This Week in WAC Soccer - Sept. 18
Denver Pioneers (6-1-2, 0-0-0 WAC)
Denver defeated Kansas 1-0 and then tied Texas 3-3 in double overtime this past week ... this weekend’s results stretched the Pioneers unbeaten streak to eight matches ... Denver will wrap-up nonconference action as the Pioneers host TCU on Friday at 7 p.m. MT, before traveling to Portland for a 2 p.m. MT Sunday kickoff ... senior forward Kaitlin Bast scored her 32nd career goal on Sunday, moving her into a tie for sixth on DU’s all-time list ... Bast is also seventh on DU’s all-time points list with 81 ... junior forward Kristen Hamilton moved into a tie for ninth on DU’s all-time points list with 73 ... junior forward Nicholette DiGiacomo was named WAC Offensive Player of the Week after recording a game-winning assist and a goal on the week ... Denver is 25-1-1 all-time at CIBER Field at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium.
Idaho Vandals (2-8-0, 0-0-0 WAC)
Idaho went 0-2 last week ... the team dropped a 2-0 decision at Eastern Washington before falling 5-1 at home against Washington State ... Katie Baran registered Idaho’s lone goal of the week against Washington State ... Chelsea Small led the team with 10 shots on the week, three of which were on goal ... Erica Hart had nine shots, including a team-high four on goal ... Meli Cortez and Lauren Layton were each credited with assists on the Baran goal against Eastern Washington ... Liz Boyden led the Vandals in the box with 10 saves over the two contests ... this week, Idaho hosts Utah Valley on Friday before traveling to play UNLV on Sunday.
Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters (7-1-2, 0-0-0 WAC)
Louisiana Tech is on a four-game unbeaten streak after sweeping the weekend matches versus Jackson State and Southeastern Louisiana ... all six of the Techsters goals this weekend came in the second period ... the 28 goals scored this season in 10 games thus far has already eclipsed their 26 total goals scored from a year ago ... after allowing one goal this weekend versus Southeastern Louisiana, LA Tech has only allowed four goals all season ... junior forward Emily Brennan notched her team-leading fifth goal on Sunday versus Southeastern LA ... freshman forward Laura LeFevour was credited with an assist in both weekend matches giving her a team-leading five assists on the season ... the comeback win versus Southeastern LA was the first come-from-behind victory for Tech this season ... this week, LA Tech hosts McNeese State and travels to SE Missouri St.
New Mexico State Aggies (1-6-2, 0-0-0 WAC)
In another defensive strong hold, NM State fell to in-state rival New Mexico, 1-0, in the final minutes of double overtime, Sept. 16 ... the rivalry match was the second consecutive double overtime game ... junior goalkeeper Mikaela Bitner anchored the Aggie defense with a game-high eight saves ... senior Courtney Irwin, junior Olivia Sierra and freshman Mikaela Bitner assisted with the defensive effort and played all 108 minutes ... the Aggies played to a 0-0 double overtime draw at Montana, Sept. 14 ... it was the third extra time match of the season for the Aggies ... Bitner grabbed a career-high 12 saves in her second shutout of the year ... in a fiercely contested I-10 rivalry match, NMSU fell to UTEP, 2-1, Sept. 12 ... the Aggies controlled the tempo for the majority of the match and posted 12 shots in the contest.
San Jose State Spartans (2-6-1, 0-0-0 WAC)
San Jose State went 0-2 last week ... the Spartans dropped a 5-1 decision to UNLV before taking a 1-0 setback to Northern Arizona at the Hilton Garden Inn High Altitude Classic in Flagstaff, Ariz. last week ... Megan Rauschnot scored the only goal of the week for the Spartans against UNLV ... she was assisted on the goal by Kelsey Lord ... Rauschnot led the Spartans with four shots, including two on goal over the two contests ... Cacey Gricius had three shots on the week with one on goal ... Zoe Makrigiannis tallied 15 saves in the box for the Spartans over the two matches ... San Jose State now has the week off as the team preps for the start of WAC play on Sept. 28 at Denver.
Seattle U Redhawks (4-4-0, 0-0-0 WAC)
Seattle U played their first two contests telecast on the Pac-12 Network at Oregon and No. 21 Oregon State ... the Redhawks played their first 2OT contest versus No. 21 OSU, falling 1-0 on a goal with just over a minute to go in double overtime ... freshman goalkeeper Brianna Smallidge made eight saves in her 2OT performance at Oregon State. On the weekend, at Pac-12 powerhouses Oregon and No. 21 Oregon State, she made 12 saves in 200 minutes of play ... senior Taylor Bolibol scored her first goal of the season versus Oregon on Sept. 14 in Eugene ... this week, Seattle U travels to play Portland on Friday before returning home to host Utah Valley on Sunday.
