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Soccer Travels To Minnesota For NCAA First Round

Courtesy: Allie Musso, Assistant SID
Release: November 10, 2008
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By Tony Harman

BOULDER The 16th-ranked University of Colorado women’s soccer team earned its sixth-straight appearance, and a No. 4 seed, in the 2008 NCAA Championship Tournament this Friday, Nov. 14 when they take on South Dakota State at the Elizabeth Lyle Robbie Stadium in the Twin Cities.


“Playing in Minnesota is not going to be a shock to our system,” said head coach Bill Hempen.  “It could be just as cold here, so there’s not going to be an issue with that.  We’re just going to heal our wounds from the tournament and look forward to the opportunity to have another chance to play together.”


The Buffs are 14-4-4 on the season after falling to Missouri in the Championship game of the Big 12 Tournament on Sunday by a score of 1-0.  Colorado is one of six teams to make the NCAAs out of the Big 12 Conference.  Texas A&M, Oklahoma State, Missouri, Texas and Kansas all earned bids. Texas A&M and Missouri will host first and second round games.


The Buffaloes, making their sixth appearance in a row, are ranked No. 16 in the latest NSCAA/adidas top-25 coaches poll.  The Buffs own a 4-5-1 NCAA record and have won three of their last four NCAA tournament first round matches, advancing at least to the second round in each of the last four years.  CU earned its first-ever trip to the NCAA Sweet 16 in 2006 when they traveled to South Bend, Ind. to face top-ranked Notre Dame.  Riding a nine-game unbeaten streak, the Buffs fell to the Fighting Irish by a score of 3-0.


Colorado will face South Dakota State for the first time in program history on Friday.  SDSU, boasting a 14-4-1 record, earned an automatic bid into the tournament after winning the Summit League Championship over the weekend with a 1-0 win over Oakland (Mich.). 


The winner of Friday’s match will move on to face the winner of No. 20 Minnesota and Marquette. Game times of both rounds will be released at a later date.


“I certainly tried to make sure that the girls understood not to take anything for granted and assume that we would be playing at home,” said Hempen.  “We were pretty shocked that we played at home last year and I think I had the team prepared this year.  It’s hard to predict what the selection committee is going to do.”


For more information, continue to check in on www.CUBuffs.com or go directly to the NCAA Soccer Championship website, http://www.ncaa.com/champ/wsoc-div1-champ.html.  PDF of the 2008 Championship bracket attached.

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