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Loyola Opens MAAC Play This Weekend, Hosting Manhattan and Saint Peter's

Oct. 2, 2007

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Up Next: The Greyhounds are in the midst of a four-game homestand at Diane Geppi-Aikens Field and open Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference competition this weekend. Loyola faces Manhattan on Friday, October 5, at 4 p.m., and Saint Peter's on Sunday, October 7, at 1 p.m. After almost a week off, Loyola then hosts Rider on Saturday, October 13, at 1 p.m.

Time Notes: Loyola's home contests against Manhattan on October 5 and Siena on October 26 will begin at 4 p.m., rather than 3 p.m. as listed on earlier schedules. The Greyhounds games at Niagara on October 21 and Iona on November 4 will both start at 12 Noon.

Fast and Furious: Loyola and Bucknell could have skipped the first 78 minutes of Sunday match and fast-forwarded to the final 12. Bucknell broke a scoreless tie with goal on a penalty kick in the 80th minute. The Greyhounds then rallied with two goals in the final nine to post a 2-1 victory. Christina Gomez tied the match at 1-1 on a goal from the left side with assists from Lea Day and Theresa Ferraina. Lina Staropoli then scored from 15 feet out in the 88th minute to tally the eventual game-winner.

The Last Time: Friday's match against the Jaspers will be the 16th all-time meeting between the schools with Loyola holding a 13-2 advantage. Manhattan won the last meeting between the schools, a 2-1 decision in double overtime on October 27, 2006, in Riverdale, N.Y. Kathleen Kunz ended the game for the Jaspers with a goal on a penalty kick in the second overtime. Courtney Arikian scored for the Greyhounds in the 56th minute. Loyola has defeated Saint Peter's 15 times in 18 games. Last season, Loyola scored twice during the first half and once in the second half to defeat the Peahens, 3-0. Amanda Meehan put the Greyhounds on the board in the 26th minute on a corner kick from Lea Day. Carolyn Kennington and Courtney Arikian then added to the final goal total for Loyola.

The Jaspers: Manhattan enters conference play with a 3-3-3 overall record after posting a win and a tie last week. The Jaspers defeated Holy Cross, 5-0, in their final non-conference match of the season last Friday and tied Stony Brook, 0-0, last Wednesday. Alicia DeFino has not allowed a goal in over 314 minutes of action and leads the MAAC with a 0.96 goals against average. Christine Reina leads the team with five goals and 12 points.

The Peahens: Saint Peter's is coming off its first wino f the season, a 2-0 victory on Sunday over Delaware State. Kyle Marsh and Katelyn Matousek scored goals for the Peahens, who are 1-7 overall. Saint Peters begins its MAAC slate of games on Friday, October 5, with a trip to Rider for a 4 p.m. match. The two goals Saint Peters scored against the Hornets in the win were the third and fourth of the year for the team. Marsh leads the team with two goals.

Henderson Honored (Again): Loyola sophomore goalkeeper Brittany Henderson earned weekly honors for the second time this season last week from the MAAC office. She shared Defensive Player of the Week laurels with Manhattan goalkeeper Alicia DeFino after posting a 3-0 shutout against Richmond.

Henderson Honored (Part One): Henderson earned several accolades for her performance at the September 7-9 Hawthorne Suites Hokie Invitational in Blacksburg, Va., In addition to being named the MAAC Defensive Player of the Week, Henderson earned Defensive Player of the Week honors from the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference (ECAC). She was then named to the SoccerBuzz Magazine Elite Team of the Week.

Spreading the Scoring: Six different players have scored goals for the Greyhounds this season - Theresa Ferraina, Christina Gomez, Lea Day, Lina Staropoli, Colleen Kinealy and Heather Cooke. Ferraina and Gomez lead the team with three each, while Staropoli and Day each have two. Staropoli tops the team with three assists, and Gomez, Ferraina, Day and Kelly Thomas each have two. Gomez and Ferraina are tied for tops on the squad with eight points.

Taking Their Shots: Each of the last four games have seen the Greyhounds take 13 or more shots, the four highest totals they've had this year. Loyola took 17, a season-high, at Colorado College, 13 at Richmond, 14 at Central Florida and 16 against Bucknell.

Preseason Picks: The Greyhounds were picked by MAAC coaches to win the conference title this year. Loyola received 93 votes, while Niagara and Fairfield were close behind with 87 and 86, respectively. Three Loyola players were named to the Preseason All-MAAC Team, backs Brynn McGrath and Sarra Moller and midfielder Lea Day.

Looking Back: Loyola finished the 2007 season with a 10-7-2 record and regular-season Metro Atlantic Conference crown. The Greyhounds, however, lost in the MAAC Semifinals to Siena, 1-0. Carolyn Kennington led the Loyola offense with 17 total points (6 goals, 5 assists), while Courtney Arikian had seven goals and two assists. Christina Gomez scored six goals and had four assists during her freshman season. Head Coach John Byford was named MAAC Coach of the Year, and 11 players earned postseason recognition from the conference. Arikian and Sarra Moller were named to the All-MAAC First Team.

Head Coach John Byford: The 2007 season will be John Byford's third as head women's soccer coach at Loyola. He has compiled a 27-17-2 record since taking over as head coach and is 17-1 in MAAC competition, winning conference regular-season crowns in each of the last two years. In 2006, Byford was honored by his peers as the MAAC Coach of the Year. Prior to his role as head coach, Byford was an assistant coach at Loyola for two seasons.