Diplomats Set for Sweet 16

Diplomats Set for Sweet 16
NCAA Sweet 16 – Game 1
Saturday, Nov. 14, 2015
William Smith vs. Bridgewater | Geneva, N.Y. | 11:00 AM
Video | Live Stats
NCAA Sweet 16 – Game 2
Saturday, Nov. 14, 2015
F&M vs. Middlebury | Geneva, N.Y. | 2:00 PM
Series Record: MIDD Leads 1-0
Streak: MIDD +1
Last F&M Victory: N/A
Last MIDD Victory: L, 2-1, Nov. 12, 2015
Video  | Live Stats
NCAA Elite 8
Sunday, Nov. 15, 2015
Sweet 16 Winners | Geneva | 1:00 PM
Video | Live Stats


F&M is set for its second straight NCAA Sweet 16 appearance after shutting out Cabrini by a 5-0 score on Wednesday. The Diplomats are in the tournament for the eighth time in program history after receiving an at-large bid following the regular season. 

A Look at the Pod: No. 5 F&M (17-3) and No. 3 Middlebury (16-2) square off for the second time in program history with the only other matchup also coming in the NCAA Second Round, a 2-1 win by the Panthers in 2011. Middlebury enters the weekend with an overall record of 28-15 in NCAA Tournament play. The Panthers won the NCAA title in 1998, finishing with a 17-1 mark, while advancing to the finals in 2003, 2004, 2007 and 2011. 

William Smith will play host to the four-team pod. The No. 6 Herons earned the Liberty League's automatic bid into the NCAA tournament after capturing its 11th conference championship. The Herons hold a 17-2 overall record going into their 25th postseason appearance and 22nd NCAA Tournament berth. Their second round opponent on Saturday is Bridgewater, who edged Catholic by a 2-1 score in the opening round on Wednesday and is making its first NCAA Tournament appearance after winning the program's first-ever ODAC Title. 

Ticket Prices: Tickets are $5 for general admission and $3 for students, senior citizens, military personnel, and children ages 3-12.

NCAA First Round: Sarah Powell tallied a pair of scores, Ilianna Santangelo stopped all six shots she faced and F&M benefited from a complete team effort in a dominant 5-0 win over Cabrini in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Wednesday evening at Tylus Field. Sydney Cole (17th minute), Powell (29th and 63rd minutes), Emily Nagle (53rd minute) and Clare Wirth (67th minute) all lit the scoreboard. 

Santangello (13-2) was stellar in cage, picking up a career-high six saves through 70 minutes for her eighth shutout of the season while Cabrini's Taylor Bookman (12-8) sent back three attempts on the evening.

In the Rankings: The Diplomats fell slightly to No. 5 in the Penn Monto / NFHCA Division III Poll, dropping one spot from the previous four weeks. CC foe Ursinus is the only other conference representative in the rankings at No. 4. To view the complete top-20, click here.

Among the Leaders (NCAA): F&M's offense continues to hold a strong presence in the national statistical rankings. The Diplomats rank 11th among all DIII teams in goals per game average (3.7) and fifth in penalty corners per game (13.2), while defensively F&M places fourth in shutout percentage (55 percent). Santangelo's 0.59 goals against average is the third-lowest in the nation.

Moving up the Charts: Guarisco is closing in on all-time points record and currently has 125 in her career, just two shy of all-time leader Brittany Croll '05 with 127. 

The senior midfielder is also nearing the program's all-time assists record, currently placing second with 31.  Eileen O'Reilly '10 leads the way with 35. She also places fifth in goals (47), a record held by Lauren Kramedas '78 with 53.

With 11 game-winning goals in her career, Guarisco is second on the program's all-time list. Becky Willert '11 holds the record at 13. 

Lauren Eastman's name is also among the program's leaders, placing 18th in career goals (21) and third in game-winning goals (8), while Cole's seven game-winning scores place her in a tie for fifth. 

As a team, the Diplomats' 11 shutouts on the year are just one shy of tying the program's single-season record of 12, set by the 2014 squad. F&M's 74 goals in 2015 are also the second-most all time, behind a total of 80 scored by the team last season.

Balanced Attack: Sixteen different Diplomats have registered at least one goal on the year with 13 notching multiple scores and seven tallying five or more.