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Cassese, Dougherty guide Team USA to 12-7 victory over Notre Dame at Champion Challenge

Sunday, 30th January 2011

Categories Boy's/Men's, College  
 

Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 1/29/11
From Press Releases and US Lacrosse

Lehigh head men’s lacrosse coach Kevin Cassese and assistant Brian Dougherty (Chestnut Hill College coach/Episcopal Ac. alum) guided the U.S. National Team to a 12-7 win over No. 7 Notre Dame today in the Champion Challenge at ESPN Wide World of Sports in lake Buena Vista, Fla.

It marked Team USA’s second win in as many tries with Cassese as head coach, following a 17-12 victory over Harvard in October. Fans can watch the game Sunday night at 10 p.m. on ESPNU.

“It’s always tough when you’ve got a group of guys who have never been together to try to get them to play as a team,” Cassese said to Inside Lacrosse. “But we played some unselfish lacrosse and that’s what you have to do to be successful.”

US goalie Adam Fullerton, the former Army standout, was named the Outstanding Player. He expects to be deployed to the Middle East within the next six months as an artillery officer.

“It’s a different role for me, but I embrace the new challenge,” Fullerton said of starting for the U.S. “I hope I can be that guy for the next few years.”

Fullerton is currently stationed at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs. More specifically, he’s a fire support officer, specializing in indirect fire artillery, mortar fire and deconfliction of air space.

“Kind of complicated, but it’s nothing too crazy,” he said. “My job will translate over to a combat situation eventually, and I’ll take what my training gave me in Colorado Springs and I’ll translate it over there.”

Kevin Leveille led Team USA with four goals, while Adam Fullerton made 12 saves in goal to help spearhead the victory. Notre Dame held a slim 40-39 edge in shots. The Fighting Irish featured freshman face-off specialist Liam O’Connor (Haverford School).

A strange sight, maybe for some, was to see Dougherty on the Team USA sideline as a coach, instead of in the crease as a goaltender. Dougherty won gold with Team USA in Manchester, England, in July. Following a brilliant playing career in International, club and professional lacrosse, he has retired from playing

“I could look myself in the mirror and say I had a pretty sweet career, accomplished a lot of things, pretty much nothing left to accomplish,” Dougherty said. “This is something that I really love. I had a great experience last year with the national team. I want to continue to be a part of it. Playing is not going to be there anymore, so give a chance to some of the younger guys. I’ll do whatever I can to help coach, or do whatever they need me to do.”

Dougherty was also hired this summer as the head coach at Division II Chestnut Hill College in Philadelphia, a program in its second varsity season.

“We’re young,” Dougherty said of the team with no juniors and seniors, only freshmen and sophomores. “Nowhere to go but up.”

ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
#7 Notre Dame – 0 0 4 3 – 7
U.S. National Team – 4 2 1 5 – 12


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