UTSA Roadrunners (1-6-0, 0-0-0 WAC)
The Roadrunners saw their weekend road trip cut in half when last Friday’s match at Sam Houston State was cancelled due to poor field conditions ... sophomore Charlotte Husoe scored the first goal of her collegiate career in Sunday’s loss at Houston ... the Aalesund, Norway, native took a rebound from a missed shot and found the back of the net in the ninth minute ... despite outshooting Houston in the second half, 8-4, UTSA was unable to find the back of the net and fell to 2-4 all-time against the Cougars .. meanwhile, freshman goalkeeper Katarina Pus made six saves to bring her season total to 38 ... UTSA will close out their road swing with a 6 p.m. (CT) match at Miami on Friday night
Texas State Bobcats (2-7-1, 0-0-0 WAC)
Texas State went 0-2 last week with a 1-0 loss to Stephen F. Austin and a 1-0 setback to McNeese State ... Texas State’s freshman Lynsey Curry has made an impact in the attack early on ... she has recorded 25 shots this season including 13 on goal ... that ranks her third in the WAC ... Texas State is in the midst of a five game home stretch ... this is the third straight season the Bobcats have had a stretch of at least five consecutive home games ... the Bobcats are having the longest scoring drought in a long time ... their current streak of four straight games without a goal is the first since 1999 ... that year Texas State was able to make the NCAA Tournament by winning its conference championship game in a shootout after tying 0-0.
Utah State Aggies (5-1-3, 0-0-0 WAC)
Utah State tied Washington 1-1 in double overtime last week in the team’s lone contest of the week ... junior midfielder Jennifer Flynn scored the Aggies’ only goal in a 1-1 tie against No. 23 Washington on Sept. 13 ... this was USU’s first-evere tie against a ranked opponent ... Flynn scored in the 59th minute to give Utah State the 1-0 lead ... a late Washington penalty kick knotted the match at 1-1 which is how it would end ... Flynn had four shots, two of which were on goal ... keeper Ashlyn Mulford was named the WAC’s Goalkeeper of the Week after allowing only a penalty kick in the Aggies 1-1 tie against No. 23 Washington ... Mulford made three saves as she kept a clean sheet in overtime as the Aggies earned their first tie against a ranked opponent in school history ... USU hosts No. 14 BYU and Wyoming this week.
WAC SOCCER PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Offensive: Nicholette DiGiacomo, Jr., F
DiGiacomo assisted the game-winning goal in a 1-0 victory at Kansas. She also netted a 28-yard free kick to jump-start a late two-goal comeback to tie Texas 3-3. In an important two-game Big 12 weekend for the Pioneers, DiGiacomo gave DU 194 quality minutes in the center of the park. In the Kansas match, DiGiacomo back-heeled a free kick through her legs to teammate Katy Van Lieshout, who netted the 18th-minute goal. With the Pioneers down 3-1 in the 83rd minute at Texas, DiGiacomo curled her free kick from the top-left corner of the box into the inside post side netting for the score.
Other offensive nominees included: Louisiana Tech freshman forward Laura LeFevour … Utah State junior midfielder Jennifer Flynn.
Defensive: Mo Rockwell, Sr., D
Rockwel played 70 minutes in the 4-0 shutout win against Jackson State while also taking four shots, one of which was on goal. Rockwell anchored a defense that allowed only two shots the entire match in the victory. Rockwell also anchored the backline for all 90 minutes that held Southeastern Louisiana to only four shots, with only two on goal in a 2-1 road win. Rockwell helped hold SLU’s leading scorer, who came in with seven goals on the season, to zero shots. Rockwell was credited with an assist on the game-tying goal at Southeastern Louisiana.
Other defensive nominees included: New Mexico State senior defender Courtney Irwin … Seattle U junior defender Mary Hill … Utah State junior defender Jackie Tillotson.
Goalkeeper: Ashlyn Mulford, Sr., GK, Utah State
Mulford, a senior goalkeeper from West Valley City, Utah (Cyprus HS), allowed only a penalty kick in the Aggies 1-1 tie against No. 23 Washington. Mulford made three saves as she helped the USU defense keep the highly-powered Husky offense at bay until the penalty kick in the 85th minute. Mulford kept a clean sheet in overtime as the Aggies earned their first tie against a nationally-ranked opponent in school history.
Other goalkeeper nominees included: New Mexico State junior Mikaela Bitner … Seattle U freshman Brianna Smallidge.
WEEK 5 HIGHLIGHTS
Louisiana Tech made its way to the top of the WAC’s non-conference standings with a pair of wins last week. LA Tech defeated Jackson State 4-0 before taking down Southeastern Louisiana 2-1. LA Tech’s Mo Rockwell was honored by the league for her team’s defesnive performance over the two contests. Denver was impressive last week on a Big 12 road trip. The Pioneers defeated Kansas 1-0 before rallying to tie Texas 3-3 in double overtime. DU’s Nicholette DiGiacomo was named the WAC’s Offensive Player of the Week after tallying a goal against Texas and a game-winning assist against Kansas. Utah State tied nationally-ranked Washington 1-1 in double overtime in the Aggies’ lone game of the week. USU keeper Ashlyn Mulford gave up only a penalty kick during her time in goal to help the Aggies to the tie. She was named WAC Goalkeeper of the Week for her efforts.
2012 WAC TOURNAMENT
The 2012 Western Athletic Conference Soccer Tournament will be held at the Chuck and Gloria Bell Soccer Field on the campus of Utah State University in Logan, Utah. Tickets may be purchased by calling the Utah State ticket office at (435) 797-0305.
2012 NCAA COLLEGE CUP
The 32nd Annual Women’s College Cup will be held Nov. 30 and Dec. 2, 2012, in San Diego, Calif., at the University of San Diego Torero Stadium. Last season, the WAC had one team compete in postseason play with Utah State falling in the first round to Auburn.