Archive for the ‘WPL’ Tag

Take Five   Leave a comment

Following the July 4th break and a disappointing result against Elm Grove SC on Wednesday, Milwaukee United took to the field at Doyne Park last night to close out the 2015 Women’s Premier League regular season against Racine United, a reschedule from June 21st.  Behind two goals from Paige Birschbach (Ripon College/Campbellsport) and multi-point performances from Callie O’Donnell (UW-Milwaukee) and Taylor Swittel (UW-Milwaukee/Brookfield East), the Owls evened their record at 3-3 and secured a fifth-place finish in the league standings with a 5-0 victory.

Milwaukee United opened the scoring in the third minute when O’Donnell deposited a pass from Monica Stephans (St. Norbert College/Hartford) past the Racine United goalkeeper at the near post.  The lead was doubled in the 16th minute as Theresa Le (Cardinal Stritch University/Shorewood) cleaned up an O’Donnell cross from the right flank, and the sides went into halftime with the scoreline 2-0.  Birschbach picked up her brace in the second half on goals in the 54th minute (assisted by Swittel) and the 73rd minute, sandwiched around a goal from Maria Stephans (UW-Milwaukee/Hartford) in the 60th minute (also assisted by Swittel).  Kara Casebolt (Cardinal Stritch University/Racine Horlick) manned the nets to secure the Owls’ first shutout since a 0-0 draw against Milwaukee Sport Club in 2013, anchoring a defense which featured the Ripon College pair of Rachel Bautzmann (Mukwonago) and Danielle Senger (Hartford), Angelina Delgado (Cardinal Stritch University/Lake Geneva Badger), and Jessica Hyde (College of St. Benedict/Waukesha Catholic Memorial).

Pairings for the WPL playoffs will be announced later today, with quarterfinal matches to be played on Saturday at the SCORe Complex in Racine.

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Posted July 14, 2015 by Scott in Uncategorized

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16 Goals and What Do You Get   Leave a comment

Milwaukee United SC went to Madison on Saturday for a doubleheader against Aris FC (fielded under the flag of RUSH Wisconsin) and the Madison 56ers.  180 minutes of action saw 16 goals scored and the Owls return to Milwaukee with a split of results, defeating Aris 7-3 in a record-setting performance followed by a 4-2 loss to the 56ers.

The opener of the twinbill got off to a fast start, with Brandi Peltier (Ripon College/Hustisford) scoring her first goal 12 minutes in, assisted by Maria Stephans (UW-Milwaukee/Hartford). Aris equalized four minutes later, only for MUSC to regain the lead in the 20th minute on Peltier’s second goal of the match.  Aris tied the match in the 26th minute and took the lead in the 39th minute.  Peltier wrapped up her first-half hat trick in the 44th minute [assisted by Taylor Swittel (UW-Milwakee/Brookfield East)] and the teams went to the half tied at 3.  A change in tactics for the Owls resulted in a three-goal flurry in nine minutes at the start of the second half, with Paige Birschbach (Ripon College/Campbellsport) scoring in the 52nd and 57th minutes [Monica Stephans (St. Norbert College/Hartford) assisting on the first, Maria Stephans on the second] and Callie O’Donnell (UW-Milwaukee) picking up a goal in the 61st minute.  Birschbach finished off her hat trick in the 86th minute, with O’Donnell getting the assist.  Milwaukee United records set in the match include:  most goals in a game (7); most goals in a half (4); most assists in a game (5); most points tallied in a game (19); and largest margin of victory (4).  Other standout performances came from Michelle Peltz (Cardinal Stritch University/Nicolet), Jessica Hyde (College of St. Benedict/Waukesha Catholic Memorial), Anna O’Donnell (Milwaukee School of Engineering), and Rachel Bautzmann (Ripon College/Mukwonago).

