WHAT’S HAPPENING: The Arizona women’s soccer team (1-1-1 overall, 0-0-0 Pac-10) will travel to Princeton, N.J., take part in the Princeton Invitational. The Wildcats will first take on Princeton(0-2-0) on Thurs., Sept. 8 at 5 p.m. (EST), followed by Penn (1-0) on Sat., Sept. 10 at 2:30 p.m. (EST). Thursday’s game will be televised on ESPNU.
LAST TIME OUT:The Wildcats traveled to San Luis Obispo, Calif. to take on Cal Poly. After regulation and two overtime periods, the Wildcats and the Mustangs ended the game with a scoreless tie.
In the first half, Arizona had three shots while Cal Poly had seven. Neither team was able to put the ball in the back of the net.
Each team had more opportunities in the second half. Senior Kamaya Damwijk highlighted UA’s chance when she crossed the ball to senior Nikki David for a diving header that was stopped by Cal Poly’s goalkeeper Liz Hill.
The Wildcats and the Mustangs then battled through two overtimes with both goalkeepers staying strong. The result was a scoreless tie.
Sophomore goalkeeper McCall Smith ended the game with nine saves and her second shutout of the season. The Mustangs’ Hill earned her first shutout of the season with five saves.
Three yellow cards were handed out in the game, one each to Cal Poly’s Becky Clark and Erica Leger and one to Arizona’s Nikki David. Arizona had 11 fouls, while Cal Poly had 13.
ABOUT PRINCETON: After earning a No. 14 pre-season ranking, the Tigers are 0-2, losing their first two games on the road. On Friday, Princeton lost to No. 3 UCLA, 1-0, in Coral Gables, Fla. The game was cut 18 minutes short due to lightning. The Tigers remained in South Florida to take on Miami on Sunday. The Tigers lost to the Hurricanes, 3-0. Despite the two losses, the Tigers are still ranked No. 5 in the Mid-Atlantic Region in Soccer Buzz’s rankings.
Princeton returns six starters and 18 letterwinners from a squad that went 19-3 overall and won the Ivy League Championship by going 7-0 in the conference. The 2004 squad reached the semifinals of the NCAA Tournament where it lost to UCLA.
Head Coach Julie Shackford is in her 11th season as the Tigers’ coach. During that time, she has led Princton to a 117-54-10 record.
Wildcats vs. Tigers: This will be the first meeting of the two teams.
ABOUT PENN: Penn has only competed in one contest so far this season. The Quakers defeated Rider, 2-1, on Sunday in Philadelphia, Penn. Carolyn Cross and Rachel Fletcher scored the two goals, while goalkeeper Jessica Keely played all 90 minutes and made one save.
The Quakers return 13 letterwinners, including six starters, from a team that went 9-6-2 overall and 4-2-1 in the Ivy League, finishing third in the conference standings.
Head Coach Darren Ambrose is now in his fifth season as the Quakers’ coach. Ambrose has earned a 50-27-12 record in his career at Penn.
ARIZONA IN THE RANKINGS: Soccer Buzz Magazine has ranked Arizona No. 30 in its national poll. Additionally, the publication placed the Wildcats as the No. 9-ranked team in the West Region. The Wildcats dropped out of the National Soccer Coaches’ Association of America Top-25 rankings.
TIES: Sunday’s 0-0 tie against Cal Poly marked the first tie for the Arizona soccer program since Oct. 18, 2003 when the Wildcats tied Arizona State, 1-1. The last time the Wildcats played to a scoreless tie was Oct. 24, 1999 against Colorado College.
TV COVERAGE: The Wildcats’ match versus Princeton will be televised on ESPNU. Due to the television broadcast, the schedule for the tournament was slightly altered. All times are Eastern.Thurs., Sept. 8
Princeton vs. Arizona, 5 p.m.
Penn vs. Loyola Marymount, 7:30 p.m.
Sat., Sept. 10
Princeton vs. Loyola Marymount, 11 a.m.
Penn vs. Arizona, 1:30 p.m.
SENIOR LEADERSHIP: Five Wildcat seniors have participated in all three matches for the Wildcats. Kamaya Damwijk, Jennifer Klein, and Mallory Miller have started all three games. Additionally, Miller leads the Wildcats in goals with two. Kelly Nelson started in the Wildcats’ games versus Missouri and Cal Poly, while Nikki David played off of the bench in all three games. Althea Jones will return to the Wildcat lineup after she recovers from ACL surgery she had during the spring.
IN THE NETS: Sophomore goalie McCall Smith is coming off of a freshman season in which she broke four of the program’s goalkeeping records and was named a finalist for Freshman of the Year. With her shutout versus Cal Poly on Sunday, Smith is the program’s leader in career shutouts with 13.
IN THE BACK:The Wildcats rely on a fairly young defense made up entirely of underclass-persons. Sophomores Claire Bodiya, Nicole Scheid, Kaity Heath and Shannon Kusmit, and freshmen Savanah Levake, Brianna Caceres and Erika Olson make up the back line for the Wildcats. In their first two matches, the Wildcats started Bodiya, Heath and Scheid and Caceres defensively.
NEWCOMERS: The eight new freshman have made an immediate impact on the Wildcats. Freshman Brianna Caceres started both matches over the weekend. Fellow freshman London King played in the Missouri game and earned a spot in the starting lineup for Sunday’s match versus Pepperdine. She proved she belonged in the starting lineup by scoring the lone goal of the 3-1 loss.
HEAD COACH DAN TOBIAS: In 2004, Tobias led the Wildcats to a 15-6 overall record. Additionally the 6-3 Pac-10 record gave Arizona its first Pac-10 championship in the history of the program.
For his efforts, Tobias was the first coach in Arizona history to be named Pac-10 Coach of the Year. Tobias is the second coach to receive Pac-10 Coach of the Year accolades twice, after being named 2002 Coach of the Year while at Washington State. USC’s Jim Millinder accomplished the feat in 1996 and 1998.
Additionally, Tobias received national recognition by being named 2004 National Coach of the Year by Soccer America. The National Soccer Coaches Association of America and Soccer Buzz Magazine also named him West Region Coach of the Year.
IN THE RECORD BOOKS: Senior Mallory Miller is currently tied with Nikki Jones (1995-98) for the most career assists with 14.