Oct. 23, 2005
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Kerri Hanks opened the scoring by sending home a free kick for her 20th goal of the season and assisted on two other goals, as the sixth-ranked Notre Dame women's soccer team capped a dominant regular season with its seventh straight victory, 6-1 win over Georgetown. The Sunday-afternoon win extended Notre Dame's 11-year home unbeaten streak to 65 games (64-0-1) and the Irish now own a 24-game overall unbeaten streak at Alumni Field (23-0-1), believed to be tied for the nation's longest active streak (with Virginia Commonwealth) and good for 11th in the NCAA record book.
**NOTE - Attention ND women's soccer fans: the Irish will be featured on Fox Soccer Channel's "Fox Soccer USA" show this week. The first airing will be Tuesday, Oct. 25 at 7:00 p.m. EST (in South Bend, which currently is equivalent to Chicago time) ... re-airs include (all times EST): Oct. 26 (3:30 p.m.), Oct. 28 (5:00 p.m.) and Oct. 29 (11:30 p.m.) ... a Fox Soccer crew was on campus recently to film the spot, which features a behind-the-scenes look at life as a Notre Dame women's soccer student-athlete (Fox Soccer Channel is available on DirectTV channel 613 and via other cable outlets; check your local listings to confirm availability and air times).
Notre Dame (16-2-0, 10-1-0 BIG EAST) - which posted its ninth unbeaten regular-season home record (9-0-0) - played all 26 of its active players but briefly allowed Georgetown back in the game, after backup goalkeeper Lauren Karas dropped a corner-kick cross and Alexandra Hardy knocked home the loose ball for a 2-1 game in the 63rd minute. The Irish then responded in stunning fashion, erupting moments later for three goals in a span of 51 seconds to suddenly claim a 5-1 lead.
Brittany Bock, Katie Thorlakson and Annie Schefter (assisted by Thorlakson) each scored in the three-goal blitz and freshman Becca Mendoza's first goal of the season capped the scoring in the closing moments of the game. Amanda Cinalli had scored early in the second half for the 2-0 cushion.
Notre Dame ends the regular season with a commanding 81-10 scoring edge and now has seven more goals than the opponents' combined shot total versus the Irish (74). Sunday's action saw the Irish roll up a 26-3 edge in total shots while limiting the Hoyas to a single shot on goal, with Notre Dame now owning an eye-popping 76-3 edge in shots on goal during the past five games.
The Irish remain unbeaten in the second games of weekends (9-0-0, all on Sunday) while outscoring the opponents 45-2 in those games (as oppsed to a 7-2-0 record and 36-8 scoring edge in the first games/on Friday). The past three Sundays have yielded a 19-1 combined scoring margin for the defending NCAA champs.
The stout Notre Dame team defense has yielded only 34 shots on goal in 18 games played this season, an average of just 1.89 opponent shots on goal per game that is on pace to break the team record set in '97 (2.12 opp. SOG/gm).
The Irish continued their season-long sharpshooting by cashing in half of their 12 shots on goal.
Hanks joins an elite list of nine Notre Dame players who have reached 20 goals in a season, a group that includes her current teammate Thorlakson (who scored 23 goals in '04). Former classmates Anne Makinen (23, in '97) and Meotis Erikson (22) join Jenny Streiffer (22, in '96) as the only Notre Dame freshmen ever to score more goals in a season than Hanks.
Hanks now has 52 points for the season (20 goals-12 assists) while Thorlakson has 51 (14G-23A) - making them the third set of teammates in the Notre Dame program's history (and first since 1997) to each reach 50 points in a season (they entered the week tied for 2nd on the national scoring charts). The duo's combined totals include 34 goals, 35 assists and 102 points in 18 games, for an average of 5.7 points per game as a tandem.
Only one previous team in Notre Dame's storied history has featured multiple players with 50-plus points in the regular season. The potent 1996 offense produced 58 regular-season points for both Cindy Daws and Jenny Streiffer while Jenny Heft chipped in 56 prior to the start of the '96 postseason.
Hanks already ranks 11th on the ND single-season points list while Thorlakson is 12th. The 1996 trio of Daws, Streiffer and Heft are the only players in Irish history to total more regular-season points than Hanks or Thorlakson (Monica Gerardo is 6th on that list, with 50 regular-season points in '96).
Thorlakson's goal and assist give her 163 points for her career (51G-61A), still eighth in Notre Dame history but now just one point behind Erikson. Her 61 assists remain fourth in the Notre Dame record book and ninth in NCAA history, just three behind former UConn player Jen Tietjin.
