May 9, 2013
#2 NOTRE DAME (10-4)
NCAA Championship First Round
Saturday, May 11 5 p.m. (ET)
Arlotta Stadium Notre Dame, Ind.
Mark Dixon (play-by-play)
Matt Ward (analyst)
SETTING THE STAGE
No. 2 seed Notre Dame (10-4) will play host to unseeded Detroit (5-9) Saturday in the first round of the NCAA Championship. Faceoff is slated for 5 p.m. (ET) at Arlotta Stadium.
The Irish are making their program record eighth straight appearance in the NCAA Championship and their 18th trip overall. Detroit is appearing in the tournament for the first time. This will be the first-ever meeting between the Fighting Irish and Titans.
The game will be broadcast live on ESPNU and WatchESPN.com. Mark Dixon (play-by-play) and Matt Ward (analyst) will be on the call. Live stats will be available via Gametracker on UND.com.
Notre Dame and Maryland are the only two schools to earn a spot in the NCAA Championship field in each of the last eight seasons.
NOTRE DAME IN THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP
The Irish are making their program record eighth straight appearance in the NCAA Championship. Notre Dame owns an 11-17 record in 17 previous trips to the tournament. Every appearance has occurred under head coach Kevin Corrigan.
Last season, the Irish earned the tournament's No. 4 seed and topped Yale, 13-7, in the first round and took down Virginia, 12-10, in the quarterfinals. Notre Dame fell to eventual national champion Loyola, 7-5, in the national semifinals.
Notre Dame's best performance in the NCAAs was a finalist finish in 2010. The Irish have been to Championship Weekend three times (2001, 2010, 2012).
FIGHTING IRISH IN THE FIRST ROUND
Notre Dame is 4-1 in its last five first-round contests in the NCAA Championship. The Irish have won each of their last three first-round games. Last season, Notre Dame opened the tournament with a 13-7 win over Yale at Arlotta Stadium.
This year's No. 2 seed is the best ever for Notre Dame in the NCAA Championship. This is the sixth time overall - and fifth time in the last six seasons - the Fighting Irish have earned one of the eight national seeds in the tournament. The Irish also were seeded in 2001 (5th), 2008 (6th), 2009 (7th), 2011 (4th) and 2012 (4th) tournaments.
IRISH FAMILIAR WITH THE FIELD
Notre Dame faced six teams that made this year's NCAA field. All six of those squads earned a seed in the tournament (#1 Syracuse, #3 Ohio State, #4 Denver, #5 North Carolina, #7 Duke, #8 Penn State). Notre Dame went 5-2 against those teams. Both setbacks came against Syracuse, while the Irish defeated all five of the other teams.
A LOOK AT THE TITANS
Detroit earned a spot in the NCAA Championship field by winning the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Championship with an 11-10 overtime victory against Siena. The Titans are 5-9 overall and posted a 3-3 mark in the MAAC.
Detroit is averaging 8.93 goals per game, while surrendering 10.0 per contest. Mike Birney (So./M) leads the team in goals (30) and points (38), while Alex Maini (Jr./A), Tom Masterson (Jr./A/M) and Brandon Beauregard (So./A/M) all have a team-best 13 assists.
Senior A.J. Levell has a 5-6 record in goal to go along with a 9.48 goals-against average and a .559 save percentage. Sophomore Chris Kelly is 0-3 between the pipes with an 11.67 goals-against average and a .493 save percentage.
The Titans went 6-9 last season (3-3 MAAC).
Head coach Matt Holtz is in his fifth season at Detroit.
Notre Dame and Detroit have two common opponents this season (Ohio State & Marquette). The Irish bested both the Buckeyes (9-4) and Golden Eagles (17-5), while the Titans fell to Ohio State (14-8) and Marquette (14-9).
A RARE MEETING WITH THE MAAC
The Fighting Irish are 5-0 all-time against teams currently in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC). The Irish are 4-0 against Canisius and 1-0 versus VMI.
