WSOC Begins BIG EAST Season
Courtesy: Seton Hall Athletic Communications
GEORGETOWN SERIES NOTES
• The all-time series between Seton Hall and Georgetown is tied 8-8-2.
• Seton Hall picked up a 3-2 overtime win against the Hoyas last season in South Orange.
• Katie Ritter scored a pair of goals in last year's victory over Georgetown
VILLANOVA SERIES NOTES
• The Wildcats hold an 11-6-1 lead in the all-time series with Seton Hall.
• Seton Hall has won its last two games against Villanova, including a 1-0 victory on the road last season.
• The Pirates are 3-5-1 all-time at home against Villanova.
CLARKE AND RUHE ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
Junior midfielders Ashley Clarke and Amie Ruhe were named to the Villanova Classic All-Tournament Team on Sept. 10. Clarke registered her team-leading fifth assist of the year on a Stephanie Soma goal against La Salle on Sept. 7, while Ruhe started at midfield in both games of the tournament, playing a full 90 minutes against William & Mary.
HAVING A BREAK THROUGH
Junior midfielder Marie Klemme is having a breakout season offensively for Seton Hall. Entering the 2012 season with one point from an assist during her freshman campaign, she currently ranks second on the team with eight points on three goals and two assists. She has scored a point in five of her eight games played and ranks ninth in the BIG EAST in goals scored.
LENDING A HELPING HAND
Junior midfielder Ashley Clarke is quickly climbing up the Seton Hall career and single-season assists leaderboards. With a team-high five assists so far in 2012, she ranks sixth all-time in the single-season list and her career tally of nine assists ranks seventh in Seton Hall history. Additionally her five assists currently rank 10th in the NCAA, just two off the national lead.
PIRATES IN BIG EAST OPENERS
• Seton Hall is 9-7-1 all-time in BIG EAST opening matches.
• The Pirates have won two-straight conference openers and began last season's BIG EAST schedule with a 3-2 overtime win against Georgetown.
• Seton Hall started its last two conference campaigns at home.
• It is just the second time Seton Hall is playing Georgetown to open a BIG EAST season; The Pirates have faced Rutgers seven times in the opening match.
GO FOR THE GOAL
For the second straight year, the Seton Hall soccer programs will partner with the Go 4 The Goal Foundation and host a "Lace Up For Pediatric Cancer" game on Sunday, Sept. 16, when the women's team takes on Villanova. The Pirates will don gold shoelaces to raise awareness for the foundation. The laces became a staple of many athletics programs at Seton Hall during the 2011-12 academic year and helped Go 4 The Goal raise approximately $1,600. In addition, the laces will be available for purchase at the games.
MAIORANA AMONG NATION'S BEST
Freshman goalkeeper Gina Maiorana has had quite a start to her career at Seton Hall. Starting in four games so far this season she has posted a 4-0-0 record with a 0.25 goals against average and three shutouts, all numbers that rank at or near the top of the BIG EAST and the nation.
On the heels of wins over Monmouth and Delaware, Seton Hall landed two players on the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll (9.3). Ashley Clarke was joined by senior defender Taylor Mims in receiving the honor. Clarke tallied four points in the two matches and Mims has asserted herself as a defensive stalwart in 2012, playing every minute for a Pirate defense that yielding just one goal in the two matches.
TOUGH NON-CONFERENCE SCHEDULE
Seton Hall head coach Kazbek Tambi put together a number of early season tests for his squad as they prepare for BIG EAST play. Four of Seton Hall's eight non-conference foes were NCAA Tournament teams last year: LIU Brooklyn, William & Mary, La Salle and Army.
After peaking at No. 7 last week, the Pirates checked in at No. 10 in the most recent NSCAA Northeast Region poll. After receiving votes in the first poll of the year the Pirates have been ranked regionally for the last three consecutive weeks.
HISTORY AT THE HALL
Now in its 19th year, Seton Hall got off to the best start in program history, recording wins in their first five contests for the first time. It was also just the second time the Pirates have remained unbeaten through their first five contests. In 1998, SHU posted a 4-0-1 start before suffering the first setback of the season.
0H S0 G00D
The Hall left each of their opponents with a 0 on the board as their scoreless streak to start the year reached a record mark of four-straight matches. With the 3-0 shutout win against Monmouth (8.28), the Pirates surpassed the previous high mark of three-straight clean sheets to start a season which had previously been achieved twice, first in 1996 and again in 2004.
D'YONNA GETS DEFENSIVE
Freshman D'Yonna Riley has quickly established herself as an imposing force on the Pirates' backline, playing all 90 minutes in each of the four shutouts SHU has posted in 2012. Riley, who also tallied her first career point with an assist in the win at Lehigh, was named BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Week (8.27) for her efforts.
KELLY SHINES IN DEBUT
The Monmouth match also marked the first appearance in the SHU net for transfer Alyssa Kelly. Kelly, graduate student who joined the Pirates after playing three years at Vermont, she followed three-straight shutouts by freshman Gina Maiorana with a clean sheet of her own, making six saves to keep the Hawks at bay.
SPREADING THE WEALTH
In addition to their defensive exploits, the Pirates have utilized a balanced attack to support their recent winning ways. Seven different players have combined to account for SHU's 12 goals through eight matches. Midfielders Marie Klemme leads the way with three goals, while Stephanie Soma, Ashley Clarke and Kristina Meier have two apiece. The Pirates have also tallied 15 assists so far, tied for the highest total in the BIG EAST.
