Setting the Scene
Who: Bucknell (10-7-0, 7-1-0 PL) at Navy (14-3-1, 7-0-1 PL)
When: Saturday, Oct. 28, 7 p.m.
Where: Glenn Warner Soccer Facility, Annapolis, Md.
Live Webstream: Patriot League Network
Live Stats: NavySports.com
About the Bison
• This will be a matchup of the two highest-scoring teams in the Patriot League. Navy has 37 goals in 18 games (2.1 per game), while Bucknell has 30 goals in 17 games (1.8). No other team in the league has more than 25.
• Bucknell will be looking to secure a Patriot League regular-season title for the second straight year and fifth time overall. The Bison were the No. 1 seed in 1995, 2006, 2007 and 2016. They were knocked off in the semifinals in 1995 and 1996 and in the final in 2007, but last year they broke through and won the title on their home field for the first time. Bucknell also claimed PL Tournament titles in 2001 and 2005 as a lower seed.
• Bucknell's lone blemish in Patriot League play this season was a 3-2 loss at Colgate on Oct. 4. The Bison bounced back nicely from that setback, earning 2-1 wins over a pair of upper-table teams in Lehigh and Boston University.
• Kendall Ham continued her goal-scoring surge in last Saturday's Senior Day win over Boston University. She scored both of Bucknell's goals in the 2-1 win, one with a left-footed chip over the goalkeeper and another on a near-post header off a corner kick. Ham now has a team-high eight goals on the season, which is one off the Patriot League lead of nine goals, held by the Navy tandem of Ash Farrow and Eleanor Pratt. Ham and Farrow are tied for the PL points lead with 19 apiece.
• Ham was one of three Bison to receive Patriot League Player of the Week honors on Monday. She was named Offensive Player of the Week, while Meghan Holtz was tabbed as the Midfielder of the Week and Alexandra Catanzarite the Rookie of the Week. Holtz assisted on both goals in the 2-1 win over Lehigh, with Catanzarite on the receiving end of one of them. It was the second PL weekly honor of the season for all three players.
• After struggling to find consistent goal-scoring early in the year against a very difficult non-conference schedule, Bucknell has now scored multiple goals in eight of their last nine games, with the lone exception a 4-0 loss to No. 11 Princeton. In eight Patriot League games, the Bison have scored a league-high 20 goals while conceding only five.
• Ham (eight goals in last eight games) is not the only Bison in good offensive form right now. Fellow senior Maddie Mulford has points in four straight games and goals in three of her last six. The freshman Catanzarite has points in five of her last eight games.
• Bucknell has gotten excellent scoring balance. The 30 goals have been scored by 13 different players, and 17 Bison have recorded a point.
• Earlier this month the Bison saw their six-game shutout streak come to an end with a 4-0 loss to No. 11 Princeton. The six consecutive shutouts tied the team record set in 2015, but that run started with a 0-0 tie at Navy. So this year's six straight shutout victories established a new school record. The scoreless string reached 578:25 scoreless minutes, which ended up a bit shy of the 2015 record of 655:03.
• Goalkeeper Dani Kaufman leads the Patriot League in saves per game (5.3) while ranking No. 4 in save percentage (.811). Kaufman has started every game this season and has a combined shutout in addition to her six solo clean sheets. She has also benefitted from a strong back four in front of her. The quartet of (L-R) Jackie Ham, Maddie Dano, Karli Cirovski and Ali Russo have started every game.
• Last week's victory over Lehigh made the current seniors the winningest class in program history. The group of Carolyn Casey, Karli Cirovski, Jackie Ham, Kendall Ham, Meghan Holtz, Maddie Mulford and Gabi Rosenfeld now has 47 career victories. The Class of 2009 held the previous mark with 45, while the Classes of 2017 and 2010 both won 44 games.
• Bucknell set team records in wins (16), league wins (8) and win percentage (.850) last season, while posting a program-record 14-game unbeaten streak. The Bison brought back 45 of their 51 goals a season ago, including eight of their top 10 scorers. Bucknell returned seven starters, five of whom made All-Patriot League Teams in 2016.
• The Bison have reached the Patriot League Championship game each of the last two seasons under Kelly Cook, who is in her third year as head coach. She is a two-time Patriot League Coach of the Year and is joined on the sidelines by David Madsen and Leigh Howard. The trio earned NSCAA Regional Staff of the Year honors in 2016. Cook's record at Bucknell is 37-15-5 overall and 21-3-2 in Patriot League play.
• Senior forward Kendall Ham was named to the watch list for the MAC Hermann Trophy, given annually to the nation's best player. Ham became Bucknell's first women's soccer All-American last season. She and her twin sister, outside back Jackie Ham, are starters and returning All-Patriot League selections. Earlier this year at Loyola, the twins scored goals in the same game for the third time in their careers.
Record Book Watch
• Kendall Ham ranks fourth on Bucknell's career points chart with 86. Next up is Jennifer Dervarics in third with 91 points.
• Kendall Ham is third all-time in goals with 37. She needs two more to catch Liz Woodrow for the No. 2 spot.
• Kendall Ham ranks T-12th among all active Division I players with 37 career goals. Alabama State's Ariela Lewis is No. 1 with 57.
• Maddie Mulford is tied for fifth (with Kerry McDonnell) on Bucknell's career assists list with 16. She needs one more to match Caitlin Holtz, the older sister of Meghan Holtz, for the No. 4 spot.
Scouting Navy/Series History
• The Mids are enjoying an outstanding year at 14-3-1 overall, with the only three losses coming to Stanford, Maryland and Tennessee. Stanford, currently ranked No. 1 in the country, handed Navy its last loss all the way back on Sept. 3. The Mids are 10-0-1 since then, with the only dropped points coming in a scoreless draw with arch-rival Army on Oct. 13 at West Point.
• Navy has won nine straight home games since opening the season with a 1-0 loss to Tennessee in Annapolis. Bucknell also played Tennessee at home this season and fell by the same score.
• Navy has outscored opponents 37-14 on the season and 14-2 in Patriot League play, but half of their overall goals-against total came in a 7-0 loss to Stanford. Ash Farrow and Eleanor Pratt have 19 points on nine goals and one assist. They are tied with Kendall Ham for the Patriot League points lead. Basely McClaskey leads the Patriot League in assists with eight, three more than the Bucknell duo of Meghan Holtz and Maddie Dano.
• Defensively, Navy has posted 12 shutouts this season. The Mids' streak of seven straight clean sheets ended on Saturday in a 2-1 win over Colgate. Sophomore goalkeeper Sydney Fortson is in her first year as the regular starter. She had started all 18 games and has an .829 save percentage and 0.82 GAA.
• Bucknell is 10-15-2 all-time against Navy but has won the last two series meetings. The Bison topped the Mids 3-0 in the Patriot League Tournament semifinals in Boston in 2015, and Bucknell won 2-1 in overtime last season.
• Last year's game was also played in Annapolis, and Kendall Ham won it for the Bison with a shot from just outside the area 22 seconds into overtime. Cora Climo broke a scoreless deadlock in the opening minute of the second half, but Karli Sottung equalized in the 54th minute. Center back Karli Cirovski made an incredible save off the line later in the second half to keep the game tied.
• Bucknell will next play on Friday, Nov. 3 in the Patriot League Tournament semifinals. The time, location and opponent are all still to be determined.