KU Soccer Season Recap

Nov. 11, 2005


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The University of Kansas soccer team used a mixture of experience and youth during the 2005 season to compile an 11-7-2 overall record and 6-3-1 Big 12 mark. KU finished the regular season in a four-team tie for second place in the highly competitive Big 12 conference.

KU was the fifth-seed in the Big 12 Soccer Championship in San Antonio, Texas, setting up a rematch with the Nebraska Cornhuskers. On Sept. 30, the Huskers and Jayhawks played to a 0-0 draw in Lincoln. In the Big 12 Championship, the Jayhawks could not over come two first half Husker goals and eventually fell, 3-1.

When the NCAA Tournament field was announced, KU was left on the outside looking in. The abrupt halt to the 2005 season marked the end of five senior’s careers. Yet, with its young talent the KU soccer program is left with high hopes moving forward.

For the fourth year in a row, forward Caroline Smith led the Jayhawks in goals scored. The Edina, Minn., native tallied nine goals and a team-high eight assists. The senior finished her career atop nine offensive categories in the KU record books, including career goals (51), assists (24) and points (126).

Fellow senior Jessica Smith scored four goals and three assists in 2005. The Wichita, Kan., native highlighted her final season when she tallied the sixth hat trick in Kansas history with a three-goal performance against Oklahoma State on Oct. 7. After adding another goal in the next match against Oklahoma, Smith was named to the Soccer Buzz Elite Team of the Week.

True freshmen Jessica Bush, Missy Geha and Jenny Murtaugh started all 20 matches for the Jayhawks. Murtaugh was a solid defender who played all but 19 minutes during the season. Bush set a new freshman record with six assists on the year. Geha tallied three goals from her midfield position including game-winners against San Diego and UC Irvine. Both Bush and Geha were named to the Big 12 All-Newcomer Team.

Freshman goalkeeper Julie Hanley took over the starting duties against Oklahoma State on Oct. 7 and proceeded to win her first three Big 12 matches. The Indianapolis, Ind., native ended the year with a 7-2-0 record in 10 starts with a 1.16 goals against average and two shutouts.

Like Hanley, sophomore goalkeeper Colleen Quinn also started 10 matches. Quinn recorded five shutouts which ranks third all-time for a single season in KU history.

KU’s defensive unit of Murtaugh, junior Nikki Alvarez, junior Holly Gault and sophomore Afton Sauer led the Jayhawks to eight shutouts on the year, the third most in KU history. Sauer played every minute of every match for the Jayhawks and scored two goals on the season.

Gault recorded six assists and four goals including the game-winner in double overtime against rival Missouri on Oct. 28. During the season, Gault was named to the Big 12 Soccer 10th Anniversary Team, one of only two active players on the 12 member squad. The Spring Hill, Kan., native was also an unanimous All-Big 12 first team selection.

Caroline Smith joined Gault as an All-Big 12 first team selection. Ten KU student-athletes were named Academic All-Big 12. On the first team were Alvarez, senior Nicole Braman, junior Nicole Cauzillo, Gault, Karfonta, Quinn, junior Michelle Rasmussen, Caroline Smith and sophomore Emily Strinden. Jessica Smith earned second team recognition.

Arguably KU’s biggest victory of the year came on national T.V. against the Texas Longhorns at the Jayhawk Soccer Complex. Senior Kimberly Karfonta tallied her second game-winning goal in as many matches when she scored with less than four minutes to play. The victory was KU’s first ever against Texas and knocked the Longhorns out of first place.

The Jayhawks set new team records in shots (402), corner kicks (117) and home victories (9). KU also ended the season with a school-best streak of five consecutive home victories. KU also reached the 10-win plateau for fifth consecutive season.