Hardy's goal snapped Notre Dame's shutout streak at 571 minutes, spanning parts of eight games. The Irish had outscored their opponents 28-0 during the shutout streak, good for the longest stretch of unanswered goals in the seven-year Randy Waldrum and seventh-longest in the program's history (longest since the '98 team rattled off 29 straight goals).
Notre Dame has been the nation's top-scoring team all season and will enter the postseason with an average of 4.50 goals per game that would rank third-best in Irish history and best since '97.
Georgetown was held without a shot until the 54th minute of play and ultimately scored off its only shot on goal in the game.
Senior goalkeeper Erika Bohn has faced just one shot on goal in her past 266 minutes of action, since returning from the ankle injury that sidelined her for a month in the middle of the season.
Notre Dame will play host to a BIG EAST quarterfinal game next weekend (Oct. 29 of 30, date and time TBA), versus the winner of the first-round game between Georgetown and Syracuse (at SU, on Oct. 26 of 27).
Hanks had scored a couple of goals earlier in the season via direct kicks and she added another in the 28th minute of Sunday's game, striking the ball from 22 yards out beyond the center of the penalty area. The Allen, Texas, native opted to shoot left and caught Jade Higgins flatfooted, as the 'keeper dove late to her right and batted the ball into the sidenetting (27:10). It marked the sixth time that Hanks has opened the scoring this season (tops among the Irish players) and the Irish ultimately improved to 60-2-0 in their past 62 games when scoring first.
Notre Dame's goal production has been somewhat slow-starting over the course of the current six-game winning streak but the Irish have come on strong after the intermission, racking up a 21-1 scoring edge in the second half/overtime during that six-game span (nine of the team's 10 goals this weekend came after the intermission). Notre Dame has shown its tremendous depth, conditioning and 90-minute focus during the win streak while compiling a 92-13 shot edge (avg. 15.3-2.2) in those games during the second half/OT, plus 46-3 in shots on goal (7.6-0.5) and 34-10 in corners (5.7-1.7).
The team's first goal of the second half came in the 52nd minute. Junior defensive midfielder Jill Krivacek picked up her first assist of the season after feeding the ball to Hanks, who then sprung Hanks on a well-played thru-ball for her 11th assist of the season. The sophomore forward found herself 1-on-1 with Higgins and battled past the 'keeper before firing into the open net for her sixth goal of the season and 16th of her young ND career (51:29).
The goal ultimately held up as Cinalli's sixth career gamewinner with the Irish and leaves her with 49 career points (16G-17A) in 45 games with the Irish. Her next point will make her the 28th player in the program's history to reach 50 career points, joining current teammates Thorlakson (163), Candace Chapman (63) and Jen Buczkowski (56).
Cinalli's goal provided a key margin, as the Irish now have amassed 211 consecutive wins when claiming a 2-0 lead (244-0-1 all-time).
Sara Jordan's corner-kick service helped produce GU's score in the 63rd minute, producing a brief moment of anxiety before the home team's three-goal explosion. Jordan - a former teammate of ND's Susan Pinnick on the Carmel Commotion club team - struck the ball from the right flag and Karas jumped to grab the cross but the sophomore 'keeper was unable to hold onto the ball. Hardy was in position at the center of the goalmouth and tapped the ball into the net from close range for her fifth goal of the season (62:03).
Hardy's goal snapped Notre Dame's shutout streak at 632:06 (spanning parts of eight games) and ended a stretch in which the Irish had scored 28 games without allowing a single goal by the opponents. That 28-0 span is tops in the seven-year Randy Waldrum era and seventh in the program's history (best since a 29-0 goal stretch in '98, with the record set when the '97 team scored 50 straight goals without allowing an opponent score).
Notre Dame's three-goal blitz started less than four minutes later. Freshman midfielder Brittany Bock continued her impressive surge by scoring her eighth goal of the season, on a unique give-and-go sequence with Chapman. Bock received the ball near the center of the field, 35 yards away from the goal, and played a pass out to the right flank for Chapman. The fifth-year veteran (who started the game at forward and later returned to right back) made a couple touches on the ball while moving down the flank before sending a strong, dipping cross into the heart of the penalty area. Bock was running onto the play at a dead sprint and laid out for yet another impressive header goal, diving low to connect with the ball and send it into the right side of the net for the 3-1 margin (65:55).
