The University of Arizona women's soccer team wraps up a four-game road swing this weekend with a pair of matches in southern California. The Wildcats play at Pepperdine on Friday, Sept. 22, at 3 p.m., then they take on Loyola Marymount on Sunday, Sept. 24, at 1 p.m. By the end of this road swing, the Cats will have played six of their first eight matches on the road.
The Wildcats have ended their season-opening four-game losing skid, improving their record to 1-4-1 overall. In Albuquerque last weekend, the UA edged New Mexico, 3-2, in overtime, then tied Evansville, 1-1 in overtime, in a neutral contest.
After scoring the first goal of her collegiate career the weekend before, senior forward Keri Kennedy-Weber scored two more last weekend to take over the UA scoring lead with three goals (six points).
Sophomore forward Naomi Chu is second in scoring with one goal and one assist (three points), while Liz Bartlett, Meaghan McNatt and Twila Kaufman follow with one goal (two points) each. Liz Bartlett also has a team-leading 14 shots on the season, and Chu has 11.
Junior goalkeeper Shannon Monti has played in all six matches, garnering 547 minutes played, 20 saves and a goals-against average of 2.79. Senior goalkeeper Inger Airheart has played 50 minutes off the bench, logging a GAA of 1.81.
After opening its season with a loss at Fresno State, Pepperdine has put together a string of five straight wins to stand at 5-1-0 overall. The Waves have shutout each of their last three opponents, including Cal State Northridge (2-0) and Villanova (3-0) last weekend.
With three goals and five assists (11 points), junior forward Kate Desmond leads Pepperdine in scoring, followed closely by sophomore midfielder Tasha Spangler's four goals and two assists (10 points).
Junior goalkeeper Lindsey Brouillette has played in six matches, with four starts, and has collected 17 saves, one complete-game shutout and a goals-against average of 1.13. Also a junior, fellow goalkeeper Cheri Phillips has played in five games, starting three and tallying 15 saves, three shutouts and a 0.28 GAA.
Third-year head coach Tim Ward (California Lutheran, 1993) has a 23-16-6 record at the helm of the Pepperdine program.
ABOUT LOYOLA MARYMOUNT:
On a three-game win streak, LMU stands at 5-1-1 on the year after edging both Arkansas (3-2 OT) and Hawai'i (1-0) in Honolulu last weekend. The Lions will play at USC on Friday before playing host to Arizona on Sunday.
The scoring has been well-distributed for the Lions so far this season. Senior defender Stacy Roberts is in the lead with two goals (four points), while Erica Florez, Tumia Moe and Angela Ichinose have one goal and one assist (three points) each.
Senior goalkeeper Tracy Sharp has 15 saves, four shutouts and a goals-against average of 0.36 The Lion defense has allowed only three goals in all seven of the season's matches combined.
Head coach Gregg Murphey (Chapman, 1986) is 46-28-8 in five years at LMU. He holds a 104-80-12 record in 11 seasons as a head coach.
Pepperdine holds the 2-1-0 edge in the series with Arizona. The Wildcats won the last meeting between the two teams, 1-0, last year in Tucson.
Arizona leads the series with Loyola Marymount, 2-1-0, despite a 2-1 overtime win by the Lions during the last meeting on Oct. 5, 1997.
LAST TIME vs. PEPPERDINE:
In Tucson on Oct. 1, 1999, the Cats played an even match with the Waves, barely gaining a 15-14 edge in the final shots total. The only goal of the game came from Kristi Loroa at the 21:23 mark, when she scored off a rebounded shot.
ARIZONA'S LAST TIME OUT:
Snapping a season-opening four-game losing skid, the Wildcats defeated New Mexico, 3-2, in overtime on Sept. 14 in Albuquerque.
New Mexico took the lead early with a goal at 15:41, then Arizona retaliated with its own goal, an unassisted tally by freshman forward Meaghan McNatt.
Fellow freshman forward Liz Bartlett scored her first collegiate goal at 62:36 to give the Cats a 2-1 advantage. Junior forward Tiffany Sabado assisted the goal.
With less than seven minutes remaining in the contest, the Lobos knotted the score and forced the match into overtime.
The contest was nearly 13 minutes into the first overtime period when senior forward Keri Kennedy-Weber scored her second goal in as many games and nailed the victory for the Wildcats. Senior defender Ann Giallonardo was credited with the assist, the first of her career, on the game-winning goal.