A pair of Pirates recorded landmark achievements in contributing to wins over Lehigh and Monmouth. Junior midfielder Marie Klemme made her first goal as a Pirate a game-winner with a second half score at Lehigh. Sophomore Angie Shehaj also scored for the first time in her collegiate career, putting the result out of question by adding the Pirates third against Monmouth.
Seton Hall finished last season with a 9-8-3 overall record, advancing to the quarterfinals of the BIG EAST Tournament. The Pirates achieved a number of milestones last year:
• Seton Hall's nine victories were the most for the program since 1999.
• SHU finished fourth in the BIG EAST National Division with a 4-6-1 overall record, qualifying for the BIG EAST Tournament for the first time since 2006.
• The Pirates defeated St. John's, 1-0, in the first round of the BIG EAST Tournament for their first postseason win since 1999.
• Senior Taylor Wilson and sophomore Katie Ritter each earned Third-Team All-BIG EAST honors, marking the first time since 1999 Seton Hall saw a pair of student-athletes receive all-conference accolades.
ALL EYES ON RITTER
Seton Hall junior forward Katie Ritter was named to the TopDrawerSoccer.com BIG EAST Preseason Top-20 watch list. After leading the Pirates in scoring with six goals last season, Ritter earned Third-Team All-BIG EAST honors. TopDrawerSoccer ranked her as the No. 16 player in the BIG EAST Conference and the No. 5 forward.
SHEHAJ THE WORLD TRAVELER
Seton Hall sophomore Angie Shehaj got some international playing experience under her belt when she played a pair of exhibition games with the Albanian National Team during the offseason. Shehaj, who was born in Albania and moved to the United States when she was five, suited up for her national team against Macedonia and Montenegro last May. For SHU last season, she saw action in 13 games and ranked second in the team with three assists.
CLIMBING THE ALL-TIME RANKS
Junior forward Katie Ritter is steadily climbing up the Seton Hall career ranks in points and goals scored. She currently sits in 10th place in school history with 28 points and is tied for sixth with 13 goals. After notching an assist against Monmouth (8.28), she needs just one point to tie Katie Andreski for ninth all-time and is one goal away from moving into a tie for fifth place with Rita Massot.
KEEPING GOOD COMPANY
Junior forward Katie Ritter earned Third-Team All-BIG EAST accolades following her sophomore season, after being named to the conference's All-Rookie Team in 2010. She is just the second player in program history to go on to earn All-Conference recognition after being named to the All-Rookie Team; the only other is SHU Hall of Famer Kelly Smith.
KEEPING BUSY OVER THE SUMMER
The Pirates saw several of its student-athletes play for the USL W-League this summer. Senior Cristina Barthel, senior Taylor Mims, junior Ashley Clarke, junior Meghan Hayes and assistant coach Christina Reuter all competed during the offseason. Clarke scored seven goals to go along with four assists for the North Jersey Valkyries to earn All-Eastern Conference honors. Additionally, junior Amie Ruhe played for the Maryland Capitals in the WPSL.
HALL ADDS TRANSFER IN NET
Seton Hall welcomes graduate student Alyssa Kelly to South Orange for the 2012 season. Kelly, a New Jersey native, played for three seasons at the University of Vermont before graduating last spring with a business administration degree. She started in 16 contests during her sophomore season at Vermont, stopping 109 shots, the ninth-highest single-season total in school history.
BIG EAST PRESEASON POLL
Seton Hall was picked to finish sixth in the National Division in the 2012 BIG EAST Preseason Coaches' Poll. The Pirates,who return nine starters and 18 letterwinners from last year's squad, finished fourth in the division last season with a 4-6-1 record.
CLASS OF 2016
Head coach Kazbek Tambi and the women's soccer program brought in six freshman this offseason to make up the Class of 2016. Joining the Pirates on the field this fall will be goalkeeper Gina Maiorana (Street, Md.), defender Melissa Blevins (Laurel Springs, N.J.), forward Christie Cherup (Wayne, N.J.), defender Emily Hansinger (Mount Laurel, N.J.), defender D'Yonna Riley (Washingtonville, N.Y.) and defender Alexis Urbanski (Aberdeen, N.J.).
FUTURE HALL OF FAMER
Assistant coach Rick Stainton is getting ready to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Stainton, who played collegiate soccer at Green Mountain College, will be inducted into his alma mater's athletic Hall of Fame on Friday, Sept. 28.
NEW ASSISTANT COACH
Seton Hall added a new volunteer assistant coach during this offseason in former SHU men's soccer standout Jerrod Laventure. Laventure, who suited up for the Pirates from 2001-04, was a First-Team All-BIG EAST selection and an NSCAA All-American. Following his collegiate career he played for the NY/NJ MetroStars in the MLS.
2012 BIG EAST CHAMPIONSHIP
The 2012 BIG EAST Women's Soccer Championship will be hosted Friday and Sunday, Nov. 2 & 4, at Joseph J. Morrone Stadium on the campus of the University of Connecticut in Storrs, Conn. BIG EAST Tournament first round action will take place at campus sites on Thursday, Oct. 25, and the quarterfinals will be played on Sunday, Oct. 28.