Nov. 12, 2004
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Junior forward and Hermann Trophy frontrunner Katie Thorlakson had two goals and an assist – becoming just the third Notre Dame player ever to reach 20 goals and 20 assists in a season – as the second-ranked Irish opened NCAA Tournament play with a 4-0 win over visiting Eastern Illinois, in Friday-night action at Alumni Field.
Notre Dame (20-1-1), which is seeded 4th in the 64-team NCAA field, quickly bounced back from its first loss of the season, scoring in the seventh minute of play when freshman forward Amanda Cinalli volleyed home a Thorlakson corner kick.
Thorlakson – who now has scored or assisted on 17 of Notre Dame’s last 19 goals – found the net eight minutes later and went on to provide the primary assist on a second-half goal by sophomore defender Kim Lorenzen. Senior Candace Chapman, who split time at left back and forward, then scored 48 seconds later, after racing down the left side and sending a tough-angle shot into the right sidenetting.
The Irish racked up a 27-3 edge in total shots (14-1 in shots on goal) and held a 6-0 corner-kick margin, marking the ninth time this season (and fourth in the last five games) that the Irish have not allowed a corner (ND now has allowed just 34 CKs in 21 games, with only 2 opponent CKs in the last 6 games).
Notre Dame moves on to Sunday’s second round (1:00 p.m. EST, at Alumni Field) and will face Wisconsin (16-5-1), which used the 12th goal of the season from Amy Vermeulen to outlast Dayton in the 10th minute of overtime (2-1) during Friday’s early game (see www.uwbadgers.com for complete wrapup, plus quotes and stats below).
Thorlakson’s corner-kick service has led to several Irish goals this season, including a cross from the left flag early in Friday’s game. Sophomore midfielder Jill Krivacek went high in the center of the box and the ball skimmed off her head back to the left side. Cinalli was in position and extended for a leftfooted volley into the net, yielding her eighth goal of the season but first in the past eight games (the goal, at 6:13, was ND’s fifth-quickest of the season).
Cinalli’s goal held up as her third gamewinner of the season and marked the fifth time this season that she has opened the scoring for the Irish, sharing the team lead in that category with another first team all-BIG EAST performer (sophomore midfielder Jen Buczkowski).
Eight minutes later, Cinalli nearly assisted on the second Irish goal while Buczkowski provided the final pass. Cinalli set the play in motion with a run into the right side of the box but her pass found the foot of an EIU defender. Buczkowski quickly pounced on the loose ball near the right post and shifted the focus with a pass back to Thorlakson, who rocketed a shot from 14 yards out for her 20th goal of the season (14:54).
Eastern Illinois (13-6-2) nearly cut the lead to 2-1 early in the second half, when Sharyne Connell took advantage of Notre Dame’s failure to clear the ball. Connell battled for the ball and squeezed a shot past Bohn – but Lorenzen had scurried back to make the timely defensive save and preserve the shutout.
Lorenzen’s hustle extended to the other goalline 10 minutes later, as she made a run deep into the attacking third to complete the third goal sequence. Junior midfielder Annie Schefter earned an assist on the play after flaring a seemingly harmless pass from the center of the field. The ball was headed for the left endline but Thorlakson was in hot pursuit, beating the EIU players to the ball before striking a low pass into the goal area. Lorenzen was making a near-post run and tapped in her third goal of the season for the 3-0 lead (61:47).
The pass capped a four-point night for Thorlakson and pushed her season point total to 60 (20G-20A), good for fourth in Notre Dame history and suddenly just 12 shy of the team record (72) set by Cindy Daws in her 1996 national championship season.
Chapman’s goal came 48 seconds after Lorenzen’s, on a dazzling run in which she appeared to cover some 50 yards in just 4.8 seconds. Chapman – who has made a steady return this season from 2003 knee surgery – took off down the left flank and angled into the box before ripping a sharp-angled shot that carried into the right sidenetting for her 10th goal of the season (62:35).
