Griz return to road to face Northern Arizona and Sacramento State

MISSOULA, Mont. - The University of Montana soccer team continues its 2005 Big Sky Conference schedule on the road this week with matches at Northern Arizona and Sacramento State.

The Grizzlies (2-7-1, 0-1 BSC) face a 7 p.m. (MTN) contest with the Lumberjacks (4-8-0, 0-0 BSC) Friday at Lumberjack Stadium in Flagstaff, Ariz. Montana squares off against the Hornets at 1 p.m. Sunday at Hornet Soccer Field in Sacramento, Calif.

UM opened league play last weekend with a 1-0 loss at Eastern Washington. The Griz also lost 2-1 at Washington State In non-conference action last Sunday.

Griz strong historically in Big Sky
Montana soccer has had a tremendous amount of success both at home and on the road in Big Sky Conference play. The Griz, who have a dominant 23-2-1 (.904) record in home league matches, are 13-10-2 (.540) all-time in road contests.

UM's best conference marks came early in the program's history. In 1997, the inaugural season of Big Sky soccer, the Grizzlies went 5-0-0 en route to their first-ever regular-season and postseason league crowns.

After a 6-1-0 league record in 1998 and a loss in the league title match to Weber State, the Griz bounced back with a 6-0-1 campaign in 1999 which resulted in their first NCAA College Cup appearance. In 2000 the Griz went 6-1-0 and won the league tourney to earn their second-consecutive bid to the NCAAs.

Since 2001 Montana is only 13-10-2 (.540) in Big Sky matches. Despite the lack of dominance in the last five years, UM has appeared in two league title matches. UM lost 1-0 tilts with Idaho State in 2003 and Weber State last year.

Tomsin tallies second goal
Sophomore midfielder Mahlleace Tomsin recorded her second career and season goal last weekend in a 2-1 loss at Washington State. The scored came after Tomsin played a corner kick into the box that was mishandled by WSU's goalkeeper Katie Hultin, resulting in a goal. Tomsin and junior forward Lindsay Winans are the only two Grizzlies who have goals this year.

Sedgwick sound bytes
"Our team has really started to come together with the new players learning the ins and outs of the college game. Our record doesn't reflect the growth that we've made so I feel good about how are team will compete in league play. If you look at the rest of the Big Sky there is only one team that has a winning record which means that a lot of teams are in the same developmental position that we are in," Head coach Neil Sedgwick on the Griz as they enter the Big Sky Conference portion of the schedule.

"They will be a very strong, competitive opponent for us. We had success against them last year at home which gave us strength in the league standings. It's their first conference match of 2005 so they will be excited and ready to defend their home turf," Sedgwick on the Friday matchup against the Lumberjacks.

"Sac State is a team that handed us a very tough loss a year ago. Had we won on the road at their place we probably would have hosted the Big Sky Conference postseason tournament. They are an energetic team that already has as many wins this year that they had all of last season. That match will also be a difficult one because of the travel aspect. It is on the tail end of the toughest road trip," Sedgwick on Sunday's road tilt against the Hornets.

Scouting Northern Arizona
The Lumberjacks (4-8-0, 0-0 BSC) return 12 starters and 18 letterwinners from a team that finished 2004 sixth in the league standings with a 5-11-2 overall and 2-4 conference record.

NAU is coming off a 4-0 win over Utah Valley State. They also boast wins over Southern Utah (1-0), St. Bonaventure (2-0) and Nevada (3-1).

Andre Luciano is in his fifth year as mentor of the Northern Arizona soccer program. Luciano has a 27-51-7 career coaching record, all with the Lumberjacks.

Northern Arizona is led offensively by a pair of freshmen. Forward Cee Cee Odorfer, the Big Sky leader in points, goals and shots this year, has a team-best eight goals and is averaging 3.90 shots per game. Midfielder Kaitlin Baum has added three goals and two assists for NAU. Senior Stefanie Smith has contributed two goals and two assists at her forward position.

Defensively the Lumberjacks are led by two-time All-Big Sky selection Andrea Berra who has 36 saves and a GAA of 2.25 this season.

Montana is 9-2 all-time against NAU. The Griz recorded a 1-0 home win over the Lumberjacks a year ago.

Scouting Sacramento State
The Hornets (3-5-2, 0-0 BSC) return eight starters and 15 letterwinners from a team that finished last in the league standings with a 3-15-0 overall and 1-5-0 Big Sky mark.

Sacramento State is coming off a 1-0 road loss to Pacific. The Hornets have 1-0 wins over both UC Davis and Fresno State. Sac State, like the Grizzlies, recorded a 2-1 win over Idaho.

Katie Poynter is in her second season as head coach at Sacramento State. Poynter has a career coaching mark of 6-20-2, all with the Hornets.

