Milwaukee @ Wisconsin
Game #7 Sept. 21 7 p.m.
Madison, Wis. (McClimon Soccer Complex)
Gameday Media: Live Stats
#24 Marquette @ Milwaukee
Game #8 Sept. 23 6 p.m.
Milwaukee, Wis. (Engelmann Field)
Gameday Media: Gametracker, Live Video
Complete Release in PDF Format
MILWAUKEE, Wis. (Sept. 18, 2007) - The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee women's soccer team will look to halt a two-game losing streak when it takes on a pair of in-state rivals. The Panthers travel to Madison Friday to take on Wisconsin, before hosting crosstown rival and nationally-ranked Marquette Sunday at Engelmann Field.
Lights, Camera, Action
Sunday's contest with Marquette will be televised live in Milwaukee on Time Warner Sports. Time Warner Sports can be found on channel 32 in Milwaukee.
The Badgers are off to a 3-2-1 start under new head coach Paula Wilkins. Wisconsin is coming off a 1-1 roadtrip to the west, ending a five-game winning streak by Northern Arizona Sunday after a 1-0 loss at BYU Sunday. Taylor Walsh and Shannon Terry pace the team with two goals apiece. In goal, Jamie Klages has played every minute, posting three shutouts and a 0.96 goals against average.
Marquette has been fairly dominant in jumping out to a 7-0 start. The Golden Eagles have burst into the national rankings, sitting as high as No. 12 in the Soccer Buzz poll and 24th in this week's NSCAA poll. The first five games each ended 2-0 before MU outscored opponents 7-1 at the Colorado College Tournament last weekend. Freshman Ashley Bares leads the team with six goals, while Christy Zwolski is second on the team with four goals and nine points. Laura Boyer has played all but 40 minutes in goal, allowing just one goal for a scant 0.15 GAA and four solo shutouts.
Milwaukee has played Wisconsin 23 times, tied for the most against any opponent, but has struggled in the series. Last season's 1-0 win was just the second for UWM, as it has gone 2-17-4 against the Badgers all-time. Against Marquette, however, the Panthers have the upperhand, 6-5-4, including a 2-0 win at Valley Field last season.
UWM swept the three other Division I state schools last season for the first time in team history. The Panthers topped Marquette 2-0, Green Bay 3-2 and lastly Wisconsin 1-0. In years where all four schools have played each other, there have been just five sweeps, including two by Wisconsin (2003 and 2004) and Marquette (2000 and 2001).
Finding the back of the net proved to be difficult for Milwaukee last weekend, as it dropped a pair of 1-0 decisions in Boston. Friday, the Panthers were outshot 20-3 in falling to No. 8 Boston College. At Harvard Sunday, UWM was not without opportunites in falling to the Crimson despite a 23-9 shot advantage.
Notes From The Weekend
The Panthers have lost back-to-back games for the first time in two years ... At 3-3, UWM is also not at least one game above .500 since Sept. 25, 2005 ... The 20 shots allowed by Milwaukee to BC were the most by an opponent since Sept. 12, 2004 ... Meanwhile, its three shots were the fewest since Sept. 5, 2004.
Nicole Sperl has scored UWM's last two goals, both game-winners ... Erin Kreuser has assisted on the team's last three goals ... Sperl's goal Sept. 9 was the 799th goal in school history, leaving the Panthers just one score shy of 800.
Bring On Extra Time
Milwaukee's double-overtime win Sept. 9 extended an impressive streak of 18-straight overtime games without a loss. The Panthers are 9-0-9 in that time and have not yielded an overtime goal since Sept. 12, 2004, to DePaul. Of those 18 games, 13 have gone to two overtimes and nine have finished 1-0.
If playing extra time bothers junior goalkeeper Erin Kane, she surely isn't showing it. She has been in goal for 13 games that have gone into overtime and is yet to give up a golden goal. Her 13 overtime shutouts represent almost half of her school and league-record 28 career shutouts. Currently, she has played 184:56 of overtime without allowing a goal.
UWM has a great opportunity to make a name for itself nationally this season, as three teams it plays this season enter the week ranked in the NSCAA poll. Texas A&M (Oct. 26) tops the list, sitting fourth in the nation. Boston College (Sept. 14), meanwhile, is ninth. Crosstown rival Marquette (Sept. 23) jump one spot this week to 24th. Milwaukee faced three nationally-ranked foes last season, defeating No. 16 Missouri and playing a pair of No. 1 squads (Portland and Notre Dame) tough. The win over Mizzou was the second over a ranked foe in team history.
