March 25, 2014
NOTRE DAME, Ind. -
The No. 6 Notre Dame women's lacrosse team saw two of its student-athletes, Cortney Fortunato and Margaret Smith, named as second-team midseason All-Americans by Inside Lacrosse on Tuesday. In addition, Fortunato topped the list on Inside Lacrosse's midseason report's Rookie of the Year candidates.
Fortunato leads the Irish this spring with 28 goals, 10 assists and 38 points despite facing defenses designed to slow her down. Fortunato's 28 goals and 38 points both rank third nationally amongst her fellow freshmen. Overall, the 28 goals tie for 18th-most in the nation. Fortunato has scored the game-winning goal in four of Notre Dame's eight wins so far in 2014. She has also picked up 16 ground balls, controlled 14 draws and caused four turnovers. Fortunato has recorded six hat tricks on the year, all coming in games that the Irish won. On March 11, she was named both the Brine National Player of the Week by Inside Lacrosse and the ACC's Offensive Player of the Week. On Feb. 24, Fortunato claimed WomensLax.com's Rookie of the Week honor.
Smith, an All-American selection in 2012, is the team's lone senior starter and has led the Irish from the top of the defense this spring. Smith leads the ACC in both ground balls and caused turnovers, ranking 13th nationally in each category. With Smith playing an integral role, Notre Dame has held eight of its 11 opponents in 2014 to nine goals or less, tying for the school's most games allowing single digit goals since 2007. For the season Smith has 34 ground balls, 23 draw controls and 22 caused turnovers. Including these typically strong numbers, Smith ranks fourth in Notre Dame history with 125 career draw controls and stands fifth in Irish lore in both caused turnovers with 101 and ground balls with 138.
The Fighting Irish (8-3) will be back on the field on Saturday when they play host to No. 11 Stanford at noon at Arlotta Stadium.