Aug. 6, 2005
The 2005 season rapidly is approaching for the Notre Dame women’s soccer team, with the defending NCAA champions set to play a pair of in-state exhibitions on Aug. 14 (at Butler, 2:00) and Aug. 18 (vs. Virginia, in Fort Wayne, 7:00). Irish fans will have a chance to relive the 2004 NCAA championship-game win over UCLA, as the game will be rebroadcast Sunday, Aug. 7, on ESPN-U (10:00 p.m. EDT, 9:00 in South Bend). The rebroadcast is part of ESPN’s “50 States in 50 Days” summer feature series, with Aug. 7 dedicated to the state of Indiana.
For more information on “50 State in 50 Days,” see the left sidebar at www.espn.com. The linked page includes data on sports history, fan polls, etc., from Indiana and the other states.
Be sure to check back to und.com throughout the weekend and in the days leading up to the official season opener (Aug. 26, vs. New Hampshire in Vermont) for plenty of information and updates on the defending NCAA champs. Here’s a look at some of then content coming soon to und.com:
* FC Indiana update – the Goshen-based team was riding high after winning the WPSL title last weekend and added one final championship this week, winning the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup with wins over Ajax America (2-0) and the Dallas F.C. Titans (4-0). Incoming ND freshman Brittany Bock had another strong weekend in the midfielder for FC Indiana while ND rising junior defender Christie Shaner stepped forward as an emergengcy goalkeeper for the second half of the Ajax game and the first 70 minutes of the final game vs. the Titans. Shaner’s ND classmate Nikki Westfall is FCI’s staring ‘keeper but was unable to attend the Open Cup due to her brother’s wedding (the backup GK also was not able to play, forcing Shaner and a couple of her teammates into the rare net duty). Another incoming ND player, Kerri Inglis, played a number roles during the weekend (including her own stint in the nets to end the team’s impressive 18-1-0 season). A wrapup of the Open Cup is forthcoming, as are photos from the past two weekends and quotes from the four ND players.
* Rising senior forward Katie Thorlakson and her Vancouver Whitecaps team came two wins shy of repeating as the W-League champion, after Friday’s 2-1 loss to the New Jersey Wildcats. Thorlakson has been among the scoring leaders all season for the potent Whitecaps team, which plays in the W-League third-place game on Sunday at 4:30 EDT (in New Jersey, at Mercer County Community College).
* Jen Buczkowski and Erika Bohn have checked in after returning from the Nordic Cup, where they helped the U.S. Under-21 National Team bring home the championship trophy for the seventh straight year. Comments from both players and photos from the games (held in Sweden) will be posted soon.
* Several other ND players are wrapping up their summer play. Rising sophomore midfielder Ashley Jones and incoming freshman defender Carrie Dew are playing with the San Diego Surf Cup at the annual Surf Cup (Aug. 6-9). Jannica Tjeder’s busy summer will conclude in late August, as the rising sophomore midfielder/forward and her Finland teammates will play at the World University Games (Aug. 11-21, in Turkey). Finally, incoming freshman midfielder Becca Mendoza is completing summer competition with the Mexican National Team and may join Tjeder is missing some of ND’s preseason.
* The BIG EAST Conference has released its preseason polls and awards and Notre Dame is picked to win its division while Thorlakson (top offensive player) and Bohn (top ‘keeper) received preseason honors. Those two players were joined by Buczkowski and versatile fifth-year veteran Candace Chapman on the 2005 preseason all-BIG EAST team.
* Preseason polls and preseason national awards will be rolling in soon, so stay tuned.
* A season preview and player bio’s also will be added to und.com in upcoming days. Also look for a final recap and tribute to the 2004 national championship season.
* A look at the impressive academic performance of the Notre Dame women’s soccer players, who combined to post a 3.27 team GPA while winning the national title in the 2004 fall semester before registering a 3.35 team GPA in the 2005 spring term (the second-best spring of ’05 GPA among ND’s 26 varsity teams). Bohn and senior midfielder Annie Schefter lead the way as returning Academic All-Americans while three members of the 2004 team – former forward Mary Boland, Jones and Tjeder – each posted a 4.0 semester GPA during the 2004-05 academic year.
* A 2005 Notre Dame women’s soccer “Quick Facts” packet – featuring roster, schedule and ’04 stats, in addition to basic team data and player notes (as of July 30) – is available in PDF form via the following link: