Men's Soccer

@NDmenSoccer

August 20, 1997

Notre Dame Men's Soccer Team Picked Third In Preseason Big East Poll

NOTRE DAME, Ind.-- The Notre Dame men's soccer team, defending BIG EAST tournament champions, has been chosen to finish third in the league's regular season race as voted on by the league 12 head coaches. A year ago, the Irish finished third in the final regular season standings and then went on to win its first-ever tournament crown.

Defending national champion St. John's is picked to finished first. Rutgers, who lost to the Irish in the tournament's championship game, has been chosen to finish second. Along with Notre Dame and St. John's, the Scarlet Knights were the third BIG EAST team to receive an NCAA bid.

In it second year as member of the BIG EAST Conference a year ago, the Irish had a 14-7-2 overall record and placed in the league's regular season standings with a 6-3-2 mark. The Irish won their first-ever NCAA tournament game in '96 as they defeated second-seeded UNC Greensboro, 1-0. Notre Dame lost in the second round to eventual NCAA semifinalist UNC Charlotte 1-0 in a contest that was decided in the last 24 seconds of regulation.

Rutgers also advanced to the second of the '96 tournament and marked the first time that three BIG EAST teams appeared in the round of 16.

Notre Dame head coach Mike Berticelli, beginning his eighth season with the Irish, has seven returning starters and 12 returning letterwinners. Forward Ryan Turner heads the list of returnees. The senior co-captain is the team's top returning scorer off of last year's squad as he scored five goals and dished off four assists (14 points).

Other top returnees include junior midfielder Matt Johnson and junior goalkeeper Greg Velho. Both started all 23 games a year ago and are two-year starters. Johnson has started 41 of 42 games he has played in during this career. Velho was one of the leading goalkeepers nationally in '96 as he registered a .76 goals against average, recorded 9.5 shutouts and allowed just 18 goals.

Notre Dame begins its regular season at Pittsburgh on Friday, August 29 at 7:15 p.m.

Event Calendar

Delta

August 13
8:00 PM
Omaha
Omaha, Neb. (Caniglia Field)
August 16
8:00 PM
Drake
Des Moines, Iowa (Cownie Soccer Complex)
August 21
5:00 PM
Valparaiso
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
August 25
7:30 PM
San Diego
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
August 27
2:00 PM
Cal Poly
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
September 2
7:00 PM
Connecticut
Storrs, Conn. (Morrone Stadium)
September 8
5:00 PM
Boston College
Newton, Mass. (Newton Soccer Field)
September 15
7:30 PM
NC State
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
September 19
7:00 PM
Bowling Green
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
September 22
7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, Va. (Thompson Field)
September 26
7:00 PM
Indiana
Bloomington, Ind. (Armstrong Stadium)
September 29
7:30 PM
Virginia
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
October 3
7:00 PM
Northwestern
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
October 6
7:00 PM
Clemson
Clemson, S.C. (Historic Riggs Field)
October 10
7:00 PM
Michigan
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
October 13
7:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
October 17
7:30 PM
Akron
Akron, Ohio (FirstEnergy Stadium-Cub Cadet Field)
October 20
7:00 PM
Duke
Notre Dame, Ind. (Alumni Stadium)
October 24
7:00 PM
Michigan State
East Lansing, Mich. (DeMartin Soccer Complex)
October 27
7:00 PM
North Carolina
Chapel Hill, N.C. (Fetzer Field)
November 1
TBA
ACC Championship First Round
Campus sites
November 5
TBA
ACC Championship Quarterfinal
Campus sites
November 8
TBA
ACC Championship Semifinal
Campus sites
November 12
TBA
ACC Championship Final
Charleston, S.C. (MUSC Health Stadium)
November 16
TBA
NCAA Championship First Round
Campus sites
November 19
TBA
NCAA Championship Round of 32
Campus sites
November 26
TBA
NCAA Championship Round of 16
Campus sites
December 2
TBA
NCAA Championship Quarterfinal
Campus sites
December 8
TBA
NCAA College Cup Semifinal
Philadelphia, Pa. (Talen Energy Stadium)
December 10
TBA
NCAA College Cup Final
Philadelphia, Pa. (Talen Energy Stadium)

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