FIRST ROUND RECAP - The first round of the BIG EAST Championship was historic on many levels. With UConn's 3-1 win over Rutgers, Husky coach Len Tsantiris earned his 500th career victory, the second-highest total in NCAA history. In his 32nd year at the helm, Tsantiris has compiled a 500-170-50 overall record (.729 win percentage) as a head coach.
'Five hundred wins is a tremendous accomplishment and I'm honored to have played for Lenny," beamed former UConn standout and current Louisville head coach Karen Ferguson-Dayes. "He is very passionate about soccer and coaching players to reach their full potential. Lenny has built a wonderful program with a winning tradition at UConn and 500 wins is a milestone that should be celebrated!"
Despite the milestone victory, Tsantris is only looking ahead. "I'm thinking about Marquette (in the next round). That's going to be a big game. We want to bring this group here to play on our home field for the tournament. But when you're in this business, it's a passion. It's my life."
UConn held a 2-0 lead at the break with goals from senior Linda Ruutu and sophomore Gabrielle Charno, who recorded the game winner on a header. Sophomore Riley Houle added another goal in the 81st minute and freshman Andrea Plucenik dished out two assists to round out the top offensive performers for the Huskies.
UConn Tribute Video
UConn (9-7-2) advances to the quarterfinals of the BIG EAST Championship and will play at No. 1 seed Marquette on Sunday, Oct. 28 at 2 p.m. ET.
BIG EAST Bracket in PDF
DePaul earned a 3-0 win at Villanova in the other first round contest. It was DePaul's first BIG EAST Championship road win. It was also was the Blue Demons' first victory over Villanova in nine tries. Junior Ashleigh Goddard found freshman Elise Wyatt twice as the pair accounted for two of the team's three goals while junior Kylie Nordness connected on the third goal unassisted. DePaul (9-9-2) advances to the quarterfinals for a 1 p.m. ET match on Sunday, Oct. 28 at Georgetown.
Other quarterfinal matches taking place on Sunday include Louisville at USF and Syracuse at Notre Dame. Both contests will begin at 1 p.m. ET.