Arizona edged New Mexico in the shots category, 13-12, with Liz Bartlett garnering a game-high five. Wildcat goalkeepers Shannon Monti and Inger Airheart split time in goal, with Monti tallying three saves and each allowing only one goal.
Playing its second overtime game in as many matches, Arizona played Evansville to a 1-1 tie in a neutral contest in Albuquerque on Sept. 16. The contest was Arizona's third overtime game of the young season so far.
Scoring her third goal in three games, Kennedy-Weber gave the Wildcats an early advantage by denting the net at 18:58. Freshman Sierra Cristiano assisted the goal.
The Cats held Evansville off until late in the game, then the Purple Aces scored the equalizer with less than five minutes remaining in regulation. The two teams played through both overtime periods without scoring.
Evansville held the shots advantage over Arizona, 13-9. Kennedy-Weber and Cristiano each had a team-high two shots to lead the Cats. Monti played all 120 minutes in the nets for the UA, tallying three saves.
ARIZONA HEAD COACH CATHY KLEIN:
First-year head coach Cathy Klein (SUNY-Cortland, 1987) holds an 1-4-1 mark at the helm of the Arizona program. She has a Division I career record of 58-45-2 over six years and is 80-98-7 in 11 years as a head coach.
Klein was named as the Wildcats' new head coach last January. She came to the UA after a five-year stint building a new women's soccer program at Iowa State. In four varsity seasons with the Cyclones, Klein garnered a 43-37-1 mark. Before Iowa State, Klein was head coach at Creighton and Division III schools Earlham College and Utica College.
THE REST OF THE STAFF:
In her first season at the UA, Melissa Estrada (Creighton, 1995) followed Cathy Klein from Iowa State, where Estrada was part of Klein's coaching staff for four years. She assists with recruiting and works with the field players.
Assistant coach Andre Luciano (Indiana, 1993) is in his second year on the sidelines for Arizona, after stints at Utah State and Washington State. His primary responsibilities at the UA are coaching the goalkeepers and working in the recruiting efforts.
All daily practices during the regular season, until Nov. 5, will be held from 2:30-4:30 p.m.
Media are encouraged to attend all practices but are not permitted to converse with coaches or players during practice. Media are permitted to interview coaches or players after practice only if an interview has been pre-arranged. All practices and games are conducted at Murphey Soccer Stadium, 15th and Plumer.
The Wildcats return home to play host to Long Island and Northern Arizona for the Starwoods Plaza Soccer Classic on Friday, Sept. 29, through Sunday, Oct. 1. On Friday, Arizona will take on Long Island at 7 p.m., then the Cats face Northern Arizona on Saturday at 7 p.m. Long Island and Northern Arizona round out the tournament on Sunday at 1 p.m.
CATS ON TV:
Arizona's game at Oregon on Sunday, Oct. 8, is slated for broadcast on Fox Sports Net on a taped-delay basis. Air date and time are TBA.
Senior Keri Kennedy-Weber broke lose for her first collegiate goal on Sept. 10 against Utah and has scored at least one goal every match since then, including the gamewinner at in overtime New Mexico on Sept. 14.
IT'S JUST A LITTLE EXTRA TIME:
The Wildcats are coming off a weekend that saw them play two straight overtime matches. Arizona has played a total of three overtime games already in this young season. The school record for overtime contests in one season is four.
OPENING UP THE OFFENSE:
After tallying only three goals in the first four contests combined, Arizona racked up that many against New Mexico alone on Sept. 14.
On the flip side, the Cats allowed 3.8 goals per game during the first four matches. Last weekend, the defense clamped down and allowed only three goals in both games combined.
NOTING THE PAC-10:
The 2000 season has been good to the Pac-10 women's soccer teams so far, although a few of the undefeated teams took tumbles last weekend. Only Arizona State (7-0-0) and California (7-0-0) remain undefeated on the year. Six conference teams -- Stanford, UCLA, California, Washington, USC and Arizona State -- are all ranked in the adidas/NSCAA Coaches Poll this week.
IT'S A FIRST:
Several Wildcats scored their first collegiate goals recently. Senior Keri Kennedy-Weber, sophomore Naomi Chu and freshmen Liz Bartlett and Meaghan McNatt all dented the net for the first time during the last two weeks.
