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    Fighting Irish
    #1 Irish And #5/3 Stanford To Clash In NCAA Semifinals

    FIGHTING IRISH Jessica Schuveiller scored her first career goal (and the gamnewinner), helping Notre Dame advance to the 2008 College Cup.
    FIGHTING IRISH
    Jessica Schuveiller scored her first career goal (and the gamnewinner), helping Notre Dame advance to the 2008 College Cup.
    FIGHTING IRISH

    Dec. 1, 2008

    Watch - Coach Waldrum, K. Hanks and B. Bock College Cup Media Session

    2008 NCAA College Cup - Tournament Central

    College Cup Notes Package in PDF Format Get Acrobat Reader

    2008 ND Women's Soccer - Game 26

    NCAA Women's College Cup -- Semifinals

    #1/1 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (25-0-0 / 11-0-0 BIG EAST) vs.

    #5/3 Stanford Cardinal (22-1-1 / 8-1-0 Pac-10)

    DATE: December 5, 2008

    TIME: 4:30 p.m. ET

    AT: Cary, N.C.

    SITE: WakeMed Soccer Park (7,000)

    SERIES: ND leads 5-4-1

    1ST MTG: STAN 3-0 (10/4/92)

    LAST MTG: STAN 2-1, ot (9/9/07)

    TV: ESPN2/ESPNU/ESPN360.com (live) Beth Mowins, p-b-p Cat Whitehill, color

    LIVE STATS: UND.com

    TEXT ALERT: Sign up at UND.com

    TICKETS: None available

    Storylines

    • Notre Dame has advanced to the NCAA Women's College Cup for the third consecutive season, earning its fourth College Cup berth in five years and its 10th overall.

    • The Irish are 6-3 all-time in national semifinal games, and won both of their previous College Cup semifinals in Cary (2004 vs. Santa Clara; 2006 vs. Florida State).

    No. 1 Irish To Play No. 5/3 Stanford in NCAA College Cup Semifinals Delivery of a College Cup berth may have been accomplished for the top-ranked Notre Dame women's soccer team, but if observers think that's good enough for these Irish, they will be sadly mistaken. Notre Dame will take the pitch in the NCAA College Cup semifinals for the third consecutive year when it squares off with No. 5 Stanford on Friday at 4:30 p.m. (ET) from WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, N.C. (ESPN2/ESPNU/ESPN360.com). The Irish (25-0-0) used a stout defensive effort and some timely offensive firepower to post a 2-0 win over No. 6 Florida State in the NCAA quarterfinals last Friday at Alumni Field. Senior All-America forward/Hermann Trophy semifinalist Kerri Hanks assisted on both Irish goals, setting the table for freshman defender Jessica Schuveiller and sophomore forward Taylor Knaack, while becoming the first NCAA Division I player ever to log 73G-73A in her career.

    Rankings • Notre Dame is ranked No. 1 in the latest NSCAA poll and final Soccer America poll. • Stanford is ranked fifth in the latest NSCAA poll and was third in the final Soccer America poll.

    A Quick Look At The Fighting Irish Notre Dame rolls out one of its deepest teams in years, with 19 monogram winners (including nine starters) back from last season's squad that went 19-5-2 (11-0-0 in the BIG EAST) and advanced to the NCAA College Cup semifinals for the ninth time in the past 14 years. The Irish also bring back a powerful offensive punch, with 83.3 percent of their goalscoring (55 of 66) returning.

    As if that weren't enough, Notre Dame welcomes a highly-regarded nine-player freshman class to campus, with three of those incoming players having earned multiple national All-America honors during their prep or club careers.

    Leading the way for Notre Dame this season are two of the country's premier front-line players (and '07 NSCAA first-team All-Americans) in senior forward Kerri Hanks and senior forward/midfielder Brittany Bock.

    A three-time All-American and the '06 Hermann Trophy recipient, Hanks (19G-15A) continues to blaze new trails through the NCAA and Irish record books, sitting just off the national lead in goals and points this year after setting the NCAA pace in assists the past two seasons. A two-time BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year (including 2008), Hanks became the firstDivision I player to log 73 goals and 73 assists in her career (83G-73A entering Friday's game). She has earned national honors from Soccer America (Team of the Week) and Top Drawer Soccer (Player/Team of the Week) a combined seven times, as well as garnering four BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Week honors. She was the only unanimous selection on the 2008 All-BIG EAST First Team.

    Bock (6G-9A), one of the Irish co-captains in 2008, emerged as a genuine offensive threat last season, leading the team in goals and finishing second with 36 points (16G-4A). A two-time all-BIG EAST First Team selection (including 2008), Bock earned the league's Offensive Player of the Week honor on Sept. 8, as well as a spot on the Soccer America National Team of the Week after scoring the game-winning goal in a 1-0 victory at No. 3/2 North Carolina on Sept. 5. More recently, she was tapped for the Top Drawer Soccer National Team of the Week on Oct. 21 after registering a goal and four assists in shutout wins at Providence and Connecticut.

    Another key player for the Irish this season is senior center back and co-captain Carrie Dew (1G-1A), the two-time BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year and BIG EAST Championship Most Outstanding Defensive Player. She also is a two-time BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Week and a three-time national team of the week honoree, including Monday's selection as the Top Drawer Soccer National Player of the Week. One of three defenders to start every game for the Irish this season, Dew and the Notre Dame defense have recorded 17 shutouts and a 0.40 GAA, including four consecutive clean sheets to open this season (the first time the Irish have done that since '95).

