Aug. 26, 2004
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BAYLOR (0-0) AT #2 NOTRE DAME (0-0)
FRIDAY, AUGUST 27, 6:30 P.M., SOUTH BEND, IND.
BEARS OPEN SEASON AT SECOND-RANKED NOTRE DAME
The Baylor soccer team opens the 2004 campaign with a trip to South Bend, Ind., to face No. 2 Notre Dame at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, August 27. The Bears open the season after posting a 2-0 record in exhibition play with wins over Arkansas and Houston. Last year, the Bears finished with a record of 7-9-2 under first-year head coach George Van Linder.
Notre Dame, coached by former Baylor head coach Randy Waldrum, enters the season as the favorite to win the Big East Conference and is ranked in the top three in all four of the pre-season national polls. The Fighting Irish are led by defender Mellissa Tancredi and senior right back Candace Chapman. The pair earned Soccer Buzz pre-season All-America honors and were named to the watch list for the Missouri Athletic Club Hermann Trophy, given to the nation's top women's soccer player.
For Baylor, Ginny Rosario-Tull returns for her senior season with the club. The senior forward enters the year ranked fourth on Baylor's all-time career goals scored list with 21 after leading the team with nine goals scored last season. The Bears also return midfielder Tiffany Boshers, a second-team All-Big 12 Conference selection last season.
Baylor also welcomes 13 newcomers to the squad, including transfers Anna Schuch, Kristen Weegar, and Jennifer Martin. The Bears' newest members played a prominent role in Baylor's pair of exhibition victories, as Jessica Hutton, Martin and Schuch scored goals during the pre-season contests. Also, newcomers Ashley Holder and Weegar combined to hold opponents to only one goal scored.
The Bears meeting with the second-ranked Fighting Irish marks the highest ranked opponent Baylor has faced since BU fell to top-ranked North Carolina 5-0 on Sept. 27, 1998. In 1999, Baylor defeated No. 7 Texas A&M 1-0, marking the highest ranked opponent the Bears have knocked off in school history.
LAST TIME OUT - 2003 SEASON REVIEW
The start of the 2003 season marked the beginning of a new era for Baylor soccer, as George Van Linder took over the program after five strong season at in-state rival SMU. Although the Bears season got off to a fast start under the new coach, the team fell victim to several one-goal losses that saw the team fall just short of qualifying for the Big 12 Conference Tournament.
In his first season as Baylor's head coach, Van Linder guided the team to a 7-9-2 record as the squad showed the program, under his guidance, could be heading back toward the Bears' dominant days of the late-1990's in the Big 12 Conference.
The Bears started the year strong, claiming wins over Eastern Washington, North Texas and Houston. In the contest against the Mean Green, a goal by Baylor's Bathany Vick in the ninth minute of overtime ended a wild contest as the Bears claimed a 4-3 victory.
In the next two contests, a pair of one goal losses to Utah and SMU foreshadowed what was to come for Baylor as the Utes and Mustangs handed the first two of what would become five one-goal losses for the Bears on the year.
The key one-goal losses came during the conference season, as Baylor dropped one goal decisions against nationally-ranked Kansas and Missouri that saw their post-season aspirations slip away. The losses cost the Bears a berth in the Big 12 Tournament and a chance to play their way into the NCAA Soccer Championships for the third time in school history.
"We were so close last year," Van Linder said. "So many times we seemed poised and ready to win some closely contested matches against the best teams in the country. But, for some reason, we were unable to get over the hump."
Despite the fact Baylor's misfortunes in one-goal contests would define the season, the Bears still had several highlights during the 2003 season. Perhaps the biggest of the year was the Bears 2-1 upset win over nationally ranked Nebraska on Oct. 3, 2003, at Betty Lou Mays Field. The win was highlighted by back-to-back goals by Tiffany Boshers and Kandyce Farr less than a minute apart as the Bears held on for a 2-1 win.
The victory marked only the second time in school history the Bears had defeated the Huskers, and it was Baylor's first win over Nebraska since 1998.
The season-ending victory over Texas Tech provided another highlight for the Baylor program, as Van Linder reached a career milestone with the win. With the 3-0 victory, Van Linder recorded his 100th career coaching win, as he improved his overall career record 100-56-13.
Although the Bears were unable to claim any team trophies, the season saw a number of Baylor student-athletes receive recognition for their performance on and off the field. The Bears tied a school record with eight selections to the Academic All-Big 12 Conference first team. In addition, Melissa Humke and Emily Fukuchi earned CoSIDA Academic All-District VI honors, only the second time in school history at least two Bears were named to the all-district squad. Finally, for her play throughout the year, Boshers was tabbed a second-team All-Big 12 Conference selection.
