UW Women Play Friday at Princeton in Elite Eight Matchup
Nov. 22, 2004
NCAA WOMEN'S SOCCER TOURNAMENT
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 26 --
#15 Washington at #7 Princeton, 4:00 p.m. PST (7:00 p.m. EST)
Lourie-Love Field; Princeton, N.J.
State Capital Soccer Park; Cary, N.C.
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 3 --
UW/Princeton winner vs. UCLA/Ohio State winner
The 15th-seeded Washington women's soccer team (17-4-1) continues its impressive run through the NCAA Tournament, traveling to New Jersey to meet No. 7 seed Princeton (18-2) in the Elite Eight. The quarterfinal matchup is scheduled for Friday, Nov. 26 at 4 p.m. Pacific Time (7 p.m. EST) at Lourie-Love Field where Princeton has won its last 18 home games. Friday's winner advances to the Final Four, termed the 'College Cup' in NCAA soccer, to meet the UCLA-Ohio State victor. The Huskies seek to continue their deepest foray into the Tournament bracket. They posted the school's first ever Sweet 16 win Saturday with a 1-0 decision over Maryland. That game was played in Seattle, Wash., UW's only home game of the 2004 postseason. The Huskies won a pair of playoff games in Auburn, Ala. during the opening two rounds.
How They Got Here
The Huskies started the 2004 NCAA Tournament Nov. 12 with a 5-0 victory over Big South Conference champion Birmingham-Southern. On Nov. 14 they defeated 22nd-ranked Auburn, the host school, by a 1-0 tally. Tina Frimpong scored in the 19th minute to lead UW to a 1-0 Sweet 16 victory over Maryland, Nov. 20 in Seattle.
Scouting Princeton (18-2)
Throughout the playoffs, the Tigers have served as hosts in New Jersey where they won their last 18 home games. Emily Behncke scored both goals in the third-round win over Boston College that sent Princeton to its second quarterfinal berth. The Tigers reached the Elite Eight in 1982 when there was a 12-team field. Tenth-year coach Julie Shackford directed Princeton to its sixth straight NCAA Tournament appearance. The Tigers won the Ivy League championship for the fourth time in the last five seasons. Princeton is led by the 19 goals and 11 assists of Esmeralda Negron. Behncke has 12 goals. The goalkeeping tandem of Emily Vogelzang and Madeleine Jackson have combined for 12 shutouts and a 0.39 goals against average. Washington and Princeton have never met in women's soccer and they do not have any common opponents this season. The Huskies' last clash with an Ivy League foe was a 3-1 win over Harvard on Sept. 20, 2002.
Something's Gotta Give
Neither Washington nor Princeton have surrendered a goal during this year's postseason. Princeton outscored its three opponents by an 8-0 combined total. The Tigers moved into the quarterfinals with of a 5-0 opening-round win over Central Connecticut State, a 1-0 blanking of Villanova and a 2-0 third-round shutout of Boston College. Princeton outshot its three NCAA opponents by a 71-9 margin. The Huskies have a 7-0 scoring margin in tournament play, beating Birmingham-Southern 5-0, Auburn 1-0 and Maryland 1-0. UW outshot those three by a 45-28 count.
Referred to as the 'College Cup,' the NCAA women's soccer tournament is a single-elimination playoff that features a 64-team field. The NCAA Tournament format calls for four quarterfinal-round games to be played on campus sites on Nov. 26, 27 or 28. The semifinals and 23rd-annual championship game are scheduled for Dec. 3 and 5 at State Capital Soccer Park in Cary, N.C.
UW is participating in the playoffs for the fourth time in the last five years. The Huskies are making their eighth overall NCAA Tournament appearance, all of them coming during Coach Lesle Gallimore's 11 seasons. UW advanced past the second round once before, reaching the Sweet 16 in 2000 before losing 1-0 to Portland. Washington improved its all-time NCAA Tournament record to 7-6-1 with Saturday's 1-0 win over Maryland. The Huskies' 2003 NCAA appearance resulted in a 2-1 first-round loss to Nebraska in Portland, Ore. UW outshot the Cornhuskers 20-10 in that game, but lost on a deflected free kick in the 89th minute. In the second round of the 1994 NCAA Tournament, the Huskies tied 0-0 at Stanford, but the Cardinal advanced on the strength of a 6-5 edge during penalty kicks. That was the only tiebreaker in which Washington has been involved.