    A Quick Look At Stanford Stanford (22-1-1, 8-1-0 Pac-10) is playing in the NCAA Championship semifinals for the second time in program history, and first since 1993. Like Notre Dame, North Carolina and UCLA, Stanford was one of the four number-one seeds established at the outset of NCAA tournament play. The fifth-ranked Cardinal advanced out of the quarterfinal round with a 1-0 win over third-ranked Portland last Friday night.

    Sophomore forward Christen Press netted the gamewinner in the quarterfinals at 85:29, leading Stanford to the dramatic victory. It marked the second consecutive NCAA tournament game in which Stanford scored with less than five minutes remaining in regulation to advance.

    On the season, Press is tied with freshman forward Lindsay Taylor for the lead in goals with 16, while adding 11 assists for a team-high 43 points. Junior forward Kelley O'Hara leads Stanford in assists with 12.

    Junior goalkeeper Kira Maker has started every game of the season in net for the Cardinal, posting a 22-1-1 record. She has made 47 saves while recording a 0.30 goals-against-average and an .870 save percentage, along with 14 shutouts.

    Head coach Paul Ratcliffe is in his sixth season at Stanford. He has a 85-32-16 (.699) record with the Cardinal, and has led his squad to six consecutive NCAA tournament appearances. Ratcliffe is 1-1-1 versus Notre Dame all-time while at Stanford. He owns a career record of 140-66-22 (.662) in 11 years as a collegiate head coach, including a five-year stint at Saint Mary's (Calif.).

    The Notre Dame-Stanford Series Friday's game will be 11th all-time meeting between the two teams, with the Irish holding a slight 5-4-1 advantage over the Cardinal entering the game. However, the series is dead even when considering games played at neutral sites, as the Irish have a 1-1-1 record versus the Cardinal in such contests.

    The teams first met in 1992 when Stanford earned a 3-0 win at Alumni Field. Notre Dame earned its first series win in 1995 with a 2-0 home triumph. For a complete series breakdown, see page 101 of the 2008 women's soccer media guide.

    The teams have met twice in NCAA tournament play, with both meetings occuring in third-round play. The first postseason meeting came in 1999, as Notre Dame earned a 1-0 win at home on its way to a College Cup Final appearance in Randy Waldrum's first year at the Irish helm. Stanford and Notre Dame again squared off with a place in the quarterfinals at stake in 2002 in Stanford, with the Cardinal earning a hard-fought 1-0 win on that day.

    While leading the Irish, Waldrum holds a 3-2-1 all-time mark against Stanford.

    The Last Time ND And Stanford Met For the first time since the 1999 season, Notre Dame dropped an overtime game, falling 2-1 in extra time to Stanford at the Santa Clara Classic on Sept. 9, 2007. The Irish entered the contest as the nation's second-ranked team, while the Cardinal were ranked fifth at kickoff.

    The Irish got on the board first when current sophomore Lauren Fowlkes (see page 10 of this notes package for note on Fowlkes and the U-20 national team) scored her first collegiate goal at 33:37, with one of the assists going to current senior Kerri Hanks. Current Cardinal junior Kelley O'Hara tied the game in the 52nd minute.

    The game proceeded to overtime where Stanford proved victorious as Shari Summers converted a penalty kick at 97:13. Current Irish sophomore goalkeeper Nikki Weiss made one save in her first collegiate start.

    Finding Common Ground Notre Dame and Stanford have faced three common opponents this season -- North Carolina, Santa Clara and Rutgers. The Irish went 3-0-0 (two games at home, one on the road) versus those teams, while Stanford posted a 2-0-1 record (two games at home, one on the road) against the same foes. In those contests, Notre Dame held a 6-1 edge in scoring margin, while Stanford's scoring margin was a 7-1 advantage.

    Notre Dame beat North Carolina at UNC's Fetzer Field by a score of 1-0 (Sept. 5). The Irish also defeated Santa Clara (Aug. 31) and Rutgers (Oct. 24) at home by scores of 2-0 and 3-1, respectively.

    Meanwhile, Stanford played host to North Carolina on Sept. 12, as the two schools played to 1-1 overtime tie. Stanford also travelled to Santa Clara on Oct. 3 and earned a 5-0 win, before playing host to Rutgers on Nov. 21 in the third round of NCAA play, defeating the Scarlet Knights by a 1-0 score.

    Notre Dame Against The Pac-10 The Irish have an all-time record of 13-4-1 (.750) against Pac-10 opposition. With a 5-4-1 all-time record versus Stanford, the Cardinal have been Notre Dame's most common Pac-10 opponent.

    The Irish also own a 2-0-0 record versus Arizona State and a 4-0-0 record against Washington, with all six of those wins coming in regular-season play.

    The other Pac-10 school Notre Dame has faced before is another of this weekend's College Cup participants, UCLA. The Irish have defeated the Bruins in their only two matchups, both of which came in NCAA postseason play. On Nov. 29, 1997, Notre Dame won 8-0 in a quarterfinal contest at Alumni Field. Then, on Dec. 5, 2004 in Cary, N.C., the Irish and UCLA played to a 1-1 tie in the national championship game. Notre Dame went on to earn its second NCAA title, edging the Bruins, 4-3, in a six-round penalty kick shootout.

