PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania women’s soccer team will play its final home game of 2016 on Saturday, hosting Brown at 5 p.m. The match is the first half of a Rhodes Field doubleheader, as the Penn and Brown men kick off afterward.
Thank You, Seniors!
Saturday's match will be the last at home for six seniors: Olivia Blaber, Carrie Crook, Paige Lombard, Tahirih Nesmith, Lindsey Sawczuk and Riann Winget. Penn has gone 35-13-15 over the last four years, including 11-8-7 in Ivy play and 20-7-8 at home.
Live Video For Saturday - ILDN
Saturday's match will be televised live on the Ivy League Digital Network (ILDN). This is a pay service, register for the rest of the season here! With the ILDN, you will be able to watch all of Penn’s home matches, as well as their Ivy League road contests. That includes both of the team’s remaining matches!
Around the Ivy League
The Ivy title chase continues this weekend, with everyone in action on Saturday. Harvard (3-0-2) and Dartmouth (0-3-2) kick things off at 11 a.m. in Hanover, while Princeton (1-3-1) and Cornell (1-3-1) start at 2:30 p.m. in Ithaca. One hour before Penn and Brown get started, Ivy leader Columbia (4-0-1) and Yale (1-3-1) kick off in New Haven.
The Brown Series
The Quakers lead, 12-10-3, and are 5-1-1 over the last seven meetings. However, the lone Bears win in that run came last year in Providence, 1-0. Prior to that, Penn had shut out Brown over four-straight matches, going 3-0-1 in that time.
About Brown (8-2-4, 3-1-1 Ivy League)
Under first-year head coach Kia McNeill -- who replaced the legendary Phil Pincince at the helm -- the Bears have posted nine shutouts and allowed just six goals in 14 matches. Carly Gould was a first-team All-Ivy pick last year and is Brown's leading scorer this year, with 10 points (3g/4a); Celia Story also has three goals, while eight other women have scored once. In goal, Christine Etzel has played all but 45 minutes and has a 0.35 GAA.
Lombard Named Senior CLASS Award Candidate
Senior defender Paige Lombard was named one of 30 candidates nationwide for the Senior CLASS Award in women’s soccer. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities. To be eligible, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.
About Penn (9-3-2, 2-2-1 Ivy League)
*Penn enters the weekend ranked 37th nationally in scoring offense (2.07 GPG) and 13th in goals-against average (0.55).
*With two matches still left in the season, Penn already has 10 more goals (29) than all of last season (19) with 12 different women scoring.
*Nineteen of Penn's 29 goals -- and, in fact, 19 of the last 28 -- have come in the first half. Of those 19, 16 have come in the first 26 minutes of the match and eight have come in the first 10 minutes.
*Penn has scored four or more goals four times this season (5 vs. Robert Morris and Cornell, 4 vs. American and Delaware State); the last time that happened was 2007. The last time Penn had two five-goal games in one season was 2009.
*At the other end of the field, Penn enters the Brown match having not allowed a goal in the run of play in 1297:42 of game action, or the 12th minute of the season opener against Maryland. Since then, the Quakers have given up just six goals -- one on a free kick (Maryland), two on corner kicks (Lafayette and Columbia), and three on penalty kicks (Dartmouth, Harvard and Delaware).
*Penn has eight shutouts this season, including each of the last two matches. Overall, the Quakers enter Saturday having not allowed a goal of any sort in 215:33 of match action.
*Senior Olivia Blaber had a goal and an assist at Army West Point on Monday; she is now tied for second on the team in goals (4) and is fourth in points (11).
*Sophomore Cameo Hazlewood had Penn's other goal on Monday, her second of the season.
*Freshman Emily Sands scored Penn's goal at Yale last Saturday; on Monday, she earned her second Ivy League Rookie of the Week honor of the season.
*Penn has had two Ivy League Rookies of the Week; Sands also won it on September 12, and goalkeeper Kitty Qu earned the honor on September 19.
*Qu, who has played all but 119 minutes in the Penn cage this year, has a 0.45 goals-against average and enters the weekend 11th nationally in that category.
*Sands, meanwhile, leads the team in assists (6) and is tied for second in points (12).
*Sophomore Sasha Stephens has four goals overall and leads Penn in points (13). Her five assists are second on the team.
*Freshman Emma Loving leads Penn in goals (6) and is tied with Sands for second in points (12).
*Penn beat Cornell on Sept. 30, 5-0, the second-largest Ivy League victory in program history (surpassed only by a 6-0 win at Cornell in 2008).
*Penn is 9-2-2 in its last 13 matches; the Quakers' four-match win streak from September 4-16 was the program's longest since 2013, when they had a six-game win streak from October 4-22 (not allowing a goal that entire time).
*Five freshmen have already started at least two matches this season for Penn -- Loving (13 starts), Sands (13), Qu (13), Megan Lloyd (8) and Abby Reed (2).
*Junior Erica Higa had assists against Delaware State and Yale, giving her six points this season (2g/2a).
*Sophomore Allie Trzaska, who received honorable mention All-Ivy recognition last year as a freshman, is third on the team in assists (4) and also has a goal for six points..
*Penn's loss to Maryland was perhaps unjust; after allowing the Terrapins a pair of goals in the first 12 minutes, Penn ended up outshooting its opponent 12-5 in the match (9-1 in the second half).
*Through 30 matches in the Nicole Van Dyke coaching era, Penn has outshot its opponent 26 times. The Quakers outshot Army West Point on Monday, 10-1.
*Lombard (3g) anchors a defense that allowed just 11 goals in 16 matches last season and posted seven shutouts. A transfer from the University of Miami, Lombard missed the 2014 season to a knee injury but earned All-ECAC, first-team All-Ivy, and third-team NSCAA All-Region a year ago.
*The defense also returns a trio of women who saw significant time last season in Nesmith (14 appearances last year) and sophomores Romie Boyd (16 starts) and Cami Nwokedi (6 starts, 12 appearances).
*Penn returns seven women who scored a goal last year, including all four who found the back of the net more than once: Stephens (4 goals in 2015), Lombard (3), Trzaska (2), and junior Lauren Petite (2).
*Blaber, Lombard and Darby Mason -- who suffered a season-ending injury in the opener vs. Maryland -- are the captains for the 2016 season.