Monday, April 23, 2012

Montana wins Gonzaga 7-v-7 tournament in penalties

Photo Galleries:  GU-v-Idaho-White  -  CWU-v-Idaho-Black  -  WallaWalla-Gold-v-Montana-Maroon  -  EWU-v-Montana-White
The University of Montana and tournament host Gonzaga University women’s soccer programs dominated the weekend’s 7-v-7 event held Saturday on the GU campus. Montana would prevail in the championship game, 4-3 in a penalty kick tiebreaker, after a 3-3 draw against the defending two-time champion Zags, wrapping up the 12-team competition.

The tournament featured teams from Central Washington University (and CWU alumni), Eastern Washington University, the University of Idaho (2), the University of Montana (2), Spokane Community College and Walla Walla University (2) along with the host and their alumni team. The stronger programs were in Groups A and B with the top five (one wild card) and the winner of Group C advancing to the knockout phase.

Gonzaga dominated Group A with three victories, allowing the lone goal in the final match, a 7-1 victory over Idaho - White. They blanked Montana - Maroon, 4-0, and Walla Walla - Gold, 5-0, in the previous two matches. Montana finished second in the group.

In Group B, the competition was more wide open with every team posting a victory in group play. Montana – White won the group with victories over Central Washington (6-1) and Idaho – Black (8-2) in the first two games before falling to Eastern Washington, 6-3. EWU and Idaho tied for second in the group courtesy of their 3-3 draw with Eastern filling the wild card slot due to tiebreakers.

The Gonzaga Alumni won Group C with two victories and a draw. After finishing 3-3 with the CWU Alumni, the Zags went on to defeat Walla Walla – Black, 6-1, and Spokane Community College, 8-3.

Montana’s Maroon side topped Big Sky rival Eastern, 3-2, in their quarterfinal match-up and the GU Alumni advanced via penalties, 2-0, after a 5-5 draw with Idaho – Black, setting up a pair of intra-school showdowns in the semifinals.

The Zags dominated the Alumni to the tune of a 5-1 victory while the two Montana sides dueled to a 1-0 decision in favor of UM-White.

With Gonzaga already utilizing their full squad for its lone entry and the Grizzlies carrying a few knocks from the full day of competition, Montana was graciously allowed to use the full squad in the championship match.

“It turned out to be a great day, and although we lost in penalty kicks to Montana in the Final, everyone had a productive day,” said Gonzaga Associate Head Coach Derek Pittman, who served as the tournament director during the event.

The tournament was the final event of the spring for the University of Idaho, which saw nearly every Vandal score and several players spend time outside their normal playing positions quick playing environment.

“There’s little bits of the 7v7 that related well to the way we play, and then some that went against our philosophy, so it took us a little while to get acclimated and when we did, it was very good,” Vandals coach Pete Showler later said about the event. “It was a time to get a lot of minutes under your belt and really enjoy yourself for all the hard work you’ve put in this spring.”

Tournament Results

Group A
Gonzaga 4:0 UM-Maroon
Idaho-White 2:0 Walla Walla-Gold
Gonzaga 5:0 Walla Walla-Gold
UM-Maroon 5:4 Idaho-White
Idaho-White 1:7 Gonzaga
Walla Walla-Gold 6:7 UM-Maroon

Finish: 1) GU 2) UM-M 3) UI-W 4) WW-G

Group B
Idaho-Black 3:3 Eastern Washington
UM-White 6:1 Central Washington
Idaho-Black 2:8 UM-White
Central Washington 4:2 Eastern Washington
UM-White 3:6 Eastern Washington
Central Washington 2:6 Idaho-Black

Finish: 1) UM-W 2) EWU 3) UI-B 4) CWU

Group C
Spokane CC 2:1 Walla Walla-Black
GU Alumni 3:3 CWU Alumni
Spokane CC 3:3 CWU Alumni
GU Alumni 6:1 Walla Walla-Black
GU Alumni 8:3 Spokane CC
Walla Walla-Black 3:6 CWU Alumni

Finish: 1) GU-A 2) CWU-A 3) SCC 4) WW-B

Placement Matches
7th - CWU Alumni 4:7 Idaho-White
9th - Spokane CC 2:4 Central Washington

GU Alumni 5:5 (2:0 APK) Idaho-Black
Eastern Washington 2:3 Montana-Maroon

Gonzaga 5:1 Gonzaga Alumni
Montana-White 1:0 Montana-Maroon

Gonzaga 3:3 (4:3 APK) Montana