    Notre Dame in The NCAA Semifinals Notre Dame is making its third consecutive appearance (and 10th overall) in the NCAA Women's College Cup, posting an 6-3 record in its previous nine semifinal games, including wins in 1994, '95, '96, '99, 2004 and '06.

    The current Irish senior class is 1-1 all-time in NCAA semifinal matches, including a 2-1 win over Florida State (in Cary, N.C) on Dec. 1, 2006.

    Five players from the 2008 lineup have notched points in previous NCAA semifinal action for the Irish: Brittany Bock (1A), Carrie Dew (1G), Kerri Hanks (2A) and Courtney Rosen (1G) and Elise Weber (1G).

    Irish In The NCAA Championship • Notre Dame is competing in the NCAA Championship for the 16th time, dating back to the 1993 season. The Irish are one of three schools to win multiple national titles (1995, 2004), joining North Carolina and Portland.

    • Notre Dame now holds the second-longest active streak of consecutive NCAA Championship berths with 16, trailing only North Carolina (27) in that category.

    • The Irish and Tar Heels also remain the only teams to have reached the final-32 or further in every NCAA Championship since 1993.

    • The Irish are 39-3-0 (.929) all-time at home in NCAA tournament games, with a 135-22 scoring margin in those contests.

    • Notre Dame holds an all-time record of 48-13-1 (.782) in NCAA postseason play.

    • The Irish senior class is 20-0 all-time in postseason games (BIG EAST/NCAA) at Alumni Field, shutting out 16 of those 20 opponents.

    • The Irish senior class is 16-3 all-time in NCAA postseason games.

    • The Irish return nine players who were in the starting lineup for last season's NCAA College Cup semifinal against Florida State (3-2 loss on goal in 72nd minute).

    • The Irish entered the NCAAs with their first-ever unbeaten and untied record, but their fifth unbeaten record in the past 15 seasons (also 1994, 1997, 2000 and 2006).

    The BIG EAST Hardware Haul In addition to claiming its 11th BIG EAST regular-season title in 14 seasons, the Irish earned four of the six major individual awards and placed six players on the all-BIG EAST Conference Team during the BIG EAST Women's Soccer Awards Banquet on Nov. 6 at the South Bend Marriott. The four individual award recipients matches the 2005 Irish club for the most major award honorees since Notre Dame joined the BIG EAST in 1995.

    Senior All-America forward/Hermann Trophy candidate Kerri Hanks was a unanimous selection as the BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year and a first-team all-conference choice by the BIG EAST coaches. Also the 2006 recipient of the award, Hanks joins former teammate Katie Thorlakson (2004, 2005) as the only Irish players to earn the trophy more than once.

    For the second time in three years, senior defender/co-captain Carrie Dew was lauded as the BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year. Dew is the fourth Irish player to be a two-time recipient of the honor, along with Jen Grubb (1998, 1999), Candace Chapman (2002, 2005) and Melissa Tancredi (2003, 2004), with Notre Dame now having a player garner that trophy for the sixth time in seven seasons.

    Freshman forward Melissa Henderson was named the BIG EAST Rookie of the Year, becoming the fourth Irish player in the past six seasons to collect the league's top award for first-year players. She's also the third current Irish player to earn the honor, following in the footsteps of Hanks (2005) and junior forward Michele Weissenhofer, who was the 2006 recipient.

    Head coach Randy Waldrum was honored by his peers by being voted the BIG EAST Coach of the Year for the fifth time in his 10 seasons at Notre Dame. Waldrum also took home the honor in 1999, 2000, 2003 and 2004, and now has earned eight conference coach of the year awards in his illustrious career, adding previous citations in the Big 12 Conference (at Baylor in 1998) and Missouri Valley Conference (with Tulsa's men's program in 1991 and 1993).

    The Irish also fielded four first-team all-conference selections -- Hanks, Brittany Bock, Dew and Henderson -- for the fourth time in the past five seasons. Bock also becomes the 15th Notre Dame player to be a two-time first-team all-BIG EAST honoree.

    Junior midfielder Courtney Rosen was voted a second-team all-BIG EAST selection, her first career all-conference certificate. Senior defender Elise Weber was an honorable mention all-conference pick this season, earning her second consecutive all-BIG EAST citation, following a third-team honor a year ago.

    Poll Position Notre Dame took over the No. 1 ranking in all of the major national polls on Sept. 16 (unanimous in the final regular-season NSCAA balloting), with the Irish now having earned the top spot in the nation in four of the past five seasons (and five of the 10-year Randy Waldrum era, with Waldrum joining North Carolina's Anson Dorrance as the only coaches with five top-ranked seasons in this decade).

    Notre Dame last was ranked No. 1 in 2006, assuming that post in all the polls by the end of the season's first month and carrying it through to the NCAA College Cup final, where the Irish fell to North Carolina, 2-1 (one of only two blemishes in a 25-1-1 season).

    Notre Dame remains the only team in the country to own the No. 1 ranking in the NSCAA poll in four of five years from 2004-08. All-time, the Irish are 93-6-3 (.926) as the nation's top-ranked squad.

    As has become the custom on the Notre Dame campus, the traditional lighted #1 sign has reappeared atop Grace Hall, and a #1 flag now flies outside the Irish athletic department offices at the Joyce Center (see note on pp. 26 of this year's media guide).

    This year's women's soccer ranking marks the ninth consecutive academic year (starting in 2000-01) that Notre Dame has fielded at least one top-ranked team, with women's basketball, fencing, baseball and ice hockey also reaching the top of their respective polls during that span.

