Scots Prepare For Colonels in NCAA Tournament

Tournament Central

This week's outlook: The College of Wooster women's soccer team will travel to Centre College to face the host Colonels in the first round of the NCAA Division III Women's Soccer Championships. The game is scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday on Amend Field, Centre's one-year old facility that features a Bermuda natural grass playing surface.

Media coverage: Fans can follow the first and second rounds through the available live stream and live stats page hosted by Centre College. Fans can also follow the women's soccer team Twitter account @CoWWSoccer for live updates.  

How we got here: Wooster (13-3-3) earned an automatic bid into the NCAA Division III Women's Soccer Championships after claiming its first North Coast Athletic Conference Tournament Championship last weekend with a 4-0 win over Wittenberg University. Centre (19-0) won their seventh Southern Athletic Association Tournament Championship with a 3-0 win over Rhodes College.

The rest of the pod: In the 1:30 p.m. matchup, 22nd-ranked University of Chicago (13-4-1), who was last year's NCAA Tournament runner up, will play Grove City College (16-3-1). The winners of Saturday's matches will meet in the second round at 1 p.m. Sunday.

Scouting the Colonels: Centre is ranked fourth in the United Soccer Coaches NCAA DIII Women's Poll for its highest ranking in program history. Their 19-0 record makes them one of two undefeated teams still remaining along with No. 1 Washington University (17-0). The Colonels are outscoring opponents 67-4 and are averaging 3.5 goals per game. They have not given up a goal in their last 13 games, a 49-0 margin in that span. They are led by junior Alana Hughes, who has posted 40 points behind 15 goals and 10 assists. Six players have tallied at least 10 points. Sophomore goalkeeper Sarah Stodghill has 24 saves for a save percentage of .889.

Tournament background: Centre is making their eighth consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance. Their best finish came in 2015 when they reached the final four. Centre had a first round exit last year in the tournament with a 2-1 loss to Illinois Wesleyan University. Wooster is making their third overall appearance in the tournament and their first since 1996. They lost 2-1 to Heidelberg University in 1996 and 1-0 to the University of Mary Washington in 1992. Both games were hosted at Wooster.

All-NCAC players to watch: The conference office recently released its All-NCAC selections, and Wooster collected five spots with seniors Erica White, Emma Lawrence, Devin Frisby and juniors Claire Davis and Morgan Mooty. White was named Offensive Player of the Year, while Lawrence was named Defensive Player of the Year. It was the first-time Wooster collected both awards in the same year.

How they match up: Centre leads the all-time series 2-1. Their last meeting came in 2011. Against similar opponents this year, Centre is 5-0, while the Scots are 2-1-2.  

500 wins between coaches: Jay Hoffman, a Centre alumnus, won his 200th game this season and is 217-66-23 since becoming the head coach of Centre in 2004. Wooster's Geordie Brown, in his 28th year, picked up his 300th career in the season opener and rides a 312-168-53 record into the game.

Quite the season so far: Wooster reached 13 wins for the first time since 2008 when they finished 14-6. Their second-place showing in the NCAC was their best finish since 2012 and their conference tournament title was their first. The Scots improved their NCAC Tournament record to 3-5-5 overall. The 4-0 win in the championship over Wittenberg tied for the largest margin of victory in the title game.

Changing the record book: White has put her name in the school record books, capturing the individual record for goals (18) and points (41) in a single season. Cathie Docherty previously claimed both in 1987 with 39 points and 16 goals. The senior has a career tally of 56 points and 24 goals to tie her for eighth all-time in goals and place her 10th in points. White also scored the fastest goal to start a game earlier this season when she scored 11 seconds into their contest against Mount St. Joseph on Sept. 12. The game prior against Washington and Jefferson College on Sept. 8, White and Davis combined for the fastest consecutive goals in a span of 33 seconds. It was a second better than the previous record which was achieved in 2006 and 1995.

Ticket information: Ticket prices are $6 for adults, $3 for seniors and students and $2 for ages 3-12. Children three and under get in free.

Alumni reception: Wooster alumni, parents, and fans are invited to join the College's Office of Alumni & Parent Engagement at Blue Grass Pizza & Pub (314 W. Main St., Danville, Ky.) for a post-match reception starting at 1:30 p.m. Pizza and soft drinks will be provided by the College.