2003 Women’s Soccer Preview

Posted on August 14th, 2003 by

Three of last year’s top four scorers and an all-region pick at defender return for the Gustavus women’s soccer team this fall. With seven starters back and a solid recruiting class gearing up for the 2003 campaign, 14th year head coach Mike Stehlik has reason to be optimistic about the upcoming year.

“I am impressed with the commitment our upperclassmen have made in the off-season. They have done a lot of things to build a team atmosphere,” Stehlik reported. “We will see soon enough if all the work they have put in will pay off.”

Gustavus finished the 2002 season at 9-4-4, 5-4-2 in the MIAC. After starting the season 7-1-2, the Gusties hit a stretch in which they scored only four goals over the following six competitions. The inability to put the ball in the net against some of the tougher teams in the league led to Gustavus finishing fifth in the MIAC, its lowest showing since 1991.

“This year we need to play better as a unit,” commented Stehlik. “We need to do a better job of making sure that everyone is on the same page. If we have to move people around and make a change, we need to make sure they are ready to do so.”

Starters coming back from last year include Kelly Keith (JR, Minneapolis, MN), Birabwa Mutebi (SR, Minneapolis, MN), Katie Ottum (SR, Bloomington, MN), Heather Pecosky (Oregon, WI), Britanee Pelikan (SO, Rosemount, MN), Gwen Peterson (SO, White Bear Lake, MN), and Ashlie Thomas (SR, Excelsior, MN).

Mutebi, Pelikan, and Samantha Engh (SO, Wayzata, MN) were three of the team’s top four scorers last season, and figure to provide much of the squad’s offensive firepower once again. Mutebi scored eight goals, the second highest total on the team. Pelikan also netted eight goals and was second on the squad with 20 points. She was named all-conference honorable mention. Engh injected a spark into the Gustavus offense off of the bench last fall with seven goals and three assists.

Thomas, Keith, and Ottum headlined a 2002 defense that held conference opponents to just one goal per game. Keith was named to the Adidas/National Soccer Coaches Association of America NCAA Division III All-Central Region Third Team. Keith and Thomas along with Pecosky, a midfielder, are this year’s captains.

With one of the largest and most talented recruiting classes in recent years, some of the veterans may be asked to fill different positions on the field this season. Peterson for example will move to midfield to open up the keeper position for Osseo High School graduate Lindsay LaVoie (FY, Osseo, MN). There are numerous other new players that Stehlik believes will contribute during their first seasons at Gustavus.

“We are going to be really young. That brings with it uncertainty,” stated Stehlik, who has only nine letterwinners back from last year. “Going into practice we don’t know exactly who will be where once we start playing games. It will be interesting to see how the new players and veterans interact.”

The MIAC regular season will take on new meaning this fall with the addition of a conference playoff at the end of the year. The top four teams during the regular season will take part in a single elimination tournament to determine the conference’s automatic qualifier for the NCAA Tournament.

“I think for our team it is a benefit, since we are pretty young,” Stehlik said. “That will take some pressure off and allow us some time to make mistakes, learn from them, and come back. In the past, if you lost two games you were out of it. The tournament will add excitement because more teams will have games with more meaning towards the end of the season.”

His squad figures to be one of those teams, since the Gusties have finished fourth or higher in the MIAC 10 out of the past 11 years. In fact, Gustavus has not had a losing record since 1989.

The Gusties begin their season on August 29 at non-conference foe Nebraska Wesleyan. A quirk in the scheduling has Gustavus playing six straight road games to start the year before opening up a six-game homestand against St. Benedict on September 27.

