Athletics News
BIG EAST Olympic Sports Report - April 26

Irish Earn Top Seed In First BIG EAST Men's Lacrosse Championship
Notre Dame, which is ranked No. 4/3 in this week's national polls, has earned the No. 1 seed for the first BIG EAST Men's Lacrosse Championship, which begins next Thursday at Villanova Stadium. The Irish clinched the top seed, along with at least a share of their first BIG EAST regular-season title, with a 10-7 win against Villanova last Saturday. Villanova will be the No. 2 seed in the championship, while Syracuse is No. 3 and St. John's is No. 4. The regular season ends Saturday with three games, including a Notre Dame-Syracuse showdown at 5 p.m. ET on ESPNU.
 
Women's Lacrosse Championship Field Comes Down To Final Weekend
Three of the four teams that will battle for the BIG EAST Women's Lacrosse Championship have been decided, with Syracuse, Loyola and Notre Dame locked into the bracket. Syracuse and Loyola play Friday in a game that will determine the tournament's No. 1 seed and give the winner at least a share of the conference's regular-season title. The last spot in the tournament will go to the winner of Saturday's game between Rutgers and Georgetown. The Rutgers-Georgetown game will be televised at 1 p.m. ET on the CBS Sports Network.
 
Giant-Killers In BIG EAST Baseball
BIG EAST baseball teams scored nonconference wins against teams ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in this week's national polls. Louisville, which was a 12-0 winner against top-ranked Kentucky in Lexington just two weeks ago, completed a series sweep of the Wildcats with a 10-2 win at the Cardinals' Jim Patterson Stadium. USF made the trek to Gainesville, Fla., to score a 5-3 win against No. 2 Florida. With four weeks left in the regular season, USF is tied with St. John's and Connecticut for first place in the BIG EAST standings, while Louisville sits a game back in fourth place. 
 
Louisville, USF Clinch Spots In Softball Championship
There are still two weeks remaining in the softball regular season, but Louisville and USF can book their travel to Notre Dame and the BIG EAST Softball Championship. The Cardinals, at 44-2 overall and 14-2 in BIG EAST play, are in first place with six games to play, while USF (41-8, 13-3) is a game behind. Syracuse stands at 35-12 overall and 12-4 in BIG EAST play, while Notre Dame needs just one win to join the 30-win club this season. The Irish are 29-13 overall and 10-3 in the BIG EAST. 
 
Louisville, Notre Dame Take Tennis Titles
It was more of the same this year at the BIG EAST Men's and Women's Tennis Championships as Louisville won its third consecutive men's title, while Notre Dame took home the women's crown for the fifth straight year. The Cardinals listed three freshmen among their six singles players, including tournament Most Outstanding Performer Sebastian Stiefelmeyer, who competed at the No. 2 spots in both singles and doubles. Notre Dame, meanwhile, relied on a veteran group to claim the women's title. Senior Kristy Frilling was named the Most Outstanding Performer, heading a lineup that included two seniors, two juniors, two sophomores and one freshman. Both teams earned the BIG EAST's automatic bids to the respective NCAA Men's and Women's Tennis Championships in May.
 
USF Claims Women's Golf Title
USF won its first BIG EAST Women's Golf Championship by the slimmest of margins as the Bulls edged second-place Notre Dame by one stroke Tuesday at the Reunion Resort in Orlando, Fla. The Bulls placed four of their five individuals among the top 10 to finish with a three-day total of 910, while the Irish rode the play of tournament medalist Ashley Armstrong to a 911. USF, which became just the second team other than Notre Dame or Louisville to win the BIG EAST title in the tournament's 10-year history, earned the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Championship. Selections for the NCAA field will be announced Monday.
 
Notre Dame Gains Ground In National Rowing Rankings
Notre Dame's women's rowing team enjoyed yet another strong weekend, helping the Irish gain two places in this week's national rankings. Notre Dame stands at No. 15 in this week's CRCA/USRowing coaches' poll. The Irish varsity four scored head-to-head wins against Stanford and Southern California last weekend. BIG EAST crews are beginning their final weeks of competition in advance of the BIG EAST Rowing Championship, which takes place May 13 on Mercer Lake in West Windsor, N.J.
 
BIG EAST Track & Field Championships Begin May 4
The spring championship season continues in the first weekend of May as the BIG EAST Men's and Women's Outdoor Track & Field Championships are held on the campus of USF May 4-6. Full coverage of the championship will be available on BIGEAST.org, but fans can follow their teams' contenders through the regular season via the national performance list.