Blue and Gold Illustrated

Sept. 12, 2016

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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50 SEPT. 12, 2016 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED ND SPORTS BY DAVID MCKINNEY F or the seventh time in its 14-year history, the host Notre Dame men's soccer program captured the championship of the Mike Berticelli Memorial Tournament. The No. 9 Irish (2-0-0) defended their 2015 title by edging out second- place Indiana with goal differential of plus-five. The Hoosiers (2-0-0) fin- ished with a goal differential of plus- three (1-0 and 3-1 wins over New Mexico and UC Irvine, respectively). After a 4-0 win over UC Irvine Aug. 27, Notre Dame capped the tournament with a 1-0 triumph ver- sus New Mexico the following day. The decisive goal came in the 41st minute on a penalty kick by senior defender Brandon Aubrey. Head coach Bobby Clark said he was happy to get the win over a strong New Mexico team. "New Mexico is a real good team; they're excellent," Clark noted. "There's no question about that. I would say that's a better New Mex- ico team than the one we played in the NCAA semifinal in 2013. I've not seen many teams that can ping balls in that way, their back players all serve very well. Regardless of the opposition, the Irish performed up to their preseason top-10 ranking. "I thought we looked dangerous," Clark said. "We've got to do better at connecting our passes when we're under pressure, but I'll take it." Aubrey, who also scored a goal in the win over UC Irvine, was named the tournament's Most Outstanding Defensive Player. Junior forward Jon Gallagher, who tallied a team-best five points (two goals and an assist), was named the Most Outstanding Offensive Player. In addition, senior Chis Hubbard, who played all 180 minutes in goal and made seven saves, was named the Most Out- standing Goalkeeper. Aubrey, Hubbard and Gallagher were all named to the all-tournament team, along with senior defender Matt Habrowksi. ✦ Junior forward Jon Gallagher tallied five points (two goals and an assist) during Notre Dame's 2-0-0 start to the season. PHOTO COURTESY NOTRE DAME MEDIA RELATIONS No. 9 Men's Soccer Wins Season-Opening Tournament Irish Roundup WOMEN'S SOCCER (3-1-0) Stingy defense lifted Notre Dame to its third win of the season, a 3‑0 victory over Central Michigan Aug. 29. Thanks to goals from junior forwards Karin Muya and Meghan Doyle, and an own goal from Western Michigan, the Irish cruised to their third shutout victory of the season. Notre Dame also blanked Wright State (3‑0) Aug. 19 and Wisconsin (1‑0) Aug. 21, before fall‑ ing 2‑0 at Michigan Aug. 25. Head coach Theresa Romagnolo said she was happy to see Muya have success after sitting out 2015 due to injury. "I thought Karin Muya came on really strong," Romagnolo said. "She redshirted last year, so she's getting herself back into things, but she's doing really well lately." In those three shutout wins combined, the Irish outshot their opponents 59‑24 overall (including 22‑13 on goal). After the loss to the Wolverines, Romagnolo said the goal versus Western Michigan game was to clean some things up and get back on track. "We're excited to continue to get better and I felt that we did that," Romagnolo said. VOLLEYBALL (3-0) Notre Dame is off to its best start in five years. Not since 2011, when the Irish started the season by hosting and sweeping the Shamrock Invita‑ tional, has the program began a season with a record of 3‑0. This year, the Irish opened the campaign by hosting the Golden Dome Invitational and col‑ lecting wins over Seton Hall (3‑0), Cleveland State (3‑0) and Western Michigan (3‑0). It marked the first time Notre Dame has swept three straight matches since 2012. During the tournament, junior setter Caroline Holt provided the assist on 105 points to average 11.67 helpers per set en route to the tourna‑ ment's Most Valuable Player honor. Head coach Jim McLaughlin has been impressed with what he's seen from Holt so far this season. "It just stabilizes the group," McLaughlin said of Holt's strong play. "She's still got to get better. She's an unbelievable kid in many ways and she can be an unbelievable setter. Just getting the handwork in place, the footwork and the ball is going where she wants it to go more often. "She has to maximize each player [on the court], know how to talk to them and when to talk to them. She's got a good presence, the kids like her, she works hard and I love coaching her. I don't think she knows how good she could be. She could be a great setter." Having won just seven games last season, the Irish are certainly off to a better start in 2016, but McLaughlin said his team still has a long way to go. "We still have to understand we're not close to where we need to be," McLaughlin said. "We have to fix stuff, and if we don't, those habits stay with you. We have to form the right habits that give you a chance to be successful. " That's about how we're thinking and how we're preparing. The matches give training a little bit more meaning. I want us to train at a higher level that matches the intensity in games." — David McKinney

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