Men's Soccer


Oct. 6, 1997

#18 Notre Dame Returns to BIG EAST Action with Match Against Syracuse

NOTRE DAME, Ind. -- The 18th-ranked Notre Dame men's soccer team went 1-1 on its Texas road trip as the Irish lost to fourth-ranked SMU 1-0 and beat Texas Christian 4-3 in overtime. With the split, Coach Mike Berticelli's squad heads into action this week with a 7-3-2 record and are 4-0-1 in BIG EAST play.

Notre Dame has one game slated this week when the Irish host BIG EAST foe Syracuse on Saturday, October 11 at 7:30 p.m. on Alumni Field and marks the first of three straight home games.

Week in Review:
SMU -- Notre Dame had its four-game win streak snapped as the Irish dropped a 1-0 decision to fourth-ranked SMU. Paul Bromme's heel flick into the net past Irish goalkeeper Greg Velho (Longwood, Fla.) provided the game-winning tally with just 42 seconds

The Mustangs had more scoring opportunities than the Irish as the Mustangs outshot Notre Dame 13-2 in the contest and had a 9-0 advantage in corner kicks. Velho, who had helped the Irish to four straight shutouts in their last four outings, had five saves in goal. Prior to the game-winning goal, Notre Dame had not given up a score in nearly 584 minutes which spanned six games.

The loss was the first for the Irish on the road who are now 2-1-2 in games away from Alumni Field this season.

TCU -- Ryan Turner (Scottsdale, Ariz.) had his first career hat trick and scored the game-tying and game-winning goals to lead the Irish to a 4-3 overtime win over TCU in the second of two games for Notre Dame in Texas over the weekend.

Turner's game-winning score came 2:59 into sudden-death overtime as the Irish picked up their first overtime win of the season. He also scored the game-tying goal off a Matt Johnson (Livermore, Calif.) assist that came at the 77:28 mark of the contest.

Turner also netted Notre Dame's first score of the contest 4:38 into the game off a direct kick.

TCU led 2-1 at halftime following back-to-back goals by Aaron Grieshaber midway through the first half. Scott Wells (Phoenix, Ariz.) tied the game at 2-2 on a penalty kick at the 50:50 mark, but the Horned Frogs regained the lead 3-2 on Heath Driver's penalty kick less than 17 minutes later.

TCU had a 18-12 shot advantage, but Velho came up with a season-high seven saves in the contest

Head Coach Mike Berticelli:
Notre Dame head coach Mike Berticelli is in his eighth season along the Irish sidelines and 22nd as a collegiate coach. He has led Notre Dame to three of the school's four NCAA tournament appearances, (1993, 1995 and 1996). A year ago, his Irish squad won the school's first-ever NCAA tournament game when it defeated second-seeded UNC Greensboro in the first round. Berticelli has an 84-59-13 (.580) mark at Notre Dame and is 271-114-36 (.686) overall. In the last four seasons, his Irish teams have won three conference tournament titles. Under Berticelli, the Irish claimed the 1996 BIG EAST tournament crown in just its second year as a member of the league with consecutive wins over ranked opponents Connecticut and Rutgers. During the 1993 and 1994 campaigns, the Irish won back-to-back MCC tournament crowns and earned berths in the NCAA tournament. Prior to coming to Notre Dame, he spent six seasons (1984-89) at Old Dominion where his teams compiled a 76-27-16 record for a .706 winning percentage. Berticelli coached for four years at UNC-Greensboro (1980-83) with his teams compiling a 70-9-5 record (.863) and winning two Division III national crowns in 1982 and 1983. His first head coaching stint was at Thomas College where he coached from (1976-79) with his teams posting a 41-19-2 mark during that four-year span. The Irish have won 10-plus games in five of his seven seasons at the Notre Dame helm. Notre Dame's 14 wins a year ago were the second most during Berticelli's tenure with the Irish. His 1993 squad finished the season with a 15-6 record.

