Women's Soccer Travels East
Sept. 8, 1998
THIS WEEK The USC womens' soccer team (1-1), led by coach Jim Millinder, will face one of the biggest tests in school history when it travels to College Park, Md., to face Maryland on Friday at 7 p.m. EDT. Then, the Women of Troy take on Towson in a neutral-site game at Maryland on Sunday at 1 p.m. EDT. Maryland is the first ACC school that USC has faced, and its the first trip ever for USC east of the Mississippi.
NEWS & NOTES In the preseason polls, USC appeared at No. 19 in Soccer Buzz and No. 21 in Soccer Times ... Isabelle Harvey and Susie Mora will see their first action of the season this weekend after taking part in the CONCACAF World Cup qualifying tournament last week ... USCs 31 wins over the 1996 and 1997 seasons were more than any other Pac-10 team ... Soccer America chose the Nov. 1 USC-UCLA contest at the Coliseum as one of its top five games to watch this season ... The Women of Troy return nine of 11 starters (not including 1996 Pac-10 scoring leader Isabelle Harvey, who sat out 1997 with a knee injury) and 16 of 23 letterwinners ... USC is coming off its best-ever season with a 16-3-1 record in 1997, and went 7-2 in the Pac-10 for second place.
OPPONENTS Maryland (0-2) lost its first two games of the season to Penn State, 3-0, and an ACC match to Clemson, 2-1. In the preseason polls, Maryland was ranked No. 13 by Soccer News and Soccer America, No. 15 by Soccer Times, No. 18 by the NSCAA and No. 21 by Soccer Buzz. The Terrapins made the NCAA Tournament last year and had an overall mark of 12-9-3 ... Towson (1-0-1 plays Temple on Wednesday and Texas Tech on Friday) opened the season with a 1-1 tie vs. Loyola (Md.) and a 7-0 victory against Iona. Senior midfielder Kari Colsey leads the squad with three goals ... Its the first meeting between USC and both of these schools.
LAST WEEK USC suffered a disappointing 2-0 loss to San Diego State last Friday (Sept. 4) but bounced back to rout Pepperdine, 3-0, on Sunday (Sept. 6). The loss to San Diego State was the first time that the Women of Troy had lost a season opener. Theyre now 5-1 in those games. Andrea Warner, Kim Clark and Courtney Barham each had a goal and an assist in the win against the Waves and goalkeeper Karin Puccinelli made six saves for the shutout.
NATIONAL TEAM NEWS Assuming she keeps playing with the Canadian National Team, Isabelle Harvey will take part in the 1999 Womens World Cup, to be hosted next summer by the United States. Harvey, a native of Quebec, was part of the Canadian team that won the CONCACAF qualifying tournament on Sunday ... Susie Mora also still has a chance to play in the World Cup with Mexico (she was born in Santa Ana, Calif.; her parents were born in Mexico). The Mexicans finished second at the CONCACAF qualifying tournament and will now face Argentina in a two-game series with a World Cup bid on the line ... Meghan Reppe was called up to the U.S. National B team in August but has not yet played in a game.
KIM CLARK One of the top players in the nation, senior midfielder Kim Clark (Cupertino/Monta Vista HS) earned All-American third team status in 1997 with 13 goals and 17 assists (a school record and good for first in the West Region and tied for 11th in the nation), good for 43 points (tied for second in the West Region). A quick and creative player, Clark is one of the focal points of USCs attack. Her 12-game scoring streak ended in the opener against San Diego State, but she began a new streak against Pepperdine with a goal and an assist. Kim also plays basketball for the Women of Troy (along with her twin sister Kristin).
ISABELLE HARVEY After establishing herself as one of the top scorers in the West as a freshman in 1996, midfielder/forward Isabelle Harvey (Quebec, Canada) redshirted the 1997 season with a knee injury. As a sophomore in 1998, shes back at full strength and should again be one of the regions (if not one of the countrys) top players. She scored 20 goals and had 11 assists for a total of 51 points in 1996, all of which led the Pac-10. Harvey will make her 1998 debut this weekend.
COURTNEY BARHAM Senior forward Courtney Barham (Olivenhain/San Dieguito HS) is the Pac-10s top returning goal scorer with 14 in 1997. Barham, one of Troys quickest players, made the All-West Region third team and All-Pac-10 first team last season. She is USCs career goals (31) and points (72) leader and has one goal and one assist in 1998.
FORWARDS Barham is joined up front by sophomore Megan Orach (Huntington Beach/Marina HS), who scored eight goals in 1997 as a freshman. In 1998, she has one assist. Other possibilities at forward include Harvey, Clark and several freshmen. Junior Kaylee Whitfield (Santa Ana/El Modena HS) will miss the season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee against San Diego State. She was attempting to make an amazing comeback after having ACL surgery on her right knee last March.
MIDFIELDERS USCs strongest position, Clark and senior Carol Hatcher (Kapolei, HI/Kalani HS) will patrol the middle of the field, and Harvey and senior Erica De Vitis (Coto de Caza/Santa Margarita HS) are on the wings. De Vitis has one assist in 1998. Defensive midfielder will either be handled by sophomore Katie Ticehurst (Los Alamitos/Mater Dei HS) or freshman Erin Reed (Alamo/San Ramon Valley HS). Sophomore Andrea Warner (Dana Point/Dana Hills HS) started at sweeper last season but returns to her natural position at midfielder and will see a great deal of playing time. She has one goal and one assist in 1998. Two others who will see time off the bench are sophomore Ami Aylor (Lake Forest/Santa Margarita HS) and freshman Brittany Savelkoul (Seal Beach/Los Alamitos HS).
DEFENDERS The defense is anchored by senior Meghan Reppe (Orange/Villa Park HS), one of the quickest players in the West and a 1997 All-West Region second teamer. She could be joined by the likes of Ticehurst, Reed, junior Christina Kushnir (San Diego/Bishops HS) and sophomore Susie Mora (Mission Viejo/Santa Margarita). Mora will make her 1998 debut this weekend. Freshman Kim Abbamonto (Mission Viejo/Capistrano Valley), the 1997 Orange County High School Player of the Year, has been sidelined by an injury.
GOALKEEPERS Senior Karin Puccinelli (Cupertino/St. Francis HS) is the starter for now, but shell be pushed by talented freshman Shaelyn Fernandes (San Jose/Presentation HS). Puccinelli was a co-starter the last two years and she has a career record of 17-5-0. She is 1-1 in 1998 with a 1.000 goals-against average and 14 saves. Fernandes had a prep record of 78-4-5 and led her club team, the Central Valley Mercury, to the last three national championships.
HEAD COACH JIM MILLINDER In his two seasons as USCs head coach, Jim Millinder has turned Troy into a budding national power. He has a two-year record of 32-9-1 (.774) with USC. A former U.S. National Team member who played in the 1982 World Cup, Millinder was named the 1997 West Region Coach of the Year and the 1996 Pac-10 Coach of the Year.
COACH MILLINDER SAYS Maryland opened the season with two tough losses and will be extremely hungry. Theyre one of the top teams in the country. We have to be ready to match their talent and work rate. Its going to be a battle. Its very important that we get two good results this weekend.