Sophomore midfielder Katie McCoy, a second team all-league pick last season, leads the team with six points on two goals and two assists. Sophomore midfielder Rebecca Phillips has added two goals and one assist for the Hornets.

Freshman goalkeeper Jennifer Lawrence has played all available 950 minutes for Sac State. The first-year player has 57 saves to go along with three shutouts and a 1.42 GAA.

The Grizzlies lead the all-time series 9-2 over the Hornets. Sac State derailed any hopes that UM had of hosting the 2004 league tournament with a 2-1 home win late last year. It was the Hornets only conference victory of the season.

Washington State 2, Griz 1 (Oct. 2)
Senior Haley Thompson-Miller's goal in the 89th minute of play gave Washington State a 2-1 victory over The University of Montana soccer team Sunday afternoon at WSU's Lower Soccer Field in Pullman, Wash. The win improves the Cougars record to 7-3-1. The Grizzlies fall to 2-7-1 on the year.

The match was a tale of two halves offensively. Montana out-shot Washington State 7-2 in the first half but the Cougars came back to have eight shots to the Grizzlies' one in the second. Washington State maintained a 7-4 advantage on corner kicks in the match. WSU record 13 fouls while UM tallied 12.

Sophomore Mahlleace Tomsin and freshman Rachael Mayer led the Griz attack from the midfield position. Tomsin took one shot and scored UM's only goal of the match early in the first half. Mayer tallied four shots, one on goal. Senior goalkeeper Sarah Braseth faced 10 shots and totaled five saves in 90 minutes of work to lead Montana's defense.

Washington State's Thompson-Miller had a team-high two shots, both of which were on goal. Freshman Megan Hyte scored the Cougars other goal and assisted on the game-winner. Senior Katie Hultin registered three saves in goal for WSU.

Montana opened the scoring on a goal by Tomsin, her second of 2005. The sophomore from Seattle, Wash., who was taking a corner kick for Montana, played a pass that was mishandled by WSU's Hultin and made its way into the back of the net.

The Cougars came up with the equalizer in the 40th minute when Hyte got in behind the Griz defense and beat Braseth one versus one for her fifth goal of the season.

The match played to a stalemate until the final two minutes of regulation when Thompson-Miller beat the Griz defense with a goal from the top-right portion of the 18-yard box.

Eastern Washington 1, Griz 0 (Sept. 30)
Eastern Washington Friday night at EWU Sports and Recreation Center in Cheney, Wash. The loss drops the Griz to 2-6-1 overall and 0-1 in league action. The Eagles improve to 2-6-2 overall and 1-0 in conference play.

Montana recorded a season-high 19 shots in the match while Eastern Washington managed only nine. UM had six corner kicks to EWU's four. The Eagles were whistled for 16 fouls in the match, the Griz recorded only nine.

Montana was led offensively by junior Lindsay Winans who tallied at team-best four shots. Junior Lily Coble and freshman Rachael Mayer added three shots apiece. Senior Sarah Braseth faced nine shots and tallied four saves while playing 90 minutes in goal.

Eastern Washington was led by all-conference sophomore Cyeeta Mott who scored the match's only goal in the 25th minute. Senior Beth Russell assisted on the the game-winner. Mott and Kerstyn Dolack tallied three shots apiece. Senior goalkeeper Tiera Como had four saves in recording her third shutout of the season.

Previous weeks
Montana opened the 2005 season with a scoreless draw at New Mexico on August 26. Senior goalkeeper Sarah Braseth recorded her 12th career shutout in the match, a total which ranks second all-time at Montana.

The Griz traveled to Colorado Springs, Colo., for a contest with Colorado College on August 28. Montana was handed its first loss of the season with a 3-0 defeat at the hands of the Tigers.

Next for Montana was the California Invitational which ran September 2-4 at Stewart Field in Berkeley, Calif.

The Grizzlies opened the weekend session with a 3-1 loss to California. Junior forward Linsay Winans scored her first and UM's first goal of the 2005 campaign in the 53rd minute of the matchup with the Golden Bears

In the final day of the California Invitational Montana lost 2-0 to St. Mary's.

The Griz went 1-1 while hosting the Montana Nike Cup Sept. 9-11 at South Campus Stadium in Missoula, their first home matches of the 2005 season.

UM lost 1-0 to Boise State in Friday action at the home tourney. The Griz rebounded with a 2-1 ovretime win over Utah State in the tourney finale.

The Grizzlies opened an eight-match road swing the weekend of Sept. 16-18 with matches at Gonzaga and Idaho. Montana fell 3-1 to the Bulldogs but came back with a 2-0 win over Idaho to close the weekend. Junior Lindsay Winans recorded both goals for UM in the win.


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