    One Tough Slate Lest anyone think Notre Dame hasn't earned its place atop the polls, just take a look at the Irish schedule this season.

    Notre Dame has nine wins over ranked opponents (No. 21/12 Santa Clara, at No. 3/2 North Carolina, vs. No. 12/11 Duke, at No. 17/16 Penn State, at No. 17/16 Georgetown, vs. No. 24/18 Rutgers, vs. No. NR/25 Marquette, vs. No. 22/24 Minnesota and vs. No. 6/6 Florida State), with the first three in that series coming in succession and the UNC, Duke, PSU and GU games all coming away from home.

    And it's not like the Irish have experience playing SCU, UNC and Duke in a row, having last seen those three powerhouses in succession in 1995 (and not at any point in the same regular season, let alone in a row, since 1999).

    The 1-0 win at North Carolina on Sept. 5 was even more noteworthy, as it marked just the seventh time the Tar Heels had ever been shut out at home, and only the fifth time by a Division I team. One of those five was a 0-0 tie (Duke), while the other four were 1-0 losses, two at the hands of Notre Dame (the other came in the '95 NCAA semifinals at Fetzer Field, leading to the first of two Irish national championships).

    Numbers Don't Lie To get a clearer picture of just how dominating Notre Dame has been through 25 games this season, one need look no further than some of numbers the Irish have put up.

    Notre Dame is outscoring its opponents by a staggering 81-10 margin (+71, tied with North Carolina for best in the nation), with 17 shutouts this year. As of Nov. 23, the Irish also were second in the nation in scoring offense (3.29 goals/game), as well as fourth in goals-against average (0.41) and third in shutout percentage (0.667).

    The Irish also allowed just 63 opponent shots on goal all year (18 fewer shots on goal than Notre Dame's goals). By comparison, senior All-America forward and Hermann Trophy candidate Kerri Hanks has 59 shots on goal all by herself.

    Together, the Irish have registered 288 shots on goal, while their opponents have managed 188 total shots this year. And, Notre Dame also has a sizeable 172-48 (+124) edge in corner kicks, the best margin in the nation.

    Lead, Follow Or Just Get Out Of The Way With the potency of the Notre Dame offensive attack, most opponents opt for the third option. In fact, the Irish have trailed for a grand total of 1:59 this season (59:06-61:05 vs. Marquette on Oct. 5) and have led for 1,488:24 of 2,270:52 minutes this season (65.5% of the elapsed game time). In addition, Notre Dame has been tied in the second half or OT nine times (0-0 at No. 3/2 North Carolina, 0-0 and 1-1 against No. 12/11 Duke, 0-0 at DePaul, 1-1 vs. Marquette, 2-2 at Villanova, 0-0 vs. Connecticut, 0-0 vs. Michigan State, 0-0 vs. Minnesota) for a combined total of 227:12.

    The One And Only At 25-0-0, Notre Dame is the lone unbeaten and untied team left at any level of NCAA women's soccer. The only other candidate was in Division II, but previously unbeaten Grand Valley State was upset by Wisconsin-Parkside, 1-0 on Nov. 21 in the second round of the NCAA Championship.

    Now That's How You Bounce Back Since beginning last season with that tough 3-4-1 start, the Irish are 41-1-1 in their last 43 games overall, with the only loss coming to No. 14 Florida State (3-2) in last year's NCAA College Cup semifinals, and the lone tie occurring at No. 12 West Virginia (1-1) in the '07 BIG EAST tournament final (WVU won the title on penalty kicks, 5-3).

    With a victory over Toledo in the first round of the NCAA Championship on Nov. 14, Notre Dame matched the best 40-game stretch in school history (38-1-1), previously set from Oct. 2, 2005-Dec. 1, 2006. The 40-game record can not be improved upon unless the Irish roll off 10 more wins (extending into next season).

    Heading Into Uncharted Waters Notre Dame's current 25-game winning streak is the best run in program history. It bests the previous unbeaten streak of 24 games, set from Oct. 19, 1995-Oct. 11, 1996.

    The current streak also marks the sixth consecutive season in which the Irish have reeled off at least 12 victories in a row. Prior to this year's success string, the longest run in that span (dating back to 2003) had been a 15-game winning streak to kick off the 2004 national championship season.

    Golden Domers Golden In OT Overtime has usually been the right time for Notre Dame, as the Irish are 18-3-8 (.759) all-time in the Randy Waldrum era (since '99) when going to an extra period or two. Notre Dame went to OT for the first time this season on Oct. 12, taking a 3-2 win at Villanova on a "golden goal" by sophomore midfielder Rose Augustin at 96:58.

    Notre Dame's second OT win of the season came on Nov. 9 at Alumni Field, when, once again at exactly 96:58, Melissa Henderson scored to give the Irish a 1-0 win over Connecticut and secure the 2008 BIG EAST Championship. It marked the first "golden goal" in BIG EAST title-game history.

    The Irish once again needed overtime to advance out of the NCAA third round on Nov. 21, doing so when senior All-America forward and Hermann Trophy candidate Kerri Hanks netted a penalty kick at 96:54 for a 1-0 victory over No. 22/24 Minnesota at Alumni Field.

    This season marks the first time Notre Dame has ever played multiple overtime games in the postseason (BIG EAST/NCAA Championship).

    Getting The Jump On The Competition Notre Dame's impressive results this season has been fueled by its lightning-fast beginning to the first half.

