NCAA Title-Game Rematch History ... 

note: all research below is courtesy of CollegeSoccer360.com  (please credit accordingly)

By Pete LaFleur  (CS360 founder/editor ... editor@collegesoccer360.com)


When Stanford played at North Carolina a few days ago (Aug. 27), it marked the earliest rematch of the previous season's Division I women's soccer NCAA title game in the nearly three decades of D-I women's soccer play (since '82) ... Stanford gained some measure of redemption by playing UNC to a 2-2 tie, roughly nine months after dropping a hard-fought, 1-0 championship game vs. the Tar Heels to cap the 2009 season.

CollegeSoccer360 has crunched the historical numbers for such title-game rematch games, with notes following below (the bottom of this release includes a complete listing of the title games/rematches):

•  There had been 10 previous rematches of title games in the ensuing regular season – and Stanford did what only three of the previous 10 teams had managed to do (avenge the title-game loss in a regular-season win/tie) ... following Stanford's 2-2 game at UNC, the defending champion now is 7-2-2 in a title-game rematch during the following regular season ... George Mason beat North Carolina in the 1985 title game, but UNC then won the rematch vs. GMU early in the 1986 regular season (4-2, at GMU; 9/21/86) ... the defending champ then won the next four regular-season rematches, before Notre Dame played to a 2-2 game vs. visiting North Carolina on Sept. 19, 1997 (at ND ... UNC had beaten ND 1-0 in 2 OT, to win the '96 NCAA title) ... Portland beat its WCC rival Santa Clara in the 2002 NCAA title game, but SCU edged the Pilots the following November (2-1; 2 OT).

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• The 11 title-game rematches that have been played in the ensuing regular season have included only one played in August (last week's UNC-Stanford tie), plus one played in the first week of September, four others played during the third week of Sept., another in the final week of Sept., three played in mid-October and one played the first week of November:

Title-Game Rematches Played the Following Regular Season

(sorted earliest to latest in the season)

... 8/27/10 – Stanford 2,  at North Carolina 2 *  [defending champ: UNC]

... 9/4/09 – North Carolina 6,  at Notre Dame 0  [UNC] 

... 9/17/89 – at North Carolina 3,  North Carolina State 0  [UNC] 

... 9/19/97 – North Carolina 2,  at Notre Dame 2 *  [UNC]

... 9/21/86 – North Carolina 4,  at George Mason 2 *  [GMU]

... 9/21/91 – at North Carolina 2,  Connecticut 0  [UNC]

... 9/29/93 – at North Carolina 7,  Duke 2  [UNC] 

... 10/13/85 – North Carolina 5,  at Connecticut 0  [UNC]

... 10/15/88 – at North Carolina 4,  Massachusetts 0  [UNC]

... 10/15/95 – North Carolina 2,  Notre Dame 0  (in Houston)    [UNC] 

... 11/2/03 – at Santa Clara 2,  Portland 1 (2 OT) *    [PORT] 

* = team that lost previous season's title game won/tied the rematch

note: the 1995 ND-UNC game is the only neutral-site rematch listed above

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• There have been 17 seasons (out of 28) that featured a rematch of the previous season's Division I women's soccer title game ... in addition to the 11 regular-season rematches referenced above, there also have been two title-game rematches played the next season in conference tournaments (both won by the defending champ) and 11 more played in the next NCAA Tournament (defending champ has gone only 6-4-1 in those games) ... all told, the defending champions have compiled a .688 win pct. when facing the runner-up the next season (15-6-3):


Title-Game Rematches Played ...

... the next regular season: defending champion is 7-2-2

...the next season in conf. tournament: def. champ is 2-0-0

... the next season in the NCAAs: def. champ is 6-4-1

TOTAL: defending champion is 15-6-3 (.688) in title-game rematches the next season  

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• There have been 11 seasons that featured a title-game rematch in the NCAA Tournament the following season:

Title-Game Rematched Played Next Season in the NCAAs ...

