Nov. 7, 2000
Illinois will host Xavier in the first round of the NCAA Tournament Wednesday at 7 p.m. The winner of the contest will travel to Penn State for a game at either 11 a.m. or noon CST. In just its fourth season, Illinois is making its first NCAA appearance. Xavier won the Atlantic Ten Conference Tournament Sunday with a 1-0 win over Dayton.
The winner of the Illinois-Xavier match-up will travel to Penn State for the second round match at 11 a.m. CST on Sunday. A total of 48 teams make up the NCAA Tournament -- 21 automatic and 27 at-large selections. The top eight teams nationally are seeded. Penn State is the No. 7 seed in the country. Other games in the Illini's quadrant of the bracket: Holy Cross (10-9-1) vs. Boston University (15-6) with the winner playing Dartmouth (13-4), Arizona State (13-6-1) vs. Southwest Missouri State (11-10-1) with the winner playing Portland (15-3), and Washington State (13-6) vs. Montana (17-2) with the winner facing second seeded Washington (17-2).
Four Big Ten teams made the field, all four will host games. Besides Illinois and Penn State Michigan will host Miami of Ohio, while Wisconsin hosts Princeton.
Besides the four Big Ten teams, Marquette (19-2-1) is also in the field. The Illini defeated the Eagles, 3-1, in an exhibition game in August.
ILLINOIS ONE OF 13 NEWCOMERS
Illinois is one of 13 teams making its first appearance in the NCAA Tournament. The other first-time participants are Arizona State, Boston University, Florida State, Holy Cross, Jacksonville, Liberty, Miami, Ohio, Quinnipiac, Richmond, San Jose State, Southwest Missouri State and West Virginia.
Nov. 11-12 Second Round, Nov. 17-18-19 -- Round of 16, Nov. 24, 25 or 26 -- Quarterfinals, Dec. 1-3 Women's College Cup in San Jose, Calif.
NOTES ON XAVIER
This is the first meeting between Illinois and Xavier. Illinois has also not played a team from the Atlantic Ten Conference. Xavier is one of the hottest teams in the tournament. After starting the season 1-6, the Musketeers have posted a 13-0-1 record, tying Massachusetts. In addition Xavier has allowed just three goals in those 14 games. Outside the conference, Xavier has wins over Tennesee (1-3) and UW-Milwaukee (2-1). Xavier allowed 23 goals in its first 17 games.
ILLINOIS SET SCHOOL RECORDS SET IN 2000
Illinois set several school records during the 2000, including one for wins in a season (13). Other records set during the 2000 campaign.
ILLINOIS COMES CLOSE TO BIG UPSET
In front of a crowd of 681 fans, Illinois played arguably its best soccer in school history. Illinois scored an early first-half goal against No.7 Penn State, then almost held on to advance to the Big Ten championship game. Penn State scored with under ten minutes to play in regulation, then won the game with goal in the 123rd minute in the third overtime.
Penn State has a 6-0 career mark against Illinois. Of those six matches, four have been decided by one goal, including a 1-0 win the first round of the Big Ten tournament in 1998.
BROWN, HODSON NAMED TO ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
Emily Brown and Sue Hodson were named to the Big Ten All-Tournament team. Brown scored three of Illinois' four goals over the weekend, including one against No. 7 Penn State. Brown assisted on the other Illinois goal (by Tara Schuling). For the year Brown has 15 goals and five assists.
Hodson, one of the stalwarts on the Illinois defense, which set a school record for fewest goals allowed, earns the honor for the second straight season.
OTHER NCAA NOTES
Two teams with Illinois tie-ins made the field. Montana (15-4-1), the former team of Illini junior midfielder Colleen Joyce, will play at Washington State in the first round. The Grizzlies won the Big Sky Tournament. Former Illinois coach Jillian Ellis, now the head coach at UCLA boasts the sixth-ranked team in the tournament. UCLA awaits the winner of USC and San Diego.
The Big Ten ranked third in total bids with four. The Pac-10 Conference garnered seven bigs followed by the Atlantic Coast Conferece (6). The Big East, Ivy Group and West Coast Conference had three bids apiece.
ILLINI BY THE NUMBERS
15 seconds between Michigan and Illinois goals last year
13 Wins by Illini, ties a school record
11 Players from in-state on the team
10-8-6-4 Steady progression up Big Ten from 10th to 8th to 6th to 4th
9 Shutouts in 2000, a school record
8-2 Illinois record with Sarah Anderson in goal
4 Years of the Program
9 Games won by 1963 football team under QB Mike Taliaferro
2 Ties in school history
8 Overtime games last year
1 Overtime games this year
JOHNSON, JOYCE ARE CHARGING ILLINI
Last year one of the hottest players on the Illinois team down the stretch was Lindsay Johnson. The junior has taken over right where she left in 2000. Johnson had two goals and an assist in the win over Iowa State Sunday, giving her three goals and two assists in five games. Junior Colleen Joyce had five goals over the last three weekends of the regular season, including three goals and one assist this past week vs. WIU and Iowa State. For the year, Johnson has three goals and six assists, while Joyce is second on the club with 10 goals and 25 points after assisting on two goals in the Big Ten Tournament.
Joyce has the only NCAA experiece on the Illinois team. She led the Montana Grizzlies, amassing eight assists for the club which won the Big Sky regular season and tournament titles.
BROWN MOVES UP BIG TEN CHARTS
With 45 career goals, Illinois's Emily Brown has a chance to become the all-time Big Ten goal scorer next season. Currently Brown is fourth, just one goal out of third (Nicole Lee, Minnesota), four shy of Jennifer McElmury of Minnesota (49), and 13 behind all-time leader Rachel Hoffman of Penn St. (58).
FREEMAN, JOYCE EARNED BIG TEN PLAYER OF THE WEEK
One of the strengths of this Illinois team has been its bench play. That was especially evident against Purdue and Indiana when sophomore forward Laura Freeman scored three goals (two vs. Indiana) in reserve. That earned her Big Ten Player of the Week honors for that week.
Colleen Joyce earned Big Ten Player of the Week honors this week after scoring three goals in wins over Western Illinois and Iowa State. Joyce now has ten goals and three assists for the season.
Soccer Buzz Great Lakes Region Rankings (Oct. 30) -- 1. Notre Dame (20-0-1), 2. Marquette (19-2-1), 3. Michigan (12-8-1) 4. Wisconsin (15-6-1), 5. Xavier (14-6-1). 6. Illinois (13-7) 7. Cincinnati (16-6) 8. Dayton (16-5) 9. Kentuky (15-6), 10. Purdue (12-6-1) 10. Michigan State (12-6-2)
ILLINI OUT-SHOOT OPPONENTS
Illinois has consistently fired more shots than their opponents this season, combining for a Big Ten leading 441 shots. Over half (225) of those shots have been on goal.