WHAT’S HAPPENING:The University of Arizona women’s soccer team (0-0-0 overall, 0-0-0 Pac-10) will head to Ames, Iowa to take part in the Cyclone Classic. The tournament is hosted by Iowa State, and will also feature Drake University. The Wildcats will first compete on Friday, Aug. 27 against the Iowa State Cyclones at 7 p.m. CDT. Arizona will then return to the fields on Saturday, Aug. 28 to take on the Drake University Bulldogs at 7 p.m CDT.
ARIZONA IN THE PAC: Arizona has been voted to finish seventh in the Pac-10, according to the Pac-10 preseason poll. This is the highest preseason ranking for the Wildcats since Arizona soccer became a part of Pac-10 competition in 1997.
ABOUT ARIZONA: The Wildcats’ game against Iowa State will mark the first competition against an outside opponent for the 2004 season.
During the off-season, the Wildcats welcomed twelve new faces to the team. Eleven freshman and one senior join the ten returning players from the 2003 squad. Of the ten returning letterwinners, nine started at least one game in the 2003 season, and three were named to the all-Pac 10 team.
Arizona has four seniors to lead them through the 2004 season. The seniors include Vanesha Bailey, Lindsey Peeples, Candice Wilks, and Kamaya Damwijk. Bailey has started in every game as a Wildcat and is tied for seventh on the list of games started with 55. With eight career goals, she is also tied in the tenth position on the list of goals scored. Fellow senior Damwijk has yet to play in a game for the Wildcats as she joined the team as a senior walk-on. Peeples is a tri-captain who garnered Second Team All-Pac-10 honors as a junior in 2003. She is also tied for seventh on the list of games started with 55. 2003 First Team Pac-10 honoree Wilks is fourth on the list of most shots with 102, third on the list of most goals with 16, fourth on the list of most assists with seven, third on the list of most points with 39, and second on the list of game-winning goals with four. Wilks will look to continue to lead the Arizona offense in her senior season.
Arizona also welcomes back juniors Nikki David, Althea Jones, Jennifer Klein, Courtney Moseley, and junior tri-captains Mallory Miller and Kelly Nelson. Only two sophomores return from last season’s roster. Sophomores Erin Bevacqua and Lauren Winters are both strikers who may also play in the midfield and will look to contribute to the Wildcat offense.
The eleven freshmen newcomers for Arizona include Claire Bodiya, Kaity Heath, Shannon Kusmit, Sarah Litt, Nicole Scheid, Shaylyn Scott, Amelia Shister, McCall Smith, Sally Thurner, Amanda Urtuzuastegui, and Devon Wharf. In the nets, Arizona will rely on McCall and Wharf as there are no returning goaltenders from the 2003 team.
LAST TIME OUT: The Wildcats took the field for its first game of the season in an exhibition scrimmage. Team "U" took on team "A". The Wildcats were split between the two teams. The first half was scoreless. In the second half each team scored once with team "A" scoring first with a goal by senior striker Kamaya Damwijk. Shortly after Damwijk’s goal, junior striker Nikki David tied the game with a goal for team "U". The game then went into overtime where Damwijk once again scored to give team "A" the 2-1 victory.
ABOUT IOWA STATE:The Cyclones return 14 letterwinners, including eight starters, from a team that went 5-10-4 and 2-6-2 in the Big-12, finishing in a tie for ninth in the league standings. Sophomore Kate Kirwan returns this season after leading the Cyclones in goals last season with eight goals.
Head Coach Rebecca Hornbacher returns for her third season as the Cyclones’ coach. In two seasons Hornbacher has coached Iowa State to a 12-21-5 record.
Wildcats vs. Cyclones: The only meeting between the Wildcats and the Cyclones took place last season where Iowa State defeated Arizona, 2-1, on Aug. 29, 2003.
ABOUT DRAKE UNIVERSITY: The Bulldogs return all eleven starters from last year’s squad. The 2003 Bulldogs earned a 13-7 record, which included a 6-1 league mark in the Mountain Valley Conference. The 6-1 record was good enough to give the Bulldogs to give them a share of the 2003 MVC regular season championship. The top returning defender for Drake is junior Lindsey Porticncaso, who started 15 of 18 games last season. In the midfield, the top threat for the Bulldogs will be juniors Jennie Brown and Bailey Walkup, both were named First-Team All-MVC in 2003. Sophomore Melissa Nelson and junior Andrea Schmitz will lead Drake’s offense as the team’s strikers. Head Coach Corbin Stone returns for his third season as the Bulldogs’ head coach. He holds a 21-15-4 record as the head coach of the Bulldogs.
Cats vs. Dogs: The Bulldogs won the only meeting between the two programs on Aug. 30, 2002 by scoring two unanswered goals to gain the 2-0 victory.