Back-to-back · Junior Karen Chung led the Women of Troy to a fifth place finish at the Windy City Intercollegiate. She has kicked off the season with the Women of Troy’s best back-to-back performance since 2013. – Courtesy of Sports InformationOn Tuesday, the men’s and women’s golf teams concluded tournaments in Portland and Chicago, respectively. The men’s golf team finished three days of play in the Nike Golf Collegiate Invitational with a tie for second place, while the women’s team finished in fifth place at the Windy City Collegiate.Senior Andrew Levitt had a career-best performance, tying for fifth place and shooting a 67 in his final round. Sophomore Jonah Texeira tied with Levitt in the fifth spot to lead the Trojans to a second place finish. Levitt and Texeira tied for fifth at 9-under 206.Wake Forest finished in sole possession of the title while USC and Duke tied for second. The Trojans combined for a 34-under 826. Four Trojans shot a combined 12-under on the final nine holes to come close to Wake Forest, but could not catch the Demon Deacons, who led the entire match.Levitt and Texeira stayed mostly even during the first nine but really gained momentum on the final nine holes. Levitt had six birdies on the final nine holes to shoot for 5-under. Texeira had four birdies to shoot 4-under.“Andrew had a great summer. We are proud of him for getting through a rough patch with his golf and coming out the other side,” head coach Chris Zambri said. “We definitely wanted to win and are disappointed that we did not. That being said, there were some really great things out of everyone, but especially Andrew and Jonah.”Sophomore Sean Crocker shot 6-under and tied for 16th place, junior Rico Hoey shot 5-under to tie for 19th and freshman Justin Suh finished in a tie at 39th at par 215.The men’s golf team will play Oct. 16-18 at the U.S. Collegiate Championship in Alpharetta, Georgia.Junior Karen Chung led the Women of Troy to a fifth place finish in Chicago with a tie for second place while junior Tiffany Chan tied for 14th place.The Women of Troy were in the hunt for a consecutive win to open the season but fell short in the end of the match. Northwestern, Arizona and Georgia finished in a three-way tie for first at 12-under 852 while Arizona State took fourth at 11-under 853.Chung opened the season with a win at 12-under last week and followed that up with a tie for second at 7-under 209. It is USC’s best back-to-back finishes since senior Kyung Kim opened the 2013-14 season with a win and tied for second at this same event.Chan tied for 14th at 2-under 214 while junior Gabriella Then tied for 19th at 1-under 215, each finishing in the top 20 for the second consecutive tournament.The Women of Troy will next play at the Stanford Intercollegiate on Oct. 18-20 at the Stanford G.C.
Coming into the weekend with an undefeated record, the No. 19 Wisconsin women’s soccer team kept the good times rolling with a pair of impressive wins in front of their home crowd at the McClimon Soccer Complex.The home stand opened Friday with a less-than-dramatic 5-0 thumping of South Dakota State (0-2-0). Senior Forward Cara Walls made a statement early as she scored the first goal for the Badgers (4-0-0) in the 5th minute off of an impressive assist from junior midfielder Rose Lavelle, one of three setups Lavelle had on the night.Any chance for a Jackrabbit comeback was put to rest after Junior Midfielder Kinley McNicoll buried her second goal of the night in the 47th minute to put the Badgers up 3-0. The combination of a staunch defense and effective passing game on offense put Wisconsin in the driver’s seat for the remainder of the match as they tacked on two more goals in the second half en route to the 5-0 victory.Building off of their momentum from Friday, the Badgers again looked like a team on a mission against Northern Iowa (1-3-0) Sunday afternoon at McClimon. Paying respect to the Badger’s attack, the Panthers put forth a more conservative, defensive approach, which tried to clog passing lanes to prevent the set up of high-percentage shots despite giving Wisconsin a good portion of the possession. Unfortunately for Northern Iowa, Wisconsin had their cake and ate it too, tallying eight shots with plenty more scoring opportunities in the first half alone. Walls again got on the board early with a goal seven minutes in, thanks to perfectly-placed cross from fellow senior forward Kodee Williams. Walls received the feed and booted it into the upper half of the net for the quick lead.Entering their fourth year together as teammates, Williams explained how she and Walls have had plenty of time to perfect their chemistry on offense.“We are constantly watching film, talking, and obviously at practice everyday we’re just trying to improve our chemistry with really all of the front six we have up there, so it’s been really great so far,” Williams said.While the 11-goal offensive output in 4 games has been noteworthy for the Badgers this season, the defensive efforts of the team have been just as eye-popping. With a defensive unit that has given up only one goal so far, eighth year head coach Paula Wilkins credited the improvements in communication by the defense, resulting in little to no turnovers or costly mistakes.“I think in a game where you know the opposing team isn’t going to put you under that much offensive pressure, we have to make sure on transitions that we’re still good defensively and that we don’t have any mental lapses.”The defense, anchored by junior Briana Stelzer and redshirt senior Alexandra Heller, looked very sharp Sunday, passing and clearing out opportunities confidently and limiting the Northern Iowa attack to just four total shots. Both goalkeepers who played for the Badgers – senior Genevieve Richard and redshirt freshman Caitlyn Clem – had the day off to an extent, as no saves were required throughout the 90 minutes.While the fist half provided plenty of excitement, the combination of missed opportunities and impressive play in net by the Panthers’ Whitney Blunt, who had three saves, including a memorable diving stop in the 35th, kept Northern Iowa in contention after one half with a 1-0 score line. The Panther’s defense also did an effective job of recognizing plays, knowing when to draw the Badgers offside, leading to three calls by the linesman that prevented UW scoring opportunities.But the Badgers kept their foot on the gas in the second half. The team continued to communicate well with each other, as junior midfielders McNicoll and McKenna Meuer continued to generate opportunities for the offense. The Badgers came through again in the 52nd minute after Walls dribbled around Blunt and found a window to score through on the left side to go up 2-0. While the maneuver itself was impressive, Walls was quick to point out the setup on the play.“That goal was all McKenna Meuer because she kept the ball alive of the corner kick and I was kind of just there”, Walls said. “I knew she was going to win it, so I just wanted to get on the end of it and be in a position to score.”As the minutes wore on, Panther’s defense appeared worn out and began drawing more and more fouls, finishing with 11 to UW’s three. The most notable one was committed in the in the box, which lead to the third and final goal off a penalty kick by McNicoll in the shutout victory.While the Badgers have their best start to a season since 2004, the wheels are still always turning in the mind of Wilkins as they look ahead to their future matchups.“I still think we can be a little bit more dynamic in the final third,” Wilkins said. “I think we have to get numbers and advance to the ball a little bit more; we were only attacking with two at times and that’s going to be a little more work.”The Badgers will be on the pitch again next weekend with a pair of road matches in Seattle. UW faces off against Washington Friday night and then finishes off the trip west with a Sunday noon game against Portland.