Detroit will be the first current MAAC school Notre Dame has faced since a 14-7 win over Canisius in 1994.
Notre Dame assistant coach Matt Karweck, who is in his first season on the Irish sideline, was an assistant coach at Detroit during the 2011 season.
IRISH #1 IN THE RPI
Notre Dame is No. 1 in the latest RPI. The Fighting Irish are 4-2 against teams currently ranked in the top 10 of the RPI. The wins have come against #2 Ohio State (9-4), #4 North Carolina (10-9 3 OT), #5 Denver (13-12 OT) and #9 Penn State (10-9 OT). The losses were to #3 Syracuse (10-4, 9-3).
TAKING DOWN TOP-10 TEAMS
Notre Dame has defeated five teams this season that were ranked in the top 10 of the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association (USILA) poll at the time of the contest.
The Irish have defeated (in chronological order) #6 Duke (13-5), #8 Penn State (10-9 OT), #9 North Carolina (10-9 3OT), #5 Denver (13-12 OT) and #8 Ohio State (9-4).
This is the first time ever the Irish have five wins over top-10 teams during the same regular season. Notre Dame downed five top-10 opponents during the 2010 campaign (including postseason).
John Kemp A TEWAARATON AWARD NOMINEE
Senior goalie John Kemp has been named a nominee for the Tewaaraton Award. Kemp, who also was a nominee last season, is among 25 players up for the prestigious honor.
Five finalists will be selected in mid-May. The finalists will be invited to Washington, D.C. for the 13th annual Tewaaraton Award Ceremony, May 30 at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of the American Indian.
Kemp joins attackman Pat Walsh as the only two-time Tewaaraton Award nominees in Notre Dame history. Walsh earned the distinction in 2004 and 2005. Kemp will look to become the program's first Tewaaraton Award finalist.
Notre Dame ranks 10th nationally in scoring defense. The Irish are allowing just 8.14 goals per game.
Senior goalie John Kemp has the nation's 10th-best goals-against average (8.01).
Notre Dame's man-down defense is 13th nationally. The Irish have allowed just 10 goals in 37 man-down opportunities (.270).
The Irish are 23rd nationally in faceoff winning percentage (.521).
All three of Notre Dame's faceoff specialists have won at least 50 percent of their attempts. Junior Liam O'Connor is 80-150 (.533), while sophomore Nick Ossello is 55-107 (.514) and freshman Trevor Brosco is 23-45 (.511). O'Connor has missed the last six games with an injury.
That group has also combined for eight goals and five assists. Ossello has five goals and four assists, while O'Connor has tallied three goals and one assist.
PLAYING ON THE BIG STAGE
The showdown with Syracuse on April 27 at the Konica Minolta Big City Classic was Notre Dame's 10th game in an NFL stadium in the last five seasons. The Irish are 6-4 all-time in NFL venues.
Notre Dame is 2-0 in Denver (Broncos). The Irish have posted a 2-1 record in Baltimore (Ravens) and a 1-1 mark in East Rutherford, N.J. (Giants & Jets). Notre Dame is 1-0 in Jacksonville, Fla. (Jaguars) and 0-2 in Foxborough, Mass. (Patriots).
SCIOSCIA STEPPING UP
Junior attackman John Scioscia entered this season with no career goals, but has tallied 14 this season.
His breakout performance came against Marquette (April 2) when he notched six goals and one assist. The six goals are the most for a Notre Dame player since Ryan Hoff had six against Ohio State during the 2009 campaign.
Scioscia was named the BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Week on April 22 after tallying four goals and one assist in a 13-9 win over Villanova.
ROGERS REACHES 100-POINT PLATEAU
Senior attackman Sean Rogers recently reached the 100-point mark for his career. The fifth-year senior has 106 points on 75 goals and 31 assists during his Irish career. The goal total ranks 14th in Irish history, while the point mark ranks 18th.