NOTES – Thorlakson also helped set up all three goals in ND’s 3-0 win over EIU early in the ’04 season … ND owns a 53-11-1 all-time record in postseason play (.823), including 32-3-0 at home (.914) and 27-10-1 in the NCAA Tournament (.724, second-best in NCAA history) … BIG EAST teams went 5-0 in the first round, matching the Big 12 for the most teams remaining in the tournament (the ACC and Big Ten have four each) … Thorlakson matched her point total from five previous NCAA tournament games (also 1G-2A) … she entered the week ranked 3rd in the nation in points (1st in assists), has 26 points in the last 6 games (14G-8A), has scored or assisted on 65% of the team’s goals in ’04, has 32 more points than the team’s second-leading scorer (Chapman, 28) and has totaled 62 points in 27 games at Alumni Field during the past two seasons (22G-18A, 9 GWG) … Thorlakson has joined 1996 teammates Daws (26G-20A) and Jenny Streiffer (22G-22A) as the only ND players to reach 20G-20A in a season and passed former teammate Amy Warner (99) into 14th on the ND career scoring list with 102 points, 10 behind ’91 grad. Suzie Zilvitis (she now needs 6G-6A to join Streiffer, Daws, Meotis Erikson, Monica Gerardo and Anne Makinen as the only ND players with 40G-40A in their careers) …Daws (72; ’96), Streiffer (62; ’96) and Jenny Heft (61; ’98) are the only other ND players with 60-plus points in season … ND’s season stats now include a 62-12 scoring edge, 478-126 in shots (avg. 22-6), 244-59 in shots on goal (11-3) and 126-34 in corners (6-1.5) … the Irish own a 21-2 scoring edge since an early deficit vs. Seton Hall on Oct. 22 … ND has held 17 of the last 18 opponents to 0-1 goals … 6th-year coach Randy Waldrum is 114-20-5 (.838) in six seasons at ND and is three wins shy of his 300th overall win as a college coach (297-125-24, .692) … Thorlakson has played in 65 straight games with the Irish while Schefter and Buczkowski have logged all 46 games over the past two seasons … four other sophomores – left back Christie Shaner (43 straight), Lorenzen (36), F/M Lizzie Reed (35) and Krivacek (30) – each have missed just one game in their Irish careers … ND now owns a 28-4 first-half scoring edge … the Irish have reached 20 wins for the ninth time in the last 11 seasons … ND is 44-13-3 (.758) in the Waldrum era when facing a top-25 or postseason opponent … ND has trailed just 269 minutes in the last 50 games (43-5-2) … the four backline starters – Shaner, Lorenzen and senior central backs Melissa Tancredi and Gudrun Gunnarsdottir – have combined for 229 career games played at ND (185 starts) … ND is 163-14-3 (.914) all-time at Alumni Field (115-4-2/.959 vs. unranked teams) … the Irish are 211-3-1 all-time (.984) when scoring 3-plus goals (115-1-0 since 10/6/95) … Wisconsin played the Irish to a 2-2 tie early in the 2001 season, ending ND’s record-setting home winning streak at 32 games (dating back to ’99) … the fifth-year leader of that ND team, All-America and Academic All-America defender Monica Gonzalez, is in town this weekend along with her former ND teammates Kate Sobrero Markgraf and Shannon Boxx (each will be honored, along with ND’s other 2004 Olympians, during tomorrow’s football game vs. Pittsburgh).
ND HEAD COACH Randy Waldrum – “The first half we were really good but then we made some changes in the lineup and were a little lackadaisical and had trouble getting in a rhythm in the second half. Then we made some changes again and had a spell of 10 or 15 minutes where we were really good and got the last two goals. I’m happy overall because we didn’t get anybody hurt, were able to get some rest and got some playing chances for a lot of people. … We jumped on things pretty quick and the second one wasn’t too far behind the first. After the loss, the team was angry and anxious to get out and get a game. They didn’t feel sorry for themselves during the week. I thought early on we had several other chances and could have had four or five goals in the first half. They had some deflections that they cleared off the line. … Jill Krivacek has been great this year and really has taken to that center midfield role. She is so good in the air and is deceptively quick for a big player. She has great skills and is hard to knock off the ball. She’s had a great year and I was happy to see her get on the third team of the BIG EAST because I think she’s underappreciated. And Kimmy Lorenzen, scored a great goal tonight. She made a huge commitment out of right back to get into the box and hit that at the near post. But she has been doing those things all year. Kids like Jill and Kim are underrated. … The goal that Candace scored, she showed her speed of old. Her speed has come on the past few weeks and she finally is starting to get close to being 100 percent back from her injury. That was a very tough angle and an incredible goal. But someone like Candace gives us options. We just are so much deeper than we have been and have so many possibilities. … We are going to play a tough team on Sunday and the Big Ten teams are always tough to play against and this is the hurdle we need to really focus on getting past. … It was really important to jump out the 2-0 lead and get some other players in the game. And that’s why in the second half it was important to get the third goal and break the ice. … Cinalli starting off with the goal was big for her. Jannica is really starting to come around and has had a great week of training and it’s nice to get her some more time in the games. Ashley Jones had been filling her role, and moreso, and has been very good the past few weeks. She now is playing with so much composure and confidence in there. … Wisconsin is a team that can give us fits. Physically they can match up with us and defensively they look fairly organized and have a good weapon up from with Vermeulen. Horner centrally had a good game and their right winger Lindenmuth was good today. We’ll have our hands full on Sunday.”
