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Kevin Corrigan Pleased With Offensive Performance

April 30, 2018

Notre Dame (8-5) knocked off Virginia (11-5) 17-7 on Sunday afternoon in Charlottesville (Va.) to win its second ACC Lacrosse Championship.

The title win capped off an impressive weekend and a weekend filled with offense as the Irish beat Duke 14-11 on Friday evening. 

“We knew we had to win some games,” Notre Dame head coach Kevin Corrigan stated after the win. “It was a terrific weekend to do that and not play like we were under pressure. I thought our guys were loose and fast all weekend. It was clearly our best offensive output this season.” 

Entering the title game, Corrigan knew the Irish defense had to slow down Virginia All-American Dox Aitken. The sophomore entered Sunday’s contest with 34 goals on the season, including two in a 9-7 loss against Notre Dame earlier in the year. 

“Our guys took the challenge one-on-one,” explained Corrigan. “We really made good decisions. We weren’t oversliding, and you can do that on him because he’s not only big but he moves so well and very smooth. He’s not like a big guy that wants to run you down. He uses his size to lean, roll and pin you. 

“Our guys did a terrific job.” 

Another key to Notre Dame’s win was the ability to force turnovers. Virginia had 25 turnovers in the loss, and Corrigan was pleased with the effort from his defense, but also added the Hoos had to force things late in the game.

“They are going to turn the ball over more than most people,” stated Corrigan. “I think some of those turnovers late are them trying to make plays, so you don’t really count those because they had to make plays and forced some balls.”

Notre Dame has had suspect goaltending all season, but freshman Matt Schmidt might have turned the game with a huge save in the second period in basically a one-on-one opportunity for Virginia. 

“It was really big,” Corrigan said of Schmidt’s save. “Our goalie Matt Schmidt played great today. This is probably the best back-to-back games he’s had all season. It’s important especially when you have a defense that plays as consistently as ours. When you can get consistent goaltending, it makes it hard.” 

Corrigan also believed the win against Duke gave his team a little extra confidence heading into Sunday’s championship game. 

“It was a huge win against a team that just beat the pants off of us a few weeks ago,” Corrigan said of the win against Duke. “It gave us great confidence. I really think it started before that. I was impressed with how loose our guys played on Friday. 

“We don’t talk about all that, but we talk about getting ready. They know what was at stake and they were terrific. They played with great intensity and poise.” 

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