CAA Women's Soccer Championship Preview
RICHMOND, Va. (November 7, 2013) – After a pair of exciting quarterfinal matches last weekend, the CAA Women’s Soccer Championship resumes on Friday afternoon at James Madison’s University Park in Harrisonburg, Va.
In Friday’s semifinal action, #2 William & Mary (8-2-6, 5-1-2 in CAA) takes on #3 Northeastern (5-8-5, 5-2-1 in CAA) at 3 p.m., followed by #1 James Madison (14-4-1, 6-1-1 in CAA) against #4 Hofstra (10-5-3, 3-2-3 in CAA) at 6 p.m.
The two semifinal winners will advance to Sunday’s 1 p.m. championship game.
Showing the conference’s depth from top to bottom, five different teams have been crowned CAA champions over the past five years. Northeastern (2008), UNCW (2009), James Madison (2010), William & Mary (2011) and Hofstra (2012) have taken home the title during that period.
James Madison, which is currently ranked #3 in the Mid-Atlantic region by the NSCAA, captured the outright CAA regular-season title for the first time ever after closing the year on a seven-match unbeaten streak. The Dukes went 11-1-1 over their final 13 matches after a 3-3 start. JMU’s offense produced two or more goals in 12 of its last 13 contests with a balanced attack. Junior forward Katie Hyland tops JMU with seven goals, while freshman Ashley Herndon and senior Lauren Wilson have scored six apiece. Defensively, the Dukes have posted shutouts in three of their past six contests. Senior Becky Sparks and junior Shannon Rano are the top defensive performers in front of goalkeeper Ellen Forrest (1.09 GAA).
William & Mary has been the dominant program in CAA women’s soccer with 10 conference championships. The Tribe, which is ranked #6 in the Mid-Atlantic Region, has lost just once (8-1-5) since August 25 and was the only CAA team to defeat JMU during the season. W&M’s top offensive performer is junior forward Emory Camper, who has scored a team-best 10 goals. Senior forward Dani Rutter has contributed four goals and a team-high seven assists. The Tribe has been strong defensively behind junior back Emily Fredrikson and sophomore goalkeeper Caroline Casey, who leads the league with a 0.86 GAA and an .828 save percentage.
Northeastern went winless in non-conference action (0-6-3), but caught fire during CAA play with a 5-2-1 mark. The Huskies’ defense has recorded five shutouts in the past nine matches, which included a 0-0 draw in the regular-season finale against William & Mary and a 0-0 tie against #6 Delaware in the CAA quarterfinals last Sunday, in which the Huskies advanced 4-3 on penalty kicks. Junior goalkeeper Paige Burnett posted a 0.84 GAA and an .811 save percentage in CAA play and junior Bianca Calderone is the top performer on the backline. Offensively, NU is led by senior midfielder Hanna Terry and sophomore forward Morgan Hilby, who both have contributed three goals and five assists. Shayna Blackwood has scored three times.
Hofstra is the defending CAA champion, having edged UNCW 2-1 in double overtime in last year’s title game. The Pride has lost just twice (9-2-3) in their last 14 matches after a 1-3 start and is coming off a 2-0 triumph over #5 UNCW in the CAA quarterfinals last Saturday. Junior forward Sam Scolarici has scored a CAA-best 17 goals this year and has tied the Hofstra season record. Sophomore forward Leah Galton has also been a big contributor with eight goals and a league-high 11 assists, while Jeannine Molleda has chipped in five goals and five assists. Defensively the Pride features a pair of senior standouts in Brittany Farrriella and Ruby Staplehurst. Freshman Friederike Mehring has started the past three games in goal after an injury to Emily Morphitis and posted the shutout against the Seahawks.
Admission to the championship is free for all three matches.
Video for both semifinal matches and the championship final of the CAA Women's Soccer Championship will be carried live for free in high definition on CAA.TV and CAA's iPad app. A free login will be required to view the games via CAA.TV on a computer or using the CAA's iPad app. The same free login link will be provided accordingly on the Women's Soccer Championship Central page, which will also include game recaps, boxscores and much more.
2013 CAA Women’s Soccer Championship
JMU University Park – Harrisonburg, Va.
November 8 – Semifinals
#2 William & Mary vs. #3 Northeastern – 3:00 p.m.
#4 Hofstra at #1 James Madison – 6:00 p.m.
November 10 - Finals
CAA Championship Game – 1:00 p.m.