Women's Soccer 2014 NCAA Tournament #2 Virginia / #3 Kentucky Regional Breakdown

Women's Soccer 2014 NCAA Tournament #2 Virginia / #3 Kentucky Regional Breakdown

The Charlottesville Regional has some fun regional type of matchups to kick things off in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Kentucky is surging and looks poised to get to the Sweet 16. In the state of Arizona, you have an in-state rivalry matchup between Northern Arizona and Arizona State that could have some drama with the way the Lumberjacks are playing. LaSalle and Rutgers will be great contrast of styles and Virginia should have a little bit of a test from High Point.


#3 Kentucky vs. SIUE

Kentucky comes into this first round match playing outstanding soccer as they made it all the way to final of the SEC Conference Tournament. Senior defender Arin Gilliand leads the way for the Wildcats, along with sophomore forward Jade Klump, to keep the pressure on opposing back lines. SIUE won the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament and this will be the first appearance in the NCAA Tournament for the Cougars. Senior midfielder/forward Michelle Auer paces the SIU-Edwardsville attack with ten goals. This could be a bit of a high scoring match as both teams have conceded at least 20 goals so far this season.


Arizona State vs. Northern Arizona

This Lumberjacks side has been very resilient as they scratched and clawed their way to a Big Sky Conference Tournament championship. Junior forward Hailey Wingender has been absolutely clutch all season long for Northern Arizona and has seven game-winning goals. Arizona State one of only two teams to find a way to get a result against UCLA this season by earning a 1-1 draw in late September and they have beaten Texas A&M. They are definitely a sleeper team to watch, led by junior forward Cali Farquharson who has scored 14 goals this season for the Sun Devils. This is an intriguing in-state matchup that could go a number of different directions.


Rutgers vs. La Salle

The Scarlet Knights had a very impressive debut season in the Big Ten Conference and are one of the top defensive sides in the nation. They have only conceded ten goals this season thanks to the play of Casey Murphy in goal, along with her backline mates. Offensively, the combination of sophomore midfielder/forward Madison Tiernan and senior forward Stefanie Scholz are going to be very critical to Rutgers success in this matchup. LaSalle had a high enough RPI by playing a great non-conference schedule to find a way into the field as an at-large from the Atlantic 10 Conference. The Explorers will need a big performance out of senior forward Kelsey Haycook, who has 20 goals this season, to advance through to the next round.


#2 Virginia vs. High Point

Virginia has been outstanding all year long especially at home. The Cavaliers have pretty much been able to score at will against everyone minus Florida State this season. Junior forward Makenzy Doniak has 14 goals, senior forward Danielle Colaprico has 15 assists and US National Team member senior midfielder Morgan Brian is very dynamic as well. High Point is making its fifth trip to the NCAA Tournament as they have set a single-season record for wins with 12 in 2014. Senior Jacky Kessler was the Big South Conference Tournament Most Valuable Player with two goals and an assist. It is going to be a significant challenge for the Panthers to slow down the Cavaliers.


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