WPS Philadelphia-Washington, or NCAA Boston College-Rutgers?

Last year, I made it to six regular season WPS games, one regular season W-League game, and the W-League final.  I didn’t manage to attend any NCAA games, missing my chance to see UCLA at Illinois because of the rain that weekend.

This year, I made it to one preseason WPS/NCAA game (Chicago at Illinois), four regular season WPS games (three of which were FC Gold Pride road games!), and now my WPS season is over. My personal attendance is definitely down. Philadelphia is hosting the first round of the WPS playoffs, but I am (somewhat) superstitious when I am emotionally invested in a game. So I already have plans to attend Boston College-Rutgers in New Jersey instead. These two teams have both started the season strong, with the exception of Rutgers’ strange loss to Monmouth at home.

BC is probably the better-known team these days. Last year, they had an incredible season, both in the ACC and NCAA.  The roster is peppered with US youth national team players (U-20 and U-23), and I would guess they are due at least one player from the 2010 U-17 squad. Boston College is currently ranked 5th in the nation, owing their undefeated season largely to junior goalkeeper Jillian Mastroianni.

Rutgers is a respectable Big East team that doesn’t draw much attention lately. There are a few Canadian WNT and YNT players on the roster, namely Jonelle Filigno, a redshirt freshman with strong showings for both her national team and U-20 squad in 2008. This season, she has scored three goals, assisted two, and converted a PK for Rutgers. She is joined by Shannon Woeller (CWNT and U-20 team), Karla Schacher (U-20 team in 2008), and Rheanne Sleiman (U-20 in 2008 and 2006). Schacher has also added two goals this season. Their starting keeper is redshirt sophomore Emmy Simpkins.

Boston College has to take on UNC next, and Rutgers will ease into conference play by sandwiching BC between match-ups with Seton Hall and Georgetown. So this will be the last non-conference game for both teams. It will also be my first time seeing either of them in person, which is a great way for me to start the travel portion of my season. Brand new, exciting, and full of potential.

Much less nerve wracking than Philly trying to lay a smackdown on DC without giving the game away through silly fouls.

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Youth national teams round-up for early July.

This Men’s World Cup Final is both boring and endless, so I am sweeping through today’s links. US Soccer likes to hoard the women’s YNT news.

U-17 News

  • I love the Nordic Cup, but I’m used to having one at the U-23 level. This year, the US U-17s are competing in one, using a very different team from the one that went to qualifiers.
  • They opened with a 6-0 win over the Netherlands, including an own goal and a penalty kick.
  • Then they were 3-0 over Denmark.
  • They closed the group 2-1 over Norway.
  • A 2-0 win over Germany secured the championship. I cannot express how disappointed I am that the US won’t be competing in September.

U-23 News

  • As with most women’s soccer, it’s easier to find these results anywhere but US Soccer. But the U-23s, without a Nordic Cup for the second year in a row, are in England for a Four Nations tournament.
  • They opened 3-0 over England.
  • They dropped 2-1 to Norway, essentially off an own-goal by Lauren Fowlkes. She was subbed out soon after that. I’m sure only two other people will find this amusing. The next game is against Sweden on Monday.

U-20 Women’s World Cup News

  • Germany’s Marozsan injured her ankle and is questionable for the opening match, which is already sold out. I think the Germany-France game is sold out as well.
  • New Zealand is prepping for Sweden, and I psyched myself up for that last night…
  • …starting with this video, then a bunch from their U-17 days. I know. That’s a lot. There are more, but I doubt anyone finds that as cool as I do.
  • Then there’s this video from the US team. It has a lot of my favorite keeper and Doctor Quon.
  • Unfortunately, the US U-20s currently have to share the blog with the full national team, and the tagging system is not that convenient. Could the seniors please hurry up thrashing Sweden so we can get back to the important things in life?