Panthers Will Host Horizon League Semifinals and Finals
Nov. 10, 2003
Milwaukee Hosts Horizon League Final Four Win on Saturday, host on Friday. Such is life for the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee men's soccer team. Thanks to a 4-0 blanking of UW-Green Bay in the quarterfinals of the 2003 Horizon League Men's Soccer Tournament, the No. 1 seeded Panthers will now play host to the remainder of the championship. Tournament semifinal No. 1 is set for 11 a.m. on Friday (Nov. 14) as No. 2 seed Butler will square off with No. 3 seed Detroit. At 1:30 p.m., Milwaukee will face No. 5 seed Wright State University. The winners of both games will meet in Sunday's (Nov. 16) for the league's automatic b erth into the NCAA Tournament. Sunday's gametime is set for 12 p.m. at Engelmann Field.
Second-Half Surge Propels Panthers Talk about renewed focus. After finishing the 2003 regular season with a bitter 2-1 loss at Marquette, the UWM men's soccer team came out with a vengeance on Saturday, en route to an easy 4-0 blanking of UWGB in the first round of the Horizon League Tournament. Neil Dombrowski scored the game's only first half goal in the 26th minute before the Panthers second-half explosion. Two Antou Jallow goals less than seven minutes into the half made it 3-0 before a Trent Furtsch goal in the 62nd minute provided the final margin.
Home Sweet Home In Postseason While Engelmann Field has always treated the Milwaukee soccer program well, the pitch located on the corner of Hartford and Cramer in Milwuakee has been especially kind to the Panthers in postseason play. Including Saturday's 4-0 defeat of UW-Green Bay, UWM is 8-1 all-time in postseason play at Engelmann and 7-1 overall in Horizon League Tournament games. In the eight league tourney games played at Engelmann, UWM has outscored the opposition 24-5 overall and 17-1 over the last four contests. Including last year's 2-1 first round NCAA Tournament win over Oakland, Milwaukee owns a 26-6 goal differential at home in the postseason.
Louis, Louis While the Kingsmen certainly didn't have him in mind when they recorded their hit song, maybe a remake is in order due to the accolades piled up by UWM head man Louis Bennett. Thanks to a 6-0-1 regular season league mark and third consecutive league title, Bennett was honored as the Horizon League Coach of the Year for the third year in a row and fourth time in his eight years as Milwaukee's head coach. Bennett is the first-coach in Horizon League/MCC history to win the award three consecutive seasons.
Louis Not The Only Three-Peat Performer UWM head man Louis Bennett isn't the only Milwaukee soccer member with dibs on a Horizon League three-peat. Senior midfielder Tighe Dombrowski was named a First-Team All-Horizon League performer on Friday, making him one of ten players in the league's 17-year history to make the first-team squad three straight seasons. Dombrowski, who was also a First-Team All-Region performer last year, became the first Panther since Kevin Deck in 1994-96 to be named to the first-team squad three staight seasons.
Tighe, You Are Not Alone Yes, Tighe Dombrowski and Louis Bennett are the only Panthers to earn Horizon League honors three straight seasons. But they certainly weren't the only ones to be honored in 2003. Dombrowski was joined on the All-League First-Team by senior forward Kyle Lance and junior striker Antou Jallow. Lance made his first career first-team apperance after garnering second-team honors in 2001 while Jallow nabbed first-team accolades for the second straight year. In addition, senior forward Bobby Lish was named to the All-Horizon Second-Team for the second year in a row.
Antou Returns To Form You knew it was only a matter of time before Antou Jallow broke loose. The 2002 Horizon League Player of the Year enjoyed his finest game of the season on Saturday, which, in turn, earned him a nomination for the league's weekly Player of the Week honor. Jallow scored two goals versus the Phoenix, his first multiple-goal showing of the 2003 season. Jallow now leads the team with eight goals on the season while sitting alone in third in school history with 40 goals in his career. The honor would be the third this season for Jallow, who also was recognized on September 29 and again on October 12.
Thode Climbs The Charts One of the best-kept secrets in the Horizon League may be the play of UWM goalkeeper Kirk Thode. The junior, who was absent from any of the all-league teams, currently leads the league in wins (11), goals against average (0.85), and shutouts (seven). The Rock Island, Ill.-native is currently owns the third-most shutouts in a single season in UWM history while his GAA numbers are good for seventh best in school history.
Panthers Finish What They Started Well, it appears as if the Horizon League coaches knew what they were talking about. The Panthers, the unanimous pick to win the 2003 league title did not disappoint, as they coasted to the league title with a 6-0-1 record. Below is a quick glance at the 2003 men's soccer projections:
School 2002 Record Points
1 Milwaukee (7) 19-2-1 49
2 UIC 10-8-2 36
3 Butler 9-10-3 35
4 Wright State 8-10-1 30
5 Cleveland State (1) 10-11-0 29
6 Detroit 11-6-3 24
7 Loyola 3-16-0 13
8 UW-Green Bay 3-14-0 8