Women's Soccer Hosts Two Matches at Wish Field
CHICAGO - The DePaul women’s soccer team opens the home portion of the 2005 schedule with the Eastern Illinois Panthers at Wish Field. DePaul opened the season last weekend in West Lafayette, Ind., dropping two matches at the Boiler Challenge Cup. The weekend finishes with the Blue Demons hosting Northern Illinois on Sunday.
Looking at the Blue Demons: The 2005 season is the 10th year of women’s soccer as a varsity sport at DePaul University... DePaul is 0-2 to start the season for the first time since 2000... the Blue Demons return 15 players and eight starters from the 2004 roster... DePaul’s 15 returners accounted for 39 of the record-setting 46 goals last season... they also accumulated 42 assists and 120 of the team’s 140 points last year... Julianne Sitch and Lea Hill are the top returning scorers with 25 points each in 2004... Hill led the team with 10 goals and five assists while Sitch totaled nine goals and seven assists... overall, the top five scorers are back with Hill, Sitch, Erin Walter (4G/10A/18P), Jennifer Dyer (6G/5A/17P) and Lauren Spacht (5G/5A/15P)... head coach John Wilson is in his sixth season at DePaul.
Season-Opening Notes: The Blue Demons are now 3-7 all-time in season-openers... DePaul dropped a 3-0 decision to Detroit last Friday in West Lafayette, Ind... the club knocked off Central Michigan in the CMU Invitational, 3-0, to start the 2004 season.
First Home Games: The Blue Demons have won three of their last four home-openers... all-time, the program is 3-6 is first home games... a year ago, DePaul lost, 2-1, in overtime to Western Michigan at Wish Field... DePaul hasn’t played a season-opening home match since a 3-0 win against Indiana State to start the 2001 season.
Looking Back: DePaul lost two matches to start the season last weekend at the Boiler Challenge Cup. The Blue Demons fell to Detroit on Friday and Purdue on Sunday. Sophomore goalkeeper Cara LaRocca was named to the All-Tournament team.
Sunday saw Purdue score three times in the first half and once in the second period for the 4-0 victory. The Boilermakers outshot the Blue Demons, 25-15, forcing LaRocca and Sarah West to a combined 12 saves.
LaRocca earned All-Tournament honors after accumulating 14 saves in the two matches. She played a total of just under 88 minutes in the two games.
Noting Eastern Illinois: The Panthers play the first to two matches in Chicago on Friday against DePaul. Eastern Illinois takes on Loyola to complete the weekend on Sunday afternoon. The Panthers are 1-1 after splitting games at the UTEP Minor Classic in El Paso, Texas, last weekend. They opened the season with a 2-0 win over North Texas before falling to UTEP, 4-0. Head coach Tim Nowak is in his first season. A year ago, the Panthers posted a 13-6-2 record and advanced to the NCAA Tournament. The Series: Eastern Illinois leads the series, 5-1... the Panthers recorded a 3-2 victory in 2004 in Charleston... Lauren Spacht and Lea Hill scored goals for DePaul in that match... at Wish Field, the Blue Demons are 1-2 against the Panthers including a 2-1 win in 2003.
Checking Out Northern Illinois: The Huskies enter the weekend at 1-0-1 after defeating UW-Green Bay and playing Western Illinois to a 1-1 tie. Northern Illinois hosts Wright State on Friday afternoon before traveling to Chicago. Head coach Marci Miller in her first season leading the Huskies who went 6-7-5 in 2004. In the 2-1 win over UW-Green Bay on Aug. 26, Thea Johnson and Elaine Eliadia scored goals while Jenna Clausen scored the goal in the 1-1 tie at Western Illinois on Sunday. The Series: The Huskies lead the series, 2-1, with the two clubs playing for the first time since 2002... DePaul won the last meeting, 4-1, in DeKalb... Northern Illinois claimed the lone match at Wish Field, 4-2, in 1997.
Warm-Ups: DePaul posted a 1-0-1 record in the two exhibition matches played last weekend. The Blue Demons knocked off Toledo, 2-0, at the IPFW Soccer Showcase on Friday before tying Loyola-Chicago, 1-1, on Sunday afternoon. Against the Rockets, Kelly DeBaene and Alissa VonderHaar scored goals in the second half to lead the Blue Demons. Sunday’s match with the Ramblers saw a Julianne Sitch corner kick deflected into the goal by a Loyola defender and a second-half goal by the Ramblers for the 1-1 draw.
Preseason Picks: The Blue Demons were picked to finish sixth in Division B of the BIG EAST Preseason Poll. The BIG EAST Conference features a pair of eight-team divisions with the top 12 overall teams advancing to the league tournament. Senior midfielder/forward Julianne Sitch was one of 12 players selected to the Preseason All-BIG EAST Team.
Looking Foward: DePaul goes on the road for two matches beginning at Western Michigan on Sept.. 11. The Blue Demons and Broncos play at 1 p.m. EST in Kalamazoo. The BIG EAST slate starts with a bang as DePaul takes on defending NCAA Champion Notre Dame on Friday, Sept. 16 in South Bend. The Blue Demons return on Sept. 18 for a 2:30 p.m. match against Central Michigan on Alumni Weekend.