SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Preparing for its 23rd NCAA Tournament in 24 seasons, No. 11 Santa Clara had seven players honored by the West Coast Conference Tuesday. Highlighting the honorees, senior All-American goalkeeper Bianca Henninger was named the 2011 WCC Goalkeeper of the Year.
Santa Clara will host Cal in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Sat., Nov. 12 at 2 p.m.
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Tickets prices are set for the NCAA Tournament First Round vs. Cal. Gates will open at 1 p.m. for the 2 p.m. game. They are $10 for adults; $7 for youth 12 and under and seniors 65 and older; and $7 for Santa Clara students. The first 100 Santa Clara students will be admitted for free as Santa Clara is picking up the tab.
Henninger, Sofia Huerta and Julie Johnston were named to the All-WCC First Team. Ellie Rice and Meleana Shim were named to the All-WCC Second Team and Bridgett Miller received honorable mention honors. Huerta and Alyssa Kleiner were named to the Freshman All-WCC Team as well.
Henninger, a preseason All-WCC selection, had another stellar season in net for the Broncos. Making 18 starts she allowed only 13 goals, good for a 0.72 GAA which was second in the WCC. She also made 60 saves and recorded four shutouts despite battling injuries all season.
Johnston, the 2010 WCC Freshman of the Year, showed she would not endure a sophomore slump by leading the Broncos with nine goals and 22 points. She also led the conference with four game-winning goals. Her play during the week of Sept. 19 nabbed her WCC Player of the Week honors. That week Johnston scored the only goal in a 1-0 Santa Clara win over Washington State and against No. 17 Cal she added two more goals to help the Broncos to a 3-0 win.
Huerta showed her seemingly limitless potential with a scorching month of October. She was rewarded by being named West Coast Conference Player of the Month for her eight goals and three assists. She had a hat trick in a 5-0 Bronco win vs. San Diego State and followed it up by scoring both goals, including the game-winner in overtime, against rival Saint Mary's to open conference play.
Rice scored two goals in Santa Clara's season-opening 2-1 win over San Jose State and was named to TopDrawerSoccer.com's National Team of the Week on Aug. 22 for her play. Shim scored four goals, two on penalty kicks, and had four assists to total 12 points which was third on the Bronco team. Both her and Rice started all 20 games for Santa Clara.
Bridgett Miller finished the season on a tear and was rewarded by being named WCC Player of the Week in back-to-back weeks on Oct. 24 and Oct. 31. Miller scored three game-winners in that span, including the lone goal against then-undefeated No. 3 Pepperdine, and had one goal in each of the four Santa Clara games.
Kleiner started all 20 games as a true freshmen on a defense that only allowed 13 goals and recorded 10 shutouts. The 13 goals was good for second in the WCC and the 10 shutouts was tied for first.