No.7 WWU entertains Notre Dame de Namur and Dixie State
Sept. 10, 2013
BELLINGHAM, Wash. - After opening with a huge road win over a nationally ranked rival, the Western Washington University women's soccer team returns home this weekend for a pair of non-conference contests against Notre Dame de Namur on Thursday, Sept. 12 (12 noon) and Dixie State on Saturday, Sept. 14 (4 p.m.), at Orca Field on the Whatcom CC campus.
The Vikings, who moved up five spots to No.7 in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America/NCAA Division II Top 25, began their campaign last Saturday with a 1-0 upset victory at nationally No.3 ranked UC San Diego.
WWU's Jessica Bertucci (So., Bellingham/Sehome) scored the winning goal with just over a minute remaining after receiving a through ball from Stephanie Hamilton (So., Orting/Bellarmine Prep). Catherine Miles (So., Anacortes) began the sequence with an interception at midfield.
Midfielder Ashton Griffen (Sr., Duvall Cedarcrest) earned GNAC Defensive Player of the Week honors for her effort and goalkeeper Alyssa Beauchamp (Sr., Vancouver/Mountain View) made four saves in her first collegiate regular-season appearance.
Bertucci received GNAC Offensive POW honorable mention.
NDNU enters 2-1-0, all three games being at home. The Argonauts defeated Cal State Monterey Bay 2-1 in overtime, lost 2-1 to Chico State and blanked Cal State East Bay 3-0.
NDNU is led by Adrian Cortes, who earned first-team Pacific West Conference all-star honors last year. She has scored five of the team's six goals this season.
Dixie State, which plays at Seattle Pacific on Thursday, debuted at home last week with a 0-0 overtime tie against Montana State Billings.
WWU, coached by Travis Connell (11th year, 122-59-19) is the defending Great Northwest Athletic Conference regular-season and tournament champion. The Vikings finished 19-4-0, the win total being a school record, and reached the title game of the West Regional.
WWU had a 14-game home unbeaten streak (13-0-1) snapped by Seattle Pacific 1-0 in its 2012 regular-season finale on Oct. 27.
Great Northwest Athletic Conference
Women's Soccer: Western Washington Takes Down No. 3 UC San Diego
PORTLAND, Ore. - Jessica Bertucci (F/M, 5-8, So., Bellingham, WA - Sehome) had the memory of the season-ending NCAA regional defeat at the hands of UC San Diego in 2012 at the front of her mind on Saturday when she knocked home the game-winning goal against the Tritons.
The sophomore forward found the net in the 89th minute of what appeared to be another match between the two schools that was headed to overtime.
Instead, the Vikings came away with their first win of the season and more importantly, set the stage for what could be another postseason thriller this November.
Seattle Pacific had a chance to avenge its 2012 regional tournament loss to UC San Diego as well, as the Falcons opened the season in southern California on Thursday.
Despite an early goal from Red Lion GNAC Offensive Player of the Week Laura Moore (F, 5-3, So., Kent, WA - Kentwood), SPU couldn't prevent a pair of second half goals by the Tritons in a 2-1 loss.
Western Oregon took care of business on Friday, shutting out guest Trinity Lutheran in its season opener in Monmouth.
Northwest Nazarene head coach Mary Trigg made her debut on Thursday, as the Crusaders took a bitter 1-0 overtime defeat at the hands of San Francisco State. The hard luck continued for NNU on Saturday, as host Dominican scored in the 86th minute to snatch a 1-0 victory.
Kaylee Kimmet (GK, 5-5, So., Billings, MT - Billings West) made seven saves and held Dixie State scoreless as Montana State Billings battled to a draw in its season opener on Saturday.
Simon Fraser got off to a 1-0 lead over The Academy of Art on Saturday, but the Clan surrendered a pair of goals in the second half and fell to 0-2 on the season with the loss.
NATIONAL POLL: Western Washington moved up five spots in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America national poll from No. 12 to No. 7. Seattle Pacific, ranked No. 23 in the NSCAA preseason poll, dropped out of the top 25 after its loss to UC San Diego. The poll was released Tuesday.
AHEAD: SPU looks to build off of its 3-0 shutout over Point Loma Nazarene last Saturday as it plays host to Dixie State on Thursday at 7 p.m.
WWU hosts a pair of contests this week, with Notre Dame de Namur in Bellingham on Thursday for a noon game, and Dixie State in town on Saturday for a 4 p.m. start.
Northwest Nazarene hosts its first game of the year on Saturday, as the Crusaders will face rival College of Idaho at 4 p.m.
WOU is California bound this week, with games slated against San Francisco State on Wednesday and Holy Names on Saturday.
Saint Martin's remains in California to take on Holy Names on Thursday, after falling to Cal State L.A. 4-0 on Sunday in its season opener.
After dropping its first two games of the 2013 season, Central Washington takes on Eastern New Mexico in search of its first win.
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