Home, Sweet Home
Engelmann Field is a tough place to play if you're not the Panthers. Milwaukee is 106-51-13 (.662) all-time at Engelmann Field. Over the last two-plus years, the team is 15-1-3, including a 7-1 mark last season. UWM had a 17-game home unbeaten streak (14-0-3) snapped in the league semifinals last season and is 25-1-1 against league foes at home since 1998, including league tournament play.
For the second-straight season, UWM posted a perfect 2-0 record at the Milwaukee Cup to tie with its co-host Marquette. After taking second last season on a goal differential tiebreaker, the Panthers benefited from a goals scored tiebreaker for their first cup title in the eight years of the tournament. Milwaukee, which has won four-straight in the tourney and are unbeaten in its last five, won an in-season tournament for the first time since the Central Michigan Invitational in 2000. Last season, UWM took second place at all three in-season tournaments.
As champs, the Panthers placed four players on the Milwaukee Cup All-Tournament. Sophomore Erin Kreuser headed the list of honorees as the Offensive MVP. She was joined by senior Amanda Winn, junior Sarah Teegarden and freshman Heather Roadhouse.
In 2006, Louise Vraney made a splash for the Panthers, scoring two goals in the season-opener and adding another two days later. She was the first freshman in the team's Division I history to score a goal in the team's first game of the season. Just one year later, freshman Sarah Talbert joined the elite company, tallying a score in Milwaukee's win over Indiana State. Vraney tallied the first goal in that match, and now has three goals in season-openers, more than any other player in the team's history.
Panthers Pace Preseason Poll
For the eighth-straight year, Milwaukee topped the Horizon League preseason coaches' poll. The Panthers received all seven possible first-place votes and finished with 56 points. They have won the last seven league regular season championships, each time the team topped the preseason poll.
Leading The League
Since 2000, UWM has been untouchable in league play, posting a 41-1-2 league mark in that time and winning the last seven league titles. The streak is currently the second-longest in the country, trailing only Penn State's streak of nine-straight Big Ten championships.
A Look At Exhibition Play
Milwaukee split its exhibition slate, defeating Illinois State, 3-0, before losing to No. 20 Illinois. Against ISU, sophomore Erin Kresuer tallied the game-winner and sophomore Kate Megna and freshman Nicole Sperl added goals.
The Panthers are coming off the most successful season in school history. They posted a 16-4-2 record, won a seventh-straight league title and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the second-straight season. UWM set school records for wins, winning percentage (.773), goals against average (0.44) and shutouts (16). It's shutout percentage of .727 was third in the nation, GAA was fourth and winning percentage 12th.
Back In Black (And Gold)
Head coach Michael Moynihan returns eight starters from last year's squad, including six that were honored by the Horizon League following the season. Erin Kane and Sarah Teegarden head the list after their second-straight all-league first team awards. Senior Amanda Winn was an all-league second team honoree for the second-straight year and was joined by Louise Vraney. Vraney, meanwhile, was an all-newcomer selection alongside sophomores Kate Megna and Erin Kreuser.
Welcome To Milwaukee
Joining 13 letterwinners will be 10 incoming freshman and one redshirt. The 10-player class was tabbed as the top in the league by Soccer Buzz Magazine. Six of the players--Nicole Hirsch, Kelly McGrath, Heather Roadhouse, Nicole Sperl, Sarah Talbert and Helena Zbilut--hail from the area and played together for FC Milwaukee. Brianne Borgman, Erin DeYoung and Ellen Phillips all hail from Michigan and played club soccer together. Claire Watkins, out of Hisdale, Ill., was the last player to sign with UWM and goalkeeper Leslie Deebach will see the field this season after a redshirt year in 2006.
Another New Face
Ten freshmen are not the only new faces around the Milwaukee soccer program. Chris Maravalli joined the coaching staff over the summer after coaching at Castleton State College in Vermont. Among his duties will be working with the Panther keepers.
Sophomore Kate Megna is providing her take on the 2007 season as it goes on, via an online blog at uwmpanthers.com. At the start of every week, Megna looks back on the weekend of action and shares the inside story of the Milwaukee women's soccer team. Visit uwmpanthers.com for the latest installment, which is posted on Monday afternoons.
Milwaukee kicks off the 2007 Horizon League slate on the road, taking on Butler Friday (Sept. 28) and Detroit Sunday (Sept. 30).