The 21st-ranked Case Western Reserve University women's soccer team will travel to Wheaton, Illinois to face The College of Wooster in the First Round of the NCAA Division III Women's Soccer Championships on Friday, November 15th at Joe Bean Stadium.
If the Spartans win against the Scots, they will advance to the round of 32 on Saturday, November 16th and face the winner of the matchup between host Wheaton (Ill.) College and Webster University.
The team that advances from the opening weekend will move on to the sectional round of the tournament next weekend, with sites and game times to be determined.
Friday, November 15th
12:00 PM ET - #6 Wheaton (Ill.) vs. Webster
2:30 PM ET - #21 CWRU vs. Wooster
Saturday, November 16th
2:00 PM ET - Second Round Match
To view the complete 64-team bracket for the 2019 NCAA Division III Women's Soccer Championships, head to https://www.ncaa.com/brackets/soccer-women/d3/2019
General admission: $6
Students and senior citizens: $3
Children (ages 3-12): $2
Children under 3: Free
Fans can find directions to Wheaton College at https://athletics.wheaton.edu/sports/2007/4/24/Athletics%20directions.aspx and a visitor's guide at https://athletics.wheaton.edu/documents/2019/10/10/Visitors_Guide_2019.pdf.
Fans unable to attend the matches can watch a free live broadcast on the Wheaton Thunder Sports Network's online platform, which can be found at https://livestream.com/WheatonThunder. Per NCAA rules, these broadcasts will only air live and will not be archived or available after their original airing. Fans can also follow the matches with live stats, available at https://athletics.wheaton.edu/sidearmstats/wsoc/summary.
#21 CWRU Spartans (13-5-0, 2-5-0 University Athletic Association)
Case Western Reserve received one of the at-large selections to the tournament after finishing tied for fifth in the UAA. It is the Spartans' second ever playoff appearance, with the first occurring in 2011. That season the team hosted the first two rounds, winning the first match against Lebanon Valley but falling in the round of 32 to Cortland State.
Sophomore midfielder Anika Washburn leads the squad with a program record 33 points on a program record 14 goals and five assists. She led the UAA in both points and goals. Washburn also set a school-record with seven game-winning goals, which is the 11th most in Division III. First-year midfielder Merry Meyer has assisted on a UAA-leading eight goals this year. In front of the net, senior goalkeeper Lauren Unterborn finished second in the conference with 68 saves in 1,539 minutes.
The Spartans' 13 wins and 46 goals tie program records set in 2011 and 1995, respectively. In 18 regular season matches, CWRU allowed 18 goals and pitched four shutouts.
Case Western Reserve is coached by Jen Simonetti, in her first season on the Spartan sideline. Before becoming the fifth Head Coach in the history of the program, Simonetti was the head coach at Eastern Oregon University (NAIA) and Marietta College. She is assisted by Jamie Daniels, Greg Moilov, Kaleigh Piscioneri, and student coach Isabel Kazour.
College of Wooster Fighting Scots (14-2-3, 5-1-2 North Coast Athletic Conference)
Wooster advanced to the NCAA tournament by winning the NCAC conference tournament and claiming the league's automatic bid. It is the Scots' second consecutive appearance in the NCAA playoffs and fourth overall. Wooster is 0-3 overall in their playoff history, losing in the First Round last season to Centre College.
Wooster's strength is its defense. The Scots have allowed just 10 goals this season with junior goalkeeper Molly Hutter starting in all of the team's matches. She has recorded 74 saves and 14 totals shutouts, tied for the most in Division III. Hutter is also 23rd in Division III in goals against average, posting a mark of 0.53.
Junior forward Miura Wiley leads the Scots' offense with 19 points on six goals and seven assists. Wiley, sophomore forward Holly Thompson and junior forward Mila Zunich each have a team-leading six goals, and all of Zunich's goals are game winners. On the season, Wooster averages 1.50 goals per game on 15.7 shots per game.
Wooster's Head Coach is David "Geordie" Brown, who is in his 29th year at the helm. Brown is the winningest coach in Scots' history, compiling a 326-171-54 record at the school. He is assisted by Wes Davis.
The Spartans and Scots have faced off 38 times all time, including at least once every year since the Spartans' inaugural season in 1984. CWRU is 13-18-7 all-time against Wooster, good for a .434 winning percentage. Last season, the Spartans prevailed 1-0 in overtime in Cleveland, with former Spartan Emily Dickens scoring the "golden goal."
#6 Wheaton College Thunder (16-1-2, 8-0-0 College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin)
Wheaton received one of the at-large selections to the tournament after falling in penalty kicks in the semifinal round of the CCIW tournament. The Thunder are making their 22nd appearance in the NCAA playoffs, including an appearance every year from 1997-2016 and national championships in 2004, 2006, and 2007. Last season, the Thunder fell to Washington (Mo.) University in the Sectional Final.
Sophomore midfielder Sara Bakke leads the Thunder with 20 points on four goals and 12 assists. Bakke ranks 15th in Division III in assists and 14th in assists per game. Junior forward Isabelle Oliver has a team-leading seven goals and sophomore midfielder Aeva Graber has six goals. Wheaton boasts a balanced attack, with 17 members of the team scoring at least one goal. Overall, the team averages 2.58 goals per game.
The Thunder have conceded just eight goals all season and have pitched 13 shutouts. Sophomore goalkeeper Lauren Ketchum has started every game in goal for Wheaton, saving 56 shots in 1,555 minutes. She ranks 22nd in Division III in both goals against average (.492) and save percentage (.875).
Pete Felske is in his 32nd season as the Head Coach at Wheaton, compiling a 523-128-40 record in that time. Felske is the third winningest active coach in Division III and ranks fifth among coaches in wins all-time across all divisions. He is assisted by Cesar Gomez and Sarah Guidera.
Webster University Gorloks (15-4-1, 7-1-1 St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference)
Webster earned the SLIAC automatic bid by winning the conference tournament as the top seed with a 1-0 victory over Greenville University. The Gorloks are making their 14th appearance in the NCAA tournament and first since 2017, with an all-time record of 2-13. In 2017, the Gorloks fell to Loras College in the First Round.
The Webster offense is one of the most productive in the country. The team has scored 67 goals, the 16th most in Division III, and averages 3.35 goals per game, also the 16th most in the country. Leading the Gorloks' offense is senior forward Melissa Kasper with 45 points on 14 goals and 17 assists. Kasper is fourth in Division III with 0.85 assists per game. Sophomore forward Jordan Lande is 38th in Division III with 0.90 goals per game and has 18 on the season. Third on the team with 13 goals is senior forward Savannah Page, who also ranks 20th in the country with 11 assists.
Defensively, Webster is just as dominant, allowing just 13 goals all season. First-year goalkeeper Taryn Banfield has pitched nine shutouts in 18 starts in front of the net and has a .868 save percentage, 29th best in Division III.
Webster is coached by Luigi Scire, who is in his 21st season in charge of the program. The Gorloks have compiled a 322-94-17 record with Scire at the helm. He is assisted by Mike Hutchison, Lori Khazen, and Duane Kloepple.
The team's 13 wins during the season ties a program record set in 2011...The Spartans have never faced the Thunder or the Gorloks.