Thursday, September 19, 2013
After leading the Laval Comets to the 2013 W-League Championship Game, Nkem Ezurike has returned to the University of Michigan with her sights set on becoming the program’s all-time goal-scoring leader. The senior will try to add to her 40 career goals for the Wolverines on Sunday afternoon on national television, one of a number of current and former W-League players set to feature in televised contests during the weekend.
No. 15 Michigan opens its Big Ten schedule against Iowa on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET, with the game available on the Big Ten Network. Ezurike trails current Michigan record-holder Kacy Beitel by four goals, and already has five goals and five assists in seven games for the Wolverines this fall. She is backed by the Ottawa Fury’s Shelina Zadorsky, who has four assists for the Wolverines this season, and Holly Hein, who has started all seven games this season.
Iowa, meanwhile, enters with a perfect 8-0-0 record that has been powered in part by the London Gryphons’ Melanie Pickert, who is tied for the team lead with eight points on three goals and two assists. Former Toronto Lady Lynx forward Cloe Lacasse has also played well for the Hawkeyes, matching Pickert’s output, while Colorado Rapids Women goalkeeper Hannah Clark has posted a 0.50 goals-against average and five shutouts in her side’s eight victories.
The weekend’s action begins on Thursday night as Stanford hosts St. Mary’s in a non-conference clash on the Pac-12 Network at 10 p.m. ET. The undefeated Cardinal enter the game led by the Ottawa Fury’s Taylor Uhl, who has six goals in six games to start the season. Also featuring are the Washington Spirit Reserves’ Alex Doll and VSI Tampa Bay FC’s Sydney Payne, both of whom have a goal and assist, while the Pali Blues’ Chioma Ubogagu has a pair of assists.
The LA Strikers’ Rachel Daly leads St. John’s into action on Friday night as the Red Storm host Dartmouth at 5 p.m. ET on ESPN3. Daly, who was an All-Western Conference selection this summer, has scored 11 goals in seven games for the Red Storm this fall, and leads Division I with 24 points.
Also on Friday night, the Pac-12 Network features Washington as the Huskies host Gonzaga in a non-conference showdown. The Huskies have been led this season by a trio of former Seattle Sounders Women, with Jaclyn Softli having scored a pair of goals and Lindsay Elston recording a pair of assists. Washington will look for continued creativity from Isabel Farrell, who leads the team with four assists, as it hosts the Bulldogs.
Sunday sees the action switch to the ACC, where former Colorado Rush goalkeeper Kelsey Wys leads Florida State as the Seminoles host North Carolina State at 1 p.m. ET on ESPN3. Wys currently holds a 0.35 goals-against average, with five shutouts in eight games.
Also on ESPN3 at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday, Virginia visits Pittsburgh with the Cavaliers led by the Pali Blues’ Makenzy Doniak. The sophomore has five goals and four assists in seven games for Virginia, and will lead the Cavaliers’ attack against a Panthers side looking for its first win in conference play.