WWU opens GNAC play on road against WOU and SMU
BELLINGHAM, Wash. - Riding a three-game winning streak, all of them shutouts, the Western Washington University women's soccer team opens Great Northwest Athletic Conference play on the road this week, traveling to Western Oregon on Thursday (3:30 p.m.) and to Saint Martin's on Saturday (3:30 p.m.).
Last week, the Vikings won two home contests, both by 2-0 scores, against Pacific West Conference rivals Hawaii Pacific and Azusa Pacific. Two weeks ago, they opened their season on the road versus a pair of California Collegiate Athletic Association teams, being blanked 1-0 by nationally No.4-ranked Chico State before rebounding with a 4-0 win over Notre Dame de Namur.
The victories pushed the 10-year career total of WWU head coach Travis Connell to 105. He needs one more to tie Dominic Garguile (1981-90) as the school's all-time leader.
Senior goalkeeper Jamie Arthurs (Richland), who is working on a scoreless string of 324:57 minutes, needs five more shutouts to tie the WWU career record of 31 held by Teresa Fish (2003-05, 2007). Arthurs has had a school-record tying 11 shutouts in each of the last two seasons.
Freshman forward Jessica Bertucci (Bellingham/Sehome) has scored a goal in each of the Vikings' victories this year, two of them game winners, and leads the team with seven points.
Another WWU first-year player, forward Catherine Miles (Anacortes), has two goals. Two juniors, midfielder Brina Sych (Vancouver/Union) and forward Anna Geldenhuys (Bellevue/Sammamish) are tied for the team assist lead with two each.
WWU has a 64-28 shot advantage in its first four games.
The Vikings hold a 24-5-0 series lead over Western Oregon, winning the last 12 meetings, and they are 7-2-1 against Saint Martin's.
WWU has posted 12 shutouts in its last 14 home games.
Great Northwest Athletic Conference
2012 Women's Soccer Report Week 2 (Sept. 11, 2012)
Conference All W L T GF GA Pts W L T GF GA MSU Billings 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 0 8 1 Northwest Nazarene 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 1 0 8 4 Seattle Pacific 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 1 0 8 4 Western Washington 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 0 8 1 Western Oregon 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 0 6 4 Central Washington 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 1 4 10 Saint Martin's 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 0 2 7 Simon Fraser 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 0 1 4
LAST WEEK: Monday - Northwest Nazarene 2 at Notre Dame de Namur 3; Hawaii Hilo 3, Western Oregon 1 (at Oahu). Tuesday - Central Washington 1 at Point Loma Nazarene 4; Simon Fraser 1, Hawaii Pacific 0 (at Bellingham); Western Oregon 2, Chaminade 0 (at Oahu). Thursday - MSU Billings 2, Dixie State 0 (at Phoenix); Azusa Pacific 0 at Seattle Pacific 1; Hawaii Pacific 0 at Western Washington 2; BYU-Hawaii 1, Western Oregon 0 (at Oahu). Friday - Saint Martin's 1 at UC-Colorado Springs 0. Saturday - Northwest 0 at Central Washington 2; MSU Billings 2 at Grand Canyon 1; College of Idaho 1 at Northwest Nazarene 2 (ot); Hawaii Pacific 1 at Seattle Pacific 3; Academy of Arts 1 at Simon Fraser 0; Azusa Pacific 0 at Western Washington 2. . Sunday - Saint Martin's 1 at Colorado Christian 0.
THIS WEEK: Tuesday - Corban at Saint Martin's, 3 p.m. Thursday - Central Washington at Northwest Nazarene, 4 p.m.; Seattle Pacific at MSU Billings, 3:30 p.m.; Simon Fraser at Saint Martin's, 3:30 p.m.; Western Washington at Western Oregon, 3:30 p.m. Saturday - Central Washington at MSU Billings, 3 p.m.; Seattle Pacific at Northwest Nazarene, noon; Western Washington at Saint Martin's, 3:30 p.m.; Simon Fraser at Western Oregon, 11 a.m.
POLLS: NSCAA National (Sept. 11) - No GNAC team is ranked. NSCAA West Region (Sept. 11) - 6. Montana State Billings, 7. Seattle Pacific; 10. Western Washington.
GNAC RED LION PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Offense - Jessica Bertucci, Western Washington (F, 5-8, Fr., Bellingham, WA - Sehome) had the game-winning goals as the Vikings swept Hawaii Pacific and Azusa Pacific by identical 2-0 scores to earn GNAC Red Lion Offensive Player of the Week honors. She also had an assist on WWU's clinching goal against APU.
