Sept. 29, 2008
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Notre Dame senior All-America forward and Hermann Trophy candidate Kerri Hanks (Allen, Texas/Allen) is the BIG EAST Conference Offensive Player of the Week, while freshman forward Melissa Henderson (Garland, Texas/Berkner) is the league's Rookie of the Week, it was announced Monday afternoon by the BIG EAST office. In addition, senior defender/co-captain Carrie Dew (Encinitas, Calif./La Costa Canyon) earned a place on the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll, as the top-ranked Irish remain the nation's lone unbeaten and untied team after wins over Louisville (4-1) and Cincinnati (6-0).
A five-time BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Week selection in her career, Hanks scored three goals in last week's two victories, bracketing the Notre Dame scoring summary last Friday night against Louisville with goals in the 17th and 72nd minutes. She then opened the scoring on Sunday afternoon at Cincinnati, taking a pass from Dew and finding the back of the net in the 27th minute. This season, Hanks leads the BIG EAST in goals (10) and points (22) for all games, as well as during conference play (4 goals, 8 points). She also ranks eighth in the nation in goals per game (1.0) and 14th in points per game (2.2).
For her career, the three-time All-American Hanks is 17th in NCAA Division I history with 208 points (74G-60A), standing as one of only four players ever to post 70 goals and 60 assists, and she also ranks second in the Notre Dame record books for career goals and points. The 2006 Hermann Trophy recipient needs three points to catch Jenny Streiffer (1996-99) for the school record in that category, as well as six goals to tie Jenny Heft (1996-99) for the Irish record in that department.
Henderson collected her first BIG EAST Rookie of the Week award on Monday after registering her first career hat trick at Cincinnati in only 46 minutes of action as a reserve. She also became the 17th Irish freshman ever to record a hat trick (total of 21 times in 21 seasons), but the third to do so in the past eight years, joining current junior Michele Weissenhofer (2006 against Penn State in the NCAA quarterfinals) and Hanks (2005 in first two collegiate games against New Hampshire and at Vermont, the latter a four-goal day).
For the season, Henderson is tied for second in the BIG EAST in goals (8) and third in points (16) for all games, while holding those same rankings in league play (3 goals, 6 points). What's more, she and Hanks are the only BIG EAST players to tally a hat trick this season, with Notre Dame having multiple players with three-goal games for the third consecutive season. In addition, Henderson ranks 24th in the nation in goals per game (0.8).
Besides registering her first point of the season with the assist on Hanks' game-opening goal at Cincinnati, Dew (a two-time BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Week this season) anchored an Irish defense that allowed only one goal and just five shots on goal in last weekend's two victories. Notre Dame also did not allow a single shot on goal against UC en route to its seventh shutout in 10 games this year. The Irish now have outscored their opponents by a combined margin of 36-3, and have allowed just 23 shots on goal all season.
No. 1 Notre Dame (10-0-0, 3-0-0 BIG EAST) returns to the pitch Friday at 7:30 p.m. (ET) when South Florida makes its first-ever visit to Alumni Field for a BIG EAST cross-divisional match. Tickets for this, and all remaining Irish regular-season home matches, may be purchased through the Notre Dame Athletics Ticket Office (574-631-7356; located on the second floor of the Joyce Center via Gate 1), on-line through the official Irish athletics web site (www.UND.com) or at the Alumni Field ticket windows on game night.