Oct. 22, 2013
Patriot League Women's Soccer Release - 10.22.13 (PDF)
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. -- The first two postseason tickets were doled out over the weekend with Navy and Boston University clinching their seats in the Patriot League Tournament. American and Colgate, who are tied for third with 13 points, would both clinch their own tournament bids with wins Wednesday over Loyola Maryland and BU, respectively.
PATRIOT LEAGUE QUICK HITS
All five League contests on Wednesday will air on Patriot League Network. Army and Holy Cross kick off at 6 p.m., while the other four are set for 7 p.m.
While American and Colgate have a beat on securing League Tournament berths on Wednesday, the race is heading up elsewhere as six points separates fifth place from 10th. The top six teams qualify for the tournament.
Two matchups on Wednesday feature teams that sit next to each other in the standings. Second-place Boston University visits Colgate, which is tied for third, while Holy Cross, which is tied for sixth, hosts eight-place Army.
Three League games dot Saturday's schedule. Both 7 p.m. contests will air on Patriot League Network, as will one of the two games on Sunday.
Last week Navy senior goalkeeper Elizabeth Hoerner was named one of 10 finalists for the Senior CLASS Award.
BU has outscored Patriot League opponents 10-1 this season.
American's Lindsay Muri leads her team and is second in the League with six goals and tied for second with 13 points.
Charlene Belanger has allowed just one goal in net in six League games and has five shutouts for the Eagles.
Evelyn Nicinski scored in the 53rd minute to lift Bucknell to a 1-1 draw with Colgate on Saturday. Caroline Brawner had the Raider goal in the game's opening minutes.
Lehigh junior keeper Ashley Blanks picked up her sixth career clean sheet in Saturday's 1-0 victory at Army.
Navy and BU are locked in a tight battle for the top RPI team in the Patriot League. The Mids rank No. 59 in the NCAA's latest report out Monday, while the Terriers are No. 60. Colgate comes in at No. 96, followed by American (182), Lafayette (221), Army (222), Lehigh (231), Bucknell (234), Holy Cross (277) and Loyola Maryland (285).
Terrier goalkeeper Andrea Green ranks second in the nation in goals-against average (0.353).
Six teams rank in the country's top 47 in save percentage.
Patriot League Notebook
WELCOME THE NEWCOMERS
For the first time since 2001 there's a new face competing in the Patriot League, and this time around it's doubled. After a year of waiting, Boston University and Loyola Maryland made their League debuts Aug. 23, and both were winners. The Terriers scored a 1-0 victory over Dayton at home, while the Greyhounds were 2-1 winners at Towson. Before this season the League hadn't seen a new women's soccer member since 2001, when American joined in all sports. That year the Eagles brought the number of teams to an even eight. From 1995-2000 the League featured seven members.
NEW FACE NAMED FAVORITE
Last season's League finalists were looking up at a new face when the preseason poll came out Aug. 19. Boston University secured 152 points and 12 first-place votes to claim the top spot, ahead of last year's runner-up Navy (144 points, four votes) and defending champion Colgate (138, four). Loyola Maryland, which took fourth with 101 points, looks to be an immediate contender as well after coming off an NCAA Tournament appearance for winning the MAAC title. 2011 champion Army (98 points) took fifth, while Lehigh (73), Bucknell (69), American (47), Holy Cross (47) and Lafayette (31) rounded out the poll.
BIGGER LEAGUE, BIGGER TOURNAMENT
With the additions of Boston University and Loyola Maryland, the Patriot League announced it is expanding six of its tournaments and one of those is women's soccer. After 22 years of tournaments where the top four teams qualified, the 2013 field will involve six teams. The top two teams will earn quarterfinal byes, while seeds 3 through 6 will battle in the quarterfinals on Tuesday, Nov. 5. The tournament will re-seed for the semifinals on Friday, Nov. 8, and the last two remaining teams will vie for the League crown and automatic NCAA berth on Sunday, Nov. 10. The top overall seed will host the semifinals and championship.
HOERNER A SENIOR CLASS FINALIST
After amassing a 19-2-1 mark and a 1.06 goals-against average while backstopping Navy to the Patriot League championship game last season, Navy senior goalkeeper Elizabeth Hoerner was named a candidate for the Senior CLASS Award just days before the start of the season. News broke last week that Hoerner was named one of 10 finalists for the prestigious honor. In addition to her stellar play on the field during her junior campaign, Hoerner has excelled in the classroom as well. She was honored as the League's Scholar-Athlete of the Year in women's soccer and picked up first-team Scholar All-America honors from the NSCAA.
