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What’s On Tap? (9/16-9/22)

What's On Tap, Sponsored by Brazen Head Irish Pub

Every Wednesday, White & Blue Review will take a look at the week ahead in Creighton sports. It is What’s On Tap, presented by Brazen Head Irish Pub.

Friday, September 18

Women’s soccer vs. Arizona State
7:00 p.m., Morrison Stadium

Much has been made of Creighton’s championship hopes in men’s soccer. But the women’s team seems to want in on the conversation, too. It has been six seasons since Bruce Erickson led the Jays to the 2002 Missouri Valley Conference regular season title, but the Bluejays (7-1-1) look poised to make a run at some MVC hardware when conference play begins next week.

But before they can make their move to the top of the conference standings, the Jays host Pac-10 program Arizona State (4-1-1) to Morrison Stadium Friday evening. Creighton’s defense has given up just 2 goals all season, and opponents are averaging 0.22 goals per game. The Jays will need to remain tenacious in the backfield if they are to grab another non-conference win.

The Sun Devils are 2-0 all time against Creighton, including a 4-0 win in the two teams’ last meeting in 2007 in Tempe. They’ll play CU on Friday and then Nebraska in Lincoln on Sunday.

Volleyball vs. Bradley
7:00 p.m., Sokol Arena

So much for moral victories. Things have gone from bad to worse for Kirsten Bernthal Booth’s volleyball team. Just when it looked like they might turn the corner with a win against Samford last Friday in the opener of the Dayton Flyer Invitational, the Bluejays lose 5-set matches against Connecticut and Dayton. The loss to the Flyers perhaps hurts worst, since the Jays opened a 2-0 lead on the still-unbeaten Dayton squad before dropping three straight sets.

Two 5-set losses in the same day puts the program at 2-7 on the season, limping into conference play with the idea of a solid non-conference performance all but erased. Save for two non-con matchups in the coming weeks, Creighton turns its attention to the Missouri Valley Conference schedule. And it starts with the Bradley Braves coming to Omaha for the first MVC match in Sokol Arena.

BU enters the weekend 8-5 on the season and looking for retribution for last year’s sweep at the hands of the Bluejays. In fact, the Jays dropped just one set to Bradley in 2008 in wins at Peoria (3-1) and Omaha (3-0).

Men’s golf at The McLaughlin
Bethpage Red Course, Farmingdale, NY

Creighton’s men’s golf team teed its season off this past week, finishing 9th out of 12 teams in the Fairway Club Invitational in Nebraska City. This week they head out east, where they’ll participate in the 2009 McLaughlin at Bethpage State Park’s Red Course.

They’ll join host St. John’s University and 16 other teams from around the nation, including Boston College, Connecticut, Harvard, Princeton, and Villanova.

Saturday, September 19

Cross country at Woody Greeno-Nebraska Invitational
Women at 10:00 a.m.; Men at 10:45 a.m.
Pioneers Park, Lincoln, NE

After positive showings for both teams at the Creighton-UNO Invitational Labor Day weekend, coach Chas Davis takes his squads to Lincoln for the Woody Greeno-Nebraska Invitational at Pioneers Park.

The weather forecast again looks brilliant for a mid-September Saturday morning in the Midwest. Here’s hoping the Jays can build on their efforts in the past race and continue to improve.

Men’s golf at The McLaughlin
Bethpage Red Course, Farmingdale, NY

Creighton’s men’s golf team teed its season off this past week, finishing 9th out of 12 teams in the Fairway Club Invitational in Nebraska City. This week they head out east, where they’ll participate in the 2009 McLaughlin at Bethpage State Park’s Red Course.

They’ll join host St. John’s University and 16 other teams from around the nation, including Boston College, Connecticut, Harvard, Princeton, and Villanova.

Softball hosts the Creighton Round Robin Tournament
2:00 p.m.
vs. Iowa Western Community College; 4:00 p.m. vs. Nebraska-Omaha
CU Sports Complex

For the second straight weekend, the Creighton softball team will play host to two days worth of local matchups. Saturday’s action opens with Nebraska-Omaha and Iowa Western Community College squaring off at 12:00 p.m., followed by Creighton’s contests against both teams.

Men’s soccer vs. Missouri State
7:00 p.m., Morrison Stadium

Last season, the Bears handed the Bluejays their only blemish in the conference season, a draw in Springfield in late October. The Jays got the better of MSU in the conference tournament, though, on their way to another MVC tournament title.

This season, the Jays start conference play at home against the Bears, against whom Creighton holds an 18-6-3 all-time record. The Bluejays haven’t lost to MSU since 2004, but will likely need to shake some rust off following the long period since their last game (a 1-0 win over Cal-Poly).

Volleyball vs. Northern Iowa
7:00 p.m., Sokol Arena

The Panthers, a perennial power out of the MVC, come to Omaha Saturday to check out the Bluejays’ new digs. And they’re on quite a roll. After starting the season with wins over Virginia and Iona, UNI lost back-to-back matches against Texas A&M and Iowa State. Since then, the Panthers are 7-0 and poised to start conference play with momentum on their side.

They’ve got a Friday night match in Des Moines against Drake, but then will make the short trek on I-80 to downtown Omaha and Sokol Arena. After losing to UNI in Cedar Falls last September, the Jays claimed a late-season win against the Panthers in Omaha positioning themselves for a deep run in the MVC conference tournament. UNI had other thoughts, though, and ended CU’s season, running their all-time record against Creighton to 32-3.

Sunday, September 20

Softball hosts the Creighton Round Robin Tournament
2:00 p.m.
vs. Butler Community College; 4:00 p.m. vs. Nebraska-Omaha
CU Sports Complex

After Butler Community College and UNO kick things off at 12:00 p.m. Sunday, the Jays will take on both teams at 2:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m., respectively.

Monday, September 21

Women’s golf at Missouri State-Payne Stewart Memorial
Rivercut, Springfield, MO

The Jays’ season started inauspiciously with a last-place finish at the Chip-N Club Invitational this past week. Still, senior Betsy Conroy turned in a few solid scorecards, including a 74 … her best collegiate round.

The Jays head to Springfield to compete in the Payne Stewart Memorial, hosted by Missouri State today and Tuesday.

Tuesday, September 22

Volleyball vs. South Dakota State
6:00 p.m., Sokol Arena

Creighton hosts South Dakota State (3-5) for one of the Jays’ two remaining non-conference matches of 2009. The Jays and Jackrabbits have played against each other just twice: the Jays won 3-0 in 2005, and SDSU won 3-1 in 2006. Both teams won on their home courts, and the Jays will hopefully be looking to continue a home winning streak they hope to start earlier in the week against Bradley and Northern Iowa.

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