triumph last season in Hamden, Conn.

ABOUT QUINNIPIAC: The Bobcats are 7-3 overall and 1-2 in the GWLL this season … Quinnipiac is coming off an 11-10 overtime win at Air Force on April 13 … prior to that contest, the Bobcats had lost three straight games after opening the season 6-0 … in its other GWLL contests, Quinnipiac fell at Denver (14-8) and at home to Ohio State (18-7) … the Bobcats are averaging 8.87 goals per game, while allowing 8.67 a game … junior Gary Messina leads the team in scoring with 21 points on eight goals and a team-high 13 assists … sophomore Garret Kerr has a team-best 16 goals … sophomore Kevin Benzing has earned every decision in goal and carries an 8.19 goals-against average and a .544 save percentage … the Bobcats returned four starters and 26 letterwinners from last season’s team that went 6-7 and finished in a tie for fourth in the GWLL with a 1-4 conference record … head coach Eric Fekete is in his seventh season at Quinnipiac.

THE LAST ENCOUNTER: Notre Dame claimed a 14-9 decision in its first-ever trip to Quinnipiac last season … the Irish were ranked eighth at the time of the meeting, while the Bobcats were unranked … Ryan Hoff (a current junior) led Notre Dame with six goals, while Brian Hubschmann (a graduated senior) chipped in three goals and two assists … Joey Kemp made 10 saves to earn the win … Mike Annuziata and Mike Stottler both netted three goals for the Bobcats … Jamie Prudden made 13 saves in the loss.

NOTRE DAME IN THE GWLL: Notre Dame is 52-10 (.839) 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.

ND-LEHIGH SERIES NOTES: Notre Dame and Lehigh will be meeting for the fourth time when the two teams square off on Sunday … the Irish are 3-0 all-time against the Mountain Hawks … this will mark Notre Dame’s first-ever game at Lehigh … the series’ first encounter took place in 1989, a 10-8 Irish win in University Park, Pa. … the next showdown occurred in 2006, a 10-7 Notre Dame triumph in Bethesda, Md. … last season, the Irish topped the Mountain Hawks, 14-2, at Moose Krause Stadium.

ABOUT LEHIGH: The Mountain Hawks will carry a 6-8 record into Sunday’s showdown against the Fighting Irish … in its last outing, Lehigh fell to No. 10 Bucknell, 11-5 … the Mountain Hawks are averaging 6.36 goals per game and allowing 8.29 a game … junior Ricky Cornetta leads the team in scoring with 24 points on 15 goals and nine assists, while junior Max Dahlem has a team-high 16 goals … senior Eric Spriko has started 13 games in goal and possesses a 8.08 goals-against average and a .527 save percentage … Lehigh returned four starters and 19 letterwinners from last season’s squad that went 4-9 overall … Kevin Cassese is in his first season as head coach of the Mountain Hawks.

THE LAST ENCOUNTER: Notre Dame captured a 14-2 home victory over Lehigh last season … the Irish were ranked 11th at the time of the contest, while the Mountain Hawks were unranked … the two goals were the fewest allowed by the Fighting Irish during the 2007 campaign … Duncan Swezey (a current junior) notched four goals to pace Notre Dame … Joey Kemp picked up the win by not surrendering a goal in 37 minutes of play.

RECAPPING DENVER: 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, April 5 at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Ill. … Ryan Hoff led the Irish with three goals, while Grant Krebs had two scores … Notre Dame jumped out to a 6-1 lead with 5:02 remaining in the first half, yet Denver 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 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 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, 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 … Joey Kemp tied a season-high with 13 saves, while Austin Konkel had 12 stops in the victory … Taylor Clagett once again dominated the faceoff X for the Irish as the won 15-of-21 attempts.

MAKE-UP DATE: A make-up date has been established for the Notre Dame vs. Air Force tilt that was originally scheduled for March 22 … the two teams will square off on Tuesday, April 22 in USAFA, Colo. … game time is set for 2:00 p.m. (MT).

