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UConn Set To Battle USF For American Championship On ESPNU

Riley Houle led all players with six shots on goal in UConn's semifinal victory
Nov. 8, 2014

Game Notes (PDF) || Championship Central || Radio (WHUS, 91.7 FM)

TAMPA, Fla. -- After upsetting top-seed UCF on Friday night, the four-seed UConn women's soccer team (13-4-4) plays for the American Athletic Conference Championship title against host and three-seed South Florida (13-6-1) on Sunday at Corbett Soccer Stadium. The Huskies are aiming for their third Conference Tournament crown in program history and to lock up a bid to their 29th NCAA Tournament all-time. Kick-off on ESPNU is set for 11 a.m.

Connecticut has played in a conference tournament in 20 of the last 21 seasons, playing in the Big East tournaments from 1993-2012 before debuting in The American last season. UConn is 22-16-5 all-time in conference tournament play, including 12 trips to the conference final and league tournament titles in 2002 and 2004.

Rachel Hill (Rollinsford, N.H.) leads UConn offensively with a league-best 16 goals and three assists for 35 points, also the most in The American. The sophomore All-America candidate has made five weekly conference honor rolls and is tied for 14th nationally in goal-scoring. Hill has 29 career goals in 40 career appearances, including game-winning goals in both of UConn’s matches this tournament.

Hill was named the American Athletic Conference Co-Offensive Player of the Year on Thursday night. She was also a unanimous selection to the All-Conference First Team, where she was joined by seniors Gabrielle Charno (Seaford, N.Y.) and Riley Houle (Columbia, Conn.). Rounding out UConn’s postseason accolades were All-Rookie nods for Danielle Gottwik (New Port Richey, Fla.), a unanimous selection to the team, and Breanne Moreau (Belchertown, Mass.).

UConn and USF met for the 11th time in program histoy earlier this year, a 2-0 victory for the Bulls that evened the all-time series at 5-5-1. The two sides were conference-mates in the Big East from 2005-12 and continued as conference rivals last year in The American.

The Huskies are in the midst of a four-game winning streak, with each victory coming via a shutout by the defensive unit. Goalkeepers Emily Armstrong (Collegeville, Pa.) and Allison Saucier (Rocky Hill, Conn.) have settled into a half-by-half rotation and been excellent, while the support from center backs Charno and Toriana Patterson (Yorktown Height, N.Y.) and outside backs Megan Hunsberger (Bethlehem, Pa.) and Gianna Roma (Foxboro, Mass.) have helped the Huskies to a streak of 405:13 of game-time without allowing a goal. Also key to the defensive success are holding midfielders Brianna Butler (Rock Tavern, N.Y.) and Samantha McGuire (Fishkill, N.Y.)

SEMIFINAL RECAP
The Huskies upset top-seed Central Florida on Friday night, taking down the Knights by a score of 1-0. Hill scored for Connecticut in the seventh minute, burying a cross from Lindsey Watkins (Litchfield, Conn.) and giving the Huskies an early lead they would not relent. The Husky defense recorded its fourth-consecutive shutout and ninth overall in 2014, thanks in part to one save each from Armstrong and Saucier. The win was UConn’s second this year against No. 19 UCF, while the Knights went 9-0-0 against the rest of the American Athletic Conference in regular season and conference tournament action.

A LOOK AT THE BULLS
USF advanced to The American title game after a dominating 3-0 victory over East Carolina in semifinal action on Friday. The win moved the Bulls to 13-6-1 on the year, as they have won six in a row and eight of nine overall. Olivia Chance leads the USF offense with a 9-5-23 scoring line, while Leticia Skeete is second on the squad in goals (7) and points (16). Demi Stokes and Kate Loye have each chipped in indentical 4-4-12 scoring lines, giving the Bulls four players with double-digit scoring marks. In goal, Katarina Elliott and Thordis Aikman have split time and combined to record a 1.07 GAA with a .711 save percentage and eight shutouts.

Following Sunday's match, the NCAA Tournament Selection Show will be held on Monday, Nov. 10 at 4:30 p.m.
The Last Meeting
USF2
UConn0
October 17, 2014
Joseph J. Morrone Stadium, Conn.
Huskies Blanked 2-0 By USF
The UConn women's soccer team dropped a 2-0 decision to USF on Friday afternoon at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium. The loss moves the Huskies to 9-4-4 on the year and 2-2-3 in American Athletic Conference play, while the Bulls improve to 8-6-1 and 3-3-0 in league action.


 

 

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