The second match of the day got off to a fantastic start for the Owls, with Maria Stephans scoring in the 22nd minute and Birschbach doubling the margin in the 28th minute (assisted by Peltier).  The 56ers clawed back a goal in the 42nd minute and the first half ended 2-1.  A short bench combined with the exhaustion of playing two matches back-to-back ultimately caught up to them, allowing the 56ers to take control of the match and score goals in the 50th, 65th, and 79th minutes.

After a break for the 4th of July weekend, Milwaukee United returns to Women’s Premier League action on Wednesday, July 8 against Elm Grove SC at Doyne Park in Milwaukee.  Kickoff for the club’s home opener is 6pm.

Posted June 30, 2015 by Scott in Uncategorized

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A Stumble at the Starting Gate   Leave a comment

Milwaukee United SC opened its 2015 Women’s Premier League season with a 3-0 loss to SC Waukesha/Strike FC in a match that was much closer than the scoreline indicated.  Strike opened the scoring in the ninth minute when a shot from the edge of the penalty area deflected off an MUSC player and found the back of the next.  Strike doubled their lead after 38 minutes and headed into halftime up 2-0.  Halftime adjustments by coach Kara Casebolt brought greater attacking presence into the Owls’ lineup in the second half, but unfortunately didn’t draw the team closer on the scoreboard.  Strike closed out the scoring in the 63rd minute on a penalty kick.  Performances of note for Milwaukee United came from midfielder Monica Stephans (St. Norbert College/Hartford) and defender Jessica Hyde (College of St. Benedict/Waukesha Catholic Memorial) in their first-ever WPL matches, 2014 Most Improved Player Michelle Peltz (Cardinal Stritch University/Nicolet), and midfielder Callie O’Donnell (UW-Milwaukee).  MUSC’s next match is this Sunday at 11am at Doyne Park (53rd/Wells in Milwaukee) against Racine United in what is becoming a Father’s Day weekend tradition for the two clubs.

Posted June 19, 2015 by Scott in Uncategorized

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Our 2015 Roster (to date)   Leave a comment

After a LONG off-season that saw recruitment and scouting take a step backwards from previous years, we are able to tell our fans and supporters who will be playing for Milwaukee United Soccer Club this year in the Women’s Premier League.  Our roster includes six players from last year’s squad along with nine newcomers to MUSC.

Kara Casebolt – This year, Kara will be the team’s player/coach and leading all activities between the lines.  A 2014 graduate of Cardinal Stritch University, Kara played both defender and goalkeeper for the Wolves and helped to lead CSU into the Chicago Collegiate Athletic Conference playoffs her senior year.

Maria Stephans – One of Milwaukee United SC’s co-MVPs from the 2014 season, Maria will be counted on to provide leadership and attack-mindedness to the team’s midfield.  A junior at UW-Milwaukee, Maria served as a co-captain for the Panthers this past fall and contributed one goal and five assists from her holding midfield position.

Brandi Peltier – Milwaukee United’s other co-MVP from 2014, Brandi returns to the Owls following a stellar senior season at Ripon College.  Amassing 17 goals and nine assists for the Redhawks this past fall, Brandi closed out her college career as the school’s all-time leading goalscorer and finished #2 in Midwest Conference history in career goals (82) and points (186).

Paige Birschbach – Paige’s first season with MUSC proved to be the proper launching pad for her to excel in her freshman campaign at Ripon College.  Paige was named to the Midwest Conference’s first team and was an NSCAA All-Region selection after tallying 14 goals and 12 assists (including two hat tricks) to help lead the Redhawks to the Midwest Conference championship game.

Danielle Doucette – A junior at Cardinal Stritch University, Danielle brings experience on the defensive end of the field and is already testing the coaching waters for a career beyond her playing days, one we hope can blossom at the club.

Michelle Peltz – Also a junior at Cardinal Stritch, Michelle was MUSC’s most improved player in 2014 and is expected to build upon that this summer while competing for time at both midfield and defense.

Catherine Guttmann A 2011 graduate of Concordia University-Wisconsin, Catherine will provide an experienced hand to the squad as she assists Kara in managing the team and covers for her in goal on occasion.