SPREADING THE WEALTH
Five Notre Dame players have a double-digit goal total this season (Matt Kavanagh 25, Sean Rogers 21, Jim Marlatt 18, Conor Doyle 15, John Scioscia 14). All five have scored three or more goals in a game this season.
ANOTHER 10 FOR NOTRE DAME
The Fighting Irish have notched a double-digit win total for the eighth straight season.
Matt Miller A SENIOR CLASS AWARD FINALIST
Defenseman Matt Miller has been named one of 10 finalists for the 2013 Senior CLASS Award in the men's lacrosse division.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
The finalists were chosen by a media committee from the list of 20 candidates announced in February. Nationwide fan voting begins immediately to help select the winner. Fans are encouraged to vote on the Senior CLASS Award website or on the Senior CLASS Award Facebook fan page through May 13. Fan votes will be combined with media and Division I head coaches' votes to determine the winner.
The Senior CLASS Award winner will be announced during the 2013 NCAA Lacrosse Championships in Philadelphia May 25-27.
Miller has started every contest over the past two seasons on Notre Dame's stellar defensive unit. He was named to the All-BIG EAST First Team this season. Miller copped honorable mention All-America honors last season.
CAPTURING THE CLOSE ONES
Notre Dame has played five one-goal games, including three overtime affairs, this season. The Irish are 4-1 in those contests and have won all three overtime games.
Over the last two seasons, the Fighting Irish are 8-3 in games decided by one goal.
Notre Dame has won its last five overtime contests.
KAVANAGH IN THE CLUTCH
Freshman attackman Matt Kavanagh leads the Irish in goals (25) and assists (13). He has tallied four or more points in six games this season. Kavanagh has nine multiple-goal games, including two-goal efforts in seven of the last nine contests.
Kavanagh netted an overtime game winner twice this season. He scored 15 seconds into the third overtime period in a 10-9 victory over North Carolina (March 2). Kavanagh scored with 1:34 remaining in the first extra period in the 10-9 win at Penn State (Feb. 24).
Kavanagh assisted on Sean Rogers' goal that tied the Denver game (12-12) with 47 seconds left in regulation to force overtime in an eventual Irish win.
The rookie notched four goals and one assist in his debut at Duke. He had four goals, including the overtime game winner, and two assists versus North Carolina.
HOME SWEET HOME
Notre Dame is 44-6 (.880) at home since the beginning of the 2006 season.
A PERFORMER BETWEEN THE PIPES
Senior goalie John Kemp boasts a 35-12 (.745) career record to go along with a 6.96 goals-against average and a .592 save percentage. The 35 wins are the second-most in program history. John's older brother, Joey, holds the team record with 40 (40-14) career victories from 2005-08.
Last season, Kemp led the nation in goals-against average (6.27) and save percentage (.637) and was named to the USILA All-America First Team.
He finished the 2011 campaign ranked second nationally in goals-against average (6.61) and fourth in save percentage (.602) and received honorable mention All-America accolades.
CONSISTENCY IN THE CAGE
John Kemp is the third straight Notre Dame goalie to receive All-America honors. Kemp was named to the USILA All-America First Team last season after earning an honorable mention citation in 2011.
Scott Rodgers earned third-team All-America honors in 2009 and was an honorable mention pick in 2010. He also was named the Most Outstanding Player of the 2010 NCAA Championship.
Joey Kemp, John's older brother, was a three-time All-America honoree at Notre Dame. He copped first-team honors in 2008 in addition to honorable mention accolades in 2006 and 2007.
A SUCCESSFUL STRETCH
Notre Dame is 73-21 (.777) since the beginning of the 2008 season. That percentage is the third-best nationally during that time.
The Fighting Irish have been to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championship four times in the last five seasons. Notre Dame made the program's first-ever NCAA title game appearance in 2010 and the Irish were a semifinalist in 2012.