SENNETT HONORED: Mike Sennett, a 1991 Notre Dame graduate and former Fighting Irish lacrosse player who passed away suddenly in April of 2007, will be honored with the University’s Reynolds Award at this Saturday’s annual Blue-Gold spring football game … established in 1985, the William D. Reynolds Award is conferred on an alumnus/alumna (living or deceased) doing exceptional work with youth for the betterment of the quality of life … Sennett, a 1991 team captain, is being honored for his exceptional work with young athletes … he coached the DeSmet Jesuit High School team in St. Louis, Mo. for 16 seasons and became a luminary figure in national lacrosse circles through his tireless passion for the sport … in addition to his full-time job at Northwestern Mutual and lacrosse coaching duties, Mike served as a volunteer firefighter for the Boles Fire Protection District.

HOME SWEET HOME: Notre Dame has won a program-record 16 straight games at home … the Irish are 3-0 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 the other 12 have taken place outside at Moose Krause Stadium … Notre Dame owns an overall home record of 118-35 (.771) 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 Irish … Notre Dame still has two regular-season home dates for the 2008 season … the Quinnipiac tilt will take place at School Field in South Bend, Ind. on April 18, while the Ohio State game will be played at Alumni Field on the Notre Dame campus on April 27.

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 33-13 overall during his Irish career … in addition, Kemp is currently first in Irish history with a 7.30 goals-against average … the two-time All-American currently ranks among the top three in three other Notre Dame goaltender career categories, minutes played (2nd, 2,727:04), games started (2nd, 48) and saves (3rd, 543).

KEMP AMONG NATIONAL LEADERS: Joey Kemp ranks in the top 10 nationally in both save percentage (2nd, .633) and goals-against average (7th, 6.75) 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 has a team-best nine-game goal streak … senior midfielder Michael Podgajny has scored at least one goal in the past 23 games in which he has played … the only game he missed during that stretch was this season’s opener against Loyola … Podgajny missed the contest due to an injury … Ryan Hoff has notched a goal in 17 of the last 18 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.

FAST STARTS: Notre Dame has out scored its opponents 32-7 during the first quarter of play this season … the Fighting Irish have held opponents scoreless in the first quarter on four occasions this season (Loyola, Penn State, Albany, Dartmouth).

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 22 goals after pacing the team with 40 goals one season ago … he has notched three or more goals on four occasions this season.

SPREADING THE WEALTH: The Fighting Irish have had 20 different players notch at least one goal this season … in the season-opener, Notre Dame produced seven goals from seven different players in a 7-6 win over Loyola … the Irish used nine different goalscorers in a 15-9 triumph of Penn State on Feb. 24 … Notre Dame had 10 players score a goal in a 16-6 victory over Villanova on March 4 … the Irish used 12 goalscorers in a 19-7 win against Dartmouth on March 15 … the season-high total was 13 players with a goal in a 19-7 victory over Bellarmine on March 29 … last season, the Irish had 18 players score a goal.

LOCKING DOWN: The Irish are surrendering just 7.11 goals per game this season, which ranks eighth nationally … the Irish have held opponents to six goals on four occasions … 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 12.22 goals a game, which ranks sixth 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 +5.11 is the fourth-best mark among all NCAA Division I squads this season.

FACING OFF: As a team, Notre Dame boasts the nation’s top faceoff percentage (.640) … senior Taylor Clagett ranks fourth nationally in that category with a .632 win percentage … Clagett has been a valuable asset for the Irish during his Notre Dame career as he has won nearly 60-percent 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 tied for 10th in the USILA coaches poll and 13th in the Nike/Inside Lacrosse media rankings … in addition, Notre Dame is sixth in this week’s LaxNews poll … 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. 11 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.

FOLLOW ALL ND HOME GAMES ONLINE: All five of Notre Dame’s true home games will feature livestats available through und.com, the official web site of all 26 varsity athletic programs at the University … simply go to the men’s lacrosse page and click on `Schedule’ at the top of the page and find the game that is being played that day and click on `Gametracker’ to follow the game for free.

SIGN UP FOR IRISH ALERT TEXT MESSAGE SERVICE: Go to und.com and 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.

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.