Hurricanes Headed to NCAA Tournament

Hurricanes Headed to NCAA Tournament

Nov. 10, 2008

CORAL GABLES – The University of Miami women’s soccer team will be playing in the NCAA Tournament for the third time in program history and for the second straight year. Miami will face the UCF Golden Knights, Friday evening at 6:30 p.m. in Gainesville, Fla.

The Hurricanes finished the regular season with a record of 10-7-3. The 10 wins was the most for Miami since 2001 and are the most single-season wins for UM under head coach Tricia Taliaferro, who took over the program in 2002.

“This is a big moment for our program,” said Taliaferro. “For us to receive back-to-back invitations to the tournament, means that we are building a solid foundation here at Miami.”

After starting the season with a program-best 7-0 record, injuries caught up to the Hurricanes and they slumped in the middle of their schedule with an eight game stretch where the team went 0-6-2. Key players, including the team’s leading scorer sophomore Brittney Steinbruch, returned to the lineup just in time to see the Hurricanes play their best soccer of the year over the last month of the season.

Miami had a record of 3-2-1 the remainder of the season, with their only two losses coming to the second ranked team in the nation, North Carolina. In the final game of the regular season, the Tar Heels scored the game’s only goal in the 84th minute. The `Canes again faced UNC in their next game, the opening round of the ACC Tournament. The Miami defense again held the powerful North Carolina offense without a goal until the 66th minute when the Tar Heels scored the game’s only goal.

Miami will be making their third NCAA Tournament appearance and as the case with their two previous appearances, UM will be playing in Gainesville. In 2001, Miami fell to Georgia. Last season, the `Canes fell to Florida. This Friday, the Hurricanes will face UCF for the 10th time in team history, the all-time series record stands at 4-4-1. The teams faced one another in 2007, battling to a 2-2 tie.

This is the second straight year the ACC has placed eight teams among the 64-team field, and a record six will compete as national seeds. North Carolina received a No. 1 seeding, while Florida State and Virginia were awarded No. 2 seeds. No. 3 seeds went to Boston College, Duke and Wake Forest.