Oct. 6, 2002
Akron, Ohio - The Notre Dame men's soccer rebounded from a disappointing 1-0 loss to Pittsburgh on Friday night at Alumni Field to post a 1-0 win on the road at Akron in a non-conference test. Sophomore Jack Stewart (Torrance, Calif.) scored the game-winning goal off an assist from teammate Chad Riley (Houston, Texas) at the 71:25 mark as the Irish recorded their first road win of the season.
With the victory, Notre Dame improves to 5-3-3 overall, while Akron falls to 2-5-2 on the season.
For Stewart, a central defender who has started all 11 contests this season, it was his first career goal. The win marked the second shutout in 2002 for the Irish and the sixth-one goal decision this season.
The assist was the eighth of the season for Riley who leads the team in that category for the third straight year. He is the first player since Ryan Cox in 1998 and Scott Wells in 1997 to dish off eight assists in a season.
Senior Greg Tait (Fayetteville, N.Y.), started in goal for the Irish and playing in just his third game all season, registered a season-high five saves. Tait replaced sophomore goalkeeper Chris Sawyer (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) just five minutes into the second half of the Pittsburgh after Sawyer appeared to have being injured. He (Tait) played the final 47:48 of the contest.
Heading into the game, Notre Dame was 0-2-1 in its last three contests and had not experienced a win since a 5-1 victory over Providence on September 22. It also marked the first-ever victory for the Irish against an Akron team. Heading into the contest, the Zips owned a 6-0-2 advantage in their eight previous meetings. The game also marked the first matchup between the two schools since the 1989 campaign.
Notre Dame outshot Akron 12-10 in the game, including a 9-4 shot advantage in the second half. The Irish also had a 9-7 advantage in corner kicks.
Coach Bobby Clark's squad will be on the road for the fourth time in five games when the Irish travel to Chestnut Hill, Mass., to take on the Boston College Eagles on Sat., Oct. 12 at 1:00 p.m. (EDT) in a BIG EAST conference test.
GAME STATISTICS: Shots: Notre Dame 12, Akron 10; Saves: ND 6 (Greg Tait - 5), Akron 4 (Justin Christafaris - 3); Fouls: Notre Dame 10, Akron 14; Corner Kicks: Notre Dame 9, Akron 7