... round-of-16: defending champ is 0-1-1
... quarterfinals: defending champ is 0-1-0
... semifinals: defending champ is 6-2-0
(note: there has yet to be a title-game rematch in the title game the next season)
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There have been six seasons when the teams that played in the previous year's NCAA title game met multiple times the next season (including three UNC games vs. N.C State in 1989, plus a split of the rematch games in '95 between ND and UNC):

... 1986: UNC beat George Mason in regular-season and NCAAs
... 1989: UNC beat N.C. State in reg.-season, ACC final and NCAAs
... 1993: UNC beat Duke in regular season and ACC final
... 1995: UNC beat Notre Dame in reg.-season but ND beat UNC in NCAAs
... 2002: Santa Clara beat Portland reg.-season and advanced vs. UP in NCAAs (tie/Pks)
... 2009: UNC beat Notre Dame in reg.-season and NCAAs
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NCAA DIVISION I TITLE-GAME REMATCHES

(played the following season)

1984
NCAA Final ... at North Carolina 2,  Connecticut 0

... rematch: 10/13/85 – North Carolina 5, at Connecticut 0    W

1985
NCAA Final ... at George Mason 2, North Carolina 0

... 9/21/86 – North Carolina 4, at George Mason 2    L

... 11/22/86 – North Carolina 3, at George Mason 2 (2 OT; NCAA semifinal)    L

1987
NCAA Final ... North Carolina 1,  at Massachusetts 0

... 10/15/88 – at North Carolina 4,  Massachusetts 0    W

1988
NCAA Final ... at North Carolina 4,  North Carolina State 1

... 9/17/89 – at North Carolina 3, North Carolina State 0    W

... 10/29/89 – North Carolina 5, North Carolina State 3 (at Duke; ACC final)    W

... 11/18/89 – North Carolina 2, at North Carolina State 0 (NCAA semifinal)    W

1989
NCAA Final ... North Carolina 2,  Colorado College 0 (at N.C. State)

... 11/17/90 – at North Carolina 2,  Colorado College 1 (NCAA semifinal)    W

1990
NCAA Final ... at North Carolina 6,  Connecticut 0

... 9/21/91 – at North Carolina 2,  Connecticut 0    W

1992
NCAA Final ... at North Carolina 9,  Duke 1

... 9/29/93 – at North Carolina 7,  Duke 2    W

... 11/17/93 – North Carolina 4, Duke 1 (at NC-St; ACC final)    W

1994
NCAA Final ... North Carolina 5,  Notre Dame 0  (at Portland)

... 10/15/95 – North Carolina 2, Notre Dame 0  (in Houston)    W

... 12/1/95 – Notre Dame 1, at North Carolina 0  (NCAA semifinal)    L

1995
NCAA Final ... Notre Dame 1, Portland 0  (3 OT; at North Carolina)

... 12/6/96 – Notre Dame 3,  Portland 2  (NCAA semi; at Santa Clara)    W

1996
NCAA Final ... North Carolina 1,  Notre Dame 0 (2 OT, at Santa Clara)

... 9/19/97 – North Carolina 2,  at Notre Dame 2    T

1999
NCAA Final ... North Carolina 2,  Notre Dame 0 (in San Jose)

... 12/1/00 – North Carolina 2,  Notre Dame 1  (NCAA semi; in San Jose)    W

2001
NCAA Final ... Santa Clara 1,  North Carolina 0  (in Dallas, at SMU)

... 12/6/02 – Santa Clara 2,  North Carolina 1  (NCAA semifinal; at Texas)    W

2002
NCAA Final ... Portland 2,  Santa Clara 1  (2 OT; at Texas)

... 11/2/03 – at Santa Clara 2, Portland 1 (2 OT)    L

... 11/23/03 – Santa Clara 0, at Portland 0 (SCU adv. 4-2 in PKs; NCAA rd-of-16)    T

2005
NCAA Final ... Portland 4,  UCLA 0  (at Texas A&M)

... 11/24/06 – at UCLA 2,  Portland 1 (NCAA quarterfinal)    L

2006
NCAA Final ... North Carolina 2,  Notre Dame 1 (in Cary, N.C.)

... 11/24/07 – Notre Dame 3,  at North Carolina 2  (NCAA round-of-16)    L

2008
NCAA Final ... North Carolina 2,  Notre Dame 1 (in Cary, N.C.)

... 9/4/09 – North Carolina 6, at Notre Dame 0    W

... 12/4/09 – North Carolina 1, Notre Dame 0 (NCAA semifinal; at Texas A&M)    W

2009
NCAA Final – North Carolina 1,  Stanford 0  (at Texas A&M)

... 8/27/10 – Stanford 2,  at North Carolina 2    T

 editor@collegesoccer360.com