The three women's soccer teams in this week's Ohana Hotels & Resorts Shootout are desperately in need of adding some victories to their records.
By Al Chase
Host Hawaii, Long Island University and Long Beach State have played a total of 17 matches and have only three wins to show for the effort.
UH has gone four matches without a victory after defeating Wyoming. LIU has victories over Manhattan and Army. Long Beach State is winless, but the 49ers tied Oregon State 1-1 after OSU beat UH 1-0.
The Rainbow Wahine, who began the season with very high expectations and the goal of going to the NCAA Tournament, must either put a string of wins together to keep their at-large chances alive should they not capture the Western Athletic Conference tournament or fall into the familiar situation of having to win the WAC postseason event to qualify for the NCAAs.
It is an important weekend for Hawaii. With four matches left before WAC competition begins, the team could use some momentum. At the same time, UH coach Pinsoom Tenzing knows there is no sense in rushing the return of players with nagging injuries in nonconference matches.
Tenzing called last Saturday's loss to San Francisco "sad" and thought the Wahine "missed too many passes from ground zero against UCLA" but felt much better about the team's performance after reviewing the match tapes.
"I thought our defenders played extremely well against UCLA. We miss Erin Quattromani big time in the middle. We just couldn't put the ball in the drop zone against UCLA and she does that well from anywhere," said Tenzing.
Quattromani, the graduate student who transferred from Stanford, is nursing an injured hamstring, has been running but probably won't see a lot of action in this tournament. Another midfielder, sophomore Sasha Araya-Schraner, is still limping and freshman defender Seline Williams is probably out.
Tenzing will return to his standard game plan of creating offense with short passes but will use the long ball to a breaking striker if the opportunity arises. One thing Tenzing noticed in the tapes was the midfielders taking one too many touches before pushing the ball into open space. He's looking for a quicker release which helps prevent the strikers from being offside.
"Injuries have waylaid us, there is no doubt about that. I'm not down and the team isn't down. They know what they can do and they take care of themselves. When they have to go to the trainer, they go and don't ask questions," Tenzing said. "I'm thinking long term. I'm thinking WAC. This is just a bump in the road."
When: Tomorrow, Hawaii vs. Long Island U., 7 p.m.; Saturday, Long Beach State vs. Long Island U., 7 p.m.; Monday, Hawaii vs. Long Beach State, 5 p.m.
Ohana Hotels & Resorts Shootout
Where: Waipio Peninsula Soccer Park Stadium
TV: Tomorrow's UH-LIU match, KFVE (Channel 5).
Series record: Hawaii is playing both schools for the first time.
Team records: UH is 1-4-1, LIU is 2-3-0 and Long Beach State is 0-5-1.
Notes: Arlene Devitt needs one more game-winning goal, her seventh, to claim the UH career record outright. She is presently tied with Veronica Flores. ... Long Beach State coach Peter Reynaud compiled a 62-52-8 record at Fresno State before taking over the 49ers program last year. ... LIU won the Northeast Conference title two years ago, earning an NCAA trip, but slumped to 4-12-0 last season.
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