Washington has a 2-1 record this season against teams still competing in the playoffs ... UW defeated Elite Eight qualifiers Ohio State (2-1) and Portland (2-0) and lost to UCLA (5-1) ... The Huskies played 15 games this season against opponents from the 64-team NCAA Tournament field, registering a 12-3 record ... Senior forward Tina Frimpong played a part in all three game-winning goals during the Huskies' surge through the NCAA Tournament. She scored the first goal in the 5-0 first-round win over Birmingham-Southern and assisted on Kelley Schweighart's decisive tally in the 1-0 second-round victory at Auburn. Her 19th-minute tally was the lone third-round goal against Maryland ... UW encountered a difficult schedule with 10 opponents ranked in the current Soccer America top 25, including four of the nation's top-10 ... UW defeated three of those top-10 teams.
Coach Lesle Gallimore's Comments
On the surge to the Elite Eight - 'It's a great accomplishment for our team. I think everything that happened to us this year has built so much character and more desire as a team. There has been a little bit of adversity thrown the Huskies' way and I'm proud of the way they responded to it. It's been a tremendous ride.'
On quarterfinal opponent Princeton - 'We haven't heard a ton about them yet other than just looking at their results and word-of-mouth type of stuff. They are going to be a tough team physically. A lot like some of the teams we see in the Pac-10, they're difficult to score on. I would probably compare them a little bit to Stanford. Obviously, they don't give up a lot of goals and they've got a few really, really dangerous people in the attack that can turn it on. When you are the home team and haven't lost at home and haven't had to travel for the tournament I think it gives you an edge. We've got our work cut out for us going there.'
On this season's difficult schedule - 'We know we can play with the best of the best when we're executing on all cylinders. The road schedule that we had was unbelievable. Just looking at the teams we have played that are in the tournament clearly has prepared us for this day.'
Player of the Year
Forward Tina Frimpong, the leading scorer for 15th-ranked Washington, was honored as the Pac-10 women's soccer Player of the Year for the second straight season. Frimpong, who shared 2003 Player of the Year honors with UCLA's Nandi Pryce, is the first player to receive the Pac-10's top player award twice in her career. Frimpong leads the league with 15 goals, eight game-winning goals and 35 points. She helped guide UW to a third-place Pac-10 finish. Frimpong is only the second Washington player to receive Pac-10 Player of the Year honors, the other being Hope Solo in 2001. Three other UW players were lauded by the Pac-10 in 2004. Senior Nikki Gamble was a second-team selection while senior Kelley Schweighart and junior Kim Taylor were honorable mention picks.
Washington's most dangerous scoring threat is speedy senior Tina Frimpong, the first two-time Player of the Year in Pac-10 women's soccer history. Frimpong, who led all Pac-10 players with 13 goals in 2003, again leads the league with 15 this year. She scored twice in UW's opening-round NCAA victory over Birmingham-Southern, distributed the game-winning assist in the second-round win at Auburn and scored the only goal in the 1-0 third-round triumph over Maryland. Frimpong netted her school-record 35th goal Oct. 15 against USC, a golden goal with 42 seconds left in the final overtime. She now has 42 goals, eclipsing the record of 34 goals established between 1997-2000 by current UW assistant coach Tami Bennett. Frimpong also owns the UW records for career game-winning goals (18) and total points (97). She netted two hat tricks during her career and has 12 multiple-goal performances. Frimpong did not play in 2000 while she was pregnant with daughter MacKenzie who was born on March 8, 2001. Despite being out of competitive soccer for over 18 months, Frimpong returned to lead UW in 2001 with seven goals. She registered a hat trick against Idaho in her fourth game and had a two-goal performance at USC. Frimpong also found the back of the net in UW's 2001 first-round NCAA win over San Diego. She netted seven goals and a hat trick in 2002. A product of Hudson's Bay High School in Vancouver, Wash., Frimpong initially signed with Santa Clara. Before attending classes, she decided to enroll at UW beginning in August of 2000.
The Huskies will be sent 2,390 miles to New Jersey for the quarterfinals in Princeton, N.J. They hope to embark on a slightly (30 miles) shorter journey next week as the College Cup semifinals and championship game are 2,360 miles from Seattle, in Cary, N.C. A road trip is nothing unique for the Huskies who have played 14 of their 22 games away from home. The first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament took UW 2,183 miles from home, to Auburn, Alabama. UW had a 41-day stretch from Sept. 4 through Oct. 14 during which it played nine consecutive road games. A 10th road game during that span, at Maryland on Sept. 17, was canceled due to thunderstorms and a tornado warning. Before the regular-season ending two-game homestand, UW played 12 of its previous 14 games on the road.
