INDIANAPOLIS -- The Horizon League's automatic bid to the 2010 NCAA Women's Soccer Tournament will be determined on Sunday, as Butler, Detroit, Milwaukee and Wright State vie for the right to carry the League's banner into postseason play. The semifinals will begin at 1 p.m. ET on Friday, with Milwaukee facing off with Wright State, followed by Butler and Detroit at approximately 3:30 p.m. ET.
All three matches can be seen on HorizonLeague.com.
No. 4 seed Wright State (11-8-0) and sixth-seeded Detroit (8-6-5) advanced from the quarterfinals a week ago, with the Raiders capturing a 1-0 win on their home field on Sunday after the Titans used an 88th-minute goal to reach the semifinals in a 2-1 win at Cleveland State.
In Friday's first semifinal, Milwaukee (10-6-2) meets a Wright State squad that helped relegate the Panthers to the second seed in the tournament. The Raiders used a goal in the 22nd minute to down the Panthers, 1-0, two weeks ago; the loss pushed Milwaukee into a tie with Butler for the Horizon League regular season championship, allowing the Bulldogs to host the tournament.
Milwaukee enters the match with both the Offensive and Defensive Players of the Year in junior Sarah Hagen and senior Nicole Sperl, respectively. Hagen, the two-time conference player of the year, paced the League with 15 goals and 35 points, while Sperl captained a back line that allowed just three goals in Horizon League action.
Wright State counters with two Horizon League First Team selections in junior Brittany Persaud and sophomore Lauren Patterson. Persaud returned from Cancun, Mexico, where she was playing with the Guyanan National Team, in time to assist on the game-winning goal last week; Patterson chipped in 4 goals from her defensive position.
In Friday's second match, League co-champion Butler (8-10-0) meets a Detroit squad it knocked off, 3-0, on Oct. 17. Horizon League First Team honoree Katie Griswold scored her ninth goal of the season in the match, while Olivia Colosimo added two assists for the Bulldogs.
Detroit enters the semifinal after a thrilling 2-1 victory at Cleveland State; trailing early, the Titans tied the match on a strike from Kaitlyn Quarrell; the freshman struck again from just inside the 18-yard box in the 88th minute to push the Titans into the semifinals.
Milwaukee has won the last two conference tournaments, while Wright State will be after its fourth tournament title and first since 2000. Detroit has captured two Horizon League Tournament titles, most recently in 2004, while Butler is after its first title since 1996.
The winners of Friday's semifinals will meet at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday, Nov. 7, to decide the League's automatic bid. The women's NCAA Tournament selections show will be at approximately 4:30 p.m. ET on Monday, Nov. 8, on ESPNEWS.
Tags: Butler - Women's Soccer · Detroit - Women's Soccer · Milwaukee - Women's Soccer · Wright State - Women's Soccer