Series Record vs. Upcoming Opponents:
Syracuse -- Notre Dame leads the series 2-1 as the Irish have won both times the two teams have met in BIG EAST play. Syracuse has yet to score a goal against the Irish in league competition. Notre Dame beat the Orangemen 3-0 at Alumni Field in 1995 and earned a 1-0 decision at Syracuse last season.

Turner Nets Hat Trick:
Ryan Turner had his first career hat trick in Notre Dame's 4-3 overtime decision at TCU. Turner tallied the game-winning and game-tying goals and also netted Notre Dame's first score of the game. His three goals ended a three-game scoring drought in which he did not register either a goal or assist. Turner missed the first two games of the season for disciplinary reasons, but has come back to start all 10 games he has played. He leads the team in scoring with eight goals and four assists (20 points). The last Notre Dame player to score three goals in a single-game was Konstantin Koloskov (vs. La Salle) during the 1994 campaign.

Tough Defense:
Notre Dame has not given up a goal in its five BIG EAST contests this season and prior to its weekend series at SMU had posted four consecutive shutouts and seven for the season. Before the Mustangs scored the game-winning goal in the final 42 seconds of the contest, the Irish have not allowed a goal in 584 minutes of action spanning six games.

Irish Prove Tough on the Road:
Notre Dame is 2-1-2 on the road this season in six road outings. The Irish have played three of their four overtime games on the road and are 1-0-2 in those outings. Berticelli's squad has recorded three shutouts on the road -- Pittsburgh, Valparaiso and West Virginia.

Notre Dame was 7-6 in road contests (including one neutral game) in 1996 -- a vast improvement for the Irish from the previous two campaigns. Heading into last season, Notre Dame was a combined 2-14-1 on the road during the '94 and '95 campaigns. Notre Dame won back-to-back road games against Western Michigan (3-2) and Syracuse (1-0) at the beginning of October last season which marked the first time since the 1993 campaign that Notre Dame had won consecutive road outings. The Irish victory at Providence on August 31, 1996 marked the first-ever BIG EAST road win.

Home Sweet Home:
Alumni Field has not been a friendly place for Irish opponents the past two-plus seasons. The Irish are 4-2 this season at home which includes four shutouts. Notre Dame had a 7-1-2 mark at home in '96 after posting an 8-3 record during the 1995 campaign. The Irish were 11-3-1 at Alumni Field in 1994. Berticelli's squad recorded eight shutouts in 1996, six of which were at home. Notre Dame's two 1-0 wins over Villanova and Rutgers over the weekend marked the 21st and 22nd shutouts for the Irish at Alumni Field in three-plus seasons.

Wells Helps Irish:
Senior Scott Wells scored his second goal of the season in the 4-3 win over TCU. Wells' penalty kick at the 50:50 mark of the contest tied the game at 2-2. He has two goals and four assists (eight points) on the season.

Johnson Gets First Assist of Season :
Junior Matt Johnson, who has started every game this season, has his first assist of the season and fourth of his career. Johnson assisted on Ryan Turner's game-tying goal in the 4-3 overtime victory over TCU.

Savarino Steps Up To Lead Irish in Assists:
Senior forward Bill Savarino is the team's third-leading scorer thus far in 1997 with two goals and five assists (nine points). His five assists is a team best. During his three-plus seasons, Savarino has scored seven goals and dished off 11 assists (24 points).

Irish Score Early, Then Hang On:
In Notre Dame's two 1-0 wins over Villanova and Rutgers, the Irish scored early in the contest and then hung on for the victory. Coach Berticelli's squad scored less than 20 minutes into the game in both contests. Against the Wildcats, Notre Dame scored 12:11 into the contest and versus the Scarlet Knights booted in the game's only goal at the 19:07 mark.

Working Overtime:
Notre Dame has played three overtime games already this season and is 0-1-2 in those contests. Two of those games (both ties) have been on the road at Pittsburgh and West Virginia. The Irish suffered a 3-2 loss to Buffalo at home.

