Oct. 9, 2008
Washington, D.C. - The nationally-ranked Georgetown women's soccer team will look to build on their current five-game home unbeaten streak and 10-game undefeated streak this weekend when they host No. 1 Notre Dame on Friday at 3 p.m. and DePaul for Senior Day on Sunday at 1 p.m. The Hoyas are currently ranked among the top 20 nationally in polls overseen by SoccerBuzz Magazine (19th), TopDrawerSoccer.com (20th), Soccer America (16th) and the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (17th).
The team has now passed the midway point of the 2008 season and is currently three games into its BIG EAST campaign, but has already accrued a handful of accomplishments and accolades on, and off, the field. Some notable team firsts include; the first seven-goal game since 2004, first win against a MAC opponent since 2001, first win against a SEC opponent, first win at Villanova in eight tries (14 years), first win at Seton Hall in six tries (13 years) and first win at home over Rutgers in nine seasons. They are also the first GU women's soccer team to win their first four games and stay undefeated through their first 10.
The Hoyas currently rank in the top 25 offensively, averaging 2.5 goals per game and the top 10 defensively, allowing 0.379 goals per contest.
Individually, the Blue & Gray have had some standout performances as well. Junior Toni Marie Hudson (Coral Springs, Fla./Stoneman Douglas) is second only to M.A.C. Hermann Trophy Award winner and Notre Dame senior Kerri Hanks in the BIG EAST in points and goals, while also ranking among the top 25 nationally in both categories. Hudson also needs only two goals to tie the single-season goal-scoring record and six points to tie the single-season scoring record. This season, she was named the BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Week and named to various other "Teams of the Week" for her three goals in two games, September 15-21.
Sophomore Caitlin Durkee (St. Paul, Minn./Como Park) and freshman Kelly D'Ambrisi (Trumbull, Conn./Lauralton Hall Academy) are ranked third and fourth, respectively, in the conference for assists. They trail Gina DeMaio of Rutgers and Erin Hardiman from Villanova, both ranked among the top 10 nationally. Durkee is in the top 25 nationally and tied for eighth on the GU single-season charts, while D'Ambrisi is among the top 40 nationally.
Freshman Samantha Baker (Long Beach, Calif./Wilson) joins Hudson on the BIG EAST points list. She currently ranks fifth behind Hanks and Melissa Henderson from Notre Dame, Hudson and Kaitlyn Ryan of Villanova. Baker has been named to the BIG EAST Honor Roll and earned a BIG EAST Rookie of the Week honor for two goals against UMBC
Sophomore Michaela Buonomo (Churchville, Pa./Council Rock), a Freshman All-American last season and BIG EAST Honor Roll selection this season, has helped lead a defense that has shutout seven of its first 10 opponents. Sophomore goalkeeper Jackie DesJardin (Sunnyvale, Calif./Archbishop Mitty) is third in the BIG EAST in goals-allowed average and save percentage, while ranking in the top 15 nationally in both categories. She is also second on the career shutouts list Jade Higgins ('08) and needs one shutout to tie the single-season record, which she set last season.
No. 1 Notre Dame
All-time series: 1-14-0
The Hoyas have lost seven in a row, including twice last year (3-0 at ND and 2-0 in the BIG EAST Tournament) to the Fighting Irish; the only win occurred in 2002 at North Kehoe Field
The Irish went 2-0-0 last week, including a 3-0 win against USF on Oct. 3 and a 3-1 win against Marquette on Oct. 5. Notre Dame is the only Division I team in the country that is still unbeaten and untied, and one of only six in all NCAA divisions; others are Division II members Grand Valley State (12-0) and West Virginia Wesleyan (9-0), as well as Division III entities Principia (13-0), Penn State-Altoona (11-0) and Williams (8-0).
Notre Dame's unbeaten streak against conference opponents stands at a school-record 43 games (41-0-2), the third-longest string in NCAA history, dating to a 2005 loss at Marquette. Florida (50) and North Carolina (55) own the top two spots on that list. The Irish also stretched their home unbeaten streak against conference foes to 82 games (81-0-1) since Connecticut became the lone BIG EAST opponent to win at Alumni Field (5-4 in OT on Oct. 6, 1995).
Notre Dame held USF without a shot on Oct. 3 to mark the first time the Irish defense has done that since Oct. 1, 2000 vs. Rutgers (14th time in program history). Notre Dame has started a season with 12 consecutive wins for the fifth time in program history and fourth under head coach Randy Waldrum (also 1996, 2000, 2004 and 2006).
Notre Dame Notes Notre Dame returns more than 80 percent of its offensive production from last year's team, which advanced to the NCAA Women's College Cup for the third time in four seasons and ninth time in program history. A three-time NSCAA All-American, senior Kerri Hanks is aiming to become the 23rd player in NCAA Division I women's soccer history to be a four-time All-American, and the fourth from Notre Dame. Hanks holds more than 60 Notre Dame records in her storied career, including career points in the postseason (58; 18 goals - 22 assists) She entered the season 11th in the NCAA record book with 58 career assists, and is one of just three Division I players ever to amass 50 goals and 50 assists prior to her senior season. Last season, Brittany Bock became the third Notre Dame women's soccer player ever to couple All-America (first team) and Academic All-America (third team) honors in the same season. She ranked 11th in the nation with 16 goals last season (most by a BIG EAST player) and shares the school record for career goals in the NCAA Championship (10), while also being one of 17 ND players with at least 100 career points (40 goals - 20 assists).
All-time series: 2-1-0
GU has won two in a row, including last year (1-0 at DePaul); won the only home meeting, 4-0
For DePaul, 10 different players have tallied at least one goal this season and Michelle Scandora's three goals lead the team. Tara Strickland has totaled a team-high seven points on three assists and two goals. The Blue Demons struggled out of the gate with a 0-5 start to begin the 2008 season. It marked the third time in team history with a season-opening five straight defeats. DePaul proceeded to win their next two contests against Western Illinois (3-1) and at Miami (Ohio) (3-2 in overtime), but has followed that with six-consecutive losses. Goalkeeper Kelsey Hoinkes has recorded 10 saves in five occasions throughout her career (three occurrences this season).
DePaul Notes The Blue Demons return 10 starters and 16 players from last season's 5-13-1 squad. Joining the 16 returnees are a dozen newcomers from California, Ohio and the Chicago area. The group of newcomers is second-year head coach Erin Chastain's first recruiting class. Junior forward Shannon Williams is the top returning scorer after leading the Blue Demons with 16 points on seven goals and two assists in 2007. Sophomore forward Callie Hemming (seven points) and midfield classmate Tara Strickland (six points) combined for five goals, three assists and 13 points. Sophomore goalkeeper Kelsey Hoinkes and junior goalkeeper Brittni Lally split time in the net last season and both return. Hoinkes totaled 1,098 minutes in 12 games with a 1.56 goals-against average, while Lally played in seven games, saw 650 minutes of action and finished the season with a 1.52 goals against average. The Blue Demons have faced teams from the Big Ten and Big 12, while the BIG EAST slate has included home games with Notre Dame, Cincinnati, Marquette and USF.