Illinois Women's Soccer In Mad Battle For Second Place
Oct. 9, 2000
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - While Big Ten leader, No. 6 Penn State, has a commanding two-game lead in the Big Ten standings, a mad scramble exits for second place in the conference and Illinois is right in the mix.
Heading into a big home weekend vs. Purdue and Indiana, the Big Ten Standings look like this: Penn State, 6-0, Michigan, 4-2, Michigan State, 4-2-1, Wisconsin 5-3, Illinois 4-3, Purdue 4-3, Minnesota 4-3, Iowa 2-5, Indiana 1-5-1, Northwestern 1-5, and Ohio State 1-6.
The top eight teams qualify for the Big Ten Tournament Nov. 2-5 in Champaign. Illinois needs just one tie or an Indiana loss to clinch its third straight Big Ten Tournament bid, but the battle for the seeds continues.
Illinois has made a steady climb through the standings, climbing to eighth in 1998 and sixth last season.
This week's Big Ten slate: (Friday) Purdue at Illinois, Indiana at Iowa, Ohio St. at Northwestern, Wisconsin at Michigan St., Penn State at Michigan, (Sunday) Purdue at Iowa, Indiana at Illinois, Minnesota at Michigan St., Ohio State at Michigan, Penn St. at Northwestern.
BROWN REACHES SCORING MILESTONE
Emily Brown scored her 39th and 40th goals of her career Sunday against Ohio State.
Brown continues to back her claim as one of the most dangerous players in the Big Ten. Brown has scored goals in her last eight games and nine goals in her last ten.
Brown, who is especially potent on balls in the air, holds every Illini record imaginable. After scoring a school-record 18 goals last year and 13 goals the year before, she has nine goals already this season.
Even as a junior Brown is fifth on the all-time Big Ten goals scoring list, tied with Michigan's Amber Berendowsky. Rachel Hoffman of Penn State holds the record with 58 goals from 1994-97. Last year Brown set the Illinois record for goals in the most consecutive games by scoring in five straight. Brown has a goal in 20 of the Illini's 34 games over the past two seasons.
Brown has scored goals against eight of the ten Big Ten teams. She has yet to score against Indiana and Purdue.
ILLINI OUT-SHOOT OPPONENTS
Illinois has consistently fired more shots than their opponents this season, combining for a Big Ten leading 297 shots. Nearly half (144) of those shots have been on goal. The Illini are well on their way to shattering last year's school-record total of 359 shots in the 22-game season. In fact, the Illini have out-shot their opponents in 12 of 13 games . A look at Illinois and totals vs. opponents:
ILLINOIS SEEK REVENGE THIS WEEKEND
Illinois would like to forget last year's trip to the state of Indiana. The Illini played Indiana and Purdue during a streak of three straight scoreless games. Indiana tied the Illini 0-0 and Purdue won 1-0. Illinois is 0-2-1 overall vs. Indiana and 1-1 vs. Purdue.
ANDERSON POSTS SHUTOUT AGAINST OHIO STATE
Sarah Anderson got her third start as Illinois' goalkeeper this season and continues to battle junior AnneMarie Hennes at that position. Anderson posted her first solo shutout this season. She shared in two others in 2000.
Overall, Anderson has allowed two goals while making eight saves in 259:39 this year for a 0.64 goals against average.
With three Big Ten games remaining, the Illini have set the school record for most conference victories in a season with four. Illinois won three Big Ten games in 1998 and 1999.
Illinois came into the season with a 1-12-2 record on the road in its three Big Ten seasons. The Illini have tripled that total with road wins at Wisconsin and Ohio State, giving the team a 2-2 mark on the road this year with one trip left (at Iowa). With a successful October Illinois could also wrap up the school's first NCAA bid.
The Illini have posted six shutouts in 13 games, one shy of the school record of seven shutouts.
OTHER ILLINOIS NOTES
Kelly Walker scored her first Illinois goal on Sunday, the tenth different player to score goals and the 13th different Illini to score a point in 2000. The record for most different players scoring was 14 in the inaugural year of 1997.
Julie Schueller has played in the most games of any Illinois player in history (63). Heidi Holtzman (55) , Lindsay Johnson (55), and Emily Brown (54) are second, second, and fourth on the list. Illinois has a 5-1 record at home this season after going 16-10 at home in its first three seasons.
PROMOTIONS COMING UP
Oct. 13 -- Greek Night (students wearing Greek letters to the game get in free).
Oct. 29 -- Youth Day (Soccer Clinic follow the game)
After missing last season with a knee injury, Rebecca Patrick has returned to anchor a potent Illinois defense. Twice this year she has saved goals with a defender save in front of the Illini goal. Patrick has started every game she has played for Illinois.
ASK ILLINI SOCCER
To ask questions to Illinois coaches and players, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.