Nov. 17, 2002
SOUTH BEND, Ind. - The No. 14 Purdue Boilermaker women's soccer team fell on Sunday, 3-1, to Notre Dame in the second round of the 2002 NCAA Tournament. With the loss, the Boilermakers fall to 14-6-2 and the Irish improve to 13-7-0. Sunday's game marked the first time in history that the Old Gold and Black had competed in the NCAA Tournament's round of 32.
"Today, we weren't able to punch in an early chance like we did the first time we played Notre Dame," said Purdue head coach Robert Klatte. "That made a huge difference in the match and they held strong. With that first goal going past our goalkeeper and a central midfielder from a great individual effort and then once they got that second, we just had a long road to haul. I was proud of our way to peg our way back into it, but they crushed it on the corner kick on a great set play and that was when I think it really took the wind out of our sails."
The game began with Notre Dame winning the toss for the first kickoff and the Boilermaker defense with the chance to show their strong point.
Notre Dame came out quickly, as the Irish were a different team than the Boilermakers saw in October. The Irish attacked quickly, taking two shots in the first six minutes and tallying their first corner kick at the 9:43 mark. However, the Boilermaker defense continued to hold strong and not allow anything especially dangerous to go through the back line.
Notre Dame continued the attack and made good with their first goal at the 21:11 mark, when senior goalkeeper Jocelyn Cavalier was drawn off her line to block the pass but was dribbled around. Senior middle back Elise Berry and junior middle back Mary Masck went two on two with the Notre Dame offense, but Amanda Guertin made her way through and easily one-touched the gall across the goal line, despite the Purdue defense scrambling to make the team save. Katie Thorlakson was credited for the assist, after Kim Carpenter dribbled about 40 yards through the middle of traffic.
The Fighting Irish took the rest of the period and made their attack even stronger, tallying seven shots to Purdue's two, as the Boilermakers were not able to get a good shot off until the last couple minutes of the first half. Sophomore forward Lauren Sesselmann took the shot for Purdue, as she attacked from inside the box for a save by the ND keeper. Freshman midfielder Jayme-Lee Biamonte' was there on a rebound, however, and shot again only 10 seconds later for a shot that went just over the crossbar.
The half ended, as the Irish took the lead at 1-0 into the 15-minute break.
At the beginning of the second half, the Boilermakers came out stronger than in the first and made an attack with two shots and a corner kick in five minutes. But, shortly after the Purdue shots, a yellow card followed for senior defender Elise Berry and Notre Dame regained the momentum.
The pace turned back to more like the end of the first half with Notre Dame fighting hard and heading toward its offensive end of the field. Taking advantage of the wind, Notre Dame made good on another goal at the 57:42 mark, when Guertin found the back of the net again by crossing the shot from the left post to the right past Cavalier.
The game got more physical as the Irish took the 2-0 lead, but the Boilermakers continued to the fight both on the offensive attack and in the midfield, winning many, if not most, of the headers and second touches at that point of the game. Two shots, both saved, and two corner kicks would follow before junior forward Courtney Coppedge made good on her second goal of the year as she drove past and split two defenders and went one-on-one with the keeper in the 76th minute.
With new energy, the Boilermakers returned to the center circle to face off with the Fighting Irish, but the Irish quickly regained the momentum with a third goal in the 84th minute when Melissa Tancredi headed a hard cross into the back of the net off of a set corner kick. Guertin received credit for the assist on the corner, her sixth assist off a corner of the year and her fifth point of the game.
The Old Gold and Black continued the fight for the remainder of the game, but could not find the back of the net again despite the back-and-forth possession changes in the midfield.
The 2002 Boilermakers end their season as the first Purdue women's soccer team to qualify for the NCAA Tournament.
"It's been a fantastic season," said Klatte. "I told the young ladies on our team that this has been, by far, the most enjoyable coaching season of my career and our kids work hard. We're a hard-working team, not the most talented team, but we're competitive, we fight and we dual right up to the end. That's kept us in games and given us a chance to win."