Sept. 23, 2003
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FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 26 --
(#8) Portland at (#13) Washington, 4:30 p.m. PDT
Husky Soccer Field; Seattle, Wash.
The 13th-ranked Washington women's soccer team (5-1-2) continues a five-game homestand this week when defending national champion Portland (6-2) invades Husky Soccer Field, Friday, Sept. 26 at 4:30 p.m. The Huskies seek a rare win over their Northwest nemesis. No. 8 Portland leads the all-time series 14-1-1 and has never lost to UW in Seattle. Since Washington's lone win in the series, a 2-1 road result during 2000, the Pilots won the last four encounters. The two teams should have great scouting reports on each other as they played at the same venue the past two weekends. The Huskies won the Portland-hosted Nike Invitational Sept. 14 and then captured the Husky/Nike Invitational title Sept. 21 in Seattle. Portland also won both of its games in the Seattle tournament, but UW was declared the winner by virtue of a superior goal differential in its wins. Next week the Huskies conclude their non-conference schedule, hosting Portland State Oct. 3 and Idaho State Oct. 5.
UW vs. Ranked Foes
The Huskies have a 23-59-7 all-time record against ranked teams, including a 2-1-1 mark this season. They defeated then No. 18 Maryland 2-1 in overtime, lost 2-1 in overtime to No. 1 North Carolina, tied No. 18 Connecticut 1-1 and beat No. 6 Texas 3-1. UW has a 7-41-3 all-time record against top-10 teams.
Scouting Portland (6-2)
The eighth-ranked Pilots won two games last weekend in Seattle, defeating Texas 2-0 and Fresno State 1-0. They were the Husky/Nike Invitational runners-up as host Washington had a superior goal differential. Longtime coach Clive Charles, who directed the Pilots to a 226-52-13 record in 14 seasons, passed away on Aug. 26 due to cancer. He directed Portland to the 2002 NCAA title. A quartet of Pilots are tied for the team lead with three goals apiece: Lindsey Huie, Jennier Tuttle, Wanda Rozwadowska and Lisa Sari. Last year's top scorer Christine Sinclair is away with Canada's World Cup team. UP goalkeeper Cori Alexander has six shutouts and a 0.84 goals against average.
Portland owns a 14-1-1 advantage in the all-time series with Washington that began with a 1-1 tie in 1991. The Northwest rivals met four times in the postseason (1995, 1996, 2000, 2001) with the Pilots winning all four times. The Huskies lost last year's matchup in Portland by a 4-0 count. That was the two teams' most lopsided outcome since 1997. Washington's lone win in the series was a 2-1 decision on Sept. 23, 2000 at Merlo Field that snapped a 10-game losing streak against UP. The Huskies have an 0-6-1 record against Portland in Seattle, including losses in the Pilots' last six visits.
Player of the Week
Junior forward Tina Frimpong was named the Pac-10 Player of the Week on Tuesday for the second time this season. She amassed four goals and an assist during two Nike Invitational games to collect the Offensive MVP award and lead UW to the tournament title. Frimpong registered both game-winning goals on the weekend. She netted two goals 29 seconds apart and assisted on the other tally in Sunday's 3-1 victory over No. 6 Texas. She scored twice in a 3-0 win over Fresno State on Friday. Frimpong leads the team with eight goals and is tied for fourth among all-time Huskies with 22 career goals.
Washington's dynamic defense is yielding just 0.69 goals per game, down 50 percent from last season's final mark of 1.47. UW has three shutouts, matching last year's entire season total. The Huskies surrendered more than one goal only once, a 2-1 overtime setback against top-ranked North Carolina.
Home Sweet Home
For the seventh year, all Washington home games are 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 36-17-3 all-time record at Husky Soccer Field with a 28-8-2 ledger since 1999. They are 3-1 this season in Seattle. Washington ranked among the nation's top-10 attendance leaders every year since moving to the present venue in 1997.
Washington rose seven spots to No. 13 in this week's Soccer America rankings. UW is listed No. 6 in the NSCAA (coaches) rankings and is No. 12 in the Soccer Buzz poll. Impressive opening-weekend results vaulted Washington into the national polls on Sept. 1 after not receiving any preseason attention.
Washington encounters a difficult schedule that includes nine opponents ranked in the current top 25, including three of the nation's top eight teams. UW's ranked opponents are: No. 1 North Carolina, UCLA (4), Portland (8), Connecticut (12), Maryland (14), California (15), Texas (16), Arizona State (17) and Stanford (21). Thirteen teams that participated in the 2002 NCAA Tournament appear on the Huskies' schedule, including national champion Portland and Final Four qualifier North Carolina.