EIU HEAD COACH STEVE BALLARD – “It’s disappointing for our seniors but it has been a great four years for them, making four trips to the NCAAs. This group came into the season hoping to get farther in the NCAAs but unfortunately I think Notre Dame will win the national championship. And we got picked to go against them in the first round. … We came extremely close and beat the `keeper but the player cleared it away. Right after that they came down and knocked their third and fourth goals in and that’s just a great team. … I said this at the beginning of the year when I saw Notre Dame that this is the best women’s soccer team I have seen. They move the ball so quickly. They know where each other are and they just are so fluid in their play. I would expect that they should win the national championship. We’d love to see that. Their back line is so great and Buczkowski really controls the play. Thorlakson is dynamic and does so many things. She knows the game well, she’s technical., she’s quick and she can do it 1-v-1 but she also shares the ball and that’s so nice to see. She is a complete player and I just love watching her play. The whole team is `on’ and Randy has done a good job in making sure they are prepared in every game they play. It’s fortunate in soccer that you don’t have to be 6-10 to be a dominant player, even on the men’s side you see players who are 5-5 or 5-7 who are dominant players. And (Thorlakson) is great in the air. She is 5-3 but she can get up with the best of them. She reads the flight of the ball. There are so many things she adds to that team and it’s a pleasure to watch that on the field. I hate losing but it’s a pleasure to watch the Notre Dame team.”
WISCONSIN HEAD COACH DEAN DUERST – “It shows what we have done all year. We’ve found ways to win some tight games. It was a goal of ours to end someone’s streak, to keep beating non-conference teams. This game was on the edge for the balance and that’s what kind of games NCAA games are. They are a similar team to us in a lot of ways and have a lot of dangerous players in the way they move the ball around. It was two teams going after each other. I anticipated that it was going to come down a to a couple key moments and we got a lucky break on the first one, hey got a lucky break on the second one. We missed a couple, they missed a couple. That final play was brilliant. It was Kabellis to Brown to Price to Vermeulen and it led to a goal and that’s what our team needs to be more about.”
WISCONSIN FORWARD AMY VERMEULEN – “All I can remember is the ball coming and bouncing towards me and just thinking maybe I can get a touch on this and get it on net. It just happened to go my way. We already are focused for the next game. We are pretty good like that and can put one game behind us and get ready for the next.”
Eastern Illinois (13-6-2) 0 0 – 0
#2 Notre Dame (21-1-0) 2 0 – 0
ND 1. Amanda Cinalli 8 ( Jill Krivacek ,Katie Thorlakson ) 6:13.
ND 2. Thorlakson 20 ( Jen Buczkowski ) 14:54.
ND 3. Kim Lorenzen 3 (Thorlakson, Annie Schefter) 61:47.
ND 4. Candace Chapman 10 (-) 62:35.
Shots: EIU 2-1 – 3, ND 16-11 – 27.
Corner Kicks: EIU 0-0 – 0, ND 4-2 – 6.
Saves: EIU 7 (Tiffany Groeene 6, team 1), ND 0 ( Erika Bohn ).
Fouls: EIU 5, ND 3.
Offsides: EIU 0, ND 2.
Yellow Cards: None
Wisconsin (16-5-1) 0 1 1 – 2
Dayton (20-2-0) 0 1 0 – 1
WIS 1. Own goal 58:05.
DAY 1. Tesia Kozlowski 6 (Jen Simonetti) 61:40.
WIS 2. Amy Vermeulen 12 (Allison Reiss) 97:28.
Shots: WIS 6-4-1 – 11, DAY 5-6-0 – 11.
Corner Kicks: WIS 1-2-0 – 3, DAY 2-5-0 – 7.
Saves: WIS 3 (Lyn Murray 2, team 1), DAY 4 (Stacy DeLuca).
Fouls: WIS 11, DAY 19.
Offsides: WIS 3, DAY 2.