Women Take On Saint Mary's College For First Time
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  09/30/2003
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics

Sept. 30, 2003

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UPCOMING GAMES: The University of New Mexico women's soccer team takes on Saint Mary's College of California (3-5) Sunday, Oct. 5 at noon P.D.T. in week three of its month long road-trip.

Once again, the Lobos are facing a strong opponent in Saint Mary's. The Gaels may have a losing record but are better than they appear. Saint Mary's has faced four ranked opponents in No. 2 UCLA, No. 21 USC, No. 22 Dayton, and No. 21 Stanford. The Gaels upset the Flyers with a 3-1 win but fell by one goal to all the other ranked oppenents, two in overtime.

On paper, the offensive advantage would be given to Saint Mary's. The Gaels have scored 11 goals with nine assists in eight games. The Lobos have scored only two goals and one assist in eight games. Both teams however have a low shot percentage with the Saint Mary's at .129 and New Mexico at .024.

Defensively, the Lobos appear to have the upper hand. Junior goalkeeper Kristen Winters leads the New Mexico defense playing in all 769:43 minutes this season. Winters has only allowed eight goals while making 46 saves. Her goals-against-avergage is 0.94 and save percentage is .852. Winters also hold three shutouts this season.

Saint Mary's Alicia Artuso has also played every minute in the net. Her numbers slightly resemble Winters', giving up 14 goals with 42 stops. Artuso's goals-against-average is 1.68 with a save percentage of .750.

The Lobos start conference play next weekend with games at BYU and Utah. New Mexico will return home Friday, Oct. 17, taking on Mountain West Conference foe Wyoming for Stuff the Stadium Night.

SAINT MARY'S GAELS (3-5): The Saint Mary's women's soccer team is coming off a tough loss to No. 21 Stanford on Saturday. The Gaels gave up a game-winning goal in the 106th minute, resulting in a 1-0 Cardinal victory at Garaventa Field. SMC showed they could compete despite being out-shot 21-4.

Saint Mary's lone home win came Sept. 21 to then No. 22 ranked Dayton. The Gaels stunned the Flyers 3-1 behind goals from freshman McKenna Belzer, junior Jenny Barbera and senior Chelsea Montero.

Like New Mexico, the Gaels have played an extremely tough non-conference schedule. Saint Mary's has taken on two other ranked opponents besides Stanford and Dayton in then No. 2 UCLA and No. 21 USC. In both of those matches, the Gaels lost by one goal. It took overtime before the Bruins could finally down Saint Mary's.

Montero and Belzer lead the scoring attack of the Gaels with their three goals apiece. Senior Lucianne Crenshaw leads the team in points (8) and assists (6).

Saint Mary's is in its first year being coached by Paul Sapsford. In his short career, he has achieved much success with a record of 21-2.

Before hosting the Lobos this Sunday, they take on Mountain West Conference foe Utah Friday, Oct. 3.

Gaels Quick Facts
Location: Moraga, Calif.
Conference: West Coast Conference
Head Coach: Paul Sapsford (St. Mary's Univ. '97)
Record at SMC: 3-5 (First Year)
Career Record: 21-2 (1 year)
Assistant Coaches: Stacey Shaw (Saint Mary's '00); Jennifer Benz (Saint Mary's '00)
Starters Returning/Lost: 10/1
Letterwinners Returning/Lost: 19/5
2002 Record: 9-9-2
2002 Conference Record/Finish: 3-3-1/4th
2002 NCAA Finish: None
UNM vs. SMC: First Meeting
Web Site: www.smcgaels.com
SMC Overall: 3-5
SMC At Home: 1-2
SMC Away: 0-2
SMC vs. MWC: 6-3
SMC 2003 Results
Aug. 29 vs. Montana; W, 1-0
Aug. 31 vs. Wisconsin; L, 3-1
Sept. 5 at No. 2 UCLA; L, 1-0 OT
Sept. 7 vs. UC Santa Barbara; W, 3-2
Sept. 12 vs. Fresno State; L, 1-3
Sept. 19 at No. 21 USC; L, 3-2
Sept. 21 vs. No. 22 Dayton; W, 3-1
Sept. 27 vs. No. 21 Stanford; L, 0-1 2OT

Monday, August 17
7:00 PM - 
Women's Soccer
vs. Fort Lewis (exhibition)
Friday, August 21
5:00 PM - 
Women's Soccer
at USC vs. Texas Tech
7:30 PM - 
Women's Soccer
vs. Florida State
Sunday, August 23
10:30 AM - 
Women's Soccer
at USC vs. Florida State
1:00 PM - 
Women's Soccer
vs. Texas Tech
Wednesday, August 26
6:00 PM - 
Women's Soccer
at New Mexico State