The Bears also had several stand-out individual performances on the field as well. Junior forward Ginny Rosario-Tull provided much of the scoring punch for the Bears throughout the year, leading the team with nine goals in 20 points. Rosario-Tull also scored the goals in key moments throughout the season, leading the team with three game-winning goals.
Boshers, April Robertson and Brittani Zonker gave Baylor fans a glimpse into the future, as the trio of underclassmen tied for the team lead with four assists each.
Finally, goalkeeper Monica Housden closed out her career at Baylor, playing every minute of the season, recording 89 saves and four shutout victories.
Even though the Bears were unable to put a string a victories together to propel them into the post-season, the team showed it might be ready to compete with the best of the Big 12 Conference in 2004.
HEAD COACH GEORGE VAN LINDER
George Van Linder enters his second season as head coach of the Baylor women's soccer program in 2004. In his first season as Baylor's head coach, he guided the team to a 7-9-2 record as the squad showed the program, under his guidance, could be heading back toward the Bears' dominant days of the late-1990's in the Big 12 Conference.
The season-ending victory over Texas Tech provided a highlight for Van Linder, as he reached a career milestone with the win. With the 3-0 victory, Van Linder recorded his 100th career coaching win, as he improved his overall record 100-56-13.
Under Van Linder's guidance, a number of Baylor student-athletes received recognition for their performance on and off the field in 2003. The Bears tied a school record with eight selections to the Academic All-Big 12 Conference first team. In addition, Melissa Humke and Emily Fukuchi earned CoSIDA Academic All-District VI honors, only the second time in school history at least two Bears were named to the all-district squad.
Prior to his arrival at Baylor, Van Linder coached at SMU, where he led the Lady Mustangs to four straight conference championships and three NCAA Tournament appearances. Under Van Linder, SMU finished in the top 25 three times and compiled a four-year mark of 59-21-10 (.711) and a conference record of 24-3-2 (.862).
In 2002, SMU finished with a 13-5-5 record and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament, as well as winning its fourth-consecutive WAC championship. The Mustangs finished the year with a No. 20 national ranking by the NSCAA.
Van Linder was named the 2000 WAC Coach of the Year after leading the Mustangs to a 13-5-1 record and their second-straight conference title.
In 1999 he led SMU to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament and a No. 17 national ranking with a final record of 17-6-1. For his team's outstanding accomplishments, Van Linder was tabbed Central Region Coach of the Year by Soccer Buzz at the conclusion of the season.
Prior to his stint at SMU, Van Linder spent five seasons at Butler, the final three (1996-1998) as head coach of the women's program. He was named the 1996 Midwestern Collegiate Conference Coach of the Year after he led Butler to the MCC regular-season and tournament championships. The Bulldogs were ranked No. 22 in the final poll, the highest national ranking in program history.
Van Linder also has worked extensively with the Olympic Development Program. He coached the Indiana youth squad from 1994-98. He spent 1999 and 2000 working with the North Texas ODP team. Van Linder led the 2000 squad to a second-place finish at the national championships.
WORKING THEIR WAY UP THE CHARTS
Several Bears are aiming to continue making their ways up the leaderboards in the Baylor recordbook in 2004. Most notably, senior Ginny Rosario-Tull begins the year ranked fourth in school history in career goals and tied for fifth in career points.
Career Points: Ginny Rosario-Tull (4th, 50)
Career Shots: Ginny Rosario-Tull (5th, 153), Candace Reilly (8th, 89)
Career Goals: Ginny Rosario-Tull (4th, 21), April Robertson (t-7th, 9), Kristin Ruef (6th, 11), Tiffany Boshers (t-7th, 9)
Career Multi-Goal Games: April Robertson (t-5th, 2), Ginny Rosario-Tull (4th, 4)
Career Multi-Assist Games: Kristin Ruef (t-5th, 1), Tiffany Boshers (t-5th, 1), April Robertson (t-5th, 1), Ginny Rosario-Tull (t-5th, 1)
Career Assists: Ginny Rosario-Tull (10th, 8)
Career Game-Winning Goals: April Robertson (7th, 3), Ginny Rosario-Tull (7th, 3), Kristin Ruef (t-8th, 2)
Career Game-Winning Assists: Brittani Zonker (t-8th, 3)