This Week: The No. 24 University of Cincinnatiís womenís soccer team opens its second consecutive trip to the NCAA College Cup with a first-round match with Kentucky in Knoxville, Tenn. The match is set for Friday, Nov. 15 at 5:30 p.m. ET. If the Bearcats advance, they will face the winner of the game between host Tennessee and Furman on Sunday, Nov. 17 at 2 p.m. ET.
UC In The NCAA Tourney: The Bearcats will be making their second consecutive appearance in the NCAA College Cup, making it to the Sweet 16 last season before losing to Virginia, 2-0. This will be UCís sixth appearance in the College Cup, owning a record of 3-5.
About The NCAA College Cup: The 2002 NCAA College Cup consists of 64 teams playing for the opportunity to participate in the championship match to be held at Mike A. Meyers Stadium at the University of Texas on Dec. 8. The top eight teams are seeded in the tournament with Stanford owning the No. 1 seed. North Carolina is the highest seed in Cincinnatiís side of the bracket at No. 2.
About The Bearcats: The Bearcats are 16-3-3 and have won five matches in a row, including three victories on their way to claiming their second straight Confrence USA Tournament title. Amy Simonson (Cincinnati, Ohio/ Princeton), a second-team all-C-USA selection, leads the team in scoring with 19 points on eight goals and three assists. Tasha Wagner (Middletown, Ohio/ Middletown) and Tianna Oliver (Los Angeles, Calif./ Immaculate Heart) are tied for second on the team with 17 points. Oliver has seven goals and three assists while Wagner adds four goals and a team-high nine assists. Senior Heather Herweh (Cincinnati, Ohio/ Ursuline), a first-team all-C-USA selection, anchors a defense that has held opponents to 13 goals in 22 games. Sophomore Tracy Hale (Westerville, Ohio/ Westerville South) is the starter in goal for the Bearcats, posting a 0.58 goals against average, which ranks 8th in the nation.
About Kentucky: The Wildcats earned an at-large bid to the tournament after falling to No. 11 Tennessee in the semifinals of the SEC Tournament. UK owns an 11-8 overall record and is led by Elizabeth Ramseyís 20 points on six goals and eight assists. Liz Butler has played all but 17 minutes in goal, allowing 22 goals in 19 matches for a 1.12 goals against average. Kentucky defeated the Bearcats, 2-0, in the last meeting between the two schools in 2001 and holds a 5-4-0 advantage in the all-time series.
C-USA Tourney Champs: The Bearcats used victories over South Florida, East Carolina and Marquette en route to the C-USA title in Charlotte, N.C, their second in as many years. The championship was UCís fourth.
Senior Amy Simonson netted the go-ahead goal 1:51 into the second half, leading UC to a 3-1 victory over South Florida. Amy Mink tallied the matchís first goal and Tianna Oliver added a late, empty-net goal.
Mink scored the game-winner goal off a corner kick from Tasha Wagner in the 88th minute, giving Cincinnati a 2-1 win over East Carolina to advance to the championship match.
Simonson assisted on two goals, including the game-winner by Tasha Wagner, as the Bearcats defeated Marquetter, 2-1. Tianna Oliver netted the gameís first goal 15 minutes into the match as UC won its second consecutive C-USA title. Marquette tied the game in the 40th minute. Wagner tallied the game winner with 6:38 remaining.
National Rankings: UC is ranked No. 24 according to the recent National Soccer Coaches Association of America poll. The Beatcat defense owns Division Iís 10th best goals against average, surrendering 0.57 goals per game. UC also boasts the nationís 13th best shutout percentage at 0.55. Cincinnati has shutout 12 opponents in 22 matches. Individually, sophomore goalkeeper Tracy Hale is ranked 10th in D-I with a 0.58 goals against average.
Regional Rankings: UC is ranked at No. 3 in the Great Lakes Region, according to the recent NSCAA poll. Soccer Buzz Magazine also has the Bearcats at the No. 3 spot. Purdue tops the region in both polls.
Conference Tournament Honors: The Bearcats swept C-USA Tournament honors with junior midfielder Tasha Wagner earning Offensive Most Valuable Player and Stacey Kyser taking the Defensive MVP honors. Wagner netted a pair of goals in the tournament, including the game-winning goal in the championship match with Marquette. She also assisted on the game-winner in the semi-finals vs. East Carolina. Kyser provided solid defense in UCís three victories as the Bearcats held opponents to an average of five goals.
Regular Season Honors: Seniors Heather Herweh and Amy Simonson both earned all-conference honors for their play in the regular season. Herweh, a defender, was named to the first-team while registering one goal. She also led a Bearcat defense which allowed 10 goals in 19 matches during the regular season, including 12 shutouts. Simonson, who led the team in scoring with 15 points on seven goals and one assist, was named to the second team. She netted game-winning goals against No. 12 Florida, Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Bowling Green and in overtime at Marquette.
C-USA Gets Three Invites: For the first time in its eight-year history, Conference USA has advanced three women's soccer teams to the NCAA Tournament. Charlotte, the Conference USA regular-season champion, Cincinnati, the Conference USA Tournament champion and Marquette are a part of the field of 64 teams. The three bids to this year's championship gives Conference USA an eight-year total of nine NCAA bids.
