March 6, 2014
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - University of Notre Dame men's lacrosse standouts Matt Kavanagh (So./A) and Stephen O'Hara (Sr./D) appear on the watch list for the 2014 Tewaaraton Award. The award is presented annually to the nation's top collegiate lacrosse player.
The 52-man watch list includes players across all three divisions of NCAA lacrosse. The selection committee is made up of top collegiate coaches and is appointed annually by the Tewaaraton Foundation.
Players not named to the initial list have several opportunities to play their way into a spot as the season progresses. Additions will be announced on March 20 and April 10. On April 24, the field will be narrowed to 25 nominees. Nominees can be players on the watch lists or players not on the watch lists, effectively allowing for a third round of additions for players to earn a spot. Five finalists will be announced May 8 and they will be invited to the May 29 ceremony in Washington, D.C.
Kavanagh (Rockville Centre, N.Y./Chaminade/Hotchkiss) has registered a hat trick in all three games this season and leads the sixth-ranked Fighting Irish in goals (9) and assists (8). Nationally, he ranks fourth in points per game, eighth in assists per game and 19th in goals per game.
On Saturday, Kavanagh started an ended Notre Dame's 5-0 run that tied the game, 8-8, early in the fourth quarter of an eventual 11-10 win at then No. 2 North Carolina. He has compiled three goals and two assists in each of the last two contests (North Carolina and Penn State) after opening his sophomore campaign with a career-best seven-point performance on three goals and a career-high four assists in a 19-7 victory at Jacksonville.
As a freshman, Kavanagh posted team-high marks in goals (32) and assists (16) and earned honorable mention All-America accolades from the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association (USILA) in addition to being on the all-BIG EAST first team. Kavanagh copped third team preseason All-America honors from Inside Lacrosse prior to the 2014 campaign.
O'Hara (West Chester, Pa./St. Joe's Prep) has started 35 consecutive games in Notre Dame's close defense and he garnered second team all-BIG EAST honors last season and was tapped as a first team preseason All-American by Inside Lacrosse heading into this season. O'Hara was a major reason why the Fighting Irish defense finished the 2012 campaign ranked first nationally by allowing just 6.31 goals per game. Notre Dame concluded last season 10th in scoring defense (8.31).
The Ohio Machine selected O'Hara in the sixth round (41st overall pick) of January's Major League Lacrosse Collegiate Draft. Last week, O'Hara was named a candidate for the Senior CLASS Award for his outstanding achievements on the field, in the classroom and in the community.
The Fighting Irish (2-1) return to the field Saturday against No. 12 Denver (3-2) at the inaugural Pacific Coast Shootout in Costa Mesa, Calif. The game is slated for 1 p.m. (PT) at LeBard Stadium, which is located on the campus of Orange Coast College.
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