Aug. 26, 2009

By Amy Farnum

STAR SHINES: North Carolina senior forward Casey Nogueira started the season in stellar form as she reminded women's soccer fans why she is the reigning Atlantic Coast Conference Offensive and National Player of the Year in the Tar Heels' 7-2 victory versus No. 3 UCLA on Aug. 22.

The native of Raleigh, N.C., netted a pair of goals against the Bruins including the eventual game-winner at the 12:55 mark which gave the Tar Heels a 3-0 lead.  Nogueria, who has led UNC in goals each of the last two years, garnered ACC Player of the Week and Soccer America National Team of the Week honors for her performance.

The defending NCAA champion Tar Heels remained at No. 1 in the national rankings, and will host the Carolina Nike Classic on Aug. 28-30, featuring Duke, UCF and UNC Greensboro.

DOUBLE TROUBLE: Two Penn State players were commended for their efforts following the Nittany Lion's 1-0 upset of then-No. 9 Virginia in the season-opener for both teams last weekend.

Senior goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher made four saves against the Cavaliers, including two point-blank shots in the first half, to earn Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week honors.  The two-time NSCAA First Team All-American from Seymour, Conn., ranks second on Penn State's all-time win list with 48.

Freshman defenseman Lexi Marton played a key role in keeping the Cavaliers scoreless, and was the only PSU rookie to play all 90 minutes of the Nittany Lions' ninth-straight home-opening win.  The native of Aurora, Ontario, was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week for her contributions.

The Nittany Lions resume action when they host No. 14 West Virginia in Penn State Invitational on Aug. 29.

BULLDOG LEADER:  Just 38 seconds after starting the 2009 season, Georgia senior forward Carrie Patterson became the program's all-time leading scorer with a goal that sparked the Bulldogs to a 6-0 defeat of Kennesaw State over the weekend.

The native of Atlanta, Ga., tallied her first career hat trick in the contest as she improved her all-time total to 36 goals, and was selected Southeastern Conference Offensive Player of the Week for her efforts.

Patterson's three-goal game was the eighth multi-goal contest of her career, tying her for the lead on the all-time list.

The Bulldogs inched up two spots to No. 16 in the latest NSCAA/adidas Division I Coaches Top 25, and will face No. 17  Minnesota in a battle between nationally-ranked foes on Aug. 28.

OPENING ACT: The University of Colorado cracked the NSCAA/adidas Division I Coaches Top 25 at No. 18 after opening the year with a key Big 12 Conference victory over then-No. 11 Oklahoma State on Aug. 22.

Senior goalie Kara Linder collected her first Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week award since 2006 after making three saves in a 1-0 shutout of the Cowgirls.  It was the seventh shutout of her career.

"It's different, but exciting to play such a difficult Big 12 opponent the first game of the season," said Linder.  "Hopefully that continues to make us stronger as a team.  We wanted to come out and play hard to get our first win and now we have a week until our next game before we can prove ourselves again."

STREAK SNAPPED:  TCU upended then-No. 15 Texas, 2-1, ending the Longhorns' 26-game home unbeaten streak at Mike A. Myers Field on Aug. 22.  

Sophomore Jordan Calhoun netted the game-winning goal for the Horned Frogs, and was named Mountain West Offensive Player of the Week for her contribution.