Bock's goal signaled another sure-win for the Irish, who now are 132-1-0 in their past 133 games when scoring 3-plus goals (the only loss game at GU, 4-3 in 2002).
The crowd - which numbered nearly 2,000 to continue an impressive season attendance (avg. of 1,885 per home game) - still was cheering the Bock goal when Thorlakson sent home her 14th goal of the season and 51st of her career, just 21 seconds after the Bock score. The goal resulted from another give-and-go sequence, this time in a more confined area of the penalty area as Thorlakson sent the ball to Hanks near the left endline. Hanks returned the favor by lifting a cross into the six-yard box and Thorlakson volleyed the ball into the far-right side of the net for the 4-1 lead (66:46).
Hanks and Thorlakson now have assisted on each other's goals 14 times this season, with at least one of the potent frontrunners having a goal/assist on 55 of the team's 81 goals (68%).
Notre Dame completed its three-goal flurry 30 seconds after the Thorlakson goal, with the senior forward providing the primary assist after shaking free and serving the ball from beyond the right side of the box. Senior midfielder Annie Schefter was running onto the play in the center of the box and lunged forward for a low volley that clipped the bottom of the crossbar and broke the plane for her third goal of the season (all in the past four games) and the 5-1 cushion (66:46). All 11 goals of Schefter's ND career have come within the confines of Alumni Field.
Sunday's preseason ceremonies included the annual senior-class tribute, with eight players honored while flanked by their teammates and family members. Each of those players logged significant minutes in the game (no player among the 26 that saw the field played fewer than 12 minutes), with Amber McMillin playing the final 21 minutes at forward while Miranda Ford closed that part of the game at right back. Five other seniors started the game (Thorlakson, Chapman, Bohn, Schefter, left back Jenny Walz) while forward Maggie Manning logged 17 mid-game minutes.
The team's reserves scored to cap the scoring in the 87th minute, as junior forward Molly Iarocci picked up her second assist of the season (and second of her career) with a pass near the right side of the box. Freshman midfielder Becca Mendoza took the feed and shifted to set up her rightfooted before launching a shot from the top of the box that carried beyond the leap of Higgins (86:11).
Mendoza became the 14th Notre Dame player to score a goal this season while 18 different Irish players have at least one point in '05. The team's freshmen now have combined for 84 points on 33 goals and 18 assists, led by Hanks (20G-12A) and Bock (8G-5A) in addition to central defender Carrie Dew (3G), forward Beth Koloup (1G-1A) and Mendoza (1G).
UPDATED ND PLAYER NOTES - The program's previous seasons with multiple 50-point players include 1996 (Daws 72, Streiffer 66, Gerardo 59, Holly Manthei 53) and '97 (Makinen 58, Streiffer 58, Erikson 56) ... Hanks and Thorlakson could join Daws and Streiffer as the program's only teammates with 60-plus points in the same season ... Thorlakson has scored/assisted on 37 goals this season (46% of the team's total) while Hanks has a G/A on 32 ... Thorlakson now has reached 23 assists (24 in '04) in multiple seasons, joining NCAA all-time assist leader Manthei (30 in '94, 44 in '96, 34 in '97) as the only players in Division I history to post 23-plus assists in two or more seasons ... Manthei was a midfielder known for her pinpoint crossing ability but did not feature Thorlakson's goalscoring punch, totaling just 24 career goals and never more than 9 in a season (Thorlakson has 51 career goals, with a top season total of 23 in '04) ... Thorlakson totaled eight more points in the '05 regular season than in the '04 regular season (43) and now will take aim at another high-scoring postseason (she totaled an ND-record 24 points, 9G-9A, in the '04 postseason games) ... if she can score nine goals in the '05 postseason, Thorlakson would become just the sixth Div. I player ever to reach 60G-60A in her career ... that elite group includes Streiffer (70G-71A; '96-'99), Daws (61G-67A; '93-'96), former UNC great Mia Hamm (103G-72A; '89-'93), former Santa Clara standout Mandy Clemens (67G-65A; '96-'99) and former UCSB star Carin Jennings (102G-60A; '83-'86) ... no player has reached the 60-60 milestone since Streiffer and Clemens did it in '99 (they are the only 60-60 player since Daws in '96) ... Thorlakson's 23 assists rank 5th in the ND single-season record book, behind three Manthei seasons and Thorlakson's 24A in '04 ... Hanks is tied for 9th on the ND season goals list and has joined Thorlakson (24G in '04) as ND's only 20-goal scorers in the past six seasons (since Heft scored 20 in '99) ... Thorlakson (also 70 in '04) and Hanks likewise are the program's only 50-point scorers since '99 ... Thorlakson has appeared in all 88 games of her ND career (after returning from the U-19 World Championship) and is two games shy of becoming the 22nd ND player with 90-plus GP ... Chapman logged her 85th career game (27th in ND history) ... Thorlakson has points in 26 of her past 29 games with the Irish (15 of 18 in '05) ... ND is 12-0-0 this season when Hanks scores a goal ... Bohn picked up her 59th career win with the Irish ... Schefter and junior M Jen Buczkowski have played all 69 games during the '03-'05 seasons (ND is 61-6-2/.899 in that span) ... Schefter pushed her career point total to 40 (11G-18A) and a strong postseason could make her the fifth current ND player with 50-plus career points ... junior D Christie Shaner has played in 66 straight games (68 of 69 in career) ... Hanks is averaging one goal for every 60 minutes of her game time this season ... Bock needs 2G to join Hanks among 18 all-time ND players to reach double-digit goals in their freshman seasons (multiple ND freshmen have posted 10-plus goals in six previous seasons, in '90, '92, '93, '96, '97 and '00) ... Hanks has points in 15 of 18 games this season ... Thorlakson has 55 points in her past 15 home games (16G-23A).
