NCAA women's tournament
Lieberman finds scoring touch to lead Cincinnati to 3-2 upset of No. 6 Notre Dame.
NOTRE DAME, Ind. (Sunday, November 18, 2001) -- Sophomore midfielder Rachel Lieberman, who managed but one goal this season, scored twice in the first 17 minutes this afternoon, staking Cincinnati to a lead it would never relinquish in stunning sixth-ranked Notre Dame 3-2 in a NCAA tournament second-round match before 753 at Alumni Field.
In advancing to a third-round meeting with Virginia, the Bearcats (20-3) snapped Notre Dame’s 39-game winning streak (38-0-1) at home and marked just the second time that the Irish have lost an NCAA tournament game at Alumni Field (18-2), the first in 12 outings.
"You don't prepare for this, especially for a team that I think we're better than," Nore Dame coach Randy Waldrum said. "But hats off to Cincinnati. They came out and fought and worked hard for it and were organized in the way they played and took advantage of their chances. I don't think we were very good today in any phase. Defensively, where we've been strong for the last month, we had a couple of breakdowns and when you give away a couple goals to a good team at this time of year, that's a problem.
"Over 18 or 19 years of (being a college coach), this probably is (my toughest loss) because I don't think we performed today, not to take away from Cincinnati because I think they deserved the win. If you go out and have a great performance and you lose, then so be it."
Lieberman's first goal came in the 13th minute with sophomore midfielder Tasha Wagner's run down the right side setting up Amy Simonson for a shot from the right side of the penalty area. Irish senior goalkeeper Liz Wagner made the save, but left the rebound rolling out to the penalty spot for Lieberman, who raced in from the left side and netted the loose ball for a 1-0 lead with 12:12 elapsed.
"I knew the weak side was open," Lieberman said. "When they have the ball, they always pinch in so far. I was kind of shocked that I didn't get tracked into the middle, so I just ran in and shot. They are a great team and all of their players are good. But we found their weaknesses and were able to capitalize on them."
Soon after, a collision in the Irish defense allowed Simonson to get free again into the right side of the box before crossing to a similar spot for Lieberman to drill home to make it 2-0 at 17:02.
Notre Dame (17-3-1), which had advanced to at least the NCAA quarterfinals for seven straight seasons, pulled to within 2-1 at 22:33 when sophomore striker Amanda Guertin found net, racing onto a free kick from Randi Scheller for a 22-yard blast that UC senior keeper Christy Hoffman with a initial lunging save, but could not keep from rolling into the net.
Guertin set a Notre Dame record by scoring a goal for the 10th consecutive game, tying for second place in NCAA Division I record book with Maria Kun (Hartford 1997) behind current United States women’s star Brandi Chastain (15 for Santa Clara in 1990). Guertin, who finished with 16 strikes, netted 10 of Notre Dame's final 16 goals of 2001.
Simonson, the Bearcats’ top returning scorer from 2000 who had just one goal this season before scoring twice in the 3-2 first-round win over Oakland (Mich.) provided a critical tally with a 30-yard chip that caught Wagner too far off her line, putting UC ahead 3-1 at 61:24.
"I knew we needed another goal," Simonson said. "I saw that the (Wagner) had stepped a bit off the line and I had a goal the other night where I scored from the same spot and it was the same thing, right over her head. So I figured it might work again. . . The tournament is all about taking chances, you can't play passive. I think we came out harder, stronger, more focused. We knew what we were up against and we knew that hustling and being aggressive would get it done."
The Irish juggled their lineup in the second half with sophomore Vanessa Pruzinsky moving from defense to forward, a move that produced the game's final goal with 13:10 left. Pruzinsky carried from 45 yards out and unleashed a strong shot from traffic with the rising shot from the right side of the box ripping into the far side of the net to narrow the deficit to 3-2.
UC's three goals were the second-most allowed by the Irish in 33 all-time NCAA games, behind the 5-0 loss to North Carolina in the 1994 NCAA title match.