Going Out With A Bang: Tianna Oliver has done her best to continue her final season as a Bearcat. The senior has scored a goal in four of the last five matches, including two during the Conference USA Tournament.
Oliver ended her career at Meyers Field the same way she started it, with a goal. Oliver scored a goal in her first ever match at UCís home field, during a 4-2 win over crosstown rival Xavier. The Los Angeles native tallied the teamís second goal in Cincinnatiís 3-0 Oct. 31 win over Louisville. Oliver also netted a goal in her final regular season match, scoring the game-winning goal in UCís 1-0 victory over Ohio State.
Haleís GAA Drops: Sophomore goalkeeper Tracy Hale saw her goals against average take a dip during UCís eight-game shutout streak from Sept. 27 through Oct. 25. Haleís GAA was 0.96 in UCís first eight games, but has since dropped to 0.58, which ranks at No. 10 in NCAA Division I.
Season Of Streaks: UC put together several lengthy streaks this season, all of which came to an end during Oct. 27thís 2-0 loss to Saint Louis at Meyers Field.
ē The Bearcats ran up an unbeaten streak of 10 matches.
ē The Bearcats had a scoreless streak of 943:42 spanning eight matches.
ē Cincinnati had an unbeaten streak of 23 C-USA regular season matches.
Defense Leads The Effort: The UC defense has allowed just 13 goals in 22 games this season. Much of that can be attributed to UCís ability to hold opponents to a small number of shots. The unit, which returned three starters from last season, is limiting foes to just under nine shots per game. On the season, UC is out shooting its opponents by a 289-189 clip.
Spreading The Goals Around: Eleven different Bearcats have netted goals this season. Amy Simonson leads the team with eight goals while Tianna Oliver is second with seven. Amy Mink and Tasha Wagner have four apiece while three other Bearcats are tied with two apiece and four others adding a goal each.
Assisting The Team: Junior Tasha Wagner has found the net four times this season, but she has also found other ways to help the team. Wagner easily leads the team in assists with nine. Rachel Lieberman is second on the team with four.
Wagner passed her 2001 total of six assists with an assist in UCís 2-0 win at DePaul. Wagner also tied her 2001 season total of 12 points in UCís 3-0 win over Louisville.
Season Records Fall: The Bearcats broke three school records during the 2002 campaign.
ē Goalkeeper Tracy Hale passed Christy Hoffman for most home shutouts in a season with five and half. Hoffman set the record last season with 4.5.
ē With its 0-0 tie with No. 12 Charlotte, UC tied the single-season mark for ties with three. The record has been done previously four times in 1983, 1990, 1996 & 1997.
ē UCís streak of eight consectuive shutouts surpassed the old mark of seven. The previous record had been done twice prior to this season, once last season and once in 1982.
Changing The Record Books: A couple of the top-10 career lists at UC will look a little different after this season thanks to members of this yearís Bearcat squad. Leading the list is Tasha Wagner, who with her nine assists this season has moved into a tie for fifth place on the career assists list with 18.
With her goal in UCís win over South Florida in the C-USA Tourney, senior Amy Simonson moved into ninth place on the career points list at UC. Simonson, who now has 60 career points, is also tied for sixth place on the all-time assists list with 16. With her career totals of 22 goals, Simonson is one goal shy of cracking a third top 10.
Hale Cracks Top Ten: In her first season as the Bearcatsí starting goalkeeper, Tracy Hale moved into eighth place on the career shutouts list at UC with 11.5. Hale has 11 shutouts this season and shared a shutout with Christy Hoffman and Marche Gendrew in 2001. Kara Coakley and Julie McCaffrey are next on the list, tied in sixth place with 12 apiece.
Goal Dominance: The Bearcats are outscoring their opponents 34-13 on the season including a 18-5 advantage in the second half of games. The first half hasnít been too bad for UC either as it holds a 15-8 advantage prior to the intermission. UCís other goal came in a 1-0 victory at Marquette on Oct. 18, the Bearcatsí only goal in three overtime matches.
UC Captains: The captains for the UC womenís soccer team are senior defenders Heather Herweh and Stacey Kyser along with senior forward Amy Simonson.
Goodbye To A Great Senior Class: Six UC seniors are nearing the end of the Bearcat careers. Together the class, consisting of Jill Firman, Heather Herweh, Stacey Kyser, Tianna Oliver, Kelly Rigsbee and Amy Simonson, have helped UC to a 60-22-4 record, including last seasonís 20-4-0 mark with a trip to the NCAA Tournamentís Sweet 16. The seniors have also made four consecutive trips to the Conference USA tournament and won back-to-back championships in their final two seasons.
About Coach Glenn: Meridy Glenn (Brown, Ď80) is in her 20th season as head coach of the Bearcats. In 2001, Glenn became the ninth Division I womenís soccer coach, and first woman, to reach the 200 win plateau. She is by far the winningest womenís soccer coach in school history with a career mark of 227-126-27. Glenn is the third coach in the history of the UC program which dates back to 1980. Glenn came to UC after serving as an assistant coach at Brown University for two years.