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What To Watch For: Western Michigan

Aug. 28, 2016

By Joanne Norell

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame women’s soccer team looks to get back into the win column Sunday when the Irish welcome Western Michigan to Alumni Stadium.

WHAT: Match 4
WHO: No. 12 Notre Dame (2-1-0) vs. Western Michigan (2-0-0)
WHERE: Alumni Stadium – Notre Dame, Ind.
WHEN: 5:00 p.m. (ET) – August 28, 2016
LIVE STREAM: ACC Network Extra

Scouting Western Michigan
The Broncos will travel to Notre Dame with a 2-0-0 record, enjoying seven days’ rest before squaring off with the Irish on Sunday. Western Michigan opened the season with a pair of wins, defeating IPFW 2-1 in overtime in Kalamazoo, Michigan, last Friday before traveling to Indiana to upend the Hoosiers 2-0 on Sunday.

Junior midfielder Kendall Juhnke leads Western Michigan in scoring with both goals coming against Indiana on Sunday. Junior midfielder Alex Ruffer and junior forward Candice Uhl have a goal and an assist each.

Defensively, the Broncos are anchored by junior center back Maria Jamarillo, who was named the MAC Defensive Player of the Week this week after WMU allowed just three shots on goal over their first two games.

The Last Time They Met
The Irish dominated the Broncos in most areas in their 2015 matchup, but WMU found a way to force the draw with an 80th-minute goal. The Irish struck first with then-senior Anna Maria Gilbertson’s unassisted shot in the 41st minute, but the Broncos tied it in the 63rd on a shot from Emma Kahn, who returns as a junior forward. Irish then-sophomore Meghan Doyle tallied her first career goal just two minutes later, but the Broncos scored again as Kahn got behind the Irish defense on a breakaway by Olivia Vollmers and tapped in the equalizer. The Irish are 3-0-1 in the all-time series against the Broncos.

Last Time Out
The Irish dropped their first road contest of the season on Thursday in a 2-0 loss to Michigan in Ann Arbor. The Wolverines scored two goals within three minutes of each other midway through the second half and the Irish couldn’t recover.

Home Field Advantage
The Irish own a 310-33-7 all-time advantage in games played on their home field. Last season, Notre Dame was 11-1-0 at Alumni Stadium, its best home mark since 2010, when the Irish last won the NCAA Championship.

— ND —

Joanne Norell, athletics communications assistant director at the University of Notre Dame, has been part of the Fighting Irish athletics communications team since 2014 and coordinates communications efforts for the Notre Dame women’s soccer, men’s tennis, women’s tennis and fencing programs. Norell is a 2011 graduate of Purdue University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in mass communication, and earned her master’s degree in sports industry management from Georgetown University in 2013.