    In 15 of their 25 games, the Irish have scored a goal in the first 20 minutes of play (including six in the opening 10 minutes), with an own goal against Cincinnati exactly 1:00 into the Nov. 2 BIG EAST quarterfinal being the fastest strike of the season. That marked the second-fastest goal in Notre Dame's storied postseason history, not to mention the fourth-fastest of the Randy Waldrum era (since '99).

    The last time the Irish got on the board quicker than the Cincinnati game was on Nov. 5, 2006, when Hanks struck 57 seconds into the BIG EAST final against Rutgers (a game the Irish ultimately won, 4-2).

    Strong Out Of The Blocks Notre Dame is off to the best start in program history (25-0-0), with this year marking the completion of the first unbeaten and untied regular season in school history (18-0-0). That debut also eclipses the 16-0-0 start by the 2000 Irish squad during the second season for head coach Randy Waldrum at Notre Dame.

    Here's a look at the other strong starts the Irish have had to a season and how things ended up for Notre Dame:

    Start Final Record Result 2008 25-0-0 ?? ?? 2000 16-0-0 23-1-1 NCAA semifinalist 2004 15-0-0 25-1-1 NCAA champion 2006 13-0-0 25-1-1 NCAA runner-up 1996 13-0-0 24-2-0 NCAA runner-up

    Beasts Of The BIG EAST With a win over Connecticut in the BIG EAST title game on Nov. 9, Notre Dame now owns a school-record 52-game unbeaten streak (50-0-2) against BIG EAST opposition (second-longest in NCAA Division I history) dating back to a 4-1 loss at No. 15 Marquette on Sept. 30, 2005. In that time, the only ties were a 0-0 draw at Connecticut (Oct. 13, 2006) and a 1-1 deadlock at No. 12 West Virginia in last year's BIG EAST final on Nov. 11 (WVU won 5-3 on PKs, but the game is recorded as a tie).

    Since joining the BIG EAST, the Irish are 123-8-4 (.926) all-time in regular-season conference games, 32-2-1 (.929) in the BIG EAST Tournament, and hold a 682-81 scoring edge dating back to that first league season in '95.

    What's more Notre Dame maintains a 13-year, 87-game home unbeaten streak (86-0-1) versus BIG EAST teams, with Connecticut the lone conference team ever to defeat the Irish at Alumni Field (5-4 in OT on Oct. 6, 1995).

    Dude, We're Going Streaking With its 3-0 win at home over South Florida on Oct. 3, Notre Dame set a new school record for consecutive regular-season victories, with an active winning streak at 28 games heading into next season. The last time the Irish dropped a regular-season contest was more than a year ago (Sept. 23, 2007) when they gave up two second-half goals in a 2-1 loss to 14th-ranked Penn State at Alumni Field.

    Notre Dame's 28-game regular-season unbeaten streak also is tied for the third-longest in school history. In fact, it should be noted that, except for a 16-day stretch last September when the Irish lost four times in six games (twice in OT), Notre Dame has not dropped a regular-season game dating back the middle of the 2005 season.

    Spreading The Wealth In an early example of the incredible depth of this year's Notre Dame squad, the Irish had seven different players score goals in the season-opening 7-0 whitewash of Michigan (including three who tallied their first career goals). That matched the largest number of goalscorers in one game during the 10-year Randy Waldrum era (since '99), and the most since the 2005 season opener (an 11-1 rout of New Hampshire on Aug. 26 in the TD Banknorth Classic at Burlington, Vt.).

    For the season, a record-setting 19 different Irish players, representing all four classes, have scored at least one goal. Freshman center back Jessica Schuveiller is the most recent goal scorer, as she headed home what proved to be the game-winning goal versus Florida State in Notre Dame's 2-0 NCAA quarterfinal win last Friday. In addition, Notre Dame has set a school record with 21 different point scorers this season, with senior forward Kerry Inglis the newest point scorer behind a two-goal afternoon against Seton Hall on Oct. 26.

    The previous Irish single-season records for goalscorers (17) and point scorers (20) both were set in 1996 (in a 26-game season).

    No Soup For You For the second time in program history, the first time since 1995 and the first time in the Randy Waldrum era, Notre Dame opened its season with four consecutive shutouts, blanking Michigan (7-0), Loyola Marymount (4-0), No. 21/12 Santa Clara (2-0) and No. 3/2 North Carolina (1-0). The Irish actually put together a string of 419:44 scoreless minutes to begin this season (437:44 dating back to the end of last year), before the run was snapped on Sept. 7 when No. 12/11 Duke scored at 59:19 off a corner kick that deflected in off an Irish defender.

    The 1995 squad reeled off eight consecutive shutouts to begin what would be a 21-2-2 season, culminating with the program's first national championship.

    No Shots For You, Either Notre Dame held South Florida without a single shot in a 3-0 win on Oct. 3. It marked the first time since Oct. 1, 2000 (vs. Rutgers) that the Irish defense didn't yield a shot.

    Hanks = History With each passing game, senior All-America forward and Hermann Trophy candidate Kerri Hanks reaches more career milestones in the NCAA and Notre Dame record books, continuing to stamp herself as one of the greats in women's college soccer history.

    On Nov. 28 against Florida State, Hanks delivered two assists to become the first D-I player to amass 73 goals and 73 assists in her career. Only two others are even qualified for the 70G-70A club: North Carolina's Mia Hamm and Notre Dame's Jenny Streiffer.