HOERNER, SEABROOK BEING WATCHED
Navy senior goalkeeper Elizabeth Hoerner and junior defender Jade Seabrook were named to the Missouri Athletic Club's (MAC) Hermann Trophy Watch List prior to the season. Both were first-team All-League performers in 2012, with Hoerner the reigning Goalkeeper of the Year and Seabrook the Defensive Player of the Year. The Hermann Trophy honors the top male and female collegiate soccer players in the nation.
TOP TEAMS DOMINATE PRESEASON ALL-LEAGUE
It's probably comes as no surprise that all 11 members of the preseason All-League squad come from the top six teams in the preseason poll, and eight from the clubs in the top three. In addition to topping the standings prediction, BU also claimed an individual honor with senior forward Madison Clemens being named preseason Offensive Player of the Year. Navy junior Jade Seabrook, coming off an All-American campaign in which she was named the League's Defensive Player of the Year, was named the preseason favorite to repeat that honor.
WATCH FREE ON PATRIOT LEAGUE NETWORK
2013-14 is the first of a multi-year agreement between the Patriot League and Campus Insiders who have teamed up to create the Patriot League Network, a streaming platform that will enable fans to watch League regular season and championship events for free. Currently more than 40 women's soccer matches are tentatively scheduled to stream on the Network, both League and non-League, including the Patriot League Tournament.
NCAA RECOGNIZES LEAGUE AGAIN
The Patriot League was once again a big winner when the NCAA announced its latest set of Academic Performance Program Public Recognition Awards and Academic Progress Rate data in June. Women's soccer quads from American, Bucknell and Lafayette were three of the 71 total League teams cited for finishing in the top 10 percent of their sport in the most recent multi-year APR data, while all eight schools from before the July 1 expansion boasted an APR of 985 or better. Newcomers BU and Loyola will fit right in, as their APR data in women's soccer are both above 985.
Patriot League Weekly Awards (10.14-10.20)
BRINE OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
JADE SEABROOK, NAVY Jr., D, St. Paris, Ohio
Normally recognized for her defensive efforts, Seabrook scored her first goal of the season and her team's first of the game off a corner kick in the 29th minute of Friday's 2-0 victory at Holy Cross. The win clinched a third consecutive Patriot League Tournament berth for the Mids while lifting them to a 6-0-0 mark in the League. After coming forward to contribute to the Mids' offense, she went back to her usual position on the back line and helped Navy post its 11th clean sheet of the season.
BRINE DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
KIRSTEN ERIKSEN, AMERICAN Jr., D, Stamford, Conn.
Eriksen played another strong game at center back to help lift the Eagles to a 1-0 win over Lafayette on Saturday at Reeves Field in Washington. American's defense surrendered just three shots on goal and two corner kicks to the Leopards to post its seventh shutout of the season. The Eagles are tied for third at 4-1-1 in League play and have surrendered just one goal in those six contests. Eriksen grabs her first weekly award of the season from the League.
BRINE GOALKEEPER OF THE WEEK
ASHLEY BLANKS, LEHIGH Jr., GK, North Andover, Mass.
Blanks captured her sixth career clean sheet with five saves in Lehigh's critical 1-0 win at Army on Saturday. The win lifted the Mountain Hawks into a tie for the sixth and final spot in the Patriot League Tournament with three matches remaining. Blanks came up with four big saves off the foot of Kim An, one of Army's and the League's top offensive threats. Her biggest saves came late in regulation with stops at 86:12 and 89:29 to preserve the one-goal win. It's her first weekly award of the season.
BRINE ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
ERICA KOSIENSKI, BOSTON UNIVERSITY Fr., F, Plantsville, Conn.
Kosienski came off the bench in both Terrier matches last week and still netted two goals on the week, including one that helped clinch her team's first postseason berth in two years. The rookie found the back of the net in the 82nd minute to lift the Terriers to a 1-0 victory over fellow Patriot League newcomer Loyola Maryland on Saturday afternoon in Boston. That win, coupled with other results later in the day, clinched a Patriot League Tournament berth for the Terriers. She also scored earlier in the week in a 1-1 draw at Dartmouth. Kosienski, who is now a four-time Rookie of the Week, is tied for the team lead with five goals, including a team-high four game-winners.
LINDSAY MURI, AMERICAN Jr., F, Burlington, Conn.
Beat two defenders and scored on an impressive individual effort in the 51st minute to give American a 1-0 win over Lafayette on Saturday.
PAIGE ELLIOTT, LEHIGH So., D, Apison, Tenn.
Scored in the 28th minute to lift Lehigh to a 1-0 victory at Army on Saturday afternoon for the team's first win at West Point since winning the 2010 League title there.