| Game 10 | Western Illinois (6-2) @ #15/12 Milwaukee (8-1)
|| Friday, September 23 | 7 p.m. Central
|| Milwaukee, Wis. | Engelmann Stadium
| Live Stats
| Game 11 | Detroit (7-3-1, 1-0) @ #15/12 Milwaukee (8-1, 1-0)
|| Sunday, September 25 | 1 p.m. Central
|| Milwaukee, Wis. | Engelmann Stadium
| Live Stats
|| Watch Live on HLN
Complete Notes in PDF Format
Michael Moynihan Show Podcast
MILWAUKEE, Wis. (Sept. 21, 2011) - The No. 12 University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee women's soccer team opened the Horizon League season last weekend and now returns home for a weekend homestand against Western Illinois and Detroit. The Leathernecks visit Friday night in a non-league contest and the Titans come to town Sunday. The Panthers, who are ranked 12th by Soccer America and No. 15 by the NSCAA, are off to the best nine-game start in school history at 8-1.
The Panthers opened Horizon League play with a 4-0 win at Cleveland State Friday. They have now won their league opener each year since 1997. At 8-1 on the season, Milwaukee is off to its best start and continues to figure prominently in the national polls. They are No. 12 in the Soccer America national poll, while the NSCAA has Milwaukee ranked No. 15 nationally and No. 1 in the Great Lakes Region for the third-straight week.
Reaching New Heights
After establishing a school record national ranking Sept. 12 at No. 14, UWM jumped three places to 11th in the the Soccer America poll. The No. 1 regional ranking the Panthers have held for three-straight weeks is also a program best.
Milwaukee is off to the best start in school history at 8-1. The team began 2011 with six-straight wins, tying the 2008 squad for most wins to start the season. That year, the Panthers started 6-0, established the best nine-game start in team history (7-1-1), was ranked for nine weeks and received votes in the season's other four polls after the preseason. UWM is 13-5-1 all-time as a ranked team.
Last Week: UWM 4, Cleveland State 0
Three different Panthers scored goals in the first half and Helen Steinhauser had three assists as No. 17/11 Milwaukee defeated Cleveland State, 4-0, Friday evening at Krenzler Field. Sarah Hagen scored twice, Emily Scott added her first collegiate goal and Laurel Ragalie also scored in the league opener.
About Western Illinois
The Leathernecks are off to a 6-2 start to the season and have won their last two games over Grand View and Green Bay. WIU, which was picked to finish fourth in the Summit League preseason poll, features a diverse offense. Ten different players have scored goals, while Katie Condon and Trisha Quinn are the only players with two. Victoria Kappel has played every minute in goal and has a 1.25 goals against average with four shutouts.
The Titans are off to a 7-3-1 start and cracked the NSCAA Great Lakes poll, tied for the No. 10 ranking. Last week, Detroit dropped a dramatic 4-3 decision in overtime at Michigan State, but bounced back to knock off Butler in its league opener. UDM is one of the higher scoring teams in the nation with 34 through 11 games. The team has had 12 different players score, while seven have at least three goals. Abby McCollum leads the nation with eight assists and has a team-best 16 points. Alyssa Riley holds the team lead with six goals. Two different keepers have found time in goal, combining on a 0.78 GAA and six shutouts.
The Panthers have faced Western Illinois only one time prior, posting a memorable and record-breaking 16-0 win over WIU during the 1997 season. Milwaukee has faced Detroit 23 times, going 14-7-2 in those meetings. UWM has won the last three meetings and has four-straight shutouts in the series.
Follow The Leader
Milwaukee has a few players figuring prominently on the Horizon League and national leaderboards. Sarah Hagen has a league-best 11 goals, 24 points and five game-winners. Those numbers have her tied for fifth in goals, seventh in points and tied for first in game-winners in the nation. Keara Thompson's six assists are tied for second in the league and ninth in the country. Meanwhile on defense, Jamie Forbes is third with a 0.65 GAA and .870 save percentage. Her five shutouts are tops. The save percentage also has Forbes tied for 25th in the nation.
Canadians and Americans Working Together
Sarah Hagen and Keara Thompson have formed a dynamic partnership in their first three-plus seasons in Panther uniforms. Hagen is the top scorer in school history, while Thompson cracked the top-10 this season. Together, they have teamed on 20 goals in their career, including five already this season. Hagen has been on the receiving end on 16 of Thompson's assists, while setting up four of her teammate's goals. This season, Thompson has five assists on Hagen goals.
With the remainder of her senior season to play, Sarah Hagen is already the school and league record holder for goals and points in a career. She broke both marks last season and will only extend her grasp on both this season. She enters the week with 78 goals and 175 points in her career. She is annually among the national leaders in both categories and has more goals and points than any other player in the nation over that time. Currently, she is tied for 21st in NCAA Division I history for career goals. She is also just 15 points from cracking the top-25 for points.
