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Women's Soccer
(Credit: Kha Vo)
(Credit: Kha Vo)
PREVIEW: WSOCC eyes berth into Final Four
Game Date and Time: Sunday, October 29 – 1:00 p.m. (at Guelph)
Game Location: Gryphon Soccer Complex, Guelph
Live Webcast/Radio Coverage: N/A
Tickets: at Guelph (Free entry)

THE SECOND HURDLE
Following an emphatic 2-0 victory over the McMaster Marauders in first round action at University Stadium on Wednesday afternoon, the Laurier Golden Hawks Women’s Soccer team face a very stiff challenge Sunday afternoon in their OUA Quarter-final. The second-seeded Guelph Gryphons (10-4-2) have played the Hawks tough this season and fans should expect another great game on Sunday.

The two teams first met in the Hawks home opener in early September, with the Gryphons using their great team speed to overwhelm the Laurier back-end and spoil the occasion, winning 3-0. Lesson learned, the purple and gold were able to better control Guelph in the return match, settling for a 0-0 draw on the road.

An added wrinkle to the match is the recent playoff history between the two sides. Just a year ago, the Gryphons defeated Laurier 2-1 on penalty kicks after Ellie Reid (Richmond, B.C.) dramatically tied up the game for the Hawks in the 90th minute.

While the Hawks need to be concerned with controlling the pace of the Gryphons, one point of weakness that they can potentially try to exploit is Guelph’s recent defensive form. Over their final two regular season games, the Gryphons gave up a combined seven goals. Continue that trend, and the purple and gold may just find themselves back in the OUA Final Four. 

THROW-IN’S
-    Following Wednesday’s slate of first round action, quarter-final matchups have been set as other games around the league include: Waterloo at Western, Ottawa at Queen’s, and Laurentian at UOIT
-    The location for the OUA Championships next weekend will be decided Sunday, with the highest remaining seed from the East Division hosting the province’s top four teams

PLAYERS TO WATCH
Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks (OUA West No. 3 seed)

F Maxine Murchie (Kitchener, Ont.)
-    How can we not include her? She was in full flight on Wednesday, with a brace and several close opportunities. Not many players in the OUA possess the same ability to break open a game that Murchie has

Guelph Gryphons (OUA West No. 2 seed)

GK Libby Brenneman (Baden, Ont.)
-    She’s been a thorn in the Hawks side for a few years now. Two clean sheets against the purple and gold this year, she also stoned the Hawks in the playoff penalty shootout last year. Laurier won’t be able to win if they can’t beat her
 
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U Sports Top 10
1. Laval (1)
2. UOIT (2)
3. Western (3)
4. Trinity Western (5)
5. Cape Breton (4)
6. Victoria (6)
7. Montreal (9)
8. UBC (8)
9. Queen's (NR)
10. Ottawa (10)
As of Oct. 31, 2017
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