Sept. 16, 2002

NORSE NO. 1 IN NATIONAL POLL

NKU women’s soccer team jumps to nation’s No. 1

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. - The Northern Kentucky University women’s soccer team is ranked No. 1 nationally in the NCAA Division II poll, which was released Monday.

NKU, now 6-0 overall, used a 1-0 victory over then-No. 1 Christian Brothers University on Sunday to vault from No. 3 nationally to the top spot in the Division II ratings. The Norse spent five weeks ranked No. 1 nationally last season before dropping a 1-0 decision to Mercyhurst (Pa.) College in late October.

NKU is seeking its fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA Division II Final Four. The Norse also own four straight Great Lakes Valley Conference championships.

NKU’s defense held Christian Brothers forward Missy Gregg - who set an NCAA single-season record by scoring 73 goals a year ago - to just two shots on Sunday. The Norse’s Hope Bushelman marked Gregg, who had 15 goals already this season going into Sunday, most of the afternoon.

Freshman Ashley McGuffey also made an outstanding defensive play late in the second half to stop a Christian Brothers shot. Sophomore Robyn Withers also made a pair of key defensive stops for the Norse, who will play host to the University of Southern Indiana at 8 p.m Friday.

Withers, Bushelman, McGuffey, Becky Schnieders and goalie Megan Zalla have led the Norse defense, which has allowed just four goals this season. Zalla has a 0.46 goals against average and one shutout.

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Robyn Withers