    Hanks currently stands in eighth place on the Division I career points list with 239 points (83G-73A), and 13th on the NCAA career goals chart following her penalty kick gamewinner in overtime against Minnesota on Nov. 21. On both lists, the person ahead of her is a current or former U.S. National Team member -- Abby Wambach is seventh in career points (242 at Florida from 1998-2001), while Shannon MacMillan (87 at Portland from 1992-95) and April Heinrichs (87 at UNC from 1983-86) are four ahead of Hanks on the goals chart.

    For more information on Hanks' groundbreaking career at Notre Dame, including a full rundown of the records she currently holds, please see page 12 of this notes package.

    One After The Other After The Other Senior All-America forward/Hermann Trophy candidate Kerri Hanks is in the midst of one of the most productive runs of her brilliant career and arguably one of best in NCAA Division I annals.

    Against Seton Hall on Oct. 26, the Allen, Texas, native had her school-record 11-game goalscoring streak snapped (she did have a goal waved off due to an offsides call), ending what is tied for the fifth-longest in NCAA Division I history, a spot she shares with former Hartford player Maria Kun (1997) and one goal longer than the 10-game streaks by notables such as current U.S. National Team standouts Abby Wambach (2001 at Florida) and Christie (Pearce) Rampone (1996 at Monmouth).

    Although her goalscoring streak might have ended, Hanks still has an active career-long 19-game point-scoring streak, breaking the school record set by Hanks' former teammate and current Canadian National Team member Katie Thorlakson from Oct. 14-Nov. 25, 2005 (the final 14 games of Thorlakson's career).

    Despite missing Notre Dame's BIG EAST semifinal and final wins over Marquette and Connecticut, Hanks' streak has remained intact with her current spree through the NCAA Championship. It began with two assists in the NCAA opener against Toledo, followed by the helper on Rose Augustin's gamewinner versus Michigan State, then the clinching penalty kick in overtime to beat Minnesota, and two assists in last Friday's 2-0 quarterfinal win against Florida State.

    The Irish had a semi-similar situation occur in 1999, when Anne Makinen scored twice on Sept. 5 vs. Duke, then missed four games due to duty with the Finland National Team. Upon her return, she registered points in her next 11 games from Sept. 24-Oct. 27.

    Hanks Sets The Table, Too Set plays and dead-ball situations now have accounted for 77 (26G-25A) of Kerri Hanks' 239 career points (83G-73A), representing 32.2% of her points with the Irish. Her 26 goals have come on penalty kicks (15-for-16, including 8-for-9 this year), free kicks (10), or directly on a corner kick (1), while her 25 assists have been via corner-kick (16) or free-kick (9) services.

    Here's a look at Hanks' set-piece success (numbers listed as goals-assists, except PKs):

    Free Corner Penalty Total 2005 3-1 0-1 0 3-2-8p 2006 2-4 0-8 2 4-12-20p 2007 5-3 1-4 5 11-7-29p 2008 0-1 0-3 8 8-4-20p Totals 10-9 1-16 13 26-25-77p

    A Pair Of Aces Senior All-America forward and Hermann Trophy candidate Kerri Hanks and freshman forward Melissa Henderson currently are tied as the most prolific goalscoring duo in the country this season with 36 goals (Hanks - 19, Henderson - 17). North Carolina's Casey Nogueira (23) and Courtney Jones (13) also have combined for 36 goals this season.

    Melissa Can't Miss Freshman forward/BIG EAST Rookie of the Year/first-team all-BIG EAST selection Melissa Henderson is making the most of her time on the field, ranking second in the BIG EAST in goals (17) despite averaging only 52.9 minutes per game. In fact, were she to be averaging a full 90 minutes and scoring at her current pace, Henderson would have 29 goals this season, one more than the Notre Dame single-season record (28 by Kerri Hanks as a freshman in 2005), and five more than national leader Sarah Hagen (Milwaukee) entering Friday's action.

    Bock Stays A-Head Of The Game Nearly half (22) of the 46 career goals -- 12th-most in school history -- scored by senior forward/midfielder Brittany Bock have come on headers. That includes nine of her last 14 scores, most recently the opening goal in the Oct. 12 win at Villanova. Bock also has four rare header assists in her career.

    Knaack Is Taylor-Made For Goal Scoring Sophomore forward Taylor Knaack may have missed all of last season while recovering from preseason ACL surgery. However, once she got up to speed with the college game, it's been clear the Arlington, Texas, native has a bright future in the Irish lineup.

    After scoring a goal in Notre Dame's 7-0 season-opening win over Michigan on Aug. 22, Knaack added an assist at Cincinnati on Sept. 28, giving her three points in Notre Dame's first 17 games.

    Starting with the Oct. 26 regular-season finale against Seton Hall, when she netted Notre Dame's third goal, Knaack has recorded four goals and an assist in an eight-game span. Her recent scoring spree has included three goals and an assist in postseason play, most recently the game-clinching score in a 2-0 Irish win over sixth-ranked Florida State in last Friday's NCAA quarterfinals at Alumni Field.

    The Teacher And The Student Senior defender/co-captain Carrie Dew, a two-time BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year, and her central defensive partner, freshman Jessica Schuveiller, were held off the scoreboard in the regular season and BIG EAST Championship, but have opened their 2008 goalscoring accounts in NCAA Championship play.

