|| Minnesota at Nebraska
Oct. 25, 2012
The Last Meeting
October 28, 2011
Elizabeth Lyle Robbie Stadium
With only one game left in the regular season, Minnesota women's soccer travels to Lincoln, Neb. for an afternoon contest against the Cornhuskers this Friday at 4:00 p.m. CT. The team, which has already secured a spot in the Big Ten Tournament, will be playing for seeding while Nebraska needs a win to keeps hopes of a tournament showing alive.
The Huskers are heading into the final regular season game battling for a higher seed in the Big Ten Tournament. They currently sit tied with Indiana at the No. 7 spot and await the results of the weekend.
Anchored by a core of young talent, including leading scorer Mayme Conroy, Nebraska holds a current record of 7-10-1, 4-6-0 B1G. Conroy enters the week ranked 21st in the country and tied for fourth in the conference with 12 goals.
Nebraska holds the all-time series advantage (5-1-0) in the short history between these two teams. The Cornhuskers won the first five contests but the Maroon and Gold broke that streak last year when Nebraska joined the Big Ten Conference.
Big Ten Tournament
After the Gophers battled the Cornhuskers on Friday, focus will turn to the 2012 Big Ten Tournament. This year competition will be hosted by Indiana and will begin on Oct. 31st.
Seven of the eight spots have already been secured with host-school and Iowa duking it out for the final bid. In previous years, the tournament host received an automatic invitation, but the rules were changed just last year.
Minnesota has had a recent surge of success, winning five of its last eight competitions. The peak has come with perfect timing too. With only one game left in the regular season, the Gophers sit tied with the Badgers and the Illini as No. 4 in the Big Ten and are therefore guaranteed a spot in the Big Ten Tournament.
As the team takes to the field on Friday, the players look to keep improving in conference action in hopes of securing their best possible seeded position in the tournament.
Not only have the records shown recent on-field success for the Gophers but the women's soccer team has been seeing benefits in the RPI standings. Minnesota is currently placed at No. 45. A Top 50 RPI ranking would prove crucial when it comes to NCAA Tournament hopes.
Sophomore Taylor Uhl has been a huge part in the Gophers' success this season, having 19 goals and nine assists. She holds the top position in the league in points (47), a statistic that, as of Oct. 25, leads the nation. She also ranks second in goals (19), second in points per game (2.61), and third in goals per game (1.06).
Uhl has been able to accomplish these marks due to notching three hat tricks already this season to become the first Gopher to do so in a single year. She has also set records for consecutive matches with a goal (nine) and a point (13).
The Gopher defensive line has overpowered opponent after opponent this season. Of the 18 matches this fall, the Maroon and Gold have only allowed 10+ shots on seven ocassions. In contrast, Minnesota's offense has tallied 10+ shots in every single game.
Minnesota's back four have combined to limit the goalkeeper's workload, allowing only 180 total shots and 21 goals (12 in Big Ten play). They have also worked to force 71 offisides infractions as opposed to the 16 comitted by they Gophers themsleves.
In the History Books
During her tenure with the Gophers, senior Cat Parkhill has carved her name into the Minnesota record books. Coming into the weekend, she sits atop the all-time list in goalkeeper minutes with 7448:25. She also ranks second with a 0.98 career goals-against-average, second with 45 career wins, and third with 266 career saves.
Defending the Robbie
The Golden Gophers have proven over their 20 seasons as a program that it is tough for opponents to pullout a road victory. Over the 20-year span, Minnesota is 120-51-12 on their home pitch, which is a .656 winning percentage.
20th Year Anniversary
This fall marks the 20th-year anniversary for Golden Gopher soccer. In that time, the Maroon & Gold have reached the NCAA Tournament seven times and garnered three Big Ten Championships.
Taking Over the Reigns
The Golden Gophers are under new leadership for the 2012 season as former head coach Mikki Denney Wright resigned to commit more time to her family. Insert new head coach Stefanie Golan, who was formerly at Army for three seasons. Golan led the Black Knights to a 33-18-10 record in three seasons while also guiding them to a NCAA Tournament berth in 2011, which was only the second in program history.