Nov. 8, 1997
Matt McNew scores gamewinning goal against Seton Hall. (file photo)
Notre Dame Advances in Big East Championship
2-0 Quarterfinal Win over Seton Hall
SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. - Defending BIG EAST tournament champion Notre Dame
advanced to the semifinals of the 1997 BIG EAST Championship with a 2-0
quarterfinal win at Seton Hall. The fifth-seeded Irish used goals in each half
to defeat the fourth-seeded Pirates on Owen T. Carroll Field.
Notre Dame, now 10-8-2 on the season, will play top seeded and defending
national champion St. John's (15-2-2) in semifinal action on Friday, November
14 at noon at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, Conn.
Sophomore Matt McNew provided what proved to the gamewinner 17:26 into the
contest when he McNew headed in a Scott Wells corner kick into the left side of
the net. Wells sent the ball into the box and McNew headed it to the ground.
The shot then deflected off a Seton Hall defender and rolled into the left side
of the net.
The teams battled through the mud and rain with each having few scoring
opportunities. Junior Ben Bocklage sealed the win with a 30-yard blast at the
76:29 mark after taking the ball at midfield. The ball went over the head of
Pirate goalkeeper Derek Martin, deflected off the crossbar and into the goal.
Seton Hall, which outshot Notre Dame 13-9, had one of its best chances on
the day to score when Peter Scavo's shot hit the right post with eight minutes
left. The Pirates end their season at 11-8.
Irish goalkeeper Greg Velho finished with six saves on the day, while
Martin tallied five stops.
The win avenges a 2-1 loss the Irish suffered on October 24 in South Orange
during the regular season.
Notre Dame, which won the BIG EAST tournament a year ago, advances to the
semifinals for the second consecutive year. The semifinals and finals will be
held November 14 and 16 at the Joseph J. Morrone Stadium in Storrs, Conn.
In the other semifinal matchup, the Rutgers will face the winner of the
Connecticut-Georgetown which was postponed until Monday due to weather. That
semifinal contest is slated for 10:00 a.m. The two semifinal winners will
square off in the championship game on Sunday, November 16 at noon.