UW Women Fall to North Carolina in Soccer

Sept. 8, 2006

Final Stats

PORTLAND, Ore. - Whitney Engen scored the first goal and assisted on the last Friday, leading seventh-ranked North Carolina to a 4-0 win over Washington in the first round of the Portland Invitational women's soccer tournament at Merlo Field.

The Huskies (3-2) opened the season with three wins before losing their last two outings. The Tar Heels (5-1) have won all five games in the series with Washington.

UW's senior goalkeeper Kelsey Rasmussen (Gig Harbor, Wash./Bellarmine Prep) registered eight saves before being replaced in the 72nd minute by red-shirt freshman Taylor Carr (Culver City, Calif.). On three of UNC's goals, Rasmussen blocked initial shots that were then rebounded and netted by Tar Heels.

'I know it won't feel like it to her, but Kelsey played terrific,' UW coach Lesle Gallimore said. 'She got her hand on three of those shots, but the rebound went to someone we weren't marking. The thing about a team like Carolina is that they are just going to be relentless in front of the goal until it goes in.'

Engen opened the scoring in the 22nd minute on a five-yard put back of a shot by Elizabeth Guess that Rasmussen blocked.

Jaime Gilbert scored the second goal at 36:39, placing a seven-yard strike into the upper left corner.

The Tar Heels put back two saved shots in the opening five minutes of the second half to secure the final margin. Tobin Heath headed a ball in at 46:47 and Sterling Smith found the goal at 49:37 following an Engen shot that was blocked.

Goalkeeper Ana Rodenbough was credited with two saves for UNC, which outshot the Huskies 29-4. She posted her fourth shutout.

'We battled and played well. Despite just having two shots in the first half, we actually got in on them a couple times and didn't get dangerous chances off, but we could have,' Gallimore explained. 'We did a good job of sticking to our game plan early on, of trying to keep the ball in their end and holding it there instead of playing in our back half.'

North Carolina is the premier program in collegiate women's soccer, having won 18 national championships.

'The thing to take out of it for our still young and growing team is the experience of playing against a team traditionally as rich in talent and athleticism as Carolina,' said Gallimore. 'Only 20 teams in the country get an opportunity in the regular season to play against a team of Carolina's caliber. It's been a tradition with us to play a difficult schedule and that's our litmus test.'

The Huskies' treacherous 2006 schedule also includes encounters with defending NCAA champion Portland and runner-up UCLA.

'We've got to suck it up, take the positives from today and not feel badly about ourselves. We need to play as well on Sunday and get a victory,' Gallimore concluded.

Washington finishes the Portland tournament, Sunday at noon against Baylor followed by a clash between UNC and host Portland.

Portland Invitational
Merlo Field; Portland, Ore.
Friday, Sept. 8, 2006

(#7) North Carolina 4, Washington 0

Scoring --1, UNC, Whitney Engen (Elizabeth Guess), 21:18. 2, UNC, Jaime Gilbert (Nikki Washington), 36:39. 3, UNC, Tobin Heath (Yael Averbuch), 46:47. 4, UNC, Sterling Smith (Engen), 49:37.

Shots -- UW 4, UNC 29.
Saves -- UW 9 (Kelsey Rasmussen 8, Taylor Carr 1), UNC 2 (Anna Rodenbough).
Corner Kicks -- UW 2, UNC 6.
Fouls -- UW 16, UNC 12.

Records -- Washington 3-2-0, North Carolina 5-1-0.

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