UA Soccer Opens Season vs. UC Irvine
Aug. 18, 2009
Arizona Soccer Season Opener
UC Irvine @ Arizona
7 p.m. | Sunday, Aug. 23
Murphey Field at Mulcahy Soccer Stadium
TEAM QUICK FACTS
2008 Overall Record: 9-11
2008 Pac-10 Record/Finish:2-7/9th
Starters Returning/Lost: 5/6
Letterwinners Returning/Lost: 15/13
Head Coach: Dan Tobias (7th year)
Alma Mater: Hamilton University '87
Record at Arizona: 55-59-8 (6 years)
Assistant Coaches: Lisa Oyen, John Galas
2009 TEAM PREVIEW: The Wildcats are retooling in 2009 after losing six starters, but will be returning five key players, including sophomore forward RENAE CUELLAR, who finished tied as the team's leader in goals scored with five. Redshirt senior goalkeeper Devon Wharf will look to make her mark coming off a knee injury in 2008. Wharf has international experience with the Canadian National Team at the U-14, U-16 and U-18 levels that should help provide leadership to a young defensive unit. Senior Analisa Marquez will also be a key veteran on the defensive line for the Wildcats, who can also turn around and be an offensive threat. Ten newcomers provide strength to the team, most notably freshman defender Karli Hedlund out of Edmonton, Canada, who arrives in Tucson fresh off a call-up to the Canadian Senior National Team where she played in the match against the United States.
Head Coach Dan Tobias: Dan Tobias led his team to a 9-11 record in 2008, giving him a 55-59-8 record in his six years at Arizona. Tobias coached the Wildcats to the program's first appearance in the Sweet 16 in 2005. In 2004, Tobias led the Wildcats to a 15-6 overall record. Additionally, his 6-3 Pac-10 record gave Arizona its first Pac-10 championship in history of the program and was named Pac-10 Coach of the Year for the second time.
About the Anteaters: UCI finished 2008 with a 8-9-2 record overall and finished sixth in the Big West with a 2-4-2 record in conference play. Tanya Taylor earned All-Big West second team honors. UCI returns three players who have earned All-Big West honors in their careers. Taylor (Buena Park/Sunny Hills HS) earned her second straight All-Big West honor in 2008 as was named to the second team. Juniors Danielle de Seriere (Cerritos/Mayfair HS) and Nikki Forrest (Upland HS) each had All-Big West honorable mention honors as freshmen in 2007.
2008 Season Review: The University of Arizona women's soccer team started out the season red hot winning seven of its first 10 games. However, playing in the nation's best conference the Wildcats only managed to win two of its remaining 11 games to finish the season 9-11. On the bright side, one of the final two games the Wildcats won was against in-state rival Arizona State, in which Arizona won 2-1 in double overtime. The win marked the first win over the Sun Devils in 14 years and the program 100th victory.
The one constant for the Wildcats all season was Chelsea McIntyre in the net. The redshirt junior led the Pac-10 in saves with 100 and saves per game with 5. McIntyre had her career high in saves when she saved 15 against then-No. 2 Stanford Cardinal in a 3-1 defeat. On the season McIntyre registered five shutouts. In the ever difficult Pac-10, the Wildcats did not lose a game by more than two goals mainly because of the solid play of McIntyre.
During non conference play the Wildcats scored 17 goals in 11 games (1.55/per game), but managed only six goals in nine Pac-10 games (0.67/per game). For the season, eight different Wildcats were able to find the back on the net. LONDON KING, KARINA CAMACHO and RENAE CUELLAR all tallied five goals for the team lead. Arizona's inability to score goals was one of the main reasons why they finished 2-7 Pac-10 record for the second straight year.
All-Pac-10: Freshman RENAE CUELLAR was named to the All-Pac-10 Freshman team. In addition, Cuellar earned an All-Pac-10 Honorable Mention selection. Cuellar was the only Wildcat to be named to a post season conference award.
All-Academic: Sophomore midfielder LEILA AMINI was selected to the Pac-10 All-Academic First Team. She was also named to the Second Team Academic All-American for District 8 Region according to ESPN the Magazine. Amini was one of 11 players from the Pac-10 chosen from the District 8 Region.
Step It Up: The Wildcats will look to step up their play against their better opponents this season. A season ago, UA struggled against teams that qualified for the NCAA tournament, losing all nine of its contests. However, the Wildcats were 9-2 against all other opponents. If UA can find a way to win a few games against top-notch teams, it hopes to find itself back in the postseason picture.
Winning in OT: Arizona won three games in overtime in 2008, which set a new school record for such victories. The Wildcats defeated Michigan 1-0, Cal State Northridge 2-1 and Arizona State 2-1.
Next Up: Arizona will travel to Flagstaff to take on Northern Arizona on Friday, Aug. 28 before returning home to host San Diego on Sunday, Aug. 30.