2010 Butler Women's Soccer
2010 Horizon League Women's Soccer Championship
PROMOTION: FREE Marco's Pizza available for Butler students at 3:30 p.m.
The 2010 Horizon League Women's Soccer Championship will come to the Butler Bowl this weekend, giving the top-seeded Butler women's soccer team home field advantage in the tournament. Two semifinals are set for Friday, with the league champion Bulldogs play Detroit at 3:30 p.m. The league final is Sunday, Nov. 7 at 1 p.m.
Butler (6-2 HL) last played Sunday, Oct. 24 against Cleveland State. Senior Sarah Phelps buried a PK in the 56th minute to give the Dawgs a 1-0 victory. That same day, Milwaukee lost a 1-0 decision at Wright State, making both teams 6-2 in league play. Butler's 1-0 win at Milwaukee on Oct. 10 gave BU the tiebreaker.
Since that clinching finale, the young Butler squad has spent time getting healthy and preparing for a tournament run. The team had an intrasquad match last Saturday to simulate a normal weekend of play.
"We wanted to keep the rhythm of having a game over the weekend," head coach Tari St. John said. "We wanted to have that same recovery time. As long as the season is, we needed to be able to keep up that intensity, and the girls have done a good job with that."
The Bulldogs start seven freshmen, which has at times been a curse but also a blessing. The team remains hungry after tasting a regular season championship, St. John says.
"The girls enjoyed winning a regular season championship but after a few days it wears off," she said. "Any good competitor wants to move on to the next challenge. Our practices have been awesome and the girls are really motivated."
Following its success, Butler was well-represented with All-Horizon League recognition. St. John was named the league's coach of the year, while freshman Jackie Hafele was tabbed the newcomer of the year. Hafele was also the only freshman to receive first team All-Horizon League status. She was a first-teamer along with sophomore Katie Griswold.
Phelps was a second-team honoree, while Jackie and twin sister Nikki Hafele joined Olivia Colosimo on the Horizon League All-Newcomer Team. St. John has now placed 17 Bulldog players on the all-newcomer team since becoming BU's head coach in 2006.
The winner of Sunday's league title match will earn the Horizon League's automatic berth in to the NCAA Women's Soccer Championship.