PHILADELPHIA – Goals have been hard to come by for the University of Pennsylvania women’s soccer team in recent weeks. The Quakers hope to end that drought on Tuesday night, as they host American University in their final non-conference game of the 2015 season. The match will kick off at 7:30 p.m., and is the second half of a doubleheader at Rhodes Field as the Penn men host Rutgers beginning at 5 p.m.
Ivy League Digital Network
All Penn women’s soccer home matches, and most Ivy League road games, can be watched LIVE on the Ivy League Digital Network (ILDN)! This subscription-based service has packages for the year, the season, and even single games. There are also special packages for each of the eight Ivy institutions. Click here for more information!
Tuesday’s Match On ESPN3!
In addition to the ILDN, fans can watch both of Tuesday’s matches FOR FREE on ESPN3. Click here for the link to the free broadcast!
Penn holds a 4-2-0 lead over the Eagles, but Tuesday’s match is the first between these programs since 2000 and just the second since 1996.
The Eagles (4-7-2) tied Army over the weekend, after beating Lafayette a week ago. Kelly Donovan has four goals to lead American in scoring, while Marley Jennings, Audrey Denkler and Jojo Miller have two each. Jennings also leads the Eagles with four assists, while Yari Bradfield has three. In goal, Charlene Belanger has eight starts (1.38 GAA, .788 save percentage) and Courtney Bembenek has five (1.55 GAA, .775 save percentage).
*Penn (4-3-4) has gone the distance in each of its last two Ivy League matches, tying Columbia 0-0 on Friday after a 0-0 draw with Cornell two Fridays ago.
*Penn has gone to overtime in four of its last six matches, and gone the distance in all three without settling matters.
*Penn has outshot all but two of its 11 opponents this season; in last week’s two matches, the Quakers outshot Lehigh and Columbia by a combined 34-11 but came away with a loss (1-0 to Lehigh) and a tie (0-0 with Columbia).
*Penn has shut out five opponents this season, and only two of its 11 opponents have scored more than one goal -- Clemson, currently ranked fifth nationally, and two-time defending Ivy League champion Harvard scored twice each.*Penn returned just four players who scored last season to this year’s roster. None of them have scored yet this season, but nine other players have already scored.
*Of the nine players who have scored, it was the first tally at Penn for seven of them. The only two whose goals weren’t their first were senior co-captain Erin Mikolai (Mount St. Mary’s) and classmate Shannon Hennessy (VCU). Of course, in Hennessy’s case it was her second collegiate goal -- the first came her sophomore year, in 2013.
*A caveat to the previous note is senior defender Paige Lombard; the senior co-captain scored in consecutive games, against Mount St. Mary’s and at Clemson. They were her first goals at Penn, but her third and fourth as a collegian -- she also scored twice at the University of Miami.
*Freshman Maddie Dawkins had Penn’s goal in its 1-0 win at USC Upstate on September 13. It was a just result for the Quakers, who outshot the Spartans 18-1 in the match.
*Senior goalkeeper Kalijah Terilli was upended and injured early at Clemson, which has left junior Carrie Crook to pick up the pieces -- which she has, posting shutouts in four of her first seven collegiate starts after allowing just two goals (one on a PK) against the ranked Tigers.
*In her first career Ivy League start, Crook made a career-high nine saves against two-time defending champion Harvard; she has not conceded a goal in Ivy play since then.
*Freshman Kiera Towell made her collegiate debut against VCU, stepping on at halftime of a 1-1 match and preserving the draw for the Quakers.
*Sophomore Farah Otero-Amad had a goal and an assist in Penn’s win over Mount St. Mary’s, her first collegiate points.
*Sophomore Natasha Davenport and freshman Allie Trzaska -- who made her first collegiate start -- had the goals in the Quakers’ 2-1 win against previously unbeaten Temple.
*Penn opened its 2015 season -- and the Nicole Van Dyke coaching era -- with a 3-1 win over Seton Hall on August 30. It marked the fifth-straight year the Quakers have won their opener, and the sixth time in seven years.
*Freshman Sasha Stephens scored twice in her collegiate debut, notching Penn’s second and third goals. That Monday, she was named the Ivy League Rookie of the Week.
*Sophomore transfer Lauren Petite also scored in her collegiate debut; she was on TCU’s roster last year but did not see any match action. Petite’s goal came less than four minutes into the contest.
*By calendar date, this year’s season opener was the earliest in program history -- in both 2007 and 2012 the Quakers opened the season on August 31. That 2007 game ended as a 1-0 win over Saint Louis, while the 2012 match was a 2-1 win over James Madison.*The defense should once again be shored up by senior Caroline Dwyer. She was shut down after 11 matches last year due to injury, but as a sophomore she was Ivy League Defensive Player of the Year; first-team All-Ivy; first-team NSCAA All-Region; and third-team NSCAA All-America (just the second player in program history to earn NSCAA All-America recognition, after Katy Cross).
*Dwyer also is one of 30 candidates for the Senior CLASS Award this year. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, this national award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletes to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.