SCHENECTADY, N.Y.-The Union College women's soccer team received its third consecutive invitation to the NCAA Division III championship tournament. The 14-3 Dutchwomen, seeded second in the New York State Region, drew a first-round bye and will play in the region's Final Four this Saturday at William Smith at 1:30 p.m. The championship will be held Sunday at 1 p.m. at William Smith. There is no
The Dutchwomen will face the winner of Tuesday's first-round game between Rochester and Nazareth. Union defeated both of those teams during the year, beating Nazareth, 3-1, in Rochester and snapping the Yellowjackets' 10-game win streak, 1-0, on Garis Field.
This is the fifth time that seven-year head coach Brian Speck has led the Dutchwomen into a postseason tournament. He goes into the weekend with a college career record of
Union missed the 1995 New York State Women's Collegiate Athletic Association Tournament in his rookie campaign of 1995 after posting an 8-5-2 overall record. The 1996 Dutchwomen lost their opening round NYSWCAA tournament game to Plattsburgh to end at 8-7-1 before the 1997 team finished was then a college-best third in the state tournament and a 12-5-1 record.
The 1998 Garnet, which elected not to participate in the state tournament, did not get an NCAA invitation despite winning the Upstate Collegiate Athletic Association and finishing with a 13-1-1 record. However, the 1999 team, which won the UCAA crown with a 6-0-0 record, picked up the league's automatic berth to secure the Dutchwomen's first-ever NCAA invitation. Union won its first game, beating Ithaca, 4-3 in four overtimes, and lost its second to finish at 16-3-1. Last year the Dutchwomen lost in the first round, 1-0 in four overtimes, to finish at 15-2.2
Both the 1999 and 2000 teams captured the NYSWCAA championship, the first since women's soccer became a sport at Union in 1980.
Sophomore Stephanie Mole' is among seven double-digit scorers for the Dutchwomen. Mole', who has 12 goals and 28 points, is followed by freshman Molly Flanagan (8-3-19), freshman
Brittany Cressman (7-4-18), senior Tara Ilsley (5-6-16), senior Lauren Byrne
(3-6-12), junior Abbie West (4-3-11), and senior Katie Smith (4-2-10).
On the other side of the field, junior netminder Carolyn Stead has given up just 12 goals while stopping 72 shots (a goals against average of 0.70 and a save percentage of .857). She has played every second of Union's 1535 minutes.
Anchoring the defense are senior All-American candidate Stephanie Maychack, senior Carrie Price and junior Victoria Kuzman.
Top-seeded William Smith will play the winner of Wednesday's Keuka-Oneonta showdown Saturday at 11 a.m.
Tickets for each game will be $4 for adults, $2 for students with ID and senior citizens, and $1 for children under 12.