No. 5 Fighting Irish Advance Past No. 16 Penn

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – No. 4 seed Notre Dame defeated Penn 13-6 on Saturday afternoon at Arlotta Stadium in the first round of the NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championship. Senior attackman ColinIgoe registered a career-high four points on three goals and an assist for the Fighting Irish.

Notre Dame (11-2) received two goals apiece from Zach Brenneman, Westy Hopkins, Nicholas Beattie and Pat Cotter. Steve Murphy and Sean Rogers both chipped in a goal for the Irish, while junior long-stick midfielder Bobby Smith dished out a career-high two assists. Notre Dame had nine assists on its 13 goals.

The Fighting Irish defense held Penn (8-7) to just one second-half goal. The Quakers did not score from the 2:55 mark of the second quarter until the 5:43 mark of the fourth quarter, a span of 27:12

“Penn is a very good team but I thought we played one of our best games of the year,” said Notre Dame head coach Kevin Corrigan. “We expected a defensive struggle with two teams known for playing great defense, but it was 8-5 at halftime. I thought we settled down a lot defensively. We didn't move around so much and get ourselves in trouble.”

Notre Dame grabbed an early 4-0 lead in the contest. Hopkins put the Irish on theboard, while Beattie deposited back-to-back tallies to put the Irish up by three at the 6:52 mark of the opening quarter. Rogers scored 25 seconds later to increase the Irish advantage to four.

Penn goals from Rob Fitzpatrick and Al Kohart in the final two minutes of the period made it a 4-2 game by the end of the first quarter.

Goals from Cotter and Murphy 37 seconds apart put Notre Dame on top 6-2 just overfive minutes into the second quarter. The Quakers responded with a Dan Savage goal midway through the period.

Following a score from Brenneman, consecutive tallies from Penn's John Conneely and MorganGriff made it a 7-5 contest with 2:55 left in the opening half. The Irish outscored the Quakers 6-1 during the remainder of the game. Igoe's first goal of the afternoon gave Notre Dame an 8-5 lead at halftime.

A man-up goal from Cotter, off a pass from Brenneman, gave the Irish a four-goal cushion (9-5) with 9:33 left in the third quarter. A Brenneman score made it a 10-5affair after three quarters of play.

Hopkins' second goal of the game put the Irish up by six (11-5) early in the fourth period. Penn snapped its scoreless drought with just under six minutes left in the contest on a Will Amling goal.

Two goals from Igoe produced the final outcome. Today's 13 goals are tied for the second-most goals scored in an NCAA Tournament game in Notre Dame history.

“Penn is really good defensively,” commented Igoe. “We changed things up a little bit with our midfielders in the beginning of theweek to kind of move with these guys. Coach said, 'Play our game and good things will come.'”

Sophomore goalie John Kemp made nines saves for the Irish in his first career start in the NCAA Championship. Brian Feeney had 14 stops for Penn. The Fighting Irish out shot the Quakers 41-24.

Irish senior Jake Marmul went 16-20 in faceoff attempts. As a team, Notre Dame won 17 of the 23 faceoffs.

Notre Dame will face either Duke or Delaware next Sunday in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championship. Faceoff is slated for either noon or 2:30 p.m. (ET) at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.

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SOUTH BEND, Ind. – Playing in its first NCAA game since 2006, a sloppy performance by Penn could have been expected.

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2011-05-14



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