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– On Friday, Sept. 5, the Columbia women’s soccer team will take the field at Rocco B. Commisso Soccer Stadium to open the 2014 season. The Lions will host Sacred Heart at 7 p.m. for its first of two matches on opening weekend. On Sunday, Sept. 7, Columbia will head to West Point to take on Army at 1 p.m. for a fierce start to the year.

ABOUT THE LIONS: At the helm for Columbia in her first season is head coach Tracey Bartholomew. After 14 seasons as head coach at LIU-Brooklyn, Bartholomew will begin her leadership of an exciting mix of veteran players and new talent for the Lions on the pitch this weekend.

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The Lions return a total of 19 players, including 10 seniors to a team that went 8-6-3 overall last season. On offense, Columbia returns two double-digit point scorers in junior Elly McGuffog (11) and senior Alex Yow (10), along with senior Pheonetia Browne who tallied nine points in 2013. Co-captain Coleen Rizzo will also return this season for the first time since her 2012 campaign where she was the Lion’s second leading scorer behind 14 points on six goals and two assists.

On defense, the Lions welcome back 100 percent of its goalkeeping.  Sophomore Allison Spencer (39 saves) and senior Grace Redmon (43 saves) both anchor a team defense loaded with veteran experience, including team co-captain Torie Goode.

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8-6-3 Record 2-1
Ivy League Conference NEC
1.71 Goals Per Game 2.67
.156 Shot % .544
31 Assists 5
Coleen Rizzo (15 pts.) *2012 Leading Scorer Kristin Verrette (10 pts.)
Grace Redmon (3-3) (.811 save %) Goalkeeper Talia Schwartz (2-1) (.667 save%)

INSIDE THE SERIES: Columbia will look to extend its current three-game winning streak over the Pioneers on Friday. The Lions lead the all-time series 3-0 dating back to the teams’ first meeting in 2005.  and back-to-back wins over the past two seasons. Sacred Heart has remained scoreless all-time against Columbia behind three Lion’s shutout, including back-to-back clean sheets he past two seasons.

Bartholomew will take on a familiar foe in Sacred Heart this weekend having consistently competed against the Pioneers in the NEC during her last regime in Brooklyn.

ABOUT SACRED HEART: The Pioneers are off to a 2-1 start to the season with a pair of home wins. On Aug. 31, Sacred Heart bounced back form a 0-1 loss at Iona to shutout Saint Peter’s 4-0 at home. Senior Kristin Verrette has picked up where she left off last season as the Pioneers' leading scorer with a team-high five goals through three matches.

Watch all the action on Friday via live stream on the The Ivy League® Digital Network at


COLUMBIA (2013) Team Matchup ARMY
8-6-3 Record 1-3
Ivy League Conference Patriot League
1.71 Goals Per Game 1.00
.156 Shot % .429
31 Assists 4
Coleen Rizzo (15 pts.) *2012 Leading Scorer Bailey Wildman (5 pts.)
Grace Redmon (3-3) (.811 save %) Goalkeeper Jordan Cassalia (1-3) (.741 save%)

INSIDE THE SERIES: The Lions will hit the road to take on Army for the second straight time since the team’s last meeting in 2012. The Black Knights led the all-time series 7-13 dating back to 1986, however Columbia has took control of the series in recent years winning seven of the last ten matches.

ABOUT ARMY: The Black Knights have begun the season 1-3 with its sole win coming at home against St. John’s, 2-1, on Aug. 25. Army will enter the weekend looking to shake off two road losses as it begins a three-game homestand. The Lions will be the second game in the homestand on Sunday, following Army’s Friday match against Delaware.