Women's Soccer Hosts Cornell, Saint Francis This Weekend

PHILADELPHIA -The Penn women's soccer team learned quickly that Ivy League matches are played with a little more intensity. The question now is how the Quakers respond from the first blow.

After dropping a 2-0 decision at Harvard last Friday -- the Crimson scoring both goals in the opening half -- the Quakers have a chance to even their Ancient Eight ledger this Friday, hosting Cornell at Rhodes Field. The teams will kick off at 7 p.m., and Cornell is also looking for its first Ivy win of the season after falling, 3-1, to Columbia last weekend in Ithaca, N.Y.

Penn is also at home on Sunday, hosting Saint Francis (Pa.) in a non-conference match at 1 p.m.

Around The League: Penn and Cornell kick off the second full weekend of Ivy play on Friday night, with the other six teams playing on Saturday. Princeton (0-1) and Dartmouth (0-1) will search for their first win in Hanover, kicking off at 1 p.m. At 4, Harvard (1-0) and Yale (1-0) will look to remain unbeaten when they match up in New Haven. Brown (1-0) and Columbia (1-0) will complete league play Saturday night, kickoff off at 7 p.m. in New York City.

Penn vs. Cornell: The Quakers lost the first six meetings with the Big Red; since then, they are 13-0-1 in the series including wins in the last 12 matchups. Taking it further, Penn has allowed Cornell just one goal in the last seven meetings, outscoring the Big Red 18-1 in that span. Penn has won seven in a row at home over Cornell, with the last blemish a loss in 1995.

About Cornell: The Big Red (2-8-0) come to Philadelphia after having their game at Lafayette cancelled on Wednesday. Maneesha Chitanvis -- an honorable mention All-Ivy player last year who had Cornell's goal vs. Columbia last week -- leads the Big Red in scoring, with four goals and an assist, while Brook Chang has two goals. At the other end, Kelly Murphy has made six starts (2.20 GAA, .675 save percentage) while Megan Bartlett has made four (2.00, .714 save percentage). Bartlett was a second-team All-Ivy player last year, along with senior defender Sidra Bonner.

Penn vs. Saint Francis (Pa.): Sunday will mark the first meeting between the Quakers and the Red Flash in women's soccer.

About Saint Francis: The Red Flash (5-4-0) will play Sacred Heart on Friday before making the trip to Philadelphia. SFU won its Northeast Conference opener last weekend, defeating Robert Morris 1-0 in Loretto, Pa., as Stephanie Boulter scored the winner. Tesa McKibben is the Red Flash's top offensive threat, with five goals and three assists. Traci Flick and Boulter are the only other players with more than one goal. At the other end, Brianna Butcher has a 1.21 goals-against average and a .796 save percentage in playing every minute between the pipes.

About Penn...
*At 6-2-0, Penn is off to its best start since 2001, when the Quakers were 6-1-1 after eight matches en route to a 13-2-3 record, a share of their first Ivy League title, and an NCAA Championship bid.

*Penn began the season with five wins, all coming by shutout. The last time a Quaker team posted five clean sheets in a row was 1999 (Oct. 20 to Nov. 6). Coincidentally, that 1999 streak was broken in the NCAA Championship first round by the same program that was Penn's final victim in this most recent streak, James Madison.

*Penn entered the week ranked third nationally in shutout percentage (.750) and 23rd in goals-against average (0.625).

*Penn was the second-to-last team in NCAA Division I women's soccer to give up a goal this season. The last team is still standing, and it's another Philadelphia squad -- La Salle entered the week having not allowed a goal in nine matches.

*Penn has won seven games in a row at Rhodes Field dating back to last season, the Quakers' longest home winning streak since they won 12 in a row bridging the 2004 and 2005 seasons.

*Senior forward Marin McDermott -- who was the Ivy League Player of the Week on Sept. 5 -- had an assist last Sunday vs. Youngstown State and leads Penn with ten points (4g, 2a).

*McDermott has 18 career goals, which ties her for eighth place on Penn's all-time list with Kelly Stevens (1995-98) and Rachelle Snyder (2001-04).

*McDermott needs one more point to move into Penn's all-time Top 10 list in that category; she has 45, and 10th place is currently held by Carolyn Cross who had 46 from 2002-05.

*Sophomore Brianna Rano and freshman Callan Parra scored their first collegiate goals last Sunday vs. Youngstown, while freshman Megan York tallied her second at Penn.

*Sophomore forward Kathryn Barth is third on the team with five points (2g, 1a) while junior captain Erin Beck and Rano both have four (1g, 2a).

*York made her first collegiate goal one to remember, as it provided all the offense Penn needed in the Quakers' 1-0 win over Villanova on Sept. 9 at PPL Park, the home of Major League Soccer's Philadelphia Union.

*After going 0-11-1 against Villanova in the first 12 meetings of that series, Penn has now defeated the Wildcats each of the last two years.

*On defense, a new middle has featured senior captain Adrienne Lerner and junior Erin Thayer. Senior Colleen Barry has returned to her usual spot on the right side, while junior Alex Dayneka has been on the left side.

*One of the revelations in recent matches has been freshman Kaitlyn Moore, who has strung together some strong performances as a sitting midfielder. Expect to see her get a lot of time going forward.

*In goal, junior Sarah Banks has started all eight matches this season. She went the distance last Friday at Harvard, and went a little more than an hour on Sunday before giving way to sophomore Rachel Resek.