Nov. 4, 1999
THE GAME ? Notre Dame, making its fourth consecutive appearance in the BIG EAST tournament, meets 17th-ranked and top-seeded Rutgers in one of four quarterfinal matchups. This will be the second time the two schools have faced each other in league championship. The Irish and Scarlet Knights met in the final of the 1996 tournament with Notre Dame claiming a 1-0 victory to win the school?s first-ever BIG EAST crown.
1999 BIG EAST TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE ?
Quarterfinals ? at sites of higher seeded team
Saturday, November 6 No. 8 Notre Dame at No. 1 Rutgers 7:30 p.m. No. 5 Georgetown at No. 4 St. John?s 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, November 7 No. 7 Seton Hall at No. 2 Connecticut Noon No. 6 Syracuse at No. 3 West Virginia 2:00 p.m.
Semifinals & Final ? at University of Connecticut, Storrs, Conn.
Friday, November 12 (Semifinal doubleheader) No. 2/No. 7 winner vs. No. 3/No. 6 winner 10:00 a.m. No. 1/No. 8 winner vs. No. 4/No. 5 winner Noon
Sunday, November 14 (Championship Final) Semifinal winners Noon
HOW THE IRISH GOT HERE ? Seton Hall Recap: Needing a win or tie to advance to this year?s BIG EAST Championship, senior Andrew Aris kicked in the game-tying goal off an assist from freshman Erich Braun as the Irish and Pirates battled to a 1-1 tie. Aris scored the goal atat the 77:08 mark of the contest following Braun?s shot that rebounded off Pirate goalie Efren Aguirre. Seton Hall?s Peter Scavo put the Pirates on the scoreboard 14:26 into the second half with his 18-yard shot off a free kick at 59:26. The Pirates outshot the Irish 22-13 in the game and owned an 11-6 advantage in corner kicks. Gerick Short came up with five saves in goal for Notre Dame. With the tie, Notre Dame and Providence tied for eighth place in the league?s regular season standings, but the Irish earned the tournament?s eighth seed by virtue of their 4-0 victory during the season.
THE SERIES ? Rutgers leads the 5-3 and has won two straight over the Irish. The last five meetings between the two schools have been decided by a 1-0 score. The Scarlet Knights earned the victory this year at Alumni Field. Notre Dame is 1-4 in games at the Rutgers Soccer Stadium, the lone win was in the ?96 BIG EAST tournament championship game (a 1-0 outcome). The last meeting between the two teams in Piscataway, N.J. was decided in overtime.
ND-RU RECAP ? Notre Dame had its six-game unbeaten streak snapped as the Irish dropped a 1-0 decision to the Scarlet Knights, ranked 11th at the time of the match. Ludwig scored the goal from five yards out in front of the net. Notre Dame outshot the Scarlet Knights 16-8 in the game.
NOTRE DAME IN THE BIG EAST TOURNAMENT ? Since joining the BIG EAST in 1995, the Irish men?s soccer team has earned a tournament berth four of the five seasons as a league member. In its three appearances in 1996, 1997 and 1998, Notre Dame has posted a 4-2 record. The Irish are 2-1 in three quarterfinal games they have played.
1996 ? Notre Dame 2, Georgetown 1 (quarterfinals) Notre Dame 2, Connecticut 1 (semifinals) Notre Dame 1, Rutgers 0 (final) 1997 ? Notre Dame 2, Seton Hall 0 (quarterfinals) St. John?s 4, Notre Dame 1 (semifinals) 1998 ? St. John?s 2, Notre Dame 0 (quarterfinals)
OPPONENTS OUTSCORING IRISH IN LAST FIVE GAMES ? Notre Dame has been outscored by its opponents 10-3 in its last five games. The Irish have been shutout in two of the contests and managed just one goal in each of the other two games.