* The Huskies have posted back-to-back wins over top-10 ranked opponents only once in their history. On Sept. 15 & 18, 1993 they beat No. 5 Santa Clara (2-1) and Nov. 3 Duke (2-0). Washington plays No. 8 Portland on Friday after defeating No. 6 Texas 3-1 on Sunday in their last outing.
* Senior Melissa Bennett has distributed five assists. Her career total of 26 is one shy of Caroline Putz's school record of 27.
* Junior Tina Frimpong leads UW with eight goals. Her 22 career goals tie her with Caroline Putz for fourth among all-time Huskies.
* Junior Clare Rustad joined the Huskies Sept. 11 after spending one month training with the Canadian National Team. Rustad is the injury alternate for Canada's World Cup squad.
Senior forward Melissa Bennett picked up where she left off last season, having distributed five assists in 2003. She has 26 career assists, one away from the school record of 27 established by Caroline Putz (1998-2001). Bennett ranked second nationally last season with 18 assists, eclipsing the UW single-season record of 12. A second-team All-Pac-10 pick, Bennett also led the league with 34 total points. Despite the record-setting assist total, Bennett is better known for scoring goals than setting them up. Bennett tied for the team lead with eight goals in 2002. She amassed a Washington state prep record with 166 goals at Seattle Christian High School. Melissa broke the state's high school record of 152 goals previously held by her sister Tami Bennett, a 2000 UW grad now in her first year on the coaching staff.
2003 UW Preview
Nine starters return from the 2002 Washington team that was snubbed by the NCAA Tournament committee. The Huskies posted a 9-8-3 record last season, including victories over three ranked opponents. Six of UW's eight losses came against ranked foes, five of them against top-10 teams. The 2003 Huskies are determined to make up for last season's postseason absence. With a near complete cast of returning starters, the coaching staff won't be establishing a lineup as much as fine-tuning it. UW returns the top seven scorers from last year led by senior Melissa Bennett who topped all Pac-10 players in points (34) and ranked second nationally in assists (18). Sophomore Kim Taylor tied for team-high honors with eight goals and explosive junior Tina Frimpong matched her 2001 total of seven goals. Senior Lisa Brookens and prep All-American Kelsey Rasmussen will battle for the starting goalkeeper spot vacated by standout Hope Solo. The other key departure was four-year central defensive starter Andrea Morelli. The midfield is directed by senior Jaime Carstensen. A diverse group of defenders features senior Liz Taylor and sophomore Sara Davis along with juniors Nicole Martinez and Kelli Smith. That quartet seeks to shore up a defense that surrendered 31 goals in 2002, the highest combined opponent tally since 1997. A group of 11 newcomers, headed by Iowa State transfer Nikki Gamble, seeks to buoy the Huskies' NCAA Tournament aspirations.
One of Washington's most dangerous scoring threats is speedy junior Tina Frimpong who leads the team with eight goals. She already boasts a career-high eight goals this season after recording seven in each of her first two collegiate campaigns. Frimpong is tied for fourth among all-time Huskies with 22 career goals. She was twice named Pac-10 Player of the Week this season, on Sept. 1 and Sept. 23. Frimpong played with the Seattle Sounders Select team this summer, leading them to the W-League semifinals. She amassed eight goals in six games. Her sister, Crystal, is a senior starter at Florida who led the Gators in 2002 with six goals. Tina is a year behind her sister in school because she 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 and ranked third among UW scorers last season with seven goals. A product of Hudson's Bay High School in Vancouver, Wash., Frimpong initially signed a letter of intent with Santa Clara. Before attending classes, she decided to enroll at Washington beginning in the fall of 2000.