Monica Stephans The first-ever pre-college player to take the field for Milwaukee United, Monica will join the squad once her senior season at Hartford Union High School is finished.  An incoming freshman at St. Norbert College, Monica was named to the WSCA All-State team in 2014.

Jessica Ochocki – The first player with ties to MUSC to move onto the college ranks, Jessica is the third of four forwards and six players overall from Ripon College on this year’s team.

Danielle Senger – The fourth Ripon College forward on the squad, Danielle comes to the Owls with experience at forward and center midfield.

Chelsey Abler – A senior at Ripon College, Chelsey returns to the field following a season off from the game and is expected to help anchor the back line.

Rachel Bautzmann – The last of the Ripon contingent, Rachel made 18 appearances for the Redhawks as a freshman and will be part of a new-look defensive core this summer at Milwaukee United.

Jessica Hyde – A player who knows what winning takes, Jessica joins MUSC on the heels of three straight WIAA state championships with Waukesha Catholic Memorial and a successful first season at the College of St. Benedict.

Michele Ripp – A graduate of UW-Whitewater, Michele brings a vast soccer-playing resume to the club and will be expected to contend for time on the flanks.

Gisel Romero – A graduate of Marquette University, Gisel returns to competitive play following some time away and will be a key cog in the club’s community outreach this summer.

With just 25 days until the scheduled season opener, we are looking to add another 6-8 players to this number.  If you would like to be part of our 2015 squad, head over to the WPL gateway and send us a note.

Posted May 12, 2015 by Scott in Uncategorized

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2015 Preview   Leave a comment

The 2015 Women’s Premier League season will start on June 6 and will be Milwaukee United Soccer Club’s third year in the competition.  After finishing mid-pack in 2013 and riding a perfect home record to a second-place finish in the WPL South division in 2014, the club is focused on securing a state playoff spot and continuing to grow toward the ideals of being an inclusive, highly-competitive women’s soccer organization.  The following is a quick Q-and-A regarding the roster to date and the foci for this year’s on-the-field pursuits.

Q: Where does the 2015 roster sit presently?

A: Currently, we have 14 players who are committed for the 2015 season.  We return 89% of our goalscoring from 2014, which should place us in good stead on the offensive side of the field.  One negative is that only five of our 20 players from 2014 will be back this year, so developing cohesion amongst the squad will be something to strive for as the season progresses.

Q: Any noticeable gaps in the roster?

A: With so few on the roster at the present time, we are thin at a number of positions.  We need to increase our depth across the board, then see how we might be able to convert players to spots on the field where we are most in need.

Q: What are the expectations for this year’s team?

A: I would expect that we will be able to compete for a place in the state playoffs.  I also expect that we will maintain our unblemished home record (4-0 over the first two WPL seasons) and that we will give up less goals than in 2014.

Q: What are the critical areas of the game that will be stressed this season?

A: As mentioned previously, on-field cohesion and chemistry will be a priority, as will the team’s off-field camaraderie.  Our newly-formed player leadership council will hopefully help us in both of those areas.  In terms of on-field play, we need to overcome the late-game stutter steps that led to giving up goals in the final 10 minutes of all but one of our 2014 matches, which in the end cost us the wild-card spot last season.  Also, more fluid play through all the lines and greater contributions across the roster will be a point of focus.

There is still time and space for you to be part of our 2015 season.  Head over to our 2015 WPL gateway to drop us a note and get on the road to being an Owl this summer.