Washington is without the services of its third-leading scorer, junior forward Kim Taylor. She was diagnosed last week with mononucleosis and missed the third-round game after playing in UW's first 20 games. Taylor was an honorable mention All-Pac-10 selection in each of the last two seasons. She ranked second among Huskies with 18 total points last season. Taylor tied for top team honors with eight assists and was second with five goals. This year, she is again tied for the assist lead, with six, and is third on the team with six goals and 18 points. Taylor is within striking distance of some schools records. She ranks No. 5 among all-time UW playmakers with 19 career assists. The school record of 29 is held by Melissa Bennett (2000-03). Taylor is third on the career game-winning assists list with nine. The Husky record of 11 was established by Caroline Putz (1998-2001). Taylor has 19 career goals, ranking seventh among all-time UW scorers and is No. 3 with 9 game-winning goals.
Over half of UW's roster is comprised of underclassmen. UW has a nine-player freshman class and six sophomores. Eight freshmen have already seen game action, leaving backup goalkeeper Lizzy Showman as the only newcomer who hasn't played. Four freshmen started in UW's Sweet 16 win over Maryland, Colby Branham, Dani Bridges, Katy Dowling and Dana Stirn.
The Head Coach
The 'Dean of Pac-10 Coaches,' Lesle Gallimore has transformed Washington into one of the nation's premier programs since her hiring in 1994. She enters her second decade of service with the Huskies, standing atop the Pac-10 coaching charts in all-time victories (130) and conference wins (52). Gallimore is directing UW in its eighth NCAA Tournament berth. She posted her 100th Washington victory on Oct. 13, 2003 at Oregon State. The 2000 Pac-10 Coach of the Year led UW to the playoffs in eight of her 11 seasons. Gallimore was named the 2000 National Coach of the Year by Soccer Buzz after her Huskies posted an 18-3 record, won the Pac-10 title, received the No. 2 seed for the NCAAs and reached the Sweet 16 for the first time. Gallimore has a 15-year record of 162-103-23, including a 130-78-14 mark in 11 seasons at UW. Prior to coaching the Huskies, Gallimore compiled a 32-25-9 record in four years at San Diego State.
The Assistant Coaches
Lesle Gallimore's staff includes ninth-year assistant coach Amy Griffin (previously Allmann), a goalkeeper with the 1991 U.S. World Cup championship team who previously was the head coach at New Mexico. Tami Bennett joined the staff last season after two seasons as an assistant at Portland State. Bennett concluded her collegiate career in 2000 as UW's all-time scoring leader with 34 goals.
Sophomore goalkeeper Kelsey Rasmussen notched her school-record 10th shutout of the season, Nov. 20 against Maryland. The third-round win marked UW's fifth consecutive shutout, the second-longest streak in school history. The 1991 team posted seven straight shutouts.
The UW defense has been streaky. During 10 season-opening non-conference games UW yielded six goals. They went into a slump and allowed 18 goals in their first seven Pac-10 contests, but recovered to shut out their last five opponents. The final statistics Saturday showed that Maryland was outshot by a 17-10 margin, but only one Terrapin attempt was on frame while nine UW shots were directly on goal. 'I don't think there were any good shots at goal,' said freshman defender Dana Stirn who credited Coach Gallimore for snapping the Huskies out of the mid-season defensive funk. 'Lesle got on us about it.' Prior to the current shutout streak UW was scored upon in seven straight outings, capped by a 3-2 loss at Washington State on Oct. 29. The Cougars tallied three goals in the opening 16 minutes. 'It was almost laughable,' Gallimore exclaimed of the sub-par defensive effort at WSU. 'We got to the point where that five-hour drive home from Pullman felt like Donald Trump's boardroom. We had a big bus meeting on the way home. These guys took it to heart and, as a coach, you couldn't be more pleased.'
Home Sweet Home
For the eighth year, all Washington home games were played on campus at 2,100-seat Husky Soccer Field. The facility is located north of Husky Stadium on the southeast corner of the Montlake Boulevard parking lot. Lights were installed before the 2000 season. The Huskies have a 48-21-3 all-time record at Husky Soccer Field with a 40-12-2 ledger since 1999. They were 7-1 this season in Seattle and averaged 1,595 spectators. Washington ranked among the nation's top-10 attendance leaders every year since moving to the present venue in 1997.
Washington finished third in the Pacific-10 Conference standings with a 5-3-1 record. The Pac-10 produced five postseason teams as Washington was joined by No. 13 seed Arizona, No. 14 UCLA, California and Stanford. Pac-10 schools UCLA and Washington are still competing in the tournament. Another conference from the same region has also provided two of the Elite Eight squads. Two schools from the West Coast Conference (Portland, Santa Clara) are also still alive in the bracket. The Big Ten also has two teams remaining in Illinois and Ohio State. Those three conferences account for six of the eight remaining teams while all teams from such prominent leagues at the Atlantic Coast Conference and Southeastern Conference have been eliminated.