Last UW Game
#20 UW 3, #6 Texas 1 (Sept. 21; Seattle)
Tina Frimpong collected the Offensive MVP award Sunday after scoring two goals 29 seconds apart and adding an assist for 20th-ranked Washington which upset No. 6 Texas 3-1 to win the Husky/Nike Invitational at Husky Soccer Field. Frimpong, who recorded two goals Friday in a 3-0 win over Fresno State, scored her seventh and eighth goals of the season during the 17th minute of play Sunday to break a scoreless tie. Both goals developed from one-on-one situations against Longhorn goalkeeper Dana Hall. The Huskies (5-1-2) won their own Nike Invitational for the second straight season by virtue of a superior goal differential compared to Portland. The defending national champion Pilots (6-2) defeated Fresno State 1-0 Sunday and Texas 2-0 on Friday. Portland's Imani Dorsey was voted the tournament's Defensive MVP. Frimpong opened the scoring at 16:02, receiving a pass from Nikki Gamble and dribbling past Hall before slipping a 12-yard shot inside the right post. She found the net again at 16:31 on a play set up by Melissa Bennett and Kim Taylor. Frimpong gathered a pass, beat Hall and walked the ball into the goal. The Longhorns (4-4) applied constant pressure to the Washington goal during the second half, eventually breaking through on a penalty kick by Nikki Thaden at 54:18. Texas labored hard in pursuit of an equalizer until Gamble posted an insurance goal for UW. Gamble controlled a low cross from Frimpong in front of the goal and booted it in from 15 yards out at 84:54. Taylor was credited with her second assist on the play. Washington goalkeeper Lisa Brookens was credited with five saves while Hall had four for the Longhorns.
The Coaching Staff
Tenth-year coach Lesle Gallimore posted her 100th Washington victory on Oct. 13, 2003 at Oregon State. The 2000 Pac-10 Coach of the Year led UW to the NCAA Tournament in six of her previous nine seasons at UW. Last year she guided UW to a 9-8-3 record and a fifth-place Pac-10 finish (4-4-1). Gallimore was named the 2000 National Coach of the Year by Soccer Buzz after her Huskies posted an 18-3 record, won their first Pac-10 title, received the No. 2 seed for the NCAA Tournament and advanced to the Sweet 16 for the first time. Gallimore has a 14-year record of 139-93-21, including a 107-68-12 mark in nine seasons at UW. Prior to coaching the Huskies, Gallimore compiled a 32-25-9 record in four seasons at San Diego State. Gallimore's staff includes eighth-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 joins the staff this season after two seasons as an assistant at Portland State. Bennett, whose sister Melissa is a senior on the UW squad, concluded her collegiate career in 2000 as Washington's all-time scoring leader with 34 goals. Also on the staff is volunteer coach Erin Otagaki, a four-year letterwinner at UW from 1998-2001.
Season tickets are available for the 2003 Washington women's soccer season and can be obtained through the Husky Ticket Office (206-543-2200). Advanced single-game tickets are also available at the ticket office, or on-line via the athletic department website (www.gohuskies.com). General admission tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for children and senior citizens. Other ticket options are also available, including group and Family Plans.
So Long Solo
The most decorated player in Husky history, goalkeeper Hope Solo, is now guarding the nets for the Philadelphia Charge. A senior in 2002, Solo was the fourth overall selection in January's WUSA Draft. She left Washington as the school's leader in nearly every goalkeeping category, including career saves (325), shutouts (18) and goals against average (1.02) along with single-season goals against average (0.68 in 2001). The 2001 Pac-10 Player of the Year, Solo was one of 13 finalists for the national Player of the Year in each of her final two seasons.
Washington was picked sixth in the annual preseason coaches' poll that was released Aug. 19 by the Pac-10 office. Defending champion Stanford was tabbed as the favorite by the coaches, receiving six first-place votes and 77 total points. The Cardinal won the 2002 conference crown with a 9-0 record and reached the NCAA quarterfinals. UCLA received the remaining four first-place votes and finished with 66 points. Arizona State was projected third with 61 points, USC was fourth with 50 and California was fifth with 48. The Huskies totaled 44 points to place sixth in the poll, ahead of Washington State (38), Oregon State (25), Arizona (18) and Oregon (13). UW placed fifth in last year's Pac-10 standings with a 4-4-1 record. That was the lowest conference finish ever for the Huskies who won the 2000 Pac-10 title. Six teams from the Pac-10 received NCAA Tournament invitations last year.
2002 UW Season Review
The Huskies finished the season with a 9-8-3 record against one of the nation's most difficult schedules. Six of the Huskies' eight defeats came against teams that were ranked in the final Soccer America poll, including five setbacks versus teams listed in the top 10. Washington played 11 games against opponents that received postseason berths, posting a 2-7-2 record in those encounters. Among the Washington seniors whose collegiate careers concluded were goalkeeper Hope Solo, the 2001 Pac-10 Player of the Year, and Andrea Morelli, the 1999 Pac-10 Defender of the Year. Solo departed as the Huskies' leader in nearly every goalkeeping category, including career shutouts (18), saves (325) and goals against average (1.02). The Huskies finished fifth in the Pacific-10 Conference standings with a 4-4-1 record, capping the season with a 5-0 victory over 15th-ranked USC.