    Dew scored her first goal of the season as she potted Notre Dame's first tally against Toledo in NCAA first round play. She now has eight career goals, three of which have come in NCAA tournament play (37.5%). What's more, all three of Dew's NCAA tournament goals have been assisted by senior All-America forward Kerri Hanks.

    Taking a cue from her backline mentor, Schuveiller scored her first collegiate goal in last Friday's NCAA quarterfinals to give Notre Dame a 1-0 lead over Florida State. The goal proved to be the gamewinner, making Schuveiller the first freshman to score a game-winning goal for the Irish in NCAA play since current junior forward Michele Weissenhofer notched the first goal in Notre Dame's 4-0 defeat of Penn State on Nov. 24, 2006, also in the NCAA quarterfinals. Weissenhofer went on to register a hat trick in that game, one of only two ever posted by an Irish play in the quarterfinal round or later of the NCAA Championship.

    Iantorno Is One Super Sub Despite starting just once this season, sophomore forward Erica Iantorno is tied for third on the Irish with seven assists and fourth on the team with 17 points (5G-7A). All this for a player who came to Notre Dame last year as a walk-on (after reversing her original decision to attend Missouri) and had four points during her entire freshman season (on four assists).

    This year, Iantorno has emerged as Notre Dame's "microwave" off the bench, heating up the minute she gets into the game. In fact, less than a minute after subbing into the Penn State game on Sept. 21, the Hinsdale, Ill., native already had chalked up an assist, taking a throw-in, driving to the left endline and whipping a cross into the box that junior forward Michele Weissenhofer buried in the back of the net.

    Five days later against Louisville, Iantorno posted a three-point night (1G-1A) less than 10 minutes after coming into the game at the 31-minute mark. First, she delivered a sharp cross at the top of the box that Weissenhofer dummied for freshman midfielder Courtney Barg, who scored her first career goal (33:35). Then, senior defender Elise Weber sent a cross into the box that was misplayed by the Louisville goalkeeper and Iantorno was on the doorstep for the easy finish (40:32).

    Most recently on Nov. 14, Iantorno scored Notre Dame's fifth goal against Toledo in the first round of the NCAA Championship, less than 19 minutes after returning as a second-half substitute.

    Patience Pays Off For Inglis Senior forward Kerry Inglis had to battle through four injury-plagued seasons at Notre Dame, enduring four major surgeries on her right ankle, which she initially injured on the first day of preseason practice as a freshman in 2005. She also missed the entire 2006 campaign because of the constant medical trouble, and has played in just 20 games in her college career because of the maladies.

    However, Inglis' persistence, faith and determination were rewarded on Senior Day (Oct. 26) against Seton Hall, when she earned the first starting assignment of her career. Not content with just enjoying the specter of being in the lineup, Inglis promptly went out and scored the first goal of her career at 11:18 of the first half, knocking home a crossing pass from classmate Brittany Bock.

    As if that weren't enough, Inglis tacked on a second goal in the game, scoring with 5:36 left after collecting a loose ball in the penalty box and poking it into the right side of the net.

    Senior Moments The Irish senior class ranks among the most successful in the country, with a four-year record to date of 91-9-3 (.898) that includes four NCAA quarterfinal berths, three trips to the NCAA College Cup and a run to the 2006 national title game.

    Notre Dame's Class of 2009 also finished with a 53-1-2 (.964) record against BIG EAST opponents and has been ranked either first or second in the nation in each of their four years (including No. 1 rankings in 2005, 2006 and 2008).

    Our Fearless Leader Tenth-year Notre Dame head coach Randy Waldrum reached a career milestone on Sept. 21 at No. 17/16 Penn State. With the 3-1 Irish victory, Waldrum became the eighth active Division I head coach to record 300 career wins -- he now has a record of 317-79-20 (.786) in 19 seasons (including six at Tulsa and three at Baylor).

    Game #25 Recap: Florida State Senior All-America forward Kerri Hanks assisted on both Notre Dame goals and the sturdy Irish defense was rock solid against one of the nation's most explosive offenses as top-ranked Notre Dame advanced to the NCAA Women's College Cup for the third consecutive season with a 2-0 victory over No. 6 Florida State last Friday in the final game ever played at Alumni Field.

    Hanks' first assist came at 18:10, as she drilled a corner kick from the left flag into the box, where freshman defender Jessica Schuveiller rose above the pack and was able to drive home a header from short range for her first career goal.

    Notre Dame then potted its all-important second goal at 76:06, and again, Hanks was right in the thick of things. This time, she drove hard to the left endline before snapping a crisp service back into the six-yard box that snuck through traffic. Sophomore forward Taylor Knaack alertly crashed the net and was able to pounce on the loose ball, depositing her fifth goal of the year and fourth in the past eight games.

    Collectively, Notre Dame held a narrow 12-11 edge in shots against Florida State, including a 5-3 margin in shots on goal. The Irish also took six corner kicks to FSU's four, while Notre Dame was whistled for 13 of the 21 fouls in the contest, and four yellow cards were evenly divided between the clubs.

    Junior goalkeeper Kelsey Lysander made two saves and senior defender/co-captain Carrie Dew came up with a timely team-save of her own late in the second half to help the Irish preserve their 17th shutout of the season.

    The Magic Number Scoring three goals has meant virtually an automatic win in Notre Dame women's soccer history, with a 278-3-1 (.988) record in those games, including a 180-1-0 (.994) mark since Oct. 6, 1995. The Irish also are 374-9-15 (.959) when holding the opposition to 0-1 goals.

