By Hubert Busby Jr.
November to Remember! For all those college basketball junkies like myself, I know you are excited about the start of the college basketball season. However, the soccer version of March Madness is truly underway.
This season has shown once again how competitive and balanced women’s soccer is.
Starting closer to home, Seattle University won the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) and therefore earned an automatic bid into the group of 64. Their first round opponent was the 7th ranked powerhouse, University of Portland. Led by former Sounder, Julia Besagno, the Lady Redhawks lost a close encounter to their Pacific Northwest rivals 2-0. Congrats to Coach Woodward and the squad on a great season.
In the Eastern part of the state, Coach Keidane McAlpine and his nationally ranked WSU Cougars hosted a well coached University of Illinois. After 120 minutes of soccer, the game was finally decided by Illinois winning on penalty kicks. Look for this talented team to be a PAC 12 contender once again next year.
Further down the West coast, the battle of Northern-California took place between the Santa Clara Broncos and the Cal Berkeley Bears. The match featured four Sounder players. Although Nikki Ambrose was ruled out through injury, Sofia Huerta featured for Santa Clara with Genessee Daughetee and Rachel Mercik led Cal. This tightly contested battle saw the Broncos come out on top with Huerta scoring the match winner for Santa Clara, with the assist by Sounders training player, Brittany Ambrose. This talented Broncos squad features U.S. Senior National Teamer, Julie Johnston. The Broncos could be poised for a deep run in the tournament. Congrats to seniors, Rachel and Gen on a tremendous college career.
Santa Clara 2-1 California – RECAP & BOX SCORE
Across the country, the ACC Champions, Florida State Seminoles showed their National Championship intent by disposing of the University of South Alabama 5-0. Sounders Women forward, Marta Bakowska-Mathews featured once again and continues to provide quality minutes for Coach Krikorian.
Florida State 2-0 South Alabama – RECAP & BOX SCORE
In Lubbock Texas Jaelene Hinkle and Janine Beckie lead the Red Raiders to a convincing 3-0 win over the Minnesota Gophers. U20 USA International, Janine Beckie, scored twice with Hinkle providing an assist on one of the goals. Coach Stone’s young squad is eager to take on their interstate rivals Texas A&M in the Rd of 32.
Texas Tech 2-0 Minnesota – RECAP & BOX SCORE
Lastly, congrats to coach Clarke and the UW men’s team who captured the PAC 12 championships, and best of luck in the tourney. Also, welcome back to Seattle, former Sounders Women star, Sydney Leroux.
Keep the ball rolling…
Hubert Busby Jr.
Head Coach & General Manager
Seattle Sounders Women