Home, Sweet Home
Milwaukee is excited to get back to Engelmann Stadium for a full home slate this season, as the team has an undeniable home field advantage. The Panthers have a 47-5-6 record at Engelmann since 2005, including a 24-game unbeaten streak (21-0-3) that came to an end in 2009. That streak is tied for the 14th-longest in NCAA Division I history. UWM also had not lost a regular season league home game in almost 12 years before last season, a span that reached 37 games (36-0-1). All-time, the Panthers are 48-5-1 at home in league play.
In addition to the school-record crowd for the Milwaukee/Marquette derby Sept. 7, the Panthers also drew well four days later against Wisconsin. For that game, 612 fans were on hand--the seventh-largest crowd in school history. In five home games this season, UWM is averaging 771 fans per game. The large crowds have not been limited to Engelmann Stadium as attendances have averaged 654 on the road and the team played in front of 875 for its neutral-site game against Iowa State.
Local Derby Gone National
The annual Milwaukee/Marquette contest continually draws plenty of local interest. This season, that interest went national, as the Sept. 7 showdown was broadcast live on Fox Soccer Channel as part of the NSCAA Game of the Week. The contest was the first women's broadcast of the season and one of 20 college games to be featured. The Milwaukee crowd did not dissappoint, as 2,212 fans packed Engelmann Stadium, breaking the team's attendance record by over 900 fans (1,307).
Minnesota Gold Classic Wrap-up (Sept. 2-4)
For the second-straight weekend, Milwaukee went 2-0 in tournament play and took second place. Both the Panthers and Georgia went 2-0, with the Bulldogs taking the Minnesota Gold Classic title based on goals scored (4-3). Sarah Hagen was named the tourney's Offensive MVP and was joined on the all-tournament team by Jamie Forbes and Makenzie Gillaspie.
Milwaukee Cup Wrap-up (Aug. 26-28)
Both the Panthers and fellow host Marquette finished the Milwaukee Cup (Aug. 26-28) with 2-0 records. MU claimed the title and UWM second place based on goal differential for the weekend (+6 to +4). Milwaukee landed three players on the all-tournament team: Sarah Hagen, Keara Thompson and Kelsey Holbert.
Player/Team of the Week
After posting a pair of shutouts Sept. 2-4, Jamie Forbes was named the Horizon League Player of the Week this week. The highlight of her weekend was 11 saves against Minnesota Sunday, keeping the Golden Gophers off the scoreboard. This is the second award of Forbes' career (Aug. 31, 2009). Forbes was also selected to the TopDrawerSoccer.com National Team of the Week.
Player/Teams of the Week Part 2
Sarah Hagen was named the Horizon league Player of the Week Aug. 22 and was selected to Soccer America's National Team of the Week after each of the first two weekends. The POW award is the 12th of her career, while the TOW awards are her seventh and eighth. Then, last week, Hagen was the TopDrawerSoccer.com Player of the Week.
Wasting No Time
Kelly Lewers scored the game-winner Aug. 21 just 40 seconds into Milwaukee's game with DePaul. In addition to being her first collegiate goal, the score is also the second-fastest to start a game in school history. Katie Waltenberger holds the school record when she scored a goal 26 seconds into a game Oct. 27, 1998.
Return of the M.A.C.
For the third-straight season, Sarah Hagen has been named to the M.A.C. Hermann Trophy Watch List. Last season, the two-time defending Horizon League Player of the Year was named a semifinalist for the award and was selected to the NSCAA All-America First Team.
More Preseason Awards
In addition to being named to the Hermann Trophy Watch List, Sarah Hagen has also been named a Preseason All-American by both Soccer America and AllWhiteKit.com. The AWK honor features Hagen as the lone striker on an 11-member team in a 4-2-3-1 formation. The Appleton, Wis., native was also ranked the No. 7 upperclassman in the nation by TopDrawerSoccer.com.
Panthers Picked in Preseason Poll
For the 12th-straight year, Milwaukee topped the Horizon League Preseason Coaches' Poll. The Panthers, who received 63 points in the poll, have won league titles in each of the last 11 years they were picked to win. Butler, which shared the regular season crown with UWM in 2010, was picked second. Wright State and Detroit, which each garnered a first-place vote, were picked third and fourth.
A Field By Any Other Name...
The Panthers' home field hasn't changed, but the name has. Milwaukee now calls its home Laura Moynihan Field at Engelmann Stadium. A new synthetic surface was put in place in 2010 and it was renamed Laura Moynihan Field, honoring the former women's soccer coach. The facility retained the Engelmann name in the form of "Engelmann Stadium." All references to Milwaukee's home stadium should be "on Laura Moynihan Field" or "at Engelmann Stadum."
The Panthers hit the road for a single league game, playing at Wright State Saturday, Oct. 1.