    Most impressively, Notre Dame is 302-0-1 all-time when claiming a 2-0 lead and is unbeaten in its past 279 contests when going ahead 2-0 (dating back to a 3-3 tie with Vanderbilt on Sept. 15, 1991, in Cincinnati). In fact, just two of the past 191 Irish opponents to face a 2-0 deficit have forced a tie, something achieved by four opponents in Notre Dame history: Duke on Oct. 17, 1993, in Houston (Irish won 3-2), Connecticut on Nov. 10, 1996, in the BIG EAST final at Alumni Field (ND led 2-0, later tied 2-2 and 3-3, ND won 4-3), Duke on Nov. 30, 2007, in the NCAA quarterfinals at Alumni Field (Irish won 3-2), and most recently, Villanova on Oct. 12, 2008 in Villanova, Pa. (Irish won 3-2 in OT).

    You Can Put It On The Board Notre Dame has scored a goal in 50 consecutive games, dating back to a scoreless draw with Michigan to open last season. The current 50-game goal streak is the second-longest in school history, trailing only a 55-game run from Aug. 29, 1997-Sept. 17, 1999.

    A Little Added Face Time Notre Dame played on television twice during the 2008 regular season. The Irish made their Big Ten Network debut on Sept. 21, posting a 3-1 win at No. 17/16 Penn State. On Oct. 19, Notre Dame traveled to Storrs, Conn., and defeated BIG EAST rival Connecticut, 2-0, on CBS College Sports.

    In addition, Notre Dame will be playing on TV for the third time this postseason when Friday's NCAA College Cup semifinal against Stanford is broadcast live on ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN360.com. Notre Dame's 2-0 BIG EAST semifinal win over Marquette on Nov. 7 aired live on CBS College Sports, as did its Nov. 9 BIG EAST title-game victory in overtime against Connecticut.

    In addition to its commercial TV coverage, Notre Dame enjoys an extensive broadcast footprint on the Internet. All of the Irish regular-season home games were broadcast live on the official Notre Dame athletics web site (www.UND.com), with supplemental live stats information provided by CBS College Sports Online's GameTracker service.

    Fans also can follow the Irish on their cell phones by signing up for the Irish ALERT text-messaging system. This free service is available by logging on the women's soccer page at www.UND.com and scrolling down the right-hand sidebar.

    Finally, the Notre Dame Sports Hotline (574-631-3000) remains a reliable resource for all the latest Irish athletics information. Regular updates on the Notre Dame women's soccer program can be found by calling the Hotline, then selecting option 4 and pressing "2".

    The Golden Girls Former Notre Dame standouts Kate (Sobrero) Markgraf ('98) and Shannon Boxx ('99) helped the United States successfully defend its Olympic gold medal with a 1-0 overtime win over Brazil in the 2008 title game on Aug. 21 in Beijing, China. Both players started and played all 120 minutes in the final on the way to earning their second consecutive gold medal.

    The duo join fencer Mariel Zagunis ('10) as Notre Dame Olympians with multiple gold medals. Markgraf also matches Zagunis' career total of three medals (Markgraf won silver with the USA at the '00 Sydney Games), a standard also equalled by former track & field great Alex Wilson ('32).

    Fowlkes Tapped For U.S. U-20 Team Sophomore defender/midfielder Lauren Fowlkes is one of 20 players who have been named to the final roster for the United States Under-20 Women's National Soccer Team, it was announced Oct. 27 by head coach Tony DiCicco. Fowlkes and her American teammates arrived in Chile to compete in the 2008 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup, slated for Nov. 19-Dec. 7. Fowlkes previously was part of the U.S. U-20 squad that qualified for the World Cup back in June after finishing second at the CONCACAF U-20 Championship in Mexico.

    Thus far, Fowlkes has started all four games at center back for Team USA, which has posted three shutouts and advanced to the tournament semifinals following a 3-0 win over England on Sunday night. The Americans will face either Brazil or Germany on Thursday evening in the semifinals.

    Because of her national team commitments, Fowlkes will miss the balance of the 2008 postseason at Notre Dame. She appeared in 18 games for the Irish this year, starting six times, with her lone goal being the gamewinner in a 3-1 victory over No. 12/11 Duke on Sept. 7 at the Carolina Classic in Chapel Hill, N.C.

    Fowlkes continues a strong tradition of Notre Dame players on the U.S. U-20 World Cup Team (and its predecessors at the U-19 level). Current Irish senior co-captains Brittany Bock and Carrie Dew donned the Stars & Stripes for the 2006 FIFA U-20 Women's World Championship (as it was then called) in Russia, where the United States finished fourth.

    Another Notre Dame senior, All-America forward/Hermann Trophy candidate Kerri Hanks, played for the USA at the 2002 and 2004 FIFA U19 Women's World Championships, helping the Americans to the title in 2002 (defeating host Canada, 1-0 in OT in the final) and a third-place finish in 2004 in Thailand. In the `04 third-place game, Hanks scored the opening goal for the U.S. on a free kick in the 21st minute.

    Next Game: NCAA Women's College Cup Should the Irish win on Friday, they would advance to the 27th annual NCAA Division I Women's College Cup championship game, which will be played at 2 p.m. (ET) Sunday at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, N.C.

    In the finals, the winner of Friday's semifinal game between Notre Dame and Stanford will play the winner of the UCLA-North Carolina semifinal game. The title contest will be televised live to a national audience on ESPN2 and ESPN360.com.

     

     

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