 Stanford 3,  Saint Mary’s (Calif.) 1
STANFORD, Calif. -- Junior forward Marcia Wallis staked No. 5 Stanford to a two-goal advantage in the first 11 minutes and The Cardinal rolled to a 3-1 decision over 12th-ranked Saint Mary’s of California in a second round game before 1,022 at Maloney Field.
Stanford (15-3-2) next plays Texas A&M in the third round, the furthest it has advanced since 1994 when it made an appearance in the quarterfinals.
"The game was over in the first 10 minutes, it was just a poor start," Saint Mary’s coach Paul Ratcliffe said. "You can't start a game against a team like Stanford with a bad start."
Less than two minutes in, Becky Myers sent a cross from the right side to the near post. Gael keeper Ruth Montgomery got her hands on the ball, but Wallis was right there when the ball popped loose to poke it in for a 1-0 lead with 1:09 elapsed.
Marcie Ward’s assist set up a well-positioned Wallis to again punch in a deflection off Montgomery’s hands to make it 2-0 at 10:20.
"We were saying before the game we just need to score in the first five minutes," Wallis said. "We knew they were going to come out tough, so it was importance for us to establish our dominance early."
Sarah Takekawa pulled the Gaels (15-3-2) to within 2-1 at 30:04. Lucianne Crenshaw beat her defender down the right side and sent a cross for Takekawa to collect and send into the lower left corner from a short distance.
Natalie Sanderson crossed from the right corner to a wide-open Kelsey Carlson who settled the ball and fired her shot into the lower right corner to ice the Cardinal triumph at 3-1 at 86:37.
 Portland 2,  Washington 0
PORTLAND -- Lisa Casagrande and Christine Sinclair scored for fourth-ranked Portland in a five-minute span midway through the first half, then held off No. 14 Washington 2-0 in a second-round match before 1,748 at Merlo Field.
Portland (18-3) will host 10th-ranked Nebraska next Saturday at Merlo.
A hesitation in communication among the Washington defense led to Portland’s first goal at 23:55. Huskies keeper Hope Solo and a defender were slow to clear a bouncing ball leaving Casagrande to get to the ball first for an easy tally from the left side.
Then, Erin Misaki’s short cross found Casagrande in the box. Drawing Solo off her line, Casagrande nudged the ball ahead to Sinclair for an open-net goal and a 2-0 advantage at 27:23 .
"I thought we played pretty well in the first 25 to 30 minutes," Portland coach Clive Charles said. "We didn’t play well in the second half, but we worked hard."
The Pilots increased their all-time edge over the Huskies to 13-1-1 and eliminated Washington (13-5-2) from the NCAA tournament for the fourth time in the last eight seasons
"Portland is great at putting pressure on you from the get-go," Washington coach Lesle Gallimore said. "Giving up a soft goal early in the game takes the wind out of your sail, but it was the second goal which really did us in."
 UCLA 2,  Pepperdine 1
LOS ANGELES -- Midfielder Whitney Jones broke a 1-1 tie in the 48th minute, helping No. 3 UCLA past 24th-ranked Pepperdine 2-1 in a second-round match before 897 at Drake Stadium.
UCLA (19-2), the 2000 national runnerup, advanced to a third consecutive round of 16 appearance where it will host Dayton on Sunday.
UCLA came out strong in the second half, scoring its second goal a little more than two minutes after intermission. Defender Bethany Bogart hit a bouncing free kick through the Pepperdine box to a waiting Jones who knocked it home from about seven yards. The Bruins then held the Waves (17-6) to just one second-half shot.
The Bruins took a 1-0 lead in the 29th minute on an own goal after forward Stephanie Rigamat crossed a high ball into the Pepperdine box that a defender headed into her net.
Pepperdine answered six minutes later when defender Ashley Swanson launched a 50-yard free kick into the UCLA box that was headed in by midfielder Ali Pavoni.
