The women?s soccer team went on the road for two important University Athletic Association matches and came home in sole possession of first place.

The Yellowjackets got their weekend off to a good start with a 4-0 victory over Case Western Reserve University on Friday.

Senior striker Christine Sipala scored 34 seconds into the second half to give the Yellowjackets a 1-0 lead.

Freshmen forwards Portia Bridges and Kristin Kelly and senior stopper Jen Seferiadis each scored in the last 20 minutes.

UR did not allow a shot on goal for the second straight game.

The Yellowjackets kept rolling with a 1-0 victory over Carnegie Mellon University on Sunday.

Kelly scored on a breakaway after receiving a cross from Bridges in the 33rd minute ? the third time this season the two freshmen have hooked up ? to give UR its eighth straight win.

Bridges and Kelly have each scored four goals off the bench. Bridges also has two assists and Kelly has one assist.

?I did not expect that Kristin and I would play so well together,? Bridges said. ?We?re starting to become more of a unit, more of our own squad up front.?

Kelly was also pleasantly surprised, ?I?m not really sure what I expected coming in. I knew [sophomore forward Alison Collins] was a really good player and we had a lot of strong forwards, so it?s exciting to be able to contribute.?

The freshman tandem usually comes in midway through each half to relieve starters Collins and Sipala.

?They definitely help us out at practice and all four of us work together,? Bridges said.

?They set pretty good examples. Watching them play shows us what we need to be doing.?

UR is now 4-0 in the UAA and 16th in the national rankings. Emory University and New York

The winner of each league receives an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament.

?We need to keep our focus and keep getting better every day because we?re in a good position to win the UAA,? Seferiadis said.

The Yellowjackets have three league games remaining and can clinch the league title if they win at least two of them.

They host Washington University at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 19 and the University of Chicago at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 21. They will then travel to Brandeis University to finish the season Saturday, Oct. 27.

The last time the Yellowjackets won the UAA was in 1997 and they made their last trip to the NCAA tournament in 1998.

UR went to the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Association Championships the past two years where it won the title in 1999 and lost in the first round last season.

?The NCAA tournament is an unbelievable experience and it would mean everything to us,? Sipala said.

?I know that?s been our focus since [Seferiadis, senior midfielder Loren Cerami and I] were there and for it to happen our senior year would just be the culmination of everything for us. It?s what we think about every day.?

The Yellowjackets next game is against St. John Fisher at 7 p.m. Friday at Fauver Stadium.

Jacobs can be reached at bjacobs@campustimes.org.



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