ROOKIE LEADS IRISH IN SCORING FOR SECOND STRAIGHT YEAR ? For the second straight year, the Irish are led in scoring by a freshman. Last year it was forward Shane Walton (now a member of the Notre Dame football team), and this season, it?s freshman forward Erich Braun. Braun leads the team in goals (nine), assists (six) and points (24). Prior to Notre Dame?s 1-0 loss against Rutgers on October 16, he had either a goal or an assist in five straight games, and has recorded points in seven of the team?s last 10 contests.
BERTICELLI GETS 100TH CAREER WIN ? With Notre Dame?s 5-2 victory over Eastern Michigan on September 29, head coach Mike Berticelli earned his 100th win with the Irish. His current record at Notre Dame stands at 104-79-19. Just the third coach in the 22-year history of the program, Berticelli would become the second Notre Dame coach to garner 100 wins. Rich Hunter, the program?s first head coach from 1977-83, produced a 128-32-8 mark during his seven-year tenure. He coached his 200th game at Notre Dame against St. John?s on October 23.
HEAD COACH MIKE BERTICELLI ? Notre Dame head coach Mike Berticelli is in his 10th season at Notre Dame and his 24th as a collegiate coach. He has led Notre Dame to three of the school's four NCAA tournament appearances (1993, 1994 and 1996). In 1996, 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 a 104-79-19 (.562) mark at Notre Dame and is 291-134-42 (.668) overall. He coached his 450th career game against Boston College on September 4. In three of the last six seasons, his Notre Dame teams have won 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 six of his nine seasons at the Notre Dame helm.
IRISH STRUGGLING ON THE ROAD ? Notre Dame opened up the 1999 campaign with a 1-0 victory on the road. Since that September 1 contest, however, the Irish are 0-4-3 in road games. Coach Mike Berticelli?s squad was 7-3-0 at home this season.
BACK-T0-BACK LOSSES AT HOME A RARITY ? Notre Dame lost its final two regular season home games when it dropped decisions to Rutgers (1-0) on October 17 (1-0) and Georgetown (3-1) on October 29. The Irish had not lost two straight at home since the 1995 campaign when they lost overtime decisions to Indiana (4-2) and Boston College (3-2).
CLOSE CALLS ? Eight of Notre Dame?s 19 games have been decided by a single goal, with seven of those contests ending in a 1-0 decision. The Irish are 4-2 in games which have ended 1-0 this season and are 4-4 in games decided by a single goal.
IRONMEN ? Six Irish players, including three freshmen, have started all 19 games this season. Seniors Matt McNew, a defender, and goalkeeper Gerick Short have been in the starting lineup for every games as has junior defender Connor LaRose. Freshmen Erich Braun, Alan Lyskawa and Justin Ratcliffe have each been in the starting lineup for all 18 contests.
DOUBLING UP ? Heading into the 1999 campaign, junior midfielder Dustin Pridmore had just one goal and two assists to his credit in his first two seasons. This season, Pridmore is the team?s third-leading scorer with three goals and an assist (seven points).
ROSSO MAKES FIRST CAREER START ? Sophomore Matt Rosso made his first career start in Notre Dame?s last game at Seton Hall. Rosso has played in nine games this season and 18 during his two-year career with the Irish.
IRISH NOTCH SEVEN SHUTOUTS ? Notre Dame has shutout seven opponents this season The Irish began the campaign with two shutout wins over Northwestern on the road and Boston College at home. In early October, Coach Mike Berticelli?s squad notched three straight shutout wins, and four in five outings. Notre Dame?s three shutout victories were at home against Syracuse (2-0), IUPUI (1-0) and Providence (4-0).
GOING OVERTIME ? Notre Dame has played five overtime contests this season and is 0-2-3 in those matches. The Irish tied Pittsburgh (1-1), Valparaiso (2-2) and Seton Hall (1-1) and lost decisions to Western Michigan (1-0) and Connecticut (2-1). Coach Mike Berticelli?s squad played six overtime contests a year ago, including a school-record five straight in the month of September. Notre Dame is averaging 4.75 overtime games per season since 1996.