"Player for player, UCLA just has so much depth and they are so athletic," Pepperdine coach Tim Ward said. "They deserved to win. A few years ago I don¹t think it would¹ve been a one-goal game against UCLA. I think they would’ve blown us out. We deserved to be here. The future looks extremely bright for us."
The Bruins dominated most of the game, outshooting the Waves, 17-6, including 12-1 in the second half.
"We picked up our intensity for sure in the second half," UCLA coach Jillian Ellis said. "We didn’t play extremely well in the first half, but I thought if we could play better in the second half, we would get the result. (Pepperdine) is a good team and they played a great game."
 Penn State 3, Villanova 0
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- Junior striker Christie Welsh chipped in a goal and twice assisted Heidi Drummond strikes for No. 8 Penn State which grabbed a three-goal lead after 28 minutes en route to a 3-0 decision over Villanova 3-0 in a second-round match at Jeffrey Field.
"I am glad to get a win and continue on," Penn State coach Paula Willkins said. "I am proud of how we played and strive toward a national championship."
PSU (20-3-1) will travel to Connecticut next weekend for the round of 16 at a date and time to be determined.
The Nittany Lions claimed a 1-0 lead at 10:30 when Drummond headed in a Welsh cross.
Six minutes later, Welsh took a pass from sophomore Stephanie Smith and found the net’s lower right corner for a 2-0 advantage.
In the 28th minute, Drummond again head in a Welsh cross to make it 3-0
PSU held a 17-7 advantage in shots over the Wildcats (13-6-3). Senior goalkeeper Emily Oleksiuk helped the Lions to their 10th shutout of the year byb making five saves. Wildcats senior keeper Janel Schillig also registered seven saves.
 Texas A&M 2,  Southern Methodist 1 (OT)
COLLEGE STATION, Tex. -- Sophomore midfielder Kristen Strutz scored in the first sudden-death to lift No. 7 Texas past 25th-ranked Southern Methodist in a second-round match in front of 1,496 fans at the Aggie Soccer Complex.
Texas A&M (16-3-1) will travel to Stanford for a Friday night round of 16 match.
After a foul was called on SMU, senior forward sent a direct kick from 25 yards out that split the SMU wall and found the toe of Strutz for a point-blank goal at 102:43 -- her fourth of the year – and the victory.
The match marked the third time the Aggies and the Mustangs have met in the NCAA tournament with SMU earning triumphs in 1995 and 1997. "This was a huge win for our team and our program," A&M coach G Guerrieri said. "We have been unsuccessful at beating SMU in the postseason and we finally found a way to get past them."
SMU (16-4) had the advantage most of the first half. Sarah Harvey's third goal of the NCAA tournament and 12th of the season put the Mustangs ahead 1-0 3:42 into the match. Harvey received the ball outside of the box and maneuvered around a defender to finish the play.
"SMU was brilliant during the first 20 minutes or so," Guerrieri said. "They had us sleepwalking and we were lucky to be down by only one goal."
Thrasher scored the equalizer in the 61st minute with her 16th goal of the season on a cross from Strutz. SMU goalkeeper Erin McLeod was caught out of position and Thrasher buried the shot from eight yards out to make it 1-1 on Strutz’s 10th assist of the season.
"From halftime on we won most of the balls in the air and we possessed the ball in the midfield," Guerrieri said. "The team really picked up the pace of play in the second half and it carried into overtime."
Rutgers 1,  Princeton 0
PRINCETON, N.J. -- Senior Keri Lages scored midway through the first half, powering Rutgers to a 1-0 victory over No. 22 Princeton (14-3-2) in a second-round match at Lourie-Love Field.
Rutgers (14-7-1) heads to Chapel Hill to face No. 1 North Carolina Saturday in the round of 16.
Junior Erica Schubert started the scoring sequence by passing to Carli Lloyd who one-touched the ball to Lages who lofted her shot over the head of Tigers keeper Catherine Glenn to make it 1-0 with 26:01 elapsed.
With her assist, Lloyd set a Scarlet Knights' school record of 37 points with 15 goal and seven assists in her first year.