Butler Bulldogs (11-11-0 in 2008) at Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (15-2-4 in 2008)
When: Friday, Aug. 21 - 2 p.m. ET
Where: WKU Soccer Complex (1,000) - Bowling Green, Ky.
Purdue Boilermakers (12-7-3) at Butler Bulldogs (11-11-0)
When: Sunday, Aug. 23 - 1 p.m. ET
Where: Butler Bowl - Indianapolis, Ind.
The Butler women's soccer team kicks off the 2009 season this weekend with a pair of matches against teams that enjoyed successful seasons in 2008. The Bulldogs, led by fourth-year head coach Tari St. John, open the campaign Friday, Aug. 21 at Western Kentucky. BU's home opener is set for Sunday, Aug. 23 at the Butler Bowl at 1 p.m. ET.
Butler returns 10 starters from last season's team, which won 11 matches in 2008. Most of the team's top scorers from a year ago return, led by first team All-Horizon League midfielder Molly Kruger. The senior ranked third in the Horizon League with 31 points (11g-9a) last season, and she led the league in shots per game (4.25).
In addition to Kruger, the Bulldogs will count on a few other experienced seniors. Forward/midfielder Carrie Twyman is the team's second-leading returning scorer, having tallied 19 points (6g-7a) last season. Fellow seniors Morgan Cox, Abbie Kaul, Lindsey Fox and Kenzie Kokta each played key roles last season. Kaul was a second-team All-Horizon League honoree, totaling seven points (2g-3a) and playing a key role in the defensive third.
Butler also welcomes fifth-year senior Angie Muir back on to the pitch this fall. Muir, who injured her knee and didn't play in 2008, was a first team All-Horizon League performer as a junior in 2007. Muir ranks sixth all-time at Butler with 60 career points and 16 career assists. She is also seventh in school history in goals (22) and shots (157).
Juniors Courtney Lord (second team All-Horizon League) and Sarah Phelps are returning starters who combined for 10 points last season. Sophomore Maite Bastyr started all 22 matches at defender last season as a freshman.
Junior Laura Baker, who saw action in all 22 contests last season returns at goalkeeper. Baker made 21 starts and played all but 165 minutes in net. The junior goaltender was third in the Horizon League in goals against average (1.06) and fourth in saves (85) and save percentage (.794).