Women's Soccer
Illinois Soccer Takes Momentum Into Weekend

Colleen Joyce leads the Illini in scoring
Colleen Joyce leads the Illini in scoring

Sept. 21, 2000

Champaign, Ill. -


Illinois soccer took another big step forward this weekend with a win at Minnesota on Sunday. The Illini were 1-12-2 on the road in the Big Ten in their three previous seasons, so a win on the road for the Illini is big in their quest for a top finish in the conference an NCAA Bid.


Illinois has dominated all seven games in 2000. The Illini have out-shot opponents, 173-56 in the time or an average of 24-8. Here is a came by game comparison:

Opponent ( UI Shots Opp. Shots)

Eastern Illinois (W) 28 -3

Kansas (W) 22 -9

Syracuse (L) 22 -7

Evansville (W ) 27 -8

Northern Illinois (W) 35 -5

Wisconsin (L) 17 -10

Minnesota (W) 22 -14


The Illini have as veteran of a team as they have had in the program's four-year history with 10 juniors and four seniors. Illinois has also got some great help from some of the fresh faces. The Illini newcomers have combined for 11 of the team's 20 goals. Colleen Joyce, a sophomore who transferred from Montana, leads the team with five goals and ten points. Tiffani Walker, a freshman from Bellevue, Wash., has three goals. Jennifer Smith, a freshman midfielder from Tullahoma, Tenn., scored her first goal vs. Wisconsin and ranked tenth in the nation heading into last weekend's action with three assists in three games. Maggie Kellett and Mary Nitsche scored their first goals vs. Northern Illinois on Sept. 10.


Illinois travels to Illinois State for a 4 p.m. match. Illinois defeated the Redbirds, 4-1, last season. Michigan State plays at Illinois Sunday. The Spartans leads the series two wins to none.


Illinois and Michigan State have played overtime matches in each of the three meetings. MSU won in double overtime, 2-1 in 1997, the Illini took the match, 3-2 in 2OT in 1998, while the Spartans won 1-0 in the first overtime last season. Illinois has out-shot the Michigan State 42-36 in the meetings.


With the loss of incoming starter Sarah Heggen to a season-ending injury, freshman Sarah Anderson and AnneMarie Hennes have been forced into duty. Anderson started games on Sept. 8 and 10, wins over both Evansville and Northern Illinois. Hennes played the second half of the Northern Illinois game, then received the nod from the coaching staff to start to open the Big Ten season this weekend. Hennes responded by posting seven saves over the weekend and defeating Minnesota, 2-0. Hennes had five saves against the Gophers. For the year, Hennes has a 1-1 record and an 0.74 GAA, which leads the Big Ten.


Sunday's Michigan State game is Student Day at the Illinois Soccer Field. Any student showing an Illini Pride Card will be admitted free. Friday's match with Northwestern is "2000 in 2000" where the Illini will try to draw 2,000 fans which would be an all-time record. Any crowd over 800 fans would set a new record. Free tickets will be given away on several area radio stations-- WDWS (AM 1400), WHMS (FM 97.5), WPGU (FM 107.1), WKIO (92.5 FM), WLRW (94.5 FM), WIXY (100.3 FM), Q96, and WGKC (105.9). Contact those stations for details. Oct. 1 is Girl Scout Day where all Girl Scouts will get in free of charge.


Illinois downed in-state rival Illinois, 4-1 last season in Champaign. The win came at a good time for the Illini, who hadn't scored for three straight matches. As had been the case most of 1999, the Illini got on the board early when Lindsay Johnson scored on an assist from Laura Freeman and punched it in from ten feet out. Illinois State tied the scored just 1:35 late on a Christina Gutierrez goal. From there it was all Illini. Johnson had everyone talking about a possible hat trick with a goal at the 14:39 mark off an assist from Hollie Schurr. Emily Brown scored her 14th and 15th goals of the season, the final came on an assist from Heather Nadeau, her first point of her collegiate career.


Illinois has an 8-3-1 record against fellow teams from Illinois. Aside from the victory over ISU, the Illini are 1-0 vs. Western Illinois (an 8-0 victory in 1997), 2-2 vs. Eastern Illinois (EIU won 7-1 in 1997 and 4-2 in 1998, the Illini won 3-0 in 1999 and 2-0 this season), 1-0 vs. Loyola (a 4-0 victory in `97), 2-0 vs. Quincy (1-0 win in `97 and a 5-0 victory in `98), 1-0 vs. Aurora University (10-0 win in `97), and 1-1-1 vs. Northwestern (a 3-2 OT win in `97, a 2-1 loss in `98 and a 2-2 tie in `99).


To ask questions to Illinois coaches and players, send an e-mail to askuisoccer@athletics.uiuc.edu