Posted April 7, 2015 by Scott in Uncategorized

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Player Evaluation   Leave a comment

In 2010, we wrote a document on scouting which laid out how we evaluate players and the criteria we use.  With us continuing to watch new college players as well as those who have been part of MUSC in past seasons, that document is outdated.  A more numeric, less-subjective system became necessary to adequately measure players against each other and against a simple scale.  Thus, we determined that players needed to be graded on skill (physical, technical, and mental), “heart” (the less-measurable aspects of the game), and intangibles (leadership ability, positional flexibility, value on the field), with the categories weighted 55%/30%/15%.  The scale runs from 1-10 in increments of half-points (e.g. 7, 7.5, 8, etc.).  For our 2014 Women’s Premier League team, the 19 players we are considering for our two 2015 teams scored in a range from 7.2 to 9.85, with the majority of players between 7.9 and 8.5.  We have set benchmarks for experience (two years of college play), skill (7.5), heart (8), and average score (7.500) that a player must meet or exceed in order to be eligible to play for our “core” team, with those not part of the core who meet the standards eligible to be “called-up” on an as-needed basis but who would play for our “pool” team.  Below are brief synopses of four players we scouted in past years (two from 2012, two from 2013; all names, schools, and other identifiable information have been redacted).

Player A:  Second-year player at forward.  Overall score in grey area (between 7.5 and 8), minimum score on skill, above the bar in heart.  Works better with dynamic players alongside her (right/left midfield, forward partner) but has excellent speed and ability to draw away defenders.  Right now, would be slotted for “pool” but could get opportunities with the “core” due to absences/injury.

Player B:  Experienced center midfielder.  Above the bar in all areas, capable of playing more attacking or more defensive role, either alongside a partner or ahead/behind other center midfielder.  Possession-oriented, doesn’t commit turnovers or try to make more out of a play than is there.  Would make “core” and be in the mix for first XI selection.

Player C:  First-year player used at forward, outside midfielder, and center midfielder (attacking role in a diamond).  Meets the minimums in all scored areas, though heart score is just at the bar.  Moves around well to find the ball and make things happen with it.  Would play for “pool” team, but with proper development in summer would be able to move up to “core” next year.

Player D:  First-year player at forward.  Minimums in component areas, just over the minimum in overall score.  Good height, uses it to provide for outlet when up top.  Moves away from the center to open up space for others and to commit defenders elsewhere.  “Pool” for this summer and a bit of a project to develop into a player that makes the “core” in the future.

With six weeks (or so) left in the college soccer regular season, there will be more evaluations and constant grading of players as we work to find the right 41-43 women for our 2015 teams and start the course for bringing a WPL title to Milwaukee United Soccer Club.

 

Posted September 23, 2014 by Scott in Club Philosophy

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College Season Update   Leave a comment

Now that almost every team has played a third of their schedule, it’s time to parse through the stats and see how the watch list is doing.  So far in 2014, the 47 field players we are following has accumulated 37 goals and 27 assists for 101 points.  Leading the pack is Paige Birschbach (Ripon College/Campbellsport) with six goals and seven assists for 19 points, followed closely by Michelle Greeneway (Lake Forest College/Sheboygan North) with 18 points (eight goals, two assists) and Brandi Peltier (Ripon College/Hustisford) with 17 points (seven goals, three assists).  Birschbach and Peltier’s teammate at Ripon, Jessica Ochocki (Cedarburg), is part of a trio of players [the others being UW-Whitewater’s Brianna Reid (Oak Creek) and St Norbert College’s Kaitlin Schmitz (St. Thomas More)] with three goals on the season.  Players from our 2014 Women’s Premier League team have combined for 14 goals and 16 assists (44 points), the bulk coming from Birschbach and Peltier.  Maria Stephans (UW-Milwaukee/Hartford) has contributed three assists to her school’s early-season efforts and Anna Stadler (Cardinal Stritch University/Wauwatosa West) scored a goal in the Wolves’ opening match against Viterbo.

Are there players you know about that we should know about?  Drop us a note at our player gateway page.  We’re looking to have a two-team pool of approximately 41-43 players for the 2015 WPL season and are on the lookout for women who have the drive, discipline, and skill to wear the club colors with pride.  Our hope is to have more players in contact with us before the turn of the year, which will lead to finalizing the two teams and how players will be allocated earlier than this past year.

Coming soon: a set of interviews with players from the watch list.

Posted September 16, 2014 by Scott in Uncategorized

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