Bumped from the diaries. GO BRUINS. -N
The UCLA women's soccer team (20-1-2) is in College Station, Texas readying for their College Cup match-up with crosstown rival USC (4 pm PST, ESPNU). The 2007 Women's College Cup marks the Bruins 5th consecutive trip to the College Cup and they enter this year as the heavy favorite after a slew of top teams were upset earlier in the tournament.
The College Cup uses the same format as the NCAA basketball tournament with 64 teams, 4 brackets and teams seeded within each bracket. The Bruins enter as not only a #1 seed, but they are the #1 team in the nation while the other 4 teams in the College Cup are seeded #2 (USC), #3 (Florida St.) and #4 (Notre Dame). While UCLA and USC match-up at 4 pm PST on ESPNU, the other seminfinal matching Florida St. and Notre Dame will take place at 2 pm PST on ESPN2. The winners of each match will then face off in the national title game on Sunday at 11 am PST on ESPN2.
The Bruins made it to the College Cup after dominating performances in the 1st round (3-1, Cal State Fullerton) and 2nd round (4-0 Oklahoma St.), followed by overtime nailbiters in the 3rd (2-1, Virginia) and 4th (3-2, Portland). The win over Portland took a header by Danesha Adams in the second overtime to punch the Bruins' ticket to the national semifinals. The Bruins come in to the College Cup having completed their 2nd consecutive undefeated home record and outscored their opponents 21-1 in 9 Pac 10 games.
The Bruins are led on the field by Hermann Trophy (Most Outstanding Player in the nation) frontrunner Lauren Cheney and UCLA's all-time postseason scoring leader Danesha Adams. Meanwhile Kara Lang, only a sophomore, is only 3 points away from moving into 2nd place on UCLA's all-time postseason scoring list. While the players lead the Bruins on the field, the taskmaster and excellent head coach is Jillian Ellis who just picked up pac 10 Coach of the Year honors.
Looking forward to Friday, the Bruins should be confident facing the Trojans, a team they dominated this season and throughout the 2 schools history in women's soccer. The Bruins beat the Trojans in their only meeting this season 2-0 as Cheney and Lang each scored in a match where USC was content to sit back and play defense. Not once did they ever seem to generate a buildup that threatened the UCLA goal. All time, the Bruins domination over the Trojans is staggering. In 19 matches between the 2 programs, UCLA owns a 16-2-1 record and have won 9 in a row. The numbers are certainly in the Bruins favor as they ready to take on the Trojans.
Let's hope we see a replay of this of this Friday.
UCLA's victory over USC earlier this season
Photo Credit: Maya Sugarman- Daily Bruin