Washington rose two spots to No. 15 in the final regular-season Soccer America magazine poll released Nov. 8. The Huskies are No. 12 in the Soccer Buzz poll. They were ranked No. 14 by both Soccer Times and the coaches' poll conducted by the NSCAA. UW was not ranked in the preseason polls.
UW's Third-Round Recap
#15 UW 1, Maryland 0 (Nov. 20, 2004; Seattle)
Senior forward Tina Frimpong put back a teammate's shot that caromed off the Maryland goalkeeper, scoring the lone goal in the 19th minute of Washington's 1-0 victory Saturday in the third-round of the NCAA women's soccer tournament at Husky Soccer Field. The 15th-seeded Huskies (17-4-1) advance to the Elite Eight for the first time in their 14-year history. Freshman Colby Branham created the scoring situation with a 20-yard blast from the left side that deflected off goalkeeper Nikki Resnick. Frimpong collected the rebound and deposited it into the net from five yards out at 18:48 for her 15th goal of the season. That was the school single-season record eighth game-winning goal for Frimpong who eclipsed the previous mark of seven established by Tami Bennett in 2000. Nikki Resnick had eight saves for Maryland (9-7-4). Saturday's outing was a makeup game of sorts for Washington and Maryland who were scheduled to meet Sept. 17 in College Park, Md. That regular-season game was canceled due to thunderstorms and a tornado warning. Husky goalkeeper Kelsey Rasmussen was called upon to make just one save en route to her school-record 10th shutout of the season. The final statistics show that Maryland was outshot by a 17-10 margin, but only one Terrapin attempt was on frame while nine UW shots were on goal.
UW's Second-Round Recap
#15 UW 1, Auburn 0 (Nov. 14, 2004; Auburn, Ala.)
Senior Kelley Schweighart netted the lone goal on a brilliant 18-yard shot early in the first half, lifting 15th-ranked Washington to a 1-0 second-round victory over No. 22 Auburn at AU Soccer Complex. Schweighart scored the decisive goal on the first shot of the game. Tina Frimpong set up the scoring play, getting open in the right corner before feeding a pass to the top of the box. Schweighart collected the pass and directed a strike from the right side into the upper left corner of the goal at 7:04. That was her fourth goal of the season and third game-winner. Washington had numerous opportunities to extend its lead, the best being a blast by Frimpong in the 68th minute that hit the crossbar. She gathered the rebound and sent a subsequent shot over the goal. Auburn (15-4-2) lost for only the second time in its last 14 games. The Tigers most dangerous scoring opportunity came with 12 minutes remaining in the game when Courtney Crandell's 20-yard free kick glanced off the crossbar and over the goal. Sophomore goalkeeper Kelsey Rasmussen registered four saves for the Huskies who were outshot by a slim 10-9 margin. Megan Rivera was credited with three saves for Auburn.
UW's First-Round Recap
#15 UW 5, Birmingham-Southern 0 (Nov. 12, 2004; Auburn, Ala.)
Seniors Tina Frimpong and Nikki Gamble each scored two goals Friday as 15th-ranked Washington equaled its most convincing postseason victory ever with a 5-0 triumph over Birmingham-Southern in a first-round NCAA Women's Soccer Tournament game at AU Soccer Complex. UW created several dangerous chances early, including a shot off the right post by Kim Taylor in the 22nd minute. Six minutes later Taylor helped the Huskies finally break through the packed-in Birmingham defense. Taylor fired a 17-yard shot that was deflected by BSC goalkeeper Andria Gray. Frimpong collected the carom and pushed it inside the right post at 28:48. The same two UW forwards combined for a second goal at 35:56. Taylor sent a long, low pass into the area. Frimpong slid and touched the ball just past Gray and inside the left post from seven yards away. UW went ahead 3-0 before halftime on Gamble's 42nd-minute goal. Senior defender Nicole Martinez netted her first goal of the season off a corner kick in the 53rd minute. Freshman Colby Branham served a ball into the box that Martinez emphatically headed in from 12 yards out. Gamble capped the scoring with her 10th goal of the season. She received a pass from freshman Dana Stirn and slid a shot toward goal that trickled inside the left post. Gray was credited with six saves for the Panthers (12-8-3) who were outshot by a 19-8 margin. UW's Kelsey Rasmussen saved four shots.