April 7, 2011
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – This week marks the midway point of the 2011 Notre Dame women’s soccer spring schedule, with the defending NCAA national champion Fighting Irish already holding three shutout wins on their six-game docket.
The spring schedule was slated to be released last month, but was delayed due to a change in plans regarding the program’s traditional matchup with the Mexican National Team. Notre Dame initially was scheduled to face Mexico this spring, but the CONCACAF side elected to set up an international friendly with Colombia in preparation for its appearance in the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup this summer. The Fighting Irish subsequently added a sixth match to their schedule, which now is finalized.
Notre Dame opened its spring schedule on March 26 in Fort Wayne, Ind., earning a 1-0 victory over Michigan State on the strength of a goal by freshman midfielder Mandy Laddish (Lee’s Summit, Mo./Lee’s Summit) that capped a clinical 10-pass sequence. The match between the Fighting Irish and Spartans was the spotlight contest at the sixth annual Saint Francis Spring Fling, with a portion of the proceeds from the four-match, one-day event going to Erin’s House, a Fort Wayne charity which provides support services for children, teens and their families who have suffered the death of a loved one.
The Fighting Irish then returned home for a pair of 70-minute matches on April 3 at the women’s soccer practice field located directly south of old Alumni Field. Notre Dame opened the day with a 5-0 rout of Toledo, getting a hat trick from junior All-America forward/2010 Hermann Trophy runner-up/2010 Honda Sports Award recipient Melissa Henderson (Garland, Texas/Berkner), and single tallies from Laddish (a freshman All-American in 2010) and freshman all-BIG EAST midfielder Elizabeth Tucker (Jacksonville, Fla./Bishop Kenny).
Later that day, the Fighting Irish blanked Western Michigan, 1-0, on a score by freshman forward Adriana Leon (Maple, Ontario/The Country Day School), meaning four of the seven Notre Dame goals this spring have been netted by players wrapping up their first year under the Golden Dome.
Notre Dame will return to action Saturday (April 9) for a rematch of last fall’s NCAA Women’s College Cup semifinal against Ohio State in Cary, N.C., a contest won by the Fighting Irish, 1-0 on Laddish’s goal in the 83rd minute. This spring’s rematch will take place at 3 p.m. (ET) Saturday and will be played as part of the Spring Soccer Festival on Field #1 at the Athletes in Action Sports Complex (1197 S. Detroit Street) in Xenia, Ohio.
Notre Dame closes out its spring schedule with two more home matches, both of which will be played at the women’s soccer practice field south of old Alumni Field. On April 16, the Fighting Irish will play host to Loyola-Chicago at 1 p.m. (ET), before welcoming fellow BIG EAST member Marquette to town on April 19 for a 7 p.m. (ET) contest. Admission for both matches is free.
Notre Dame won its third NCAA national championship in 2010, posting a 21-2-2 record and rolling to six consecutive wins in the NCAA Championship while outscoring its opponents, 15-1. Led by the reigning National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA)/Mondo National Coach of the Year Randy Waldrum, the Fighting Irish will return seven starters (plus three others with previous starting experience) and 20 total players from their national championship team, led by Henderson, 2010 Women’s College Cup Most Outstanding Defensive Player/co-captain Jessica Schuveiller (Plano, Texas/Plano West) and 2009 NSCAA first-team All-America midfielder/Hermann Trophy semifinalist Courtney Barg (Plano, Texas/Plano West). Notre Dame also welcomes a stellar six-player incoming freshman class that includes five players ranked among the top 60 in the nation by Top Drawer Soccer.
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.
2011 Notre Dame Women’s Soccer Spring Schedule
Date Opponent Location/Site Time/Result (Goalscorers)3/26 Michigan State Fort Wayne, Ind./Univ. of St. Francis W, 1-0 (Laddish)4/3 Toledo Notre Dame, Ind./Alumni Practice Field W, 5-0 (Henderson 3, Laddish, Tucker)4/3 Western Michigan Notre Dame, Ind./Alumni Practice Field W, 1-0 (Leon)4/9 Ohio State Xenia, Ohio/AIA Sports Complex #1 3:00 p.m. ET4/16 Loyola-Chicago Notre Dame, Ind./Alumni Practice Field 1:00 p.m. ET4/19 Marquette Notre Dame, Ind./Alumni Practice Field 7:00 p.m. ET
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