The Wildcats are 0-2-0 at home, 1-2-0 on the road and 0-0-1 in neutral games this season. Last year, Arizona garnered a 4-4-2 mark at home, was 1-6-0 on the road and was 2-0-0 in neutral matches.
The 2000 Wildcat roster features four players from Tucson-area high schools -- Niki Aguiar (Mountain View), Kristi Loroa (Canyon del Oro), Erin Nelson (Sabino) and Kate Nighswander-Will (Catalina Foothills).
A number of the Wildcats' 2000 opponents are ranked in this week's polls.
In the adidas/NSCAA Coaches Poll, Stanford is No. 5, UCLA is No. 6, California is No. 11, Washington is No. 15, USC is No. 23, and Arizona State is tied for No. 25.
The Soccer America Top 20 has Stanford at No. 4, UCLA at No. 6, Washington at No. 9, California at No. 10, USC at No. 17 and Arizona State at No. 18.
In this week's SoccerBuzz.com national rankings, UCLA is No. 5, Stanford is No. 6, California is No. 9, USC is No. 11, Arizona State is No. 18 and Washington is No. 20.
In the American Soccer Writers Poll, UCLA stands at No. 6, Stanford is No. 7, Washington is No. 13, California is No. 14, USC and Arizona State are tied at No. 16 and Brigham Young is tied for No. 25.
CHECKING THE RECORD BOOK:
Senior goalkeeper Inger Airheart is currently Arizona's career leader in minutes played (4388) and shutouts (9). She is second in career saves (259), fourth in games started (47) and tied for eighth in games played (50).
Junior goalkeeper Shannon Monti is third in career minutes played (1459), third in saves (78) and third in shutouts (2). Junior forward Kristi Loroa is fourth on the UA career list in game-winning goals (2), tied for eighth in goals scored (5) and tied for ninth in total points (12).
Senior midfielder Kate Nighswander-Will is fourth in career games started (50) and is fifth in games played (55). Junior midfielder Tiffany Sabado is seventh in total points (16), tied for seventh in career goals scored (6) and tied for sixth in assists (4). Junior midfielder Twila Kaufman is tied with Sabado for seventh in career goals scored (6), and senior defender Ann Giallonardo is tied for sixth in career games started (42) and tied for eighth in career games played (50).
The outcome of three of the Wildcats' six games so far has been decided by one goal or less. In the seven-year history of the Arizona soccer program, 48 matches have been decided by that one-goal-or-less differential.
TWICE IS NICE:
Traditionally, the Cats have fared rather well when scoring two or more goals in a match. The UA won the only contest so far this season in which it scored more than two goals.
Over the seven years of Wildcat soccer, the UA has a 27-16-1 record when scoring two goals or more.
14 different players have started one game or more for the Wildcats this year... The UA played five nationally ranked opponents last year, more than in any other season in the program's history.
PAC-10 COACHES POLL:
UCLA was tabbed by the league's coaches as the favorite to win the Pac-10 crown this year, while the rebuilding Wildcats were picked to finish 10th.
Pac-10 Preseason Women's Soccer Coaches Poll 1. UCLA 7. Oregon 2. Stanford 8. Oregon State 3. USC 9. Washington St. 4. California 10. ARIZONA t5. Arizona State t5. Washington
1999 IN BRIEF:
The University of Arizona women's soccer team wrapped up the 1999 season with 7-10-2 overall and 1-7-1 Pac-10 marks. The team set or tied 28 school records, including most goals in a season (30) and fewest losses (10). The Wildcats more than doubled their number of wins from the year before (three) and finished eighth in the league standings, up two spots from 1998.
INDIVIDUALLY IN 1999:
The now-departed Chrissy Sanford was among the Pac-10's top five scorers all last season and tied the Arizona school records for single-season goals scored (11) and total points (27).
Forward Tiffany Sabado was the Wildcats' second-leading scorer, with six goals and three assists (15 points). Forward Kristi Loroa finished in third place with five goals and two assists (12 points).
Goalkeeper Inger Airheart amassed 64 saves, a goals-against average of 2.04 and a pair of shutouts, while playing in 12 contests. Keeper Shannon Monti collected 52 saves, two shutouts and a 2.94 GAA in 12 games in the nets.