A BIG EAST FEAST AGAINST WILDCATS ? The five goals scored by Notre Dame against Villanova was the largest scoring output for the Irish in a BIG EAST game. The five-goal differential in the 5-0 win over the Wildcats was the biggest for the Irish in a conference game.
STINGY DEFENSE ? As a team, the Irish have a 1.14 goals against average and have allowed 23 goals in 19 games. Notre Dame has given up eight goals in its last three contests which have resulted in two losses (St. John?s and Georgetown) and tie (Seton Hall). Prior to its loss to St. John?s, Notre Dame had yielded just four goals in its seven previous outings.
McNEW GETS HIS STARTS ? Graduation took its toll on the Notre Dame backfield with the losses of defenders Phil Murphy and David Cutler, central midfielder Matt Johnson and goalkeeper Greg Velho. The only returning starter in the backfield was sweeper Matt McNew, a three-year starter and second-team all-BIG EAST selection in 1998. He has started 76 of the 79 games he has played in during his Irish career, nearly double that of any other returnee in ?99. Only three other players on this year?s roster have started more than 25 games ? Andrew Aris (44), Connor LaRose (41) and Ryan Cox (36).
HOME SWEET HOME ? Notre Dame finished 5-1-2 at home in 1998 and was 7-3-0 in 1999 as the Irish have dropped two 1-0 decisions to Western Michigan and Rutgers and lost 3-1 to Georgetown. This marks the 10th year for the Irish playing at Alumni Field where Notre Dame owns a 65-23-7 mark overall for a 72.1 winning percentage.
1999 BIG EAST STANDINGS
BIG EAST Overall Record Record 1. Rutgers 8-1-2 (18) 11-4-3 Connecticut 9-2-0 (18) 13-4-0 3. West Virginia 8-2-1 (17) 13-4-1 4. St. John?s 6-2-3 (15) 11-4-3 5. Georgetown 6-4-1 (13) 9-8-1 6. Syracuse 6-5-0 (12) 9-8-0 7. Seton Hall 5-5-1 (11) 9-7-1 8. NOTRE DAME 4-5-2 (10) 8-8-3 Providence 5-6-0 (10) 8-8-1 10. Boston College 2-9-0 (4) 6-9-2 Pittsburgh 1-8-2 (4) 6-9-3 12. Villanova 0-11-0 (0) 2-14-0
(Week of November 1)
LW 1. Duke 1 2. UCLA 3 3. Wake Forest 4 4. Penn State 5 5. Indiana 2 6. Saint Louis 12 7. Maryland 9 8. Furman 7 9. Santa Clara 13 10. Southwest Missouri State 6 11. Connecticut 11 12. Akron 14 13. Cal State Fullerton 8 14. St. John?s 15 15. Creighton 10 16. Old Dominion 16 17. Rutgers 22 18. North Carolina 21 19. UMBC 20 20. SMU T17 Washington 19 22. Brown T17 23. UAB RV 24. San Diego RV 25. Columbia NR
SOCCER AMERICA (Week of November 1)
LW 1. UCLA 2 2. Duke 3 3. Indiana 1 4. Furman 6 5. Wake Forest 5 6. Penn State 7 7. Maryland 8 8. Southwest Missouri State 4 9. Saint Louis 10 10. Connecticut 11 11. UMBC 12 12. SMU 13 13. Santa Clara 14 14. Creighton 9 15. Washington 16 16. San Diego 18 17. Stanford NR 18. Portland 15 19. Brown NR 20. North Carolina NR
1999 NSCAA GREAT LAKES REGION RANKINGS
(Week of Oct. 31)
Pts. 1. Indiana (14-3-0) 50 2. Akron (11-3-2) 41 3. Ohio State (11-6-0) 39 4. Western Kentucky (13-34-0) 32 5. Cincinnati (9-6-1) 27 6. Oakland (11-5-2) 26 7. Marquette (10-7-0) 23 8. Kentucky (10-6-1) 16 9. Evansville (9-7-1) 10 10. Michigan State (9-6-1) 9 NOTRE DAME (8-8-2) 9
Also receiving votes: Dayton