Aug. 11, 2010
NOTRE DAME, Ind. — Notre Dame senior defender/midfielder Lauren Fowlkes (Lee’s Summit, Mo./St. Teresa’s Academy), junior midfielder Courtney Barg (Plano, Texas/Plano West) and junior forward Melissa Henderson (Garland, Texas/Berkner), have been named to the 45-player watch list for the 2010 Missouri Athletic Club Hermann Trophy, it was announced Wednesday by the National Soccer Coaches Association of American (NSCAA). The Hermann Trophy is presented annually to the nation’s top Division I women’s soccer player.
Notre Dame was one of only five schools (along with Boston College, Portland, Stanford and UCLA) to place three players on this year’s Hermann Trophy watch list. Both Fowlkes and Henderson also appeared on last year’s Hermann Trophy preseason chart, while Barg was a midseason addition to the candidate list and wound up being selected as one of 15 semifinalists for the ’09 award. The BIG EAST Conference had a total of five players named to the 2010 Hermann Trophy watch list, tying the Big Ten and Big 12 conferences for the third-most selections from one league behind the Atlantic Coast Conference (9) and Pac-10 Conference (7).
Notre Dame is one of only two programs to field four or more different recipients of the prestigious Hermann Trophy since its inception in 1988, with Cindy Daws (1996), Anne Makinen (2000) and Kerri Hanks (2006 & 2008) taking home the crystal ball award. The 2010 Hermann Trophy winner will be selected by Division I head coaches who are current members of the NSCAA. The list of 15 semifinalists will be chosen by a coaches committee, with the three finalists revealed in early December. All three will be invited to a news conference on Jan. 7, 2011, at the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis, where the winner will be announced, with a presentation banquet to follow.
Fowlkes, who was named the BIG EAST Preseason Co-Defensive Player of the Year and a preseason all-conference selection on Tuesday, earned NSCAA third-team All-America honors and ESPN The Magazine second-team Academic All-America accolades last season after piling up career highs of 10 goals and four assists (24 points) following an early-season move to forward due to various injuries on the Notre Dame roster. Fowlkes also was named the BIG EAST Co-Offensive Player of the Year and BIG EAST Championship Most Outstanding Offensive Player, as well as a NSCAA first-team all-region and first-team all-conference selection, and she could become the first player in BIG EAST history (since league play started in 1995) to collect both the conference’s offensive and defensive player-of-the-year awards during her career.
A nominee for the 2010 Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award, Fowlkes also is in the unique position of possibly being just the 13th student-athlete in Notre Dame athletics history (and the third Fighting Irish women’s soccer player) to couple All-America and Academic All-America honors in the same season on two different occasions. The 1996 NSCAA Player of the Year, goalkeeper Jen Renola, was the first to pull off that feat in 1995 and 1996, and more recently, midfielder/forward Brittany Bock (now with the Washington Freedom of Women’s Professional Soccer) matched that double in 2007 and 2008.
An NSCAA first-team All-American and Hermann Trophy semifinalist last season, Barg started all 26 games for the Fighting Irish, expertly controlling the Notre Dame attack from her holding midfield position while collecting a goal and two assists. She was named the BIG EAST Midfielder of the Year, and later was chosen for a place on both the NCAA College Cup and BIG EAST Championship all-tournament teams. Like Fowlkes, she was named to the 2010 Preseason All-BIG EAST Team on Tuesday.
Henderson, who was named the BIG EAST Preseason Offensive Player of the Year for the second consecutive season on Tuesday, rang up 18 goals and five assists (41 points) last year, leading the conference in both goals and points, as well as gamewinning goals (a school-record nine). She collected first-team MVP honors (equivalent to All-America status) from Soccer America, as well as first-team NSCAA all-Northeast Region and second-team all-BIG EAST accolades, and she was dominant in the 2009 postseason, registering 10 goals (including two hat tricks, a Notre Dame first in postseason play) and dishing out three assists as the Fighting Irish reeled off seven consecutive wins en route to the program’s 11th BIG EAST tournament title and fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA Women’s College Cup (as well as the fifth in six years and 11th overall).
Ranked fourth in the NSCAA preseason poll released Tuesday, Notre Dame will kick off its 2010 schedule with its lone exhibition contest at 1 p.m. (ET) Friday against 17th-ranked Virginia at Myles Kimmerly Park in Maple City, Mich., before returning home to face Minnesota in its regular-season opener on Aug. 20 (5:30 p.m. ET kickoff) at Alumni Stadium.
Season and single-game tickets for the 2010 Notre Dame soccer campaign are available by contacting the Murnane Family Ticket Office by phone (574-631-7356) or in person (Gate 9 in the Rosenthal Atrium at Purcell Pavilion) weekdays from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. (ET). Fans also can purchase tickets on-line through the tickets page of the official Notre Dame athletics web site (www.UND.com/tickets) or by visiting the ticket windows at Alumni Stadium on game night.
For more information on the Notre Dame women’s soccer program, join the Fighting Irish women’s soccer news Twitter page (www.twitter.com/NDsoccernews) or sign up for the Irish ALERT text-messaging system through the sidebar on the women’s soccer page at UND.com.
— ND —