From the Defensive to the Offensive:
Sophomore defender Alan Woods has provided some scoring punch for the Irish this season. Woods has started all 12 games in the backfield and is currently tied for fourth in scoring with three goals and two assists (eight points). After not recording a goal or an assist in his freshman season, Woods has accounted for all eight of his career points this season.

Tough Schedule:
Notre Dame once again is playing a formidable schedule. Four opponents on the '97 slate are ranked in either one or both of the polls (Soccer America or NSCAA/Umbro) this week -- defending national champion St. John's, Indiana, SMU and Pittsburgh.

Velho Tough in Goal:
In five BIG EAST outings and 480 minutes of action, junior goalkeeper Greg Velho has yet to give up a goal. He recorded the 20th shutout of his career in Notre Dame's 1-0 victory over Rutgers. In 120 games overall this season, he has a 1.01 goals against average and .800 save percentage. Velho has played all 1153:06 minutes of the 1997 season.

Irish on the Internet:
The official Notre Dame Athletic Department web site is available at All media guide information, press releases, results and gamenotes are available. Questions concerning the site can be directed to the Notre Dame Sports Information Office by calling (291) 631-7516.

NSCAA/Umbro and Soccer America polls.    
(Week of October 6)
1.  Indiana (11-0-0)                1
2.  UCLA (9-1-0)                    3
3.  Florida International (9-2-1)   9
4.  Maryland (7-1-1)                7
5.  St. John's (9-1-1)              2
6.  SMU (7-1-0)                     T4
7.  Duke (8-2-0)                    6
8.  Washington (8-1-2)              8
9.  North Carolina State (7-1-0)    14
10. Stanford (9-0-1)                11
11. American (6-2-2)                RV
12. Dartmouth (4-1-2)               22
13. Virginia (7-2-2)                T4
14. Creighton (6-3-1)               13
15. South Carolina (6-1-1)          21
16. Pittsburgh (5-1-4)              NR
17. Virginia Commonwealth (9-1-1)   RV
18. NOTRE DAME (7-3-2)              23
19. Portland (7-2-1)                17
20. William & Mary (7-2-0)          12
21. Marquette (7-2-1)               24
22. Massachusetts (7-2-1)           NR
23  Saint Louis (6-3-3)             18
24. James Madison (8-2-0)           15
25. Georgia Southern (9-1-1)        NR

(Week of October 6)
1.  Indiana (11-0-0)                1
2.  SMU (7-1-0)                     3
3.  UCLA (9-1-0)                    5
4.  North Carolina State (7-1-0)    6
5.  Florida International (9-2-1)   15
6.  South Carolina (6-1-1)          7
7.  Maryland (7-1-1)                8
8.  St. John's (9-1-1)              2
9.  Duke (8-2-0)                    10
10. Washington (8-1-2)              11
11. Virginia (7-2-2)                4
12. Stanford (9-0-1)                12
13. American (6-2-2)                NR
14. Creighton (6-3-1)               16
15. Portland (7-2-1)                9
16. California (6-2-1)              13
17. Marquette (7-2-1)               17
18. Dartmouth (4-1-2)               NR
19. Georgia Southern (9-1-1)        19
20. Furman (7-2-0)                  NR
1997 BIG EAST Standings
                    Overall  BIG EAST   
1.  Georgetown      7-3-0   5-1-0 (10)
2.  NOTRE DAME      7-3-2   4-0-1 (9)
    Pittsburgh      5-1-4   3-1-3 (9)   
4.  St. John's      9-1-1   4-0-0 (8)
    Seton Hall      6-4-0   4-2-0 (8)
6.  Rutgers         5-5-1   3-2-1 (7)
7.  Villanova       4-4-3   2-2-2 (6)
8.  Boston College  2-5-2   2-4-1 (5)
9.  Syracuse        4-6-0   2-4-0 (4)
    West Virginia   4-7-0   2-5-0 (4)
11. Providence      3-8-0   1-6-0(2)
    Connecticut     4-6-1   1-6-0 (2)
(   ) number of points

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