Sept. 7, 2003
COLUMBIA, Mo. - Courtney Coppedge's Missouri homecoming ended on a spectacular note, as the senior forward recorded three of Purdue's four goals in the Boilermaker's 4-0 victory romp over the Arkansas Lady Razorbacks Sunday morning at the Nike/Tiger Invitational.
Coppedge, the first player in Purdue history ever to record a hat trick, now owns two multi-goal games in her career; her first coming in 2001 during a 3-1 win at Portland State (two goals). Senior Annette Kent is Purdue's all-time multiple-goal game leader with four.
Coppedge earned the prestigious distinction with just under 10 minutes remaining in the game. She was assisted by longtime teammate Kent, who collected two assists on the day.
"It's a good feeling, but I know I couldn't have accomplished this without the awesome players that surround me," said Coppedge. "I'm so lucky that I get to play with them."
In attendance for the historic feat were Coppedge's parents, Kevin and Lois Coppedge, her two sisters Kim and Kendel, as well as her best friend, Kristin Gibbons.
A native of Florissant, Mo., Coppedge scored the match's opening goal at 33:58 on a header that darted to the right of Arkansas keeper Carrie Dillsaver. The score was assisted by Kent, who crossed it over to her classmate from the far right side.
Kent's assists, the 10th and 11th of her career, pushed her into a tie for second with Lauren Sesselmann on Purdue's all-time career assist list.
About three minutes later, Coppedge connected again from in front of the net courtesy off a ground cross assist from senior Jennie Moppert. The assist was the 12th of Moppert's career, tying her with Jessica Baumhoff on the team's all-time list.
"Annette did all the work setting up my first goal," said Coppedge." She just laid it in there for me and I finished it off. Same kind of deal for my second goal. Moppert took it all the way up the line, saw me standing in the middle and was able to get it to me."
"Courtney did an excellent job of finishing through on all her opportunities," said head coach Rob Klatte. "As a team, it was a long wait for us to record the first hat trick, but if anyone can take advantage of a situation, it's Courtney. She is a very clinical soccer player, someone who is always very composed and focused on the field."
Purdue completed the first 45 minutes with eight shots, seven of which were on goal. For the game, Purdue outshot Arkansas, 16-6.
The Boilermaker's defense returned to its suffocating form, allowing just three shots through the first period, two of which were on goal. Freshman goalkeeper Lauren Mason made two clutch saves in the first half, including an leaping tip save coming off a shot from Christina Burger, which she pushed over the top of net. The impressive save was the first of Mason's career.
The 5-11 keeper from Colorado Springs, Colo. made another gutsy save early in the second half, coming out to the top of the penalty box to block down a shot taken from Julie Williford.
Williford was stopped again by Mason midway through the second period. The Lady Razorback broke through the Boilermaker defense, to create a one-on-one matchup with the freshman, but was unable to push the ball past rookie's outstretched arms.
Mason's triumph was her first complete game shutout, making a team season-best five saves in 90 minutes. Last weekend against Marshall, Mason combined with Maureen Carey for the 3-0 win.
Arkansas' last chance to break into the scoring column came after a Purdue defender was handed a yellow card. On the ensuing free kick from Allison Harris, the ball evaded the Purdue defensive wall but bounced right up into Mason's hands.
For their stellar efforts this weekend, Mason and Coppedge were both selected to the Nike/Tiger All-Tournament team, along with teammate Kelly Haxton. Against Missouri on Friday night, Mason played just under 45 minutes in goal, blanking the Tigers throughout the second half.
Haxton provided the only offense for Purdue against Missouri, scoring in the match's 34th minute on an assist from Sesselmann. The goal was Haxton's first as a Boilermaker.
Sunday's win not only put the Boilermakers back on the winning track, it was also the program's 50th all-time victory. The team, which was founded in 1998, has averaged about 10 wins per season, and now owns an all-time win-loss record of 50-44-7.
Purdue continues its road swing next weekend with a trip to Champaign, Illinois for the Clash of the Conferences. During the two-day, four-team invitational, the Boilermakers will match up with the Missouri Valley Conference's Illinois State Cardinals (Sept. 12) and Evansville Purple Aces.(Sept. 14).