The Week in Notre Dame Athletics: The Most Sportful Time of the Year

The leprechaun can't catch our track stars. - Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The Fighting Irish earned wins this past week in hockey, men’s and women’s swimming & diving, track & field, fencing, softball, and women’s basketball.

Without further ado, we bring you the results of the last week's Irish match-ups.

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No. 20 Irish hockey (16-12-1, 5-9-1) split a crazy weekend series with Maine. Friday night, the Irish lost, 2-1, after a controversial Jeff Costello goal in the last 30 seconds was called back on the grounds that Costello pushed the Black Bear goalie into the net with the puck. The lone Irish goal came from Costello with 1:23 remaining in the game when the Irish were down, 2-0. The 1st Black Bear goal came in the first minute of the game, but the Irish kept them out of the net after that until midway through the 3rd period. Notre Dame outshot Maine, 37-31, and went 0-for-3 on power plays while killing both of 2 penalties.


Saturday, in another thriller at the wire, Notre Dame pulled out the win behind 2 goals in the final 1:08 for a 3-2 finish. Both final 2 Irish goals came from Bryan Rust; the first came from T.J. Tynan. After Maine scored midway through the 1st, Tynan tied the game up on a power play goal; Maine scored again in a 5-on-3 power play to make it 2-1 in the 2nd period. Rust's last-minute heroics saved the game for the Irish, who outshot Maine, 42-22.

We've got GIFs of Rust's final two game-winning goals, thanks to the GIF-making prowess of First Down Moses:

And the game-winner:

And here are the game highlights from NDFIDM:


The Irish make the trip to Rhode Island for this weekend's series against Providence. The teams face off Friday night (7:00 p.m. ET, WatchND) and Saturday night (7:00 p.m. ET, WatchND).

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No. 20 men's swimming and diving (7-5-1) claimed a convincing win this past weekend over Cleveland State, 204.5-94.5, at head-coach-of-29-years Tim Welsh's final meet. Welsh's very first dual meet as head coach at Notre Dame was against Cleveland State (and the head coach of CSU at that 1985 meet is also retiring this year). The Irish earned victories in 13 of 16 events.


No. 24 women's squad (8-5) claimed a final regular second win over Cleveland State, as well, tallying a score of 162-124. The Irish walked away with 11 1st-place finishes and 8 runner-up finishes.

Both Irish teams are idle this next week as they prepare for the ACC Diving Championships beginning on February 19th and then the ACC swimming championships beginning on the 26th.

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No. 16 men's tennis (6-1) saw the end to their undefeated streak this past week with a tough road loss to no. 22 Illinois, 5-2, marked by strong doubles play, but struggles in singles competition.

The Irish take the court against Northwestern this Tuesday night, then some of the team will travel to Houston for the ITA National Indoor Championships this weekend. The team faces Michigan in Ann Arbor on Saturday night.

The no. 23 women's team (5-1) was idle this past week and next faces Michigan on the road on Saturday afternoon.

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Notre Dame's track & field team hosted the 27th annual Meyo Invitational this past weekend. The Irish earned 1st-place finishes in the women's 1000m and 400m and the men's 400m and the mile. They earned top-5 finishes in both the women's and men's 5000m and weight throw, the women's 60m, 400m, 800m, the mile, and shotput, and the men's 200m (NDFB's Josh Atkinson), the mile, and the 4x400m relay.

Jeremy Rae won the Meyo Mile with a time of 3:57.25, setting a Notre Dame school record.


This weekend, the Irish travel to Geneva, OH, for the SPIRE Invitational.

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Fencing hosted two days of competition over the weekend in the DeCicco Duals (formerly the Notre Dame Duals). Saturday, the Irish went 26-1 (men) and 25-2 (women) against Cleveland State; 20-7 (both men and women) against Northwestern; 22-5 (men) and 23-4 (women) against Wayne State; and 20-7 (men) and 24-3 (women) against Detroit. Against a very stout Penn State squad, the Irish women posted a thrilling, come-from-behind 36-33 win; the men lost 18-9. Sunday, Notre Dame played 3 club teams in scrimmage-like matches; they lost just 10 bouts out of 162.

Here is the final point from the Notre Dame women's team, clinching the victory over Penn State:


The Irish will round out their regular season next weekend in Portland with a Junior Olympics match.

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Irish softball got the season started this past weekend going 3-1 in a series of games at Auburn: Notre Dame fell to North Dakota State, 4-1, but beat Tennessee Tech, 9-1, and Morehead State, 9-0, before earning a come-from-behind win over Auburn, 3-2. Allie Rhodes pitched a no-hitter in 5 innings for the Irish against Morehead State, notching 8 strikeouts and allowing 2 base runners and no walks.

This Saturday, the Irish face Louisville and Missouri in a double-header on the road in Florida. They face Missouri again on Sunday morning.

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No. 2 women's basketball (23-0) earned 2 more wins over the past week, dominating Florida State in Tallahassee, 81-60, and Syracuse at home, 101-64.

Here are NDFIDM's highlights from the win over FSU:

And from the victory over Syracuse:


The Irish next face Boston College on the road on Thursday evening (7:00 p.m. ET, WatchND). Next Monday night, they host Georgia Tech (7:00 p.m. ET, WatchND, ACC/Regional Sports).

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Men's basketball (12-12, 3-8) dropped their match against North Carolina, 73-62, on Saturday. You can find JoeSchu's recap and analysis of that game right here.

The Irish next face Clemson at the Purcell Pavilion on Tuesday night (7:00 p.m. ET, WatchND, RSN). Sunday, they visit Boston College (6:00 p.m. ET, ESPNU, WatchND).

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After starting the season with 2 exhibition match wins the week before last, men's lacrosse was idle this past week. This Sunday evening, the Irish face Jacksonville on the road. If you haven't done so yet, give Paul Rigney's primer on the season ahead a read.

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Another 3 Irish sports begin play this next week.

Baseball begins the season with a series against Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton on Saturday (double-header) and Sunday (Saturday at 1:00 and 6:00 p.m. ET, Sunday at 1:00 p.m. ET, WatchND).

Both Irish golf teams begins spring play this weekend. The women's squad tees off at the Florida State Match-Up in Tallahassee and the men's team plays in the Notre Dame Alumni Match in West Palm Beach, FL.

The women's lacrosse team hosts Cincinnati to open their season this Wednesday evening, then welcomes Boston College to town on Saturday afternoon.


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We'll bring you updates next week on Notre Dame's Olympic sports. For now, go Irish. Beat everybody.

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