First Touch #7: Ranked Wolverines Set to Host Iowa, Nebraska
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MGOBLUE

Sept. 25, 2012

Holly Hein Thrives Post Cancer | Inside Michigan Women's Soccer

THIS WEEK
Friday, Sept. 28 -- vs. Iowa (U-M Soccer Stadium), 7 p.m. EDT
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Sunday, Sept. 30 -- vs. Nebraska (U-M Soccer Stadium), 2 p.m. EDT
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The No. 22-ranked University of Michigan women's soccer team (9-2-0, 3-0-0 Big Ten) looks to continue its winning ways with four of its next five matches at the U-M Soccer Stadium. This weekend, Michigan will host Iowa (11-1-0, 2-1-1) on Friday (Sept. 28) at 7 p.m. and Nebraska (5-5-1, 2-1-0) on Sunday (Sept. 30) at 2 p.m.

This Friday's match with Iowa will be streamed online (for a fee) through the MGoBlue.com All-Access Player. Tickets are available for both matches and can be purchased through the U-M Athletics Ticket Office by calling (866) 296-6849 or online at www.mgoblue.com/tickets.

-- MATCH NOTES --

Return to the Rankings ... Michigan is back in the NSCAA/Continental Tire D-I Collegiate Rankings for the first time in seven years, coming in at No. 22 in this week's poll. The last time the Wolverines were ranked was Sept. 6, 2005, when they were No. 17.

Multiple Honors (Again) ... Haley Kopmeyer was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week after recording a pair of shutouts, and was also named National and Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week by CollegeSportsMadness.com. Meanwhile, Kopmeyer and Nkem Ezurike were named to TopDrawerSoccer.com's 11-player Team of the Week. Redshirt junior Holly Hein was also named to the CS360 (CollegeSoccer360.com) Primetime Performers Weekly Honor Roll for her defensive performance over the weekend.

Shutting Out, Shutting Down ... Eight of Michigan's nine wins this season have been shutouts. Last Sunday's win over Wisconsin set a new school record for consecutive shutouts in a season (five). The Wolverines' defense has not allowed a goal in the last 450:53, a span of six matches. The school record for most minutes without allowing a goal is 618:33, accomplished Oct. 7-Nov. 9, 2001.

Getting Defensive ... Through the first six weeks of the season, the Wolverines lead in the Big Ten in fewest goals allowed (four), goals-against average (0.36) and shutouts (eight). In the national ranks, fifth-year senior goalkeeper Haley Kopmeyer is fifth in goals-against average (0.36) and sixth in save percentage (.907).

The Last Meeting
Michigan1
Iowa0
September 30, 2011
Iowa City, Iowa
Ezurike, Kopmeyer Send U-M Past Previously Unbeaten Iowa
Nkem Ezurike scored the game's lone goal in the 54th minute and goalkeeper Haley Kopmeyer made 10 saves for her sixth shutout of the season, helping Michigan knock off Iowa, 1-0, on the road.

The Last Meeting
Michigan2
Nebraska1
October 2, 2011
Lincoln, Neb.
Ezurike's Two Scores Vault Wolverines by Nebraska
Nkem Ezurike scored a goal in each half and Haley Kopmeyer posted six saves to push Michigan past Nebraska, 2-1, for U-M's third straight road victory.

Home Comfort ... The Wolverines own an unblemished 6-0-0 record at the U-M Soccer Stadium this season, outscoring opponents by a 15-1 margin. The last time Michigan won its first six home matches to start a season was 2002. Additionally, it has outscored opponents 15-1 at home this season.

Turning Point ... Since its 2-1 loss to then-No. 11 Long Beach State on Sept. 2, Michigan has won five straight, outscoring opponents by an 11-0 margin and holding the edge in shots, 70-35.

Balanced Attack ... Eleven different players have scored at least one goal and 10 different players have recorded at least one assist. Additionally, 18 different players have started at least one match this season.

Close Contests ... Michigan is 5-2-0 this season in matches decided by one goal. The Wolverines were 5-5-1 in one-goal matches last season.

Previewing Iowa ... Iowa is 11-1-0 this season and 2-1-0 in the Big Ten. Its only loss of the season came in its Big Ten opener, losing to Illinois, 2-1, back on Sept. 16. The Hawkeyes are currently first in shots (218), goals (35) and points (96) while being second in assists (26) and goals per game (2.92). Their offensive attack is spearheaded by Cloe Lacasse, who is tied for the conference lead in goals (11) and points (28), as well as Ashley Catrell, who is tied for third in goals (seven).

Previewing Nebraska ... The Cornhuskers are 5-5-1 this season and own a 2-1-0 record in Big Ten play, scoring wins over Northwestern and Indiana. They play Michigan State on Friday in East Lansing prior to Sunday's contest. Nebraska's offense goes through Mayme Conroy, who has six goals this season.

Week in Review ... Michigan extended its shutout streak last weekend, scoring road victories over Minnesota (1-0) and an upset of then-No. 14 Wisconsin (3-0). Nkem Ezurike scored three goals on the weekend, including a pair in the win over the Badgers, and also scored the lone goal of the match against Minnesota. Haley Kopmeyer made seven saves through the two matches, earning shutouts in both. [ MGoBlue Recaps: Minnesota | Wisconsin :: Michigan Daily Recaps: Minnesota | Wisconsin ]

Huge Win ... The Wolverines reached a few accomplishments with their upset win last Sunday over Wisconsin. It was their first victory over the Badgers in nearly five years (Oct. 21, 2007) and first victory in Madison since Nov. 7, 2003. Additionally, it was Michigan's first win over a ranked opponent since Oct. 31, 2010 (beat No. 16 Illinois, 3-2), and first victory over a top-15 ranked team since Sept. 19, 2004 (beat No. 11 Illinois, 1-0).

-- TEAM NOTES --

Senior CLASS Award ... On Sept. 18, fifth-year senior Clare Stachel was announced as one of 30 finalists for the 2012 Senior CLASS Award. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence -- community, classroom, character and competition. Stachel has played in only two matches this season due to injury, but is a reigning All-Big Ten selection and two-time Academic All-Big Ten selection. She is also the second three-time captain in program history.

Yellow Armband ... Clare Stachel, Haley Kopmeyer and Holly Hein have been chosen as team captains for the 2012 season. Stachel is only the second three-time team captain in program history, joining Debbie Flaherty (1994-97), who captained the team from 1995-97. Kopmeyer wears the armband for the second straight season, while Hein is in her first.

Non-Conference Success ... Michigan's regular-season non-conference record over the last three season stands at 16-5-3, with the Wolverines winning at least five non-conference matches in each of those seasons. The last time Michigan won at least six non-conference regular season matches was 2002.

Lights, Camera, Action ... The Wolverines' road match against Ohio State on Thursday, Oct. 18, will be televised live by the Big Ten Network. The match will begin at 8 p.m. in Columbus, Ohio.

UP NEXT
Saturday, Oct. 6 -- at Northwestern (Evanston, Ill.), 7 p.m. CDT

Contact: Brad Rudner (734) 763-4423


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