Spartans to host Duke in final exhibition of preseason
UNCG vs. Duke (exhibition), Aug. 14, 7 p.m., UNCG Soccer Stadium
- UNCG will wrap up the exhibition portion of its 2010 women's soccer schedule when it hosts Duke on Saturday at the UNCG Soccer Stadium. Game time is set for 7 p.m. and admission is free.
- The last time these teams met, UNCG knocked off then-No. 11 Duke 1-0 at the Carolina Nike Classic on Aug. 28 of last season. Tabitha Padgett notched the game-winner in the 24th minute for her first career goal, while keeper Kelsey Kearney made four stops for the shutout.
- UNCG topped High Point by a 4-1 score Wednesday, with four different student-athletes coming up with goals for the Spartans in the exhibition. Junior Cat Barnekow got the scoring started in the 10th minute, and Jessi Gulledge made it 2-0 with a goal in the 51st minute. Jaimey Etten scored in the 63rd minute, and Lauren Hein capped the UNCG scoring with a header in the 75th. Senior Jen Rincon and freshman defenders Kory Spotts and Stine Schoening had one assist each.
- Three freshmen started for UNCG in Wednesday's game, with Spots, Schoening and Morgan Kennedy all earning spots in the defense.
- The Spartans won their fourth consecutive regular-season SoCon title in 2009. UNCG went 13-7-0 overall and 9-2-0 in the SoCon in 2009, running its league-record unbeaten streak in regular-season contests to 33 matches before the senior class suffered its first-ever SoCon loss.
- Padgett was named the SoCon's Co-Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year in an outstanding rookie season. Padgett scored a team-best eight goals in 2009 and was UNCG's second-leading scorer with 19 points overall. Five of her goals were game-winners.
- UNCG returns four 2009 All-Southern Conference players in first-teamers Padgett and Jenn Partenheimer and second-teamers Barnekow and Kelsey Kearney. Padgett and Hein also earned spots on the All-Freshman Team.
- The Spartans return 14 student-athletes from last season's squad, including six of their top eight scorers. Six starters – Padgett, Partenheimer, Barnekow, Kearney, Casey Godwin and Katie Evans – return. Also returning are Hein, Nicole Danford, Katie Durst, Gulledge, Etten, Stephanie Partenheimer, Alex Perry and Rincon.
- Kearney, a two-time All-SoCon selection (first team, 2008) enters the season as UNCG's career leader in goals against average, as she has posted a 0.64 mark in her first two seasons. She is also tied for fourth in shutouts (19) and is sixth in saves (127) and minutes (3,361:05).
- Gone are all-conference players Lauren Lopez, Jen Bronson and Kristin Player. Lopez was one of 10 national finalists for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award in 2009 and was named a second-team All-American by the organization.
- Duke brings back 16 letterwinners and seven starters from last season's 8-9-4 squad, which tied for sixth in the Atlantic Coast Conference with a 4-4-2 league record and fell in the first round of the NCAA tournament. The Blue Devils were picked fifth in the 2010 preseason ACC poll.
- The Blue Devils' entire starting defense returns, led by All-ACC keeper Tara Campbell. Duke also brings back five of its top seven scorers, but lost KayAnne Gummersall and Elisabeth Redmond, two of the program's all-time top scorers, to graduation. Cody Newman is Duke's top returning scorer, as she had 13 points last season (two goals, nine assists), while Chelsea Canepa is the top goal-scorer (five) returning.
- Saturday's game is Duke's lone exhibition match.
- UNCG will open the regular season on Friday, Aug. 20, when it will host East Carolina at the UNCG Soccer Stadium at 7 p.m.
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