2002 Statistics

General Information
Name: Gustavus Adolphus College
Location: St. Peter, Minn.
Founded: 1862
Enrollment: 2,540
Nickname: Golden Gusties
School Colors: Black and Gold
Field: Gustie Field
Capacity: 500
Affiliation: NCAA Div. III
President: Jim Peterson
Athletic Director: Al Molde
Athletic Phone: (507) 933-7617

First year of soccer: 1982
All-time playoff record: 1-3
Last postseason appearance/result:1997/Beat Cal. Lutheran 4-2, lost to UC-San Diego 1-3
All-time record: 203-116-35

Sports Information
Sports Info Director: Tim Kennedy
Work Phone: (507) 933-7647
Email: timgasid@gustavus.edu
Assistant Sports Info Director: Nick Huber
Work Phone: (507) 933-8411
Email: nhuber@gustavus.edu
SID Fax: (507) 933-8412
Web site: http://www.gustavus.edu/oncampus/athletics/wsc/

Coaching Staff
Head Coach: Mike Stehlik
Alma Mater: DePauw University
Record at school: 161-52-17
Career record: Same
Head Coach’s office phone: (507) 933-7619
Assistant Coach: Michelle Filipczak
Alma Mater / Year: UM-Duluth / 2001

Gustavus vs. the MIAC
Series vs. Augsburg 13-4-1
Series vs. Bethel 9-1
Series vs. Carleton 14-10-4
Series vs. Concordia 21-5-3
Series vs. Hamline 12-0
Series vs. Macalester 9-15-7
Series vs. St. Benedict 13-6-2
Series vs. St. Catherine 2-0
Series vs. St. Mary’s 8-16-3
Series vs. St. Olaf 20-5-3
Series vs. St. Thomas 9-11-2

Player Information

Key Returnees
Samantha Engh, SO, Forward, Wayzata, MN (seven goals, three assists)
Kelly Keith, JR, Defender, Minneapolis, MN (Midwest All-Region, All-Conference)
Birabwa Mutebi, SR, Midfielder, Minneapolis, MN (eight goals)
Britanne Pelikan, SO, Forward, Rosemount, MN (Honor. Ment. All-MIAC, eight goals)

All Returning Letterwinners
Samantha Engh (SO, F, Wayzata, MN)
Alysen Farran (JR, MF, Plymouth, MN)
Kelly Keith (JR, B, Minneapolis, MN)
Birabwa Mutebi (SR, MF, Minneapolis, MN)
Katie Ottum (SR, B, Bloomington, MN)
Heather Pecosky (SR, MF, Oregon, WI)
Britanee Pelikan (SO, F, Rosemount, MN)
Gwen Peterson (SO, MF/GK, Mankato, MN)
Ashlie Thomas (SR, B, Excelsior, MN)

Letterwinners Lost
Renee Beaudry
Amanda Cody
Sonja Hall
Sarah Handahl
Christa Harrison
Cynthia Lee
Lindsay Makarem
Kara Nelson
Lindsay Parker

Letterwinners returning: Total: 9
Letterwinners lost: Total: 9
Starters Returning: 7
Starters Lost: 4

2003 Schedule
Aug. 29 Nebraska Wesleyan University 4:00 pm
30 Principia College 4:00 pm
Sept. 12 Wartburg College 5:00 pm
13 Grinnell College 11:00 am
20 Concordia College 1:00 pm
24 St. Olaf College 4:00 pm
27 College of St. Benedict 1:00 pm
Oct. 1 St. Mary’s University 4:00 pm
4 Carleton College 1:00 pm
5 Luther College 2:00 pm
11 Augsburg College 12:00 pm
14 Bethel College 4:00 pm
18 Hamline University 1:00 pm
21 Macalester College 7:30 pm
25 UW-Stout 2:30 pm
29 University of St. Thomas 2:30 pm
Nov. 1 College of St. Catherine 1:00 pm
2 UW-Stevens Point 2:00 pm

2002 Game-by-Game Results
8/31 Grinnell W 5-3
9/2 Wartburg W 2-1
9/7 @ UW-Stevens Point T 2-2
9/14 @ UW-La Crosse W 4-2
9/17 @ Carleton W 3-1
9/21 Concordia W 4-1
9/28 @ St. Benedict L 1-3
9/29 @ St. Scholastica W 4-0
10/2 @ St. Mary’s W 5-0
10/5 St. Olaf T 1-1
10/12 @ St. Thomas L 0-2
10/15 St. Catherine W 3-0
10/18 @ UW-Stout T 1-1
10/26 @ Augsburg T 0-0
10/30 @ Bethel L 0-1
11/2 Macalester L 0-2
11/9 Hamline W 8-0


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