UCLA Women's Soccer Ends Best Season in School History

Dec. 1, 1997

UCLA Ends Season 19-3-0 — The 1997 UCLA women's soccer team finished its best season in the program's five year history this past weekend, recording a 19-3-0 record. The Bruins' season was ended in the quarterfinals of the NCAA playoffs, as the Notre Dame Fighting Irish handed UCLA an 8-0 defeat. Despite the tough ending to the 1997 season, the Bruins had an outstanding year. The team went 9-0 in the Pac-10 to win its first ever Pac-10 title. The team recorded a school record twelve game win streak to close out the season. The Bruins recorded their first ever playoff win in their 1-0 defeat over Portland and advanced to the quarterfinals for the first time in school history. The team received the highest ranking in school history, finding themselves at No. 11 on the Soccer News poll twice this season. The Bruins finish the season tied for fifth in the nation.

UCLA's Season Ended By No. 2 Notre Dame — The No. 2 seed Notre Dame (23-0-1) handed UCLA an 8-0 defeat in the quarterfinals of the NCAA playoffs. The Irish lead the nation in goals scored, with 12 players in double figures in scoring, three of which have 50 points or more. Notre Dame, the 1995 National Champions, advance to the Final Four for the fourth straight year.

UCLA's Playoff Run – The 1997 UCLA Bruins had an excellent playoff run this season, recording their first win and making their first appearance in the quarterfinals. The Bruins began the postseason with a big win over No. 7 seed Portland. UCLA recorded its first win in the NCAA playoffs when it handed the Pilots a 1-0 defeat. UCLA joined Notre Dame as the only two schools to hand Portland a home playoff loss. UCLA forced the Pilots out of the first round for the first time in five years. The Bruins traveled next to the Lone Star State to take on the SMU Mustangs in Dallas, TX. UCLA handed the Mustangs a 3-2 defeat, earning the team a spot in the quarterfinals. The Bruins next faced the No. 2 Notre Dame Fighting Irish in South Bend, ID. The Bruins played hard, but were unable to stop the number one scoring team in the nation, as the Irish defeated UCLA 8-0. Despite the tough ending, UCLA's playoff run did not only make history, but also capped off the best season the five year program has ever had.

Pac-10 Champions — The UCLA women's soccer team won its first-ever Pac-10 championship this season, finishing conference play with a perfect 9-0 record. The Bruins became the first team in Pac-10 history to go 9-0 in conference play. For their outstanding play in the Pac-10 and the overall season, the Bruins were rewarded handsomely. Head coach Joy Fawcett was named Pac-10 Coach of the Year, leading UCLA to its first Pac-10 title. Senior forward Traci Arkenberg was named Pac-10 Player of the Year, leading the Pac-10 in points and goals scored. Freshman midfielder Sommer Hammoud was named Pac-10 Freshman of the Year. Arkenberg and seniors Shannon Thomas and Rhi Tanaka were named to the first-team All-Pac-10 team, while Sommer Hammoud and sophomore midfielder Beth Thompson received second-team All-Pac-10 honors. History Making — The 1997 season was a record breaking season for the Bruins. The team won more games than any other Bruin squad, posting a school best 19-3-0. The Bruins enjoyed a 12 game win streak, also a school record. The Bruins broke virtually ever scoring record at UCLA. Individually, forward Traci Arkenberg and goalkeeper Lindsay Culp broke a few records themselves.