UW-Oshkosh celebates a quarter-century's worth of its women's intercollegiate soccer program when the Titans host UW-Platteville on Saturday (Oct. 7) at J. J. Keller Field at Titan Stadium.
The 7 p.m. contest will feature the halftime introduction of former UW-Oshkosh players and coaches, and a special video presentation highlighting the program's 25-year history.
What began as a club team in 1986 blossomed into a varsity program in 1993. Over 24-plus seasons, UW-Oshkosh women's soccer has produced a 242-188-42 record and four appearances in the NCAA NCAA Division III Championship. UW-Oshkosh enters Wednesday's (Oct. 4) home match against nationally ranked UW-Whitewater with a 3-5-2 record.
Five head coaches have guided the program, including Bruce Coleman, who led the Titans to a 11-14-5 record during the first two seasons. Dave Farin (25-44-4 record) coached for four seasons from 1995-98 before Scott Haywood (54-31-7) took the reins for nearly five years, leading the Titans to their first winning season in 2000, when they compiled a program-best 15-4 mark. Erin O'Driscoll then coached UW-Oshkosh to a 5-1 record during the final six games of the 2003 season.
Current head coach Erin Coppernoll (147-98-28 record) is in her 14th season in 2017. The Titans went 15-4-3 in Coppernoll's inaugural season in 2004 to match the school record for wins. The fourth-winningest coach in WIAC history, Coppernoll has guided the program to each of its four NCAA postseason trips, its one conference title and 11 winning seasons, including the past eight years in a row.
Coppernoll was also on the sidelines for the team's 100th and 200th wins. The Titans reached the century mark on Sept. 25, 2004, at St. Norbert College and won their 200th contest at home against UW-Eau Claire on Oct. 12, 2013. The first game in program history resulted in a 1-0 win, a goal by Kim Sorensen, at Lawrence University on Sept. 8, 1993.
UW-Oshkosh marked program firsts with an NCAA Championship appearance in 2006, a WIAC Tournament championship in 2011 and a WIAC regular season title in 2015. The Titans have since added NCAA postseason trips in 2011, 2014 and 2015, and a WIAC Tournament title in 2014.
The Titans own a 0-3-2 record in their four NCAA tournament appearances. UW-Oshkosh reached the second round of the national postseason for the first and only time in 2011, when the Titans won a shootout over Ohio Wesleyan University after playing to a scoreless tie through a pair of overtimes.
UW-Oshkosh has also compiled a 101-72-15 record in conference play over the past 24-plus years. In addition to their WIAC title in 2015, the Titans also finished second in the league in 2001, 2005, 2006, 2013 and 2014.
A total of 38 UW-Oshkosh players have earned All-WIAC recognition, 16 All-Region status and one Titan – Carrie Gilbert – received All-America honors. Gilbert was named to the All-America Second Team as a defender in 2001.
Former Titan midfielder Robyn Elliott was selected to the All-Region team in each of her four seasons from 2013-16. She was named to the All-Region Second Team in 2013, 2015 and 2016, and was chosen to the Third Team in 2014.
Gilbert and midfielder Michelle John are the only two UW-Oshkosh players to receive All-Region first team plaudits as Gilbert was selected to the top team in her All-America season of 2001 and John, a three-time All-Region performer from 2004-06, earned first team regional honors in 2006.
Elliott is also the program's only four-time All-WIAC selection, collecting first-team laurels from 2013-16. John (2004-06), midfielder Chelsea Kierszh (2011-13) and defender/forward Lindsay Rau (2001-03) were named All-WIAC First Team three consecutive years while Corri Brunner was the program's initial All-WIAC first team selection in the debut varsity season of 1993.
Two Titans have been named WIAC Defensive Player of the Year – Anna Beckerleg in 2013 and Ashley Siewert in 2015.
Nicole Kunick (2002-05) holds the program records with 77 points and 33 goals, while Jolanda Aalbers scored a school-record 30 goals in just 15 games in 2000. Aalbers tallied a WIAC-record six goals in a match against UW-River Falls in 2000.
Other program statistical leaders include John with 23 assists from 2003-06 and goalkeeper Sara Tomjanovich with a 0.66 goals-against average from 2000-03.