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November 8, 2010

2010 Season - Vikings will take on Carleton in NCAA soccer

Augustana is currently 13-1-5 overall and the Vikings will face Carleton in the first round of the NCAA women's soccer tournament on Friday, November 12. This will be the fourth NCAA appearance for Augustana under the direction of head coach Scott Mejia.

For the second consecutive season, and the fourth time in school history, Augustana will be participating in the NCAA Division III national tournament in women’s soccer. The Vikings of veteran head coach Scott Mejia earned an at-large berth following a 14-1-5 campaign. Augustana will play Carleton in a first round game on Friday, November 12 at Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois.

Carleton is 14-2-2 overall and won the regular season title in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference with a 9-1-1 mark. The Carls tied Concordia-Moorhead 1-1 in the championship match of the MIAC tournament and also earned an at-large berth in the NCAA tournament. The winner of the Carleton/Augustana match will play the winner of the Lawrence (9-8-1)/Wheaton (18-3-1) battle on Saturday, November 13.

The match between Carleton and Augustana will start 30 minutes after the Wheaton/Lawrence contest, which has a 5:00 p.m. start. The approximate starting time for the Vikings will be 7:30 p.m.

Augustana made a run to the “Sweet Sixteen” of the national tournament a year ago and finished with a 20-2-1 mark. The Vikings were eliminated by Calvin 2-1 in the semi final of the sectionals. This will be the fourth NCAA appearance for Mejia’s club. Augustana tied Wisconsin-Eau Claire 0-0 in the first round in 2005 but the Blu-Golds advanced on penalty kicks. That regional was held in Wheaton, Illinois. The next year (2006) the Vikings defeated Grinnell 2-1 in the first round but fell to UW-Eau Claire 4-0. UW-Eau Claire served as the host school in that regional.

Last year Augustana hosted the regional and beat Albion 2-1 in the first round and defeated Wisconsin-Stevens Point 1-0 in the regional championship. The Vikings hosted the sectional as well and dropped a 2-1 decision to Calvin.

Augustana is currently ranked 11th in the nation by D3soccer.com and 18th by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America. Carleton is rated 24th in the D3soccer.com poll and 16th by the NSCAA.

Sophomore Taylor Moesle (Carl Sandburg HS, Orland Park, Ill.) leads Augustana in scoring with 12 goals and three assists for a total of 27 points. Junior Ashley Higuchi (Smoky Hill HS, Aurora, Colo.) is next with six goals and four assists for 16 points while junior Erin Coulson (Neuqua Valley HS, Naperville, Ill. – now resides in Hermosa Beach, Calif.) has five goals and three assists for 13 points. Junior Jessica Dodds (Linn-Marr HS, Marion, Iowa) has five goals and two assists for 12 points.

The Vikings have allowed just nine goals this season in 1,820 minutes of play. Junior Kayla Radloff (West Chicago HS, West Chicago, Ill.), who earned NCAA Division III All-American honors a year ago, is 13-1-5 in goal and has a goals-against-average of 0.48.

Augustana tied Illinois Wesleyan 1-1 in the semi-final of the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin tournament last Wednesday, November 3. The Titans advanced to the championship match against Wheaton by virtue of a 5-4 advantage in penalty kicks.