UPDATED TEAM NOTES - The Irish have scored six-plus goals in seven games this season ... the current seniors have helped ND win 83.3% of its games during the past four seasons (74-14-2, from '02-'05) ... ND improved to 119-11-3 (.906) vs. BIG EAST teams since joining the league in '95 (95-8-3 in regular season) ... ND's current players have combined for 1,108 career games played ... Waldrum enters the '05 postseason with a 135-22-5 career record at ND (.849) ... the Irish have held 38 of their past 41 opponents to 0-1 goals ... ND improved to 176-14-3 all-time at Alumni Field (.920) ... previous ND teams to go unbeaten at home in the regular season include the '91, '93, '94, '96-'99 and '04 teams (all but the '97 and '04 teams won all their regular-season home games) ... the Irish amassed a 51-3-2 regular-season record from '03-'05 ... ND enters the postseason with the nation's 6th-best win pct. (.889), trailing only Penn State (17-0-0), Portland (16-0-1), UNC (16-1-0), UCLA (14-1-1) and Lehigh (13-1-1) ... ND's shutout streak ended at six games (tied for 3rd-longest in the program's history) ... the 81 goals are the most by an ND team since the '99 team scored 98.
BIG EAST POSTSEASON - Georgetown (11-7-1, 4-6-1) lost its final four BIG EAST games and closed 1-6-0 in league play but still qualified for the postseason, thanks to Villanova's win at DePaul ... 1st-round matchups (time and date TBA) will feature GU (the Division-B 5th-place team) at Division-A 4th-place team Syracuse (3-5-3) while Rutgers (5-6-0; Div. B #4) will play host to Pittsburgh (3-6-2; Div. A #5) ... two quarterfinal dates and times have been set for Oct. 29 (both at 4:00 CDT/5:00 EDT): the RU/Pitt winner at Div.-A winner UConn (10-1-0); and West Virginia (7-2-1; Div. A #3) at Villanova (6-1-3; Div. B #2) ... the other quarterfinal date and times - Louisville (6-5-0; Div. B #3) at Marquette (9-2-0; Div. A #2) and the GU/SU winner at ND -had yet to be announced by the BIG EAST as of Sunday night ... the semifinal games will be telecast live by CSTV on Nov. 4 (2:30 and 5:00 CDT) while the championship game on Nov. 6 (11:00 a.m. EDT) also will be aired live by various BIG EAST affiliates (TBA) ... the semifinal games will not be placed into time slots until after the quarterfinals are completed.
Georgetown (11-7-1, 4-6-1 BIG EAST) 0 1 - 1
ND 1. Kerri Hanks 20 (-) 27:10; ND 2. Amanda Cinalli 6 (Hanks, Jill Krivacek) 51:29; GU 1. Alexandra Hardy 5 (Sara Jordan) 62:03; ND 3. Brittany Bock (Candace Chapman) 65:55; ND 4. Katie Thorlakson 14 (Hanks) 66:16; ND 5. Annie Schefter 3 (Thorlakson) 66:46; ND 6. Becca Mendoza 1 (Molly Iarocci) 86:11
Shots: GU 0-3 - 3, ND 14-12 - 26