Defense - Natalie Harold, Seattle Pacific (GK, 5-3, Jr., Vancouver, WA - Heritage) had five saves, including one to preserve a 1-0 shutout of Azusa Pacific as the Falcons won a pair of home contests. That performance earned her the GNAC Red Lion Defensive Player of the Week award. "Natalie took away a sure goal from Azusa with an amazing save," SPU coach Chuck Sekyra said. "Natalie has been strong in the net. We have not given up a lot of chances, but when we have, she has come up huge."
Katlyn Lokay, MSU Billings (M, 5-5, Fr., Boulder, CO) scored a pair of goals, including the game-winner in a 2-0 win Thursday against Dixie State. The Yellowjackets also beat Grand Canyon 2-1 to improve to 4-0 on the season.
Kelsey Villegas, Central Washington (M, 5-4, Jr., Graham, WA - Graham-Kapowsin/Tacoma CC) scored a pair of goals as the Wildcats split two contests, losing at Point Loma 4-1 before defeating Northwest 2-0.
Riley Dopps, Seattle Pacific (D, 5-5, So., Port Orchard, WA - South Kitsap) had a goal and an assist in the Falcons' two victories. Dopps had an assist on SPU's game-winning goal against Azusa Pacific and scored the first of the game in a 3-1 win over Hawaii Pacific. "Anytime you have a defender like Riley making a difference offensively, it certainly is a powerful weapon," SPU coach Chuck Sekyra said.
Aiko Johnson, MSU Billings (GK, 5-7, Fr., Fullerton, CA) had six saves in wins over Dixie State and Grand Canyon.
Reilly Retz, Central Washington (M, 5-7, Fr., Kent, WA - Kentwood) led Wildcat defense that blanked Northwest. "As a freshman she has started every game and played nearly every minute," CWU coach Michael Farrand said.
Kayla Russ, Western Washington (D, 5-7, Jr., Puyallup, WA) led a defense that blanked Hawaii Pacific and Azusa Pacific by identical 2-0 victories. "Kayla was a huge part of both our shutouts this past weekend," WWU coach Travis Connell said. "She was able to shutdown two talented strikers and help our team limit our opponents to just two shots on goal."
AROUND THE GNAC: Western Washington goalkeeper Jamie Arthurs needed to make just two saves in recording her 25th and 26th career shutouts last weekend. She currently ranks third in GNAC history trailing only Teresa Fish of Western Washington and Maddie Dickinson of Seattle Pacific. Fish had 31 during the 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2007 seasons. Dickinson had 28 between 2007 and 2010. Arthurs moved ahead of Jennifer Hull of Seattle Pacific, who had 25 between 2001 and 2004. . .Seattle Pacific's Ali Martin had a pair of goals, including the game-winner, and Ashley Shaw had a pair of assists in the Falcons' 3-1 win over Hawaii Pacific. . . Nicole Nedervelt scored the game-winning goal in the 85th minute on the assist from Randi Mielke in Saint Martin's 1-0 win at Colorado Christian. . .Sarah Staropoli had two goals and an assist as Northwest Nazarene split two contests. Whitney Wood netted the game-winner in the Crusaders' 2-1 overtime win over College of Idaho. . .Aja Choy-Halo scored the game-winner as Simon Fraser edged Hawaii Pacific 1-0. . .Lindsay Bauman scored the game-winning goal in Western Oregon's 2-0 win at Chaminade.
PREVIOUS RED LION PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Week of Sept. 3-9: Offense - Chelsea Shuman, Montana State Billings (M, 5-2, So., Kalispell, MT - Flathead) scored the game's only goal as the Yellowjackets nipped nationally fifth-ranked Colorado Mines 1-0 Thursday. "Chelsea had an amazing game in the middle and scored a beautiful goal from 25 yards out," MSUB head coach Wojceich Krakowiak said. "She also connected on a lot of passes from our forwards." Defense - Jennifer Larsen, MSU Billings (D, 5-4, Sr., Mesa, AZ - Mountain View) was instrumental in the Yellowjackets' 1-0 shutout of nationally fifth-ranked Colorado Mines Friday. Larsen also scored two goals in a 3-0 shutout of Northern State on Saturday. She was the lone GNAC player to score twice during the opening weekend. "Jennifer was very solid in the back and won a lot of headers," Krakowiak added.
GNAC TEAMS OF THE WEEK: Aug. 27-Sept. 2 - Montana State Billings (Women's Soccer). Sept. 3-9 - Western Washington (Volleyball).
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