This Week in WAC Soccer - Sept. 25
Denver Pioneers (8-1-2, 0-0-0 WAC)
This weekend’s results stretched the Pioneers unbeaten streak to 10 matches, including eight wins after a 2-1 overtime victory over TCU and a 3-1 reoad victory at 13th-ranked Portland ... Denver will play its first Western Athletic Conference contest in program history on Friday, as the Pioneers take on San Jose State, before hosting Utah State on Sunday ... senior forward Kaitlin Bast scored her 33rd career goal on Friday, moving her into sixth on DU’s all-time list. Bast is also sixth on DU’s all-time points list with 84 ... Denver is 26-1-1 at CIBER Field at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium ... junior forward Kristen Hamilton is tied for eighth on DU’s all-time points list with 79 ... before Sunday, Denver’s last win over a ranked opponent was on the same date (Sept. 23) five years ago against No. 1 Stanford.
Idaho Vandals (3-9-0, 0-0-0 WAC)
Idaho’s win on Friday over Utah Valley was historic in that it gave the team’s seniors their 34th career victory and makes them the winningest four-year group in program history … the Vandals earned a tough-luck loss at UNLV when they held the Rebels’ potent attack at bay, but gave up a 75th-minute own goal … keeper Liz Boyden was named the WAC’s Goalkeeper of the WAC after posting her 14th career shutout last week ... she also had 11 saves over the two matches last week ... Idaho wraps up non-conference schedule that included two teams currently receiving Top-25 votes and four that are ranked regionally.
Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters (9-1-2, 0-0-0 WAC)
LA Tech swept their pair of weekend matches for the second straight week and increased their unbeaten streak to six games ... the Lady Techsters defeated McNeese State 1-0 at home before taking down UT-Tyler 1-0 in overtime on the road ... the nine wins on the season has already surpassed last year’s win total ... the match against UT Tyler was the third overtime game played this season ... the contest marked the first OT win for LA Tech since Oct. 15, 2010 when the team defeated San Jose State 5-4 in the first period of overtime ... it was the first OT win in program history when the game was scoreless entering the overtime period.
New Mexico State Aggies (1-7-2, 0-0-0 WAC)
In its final non-conference tune-up, NM State suffered a 5-0 loss at Texas Tech, Sept. 23 ... the Aggies fell behind early after a pair of Texas Tech goals in the first 35 minutes of action ... NM State attempted to respond, and the team recorded four shots and three corner kicks in the first half ... n the second period, the Aggies started with a quick pair of shots within the first few minutes of the half but couldn’t convert ... the Red Raiders added three goals late in the second half to extend their lead to 5-0 ... senior midfielder Elise Nordin guided the Aggies with three shots on goal, while junior goalkeeper Mikaela Bitner had four saves in 90 minutes ... this week, NM State opens WAC play at home against Utah State and San Jose State.
San Jose State Spartans (2-6-1, 0-0-0 WAC)
San Jose State did not compete last week ... the team opens up WAC play this week on the road ... the Spartans will take on Denver on Friday before traveling to New Mexico State for an afternoon match on Sunday.
Seattle U Redhawks (5-5-0, 0-0-0 WAC)
Seattle U split a pair of matches last week ... the Redhawks dropped a 3-0 decision at Portland before returning home to defeat Utah Valley 4-2 ... in the lass to Portland, Stephanie Verdoia led the Redhawks with four shots, followed by Julia Besagno with three ... Micaela Capelle took a team-leading five shots for the Pilots. Portland outshot Seattle U, 16-10, over the match ... Brianna Smallidge got the start in goal for Seattle U, playing all 90 minutes and making four saves ... in the win over UVU, Melissa Busque, Kiana Kraft, Verdoia and Heather Thomas each recorded goals. Busque also had an assist in the match ... this week, SU opens WAC play at UTSA on Friday and at Texas State on Sunday.
UTSA Roadrunners (1-7-0, 0-0-0 WAC)
UTSA went 0-1 last week with a 1-0 setback to Miami (Fl.) on the road ... freshman goalkeeper Katarina Pus recorded eight saves in the match ... the contest remained scoreless until Miami’s unassisted strike with a little more than 15 minutes remaining ... UTSA will play its first home matches since Sept. 9 this weekend, when it hosts Seattle (Sept. 28) and Idaho (Sept. 30) ... the Roadrunners will be playing their first Western Athletic Conference matches and their first contests against Seattle and Idaho ... freshman goalkeeper Katarina Pus ranks second in the WAC with 46 saves and 5.75 stops per contest ... she has at least five saves in all but two contests this fall.
Texas State Bobcats (3-7-1, 0-0-0 WAC)
Texas State defeated Texas Southern 6-0 in the team’s lone match of the week last week ... Texas State posted a season-high six goals against Texas Southern ... the Bobcats scored three goals in each half, the most in any half this year ... Texas State has shutout its opponent in all three of its wins this year ... heading into conference play, the Bobcats have managed at least a win or tie in their conference opener in five of the past six seasons ... all-time in conference openers, Texas State is 9-2-2 ... Texas State opens WAC play at home this week with Idaho on Friday and Seattle U on Sunday.
Utah State Aggies (5-2-4, 0-0-0 WAC)
Utah State went 0-1-1 last week ... the team dropped a 1-0 decision at home to 12th-ranked Brigham Young before tying Wyoming 1-1 in double overtime ... versus BYU, Utah State’s Ashlyn Mulford collected five saves while allowing only the early goal ... Jessica Hoskin and Mari Miyashiro each had two shots against the Cougars ... senior defender Natalie Norris drilled a penalty kick in the second half Sunday on her birthday to help lead Utah State soccer to a hard-fought 1-1 double overtime tie against Wyoming ... the 1-1 tie was the Aggies’ third of the season and fourth draw overall ... this week, USU opens WAC play at New Mexico State on Friday and at Denver on Sunday.
WAC SOCCER PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Offensive: Kristen Hamilton, Jr., F, Denver
Hamilto netted her first career hat trick to lead the Pioneers to a 3-1 win at No. 13/15 Portland on Sunday afternoon. Hamilton played 188 minutes at forward for Denver in the two-game stretch. With her three goals, Hamilton now has 30 in her career and is two behind a pair of Pioneer alumna for eighth on DU’s all-time scoring list. Hamilton also moved into a tie for eighth on DU’s career points list with 79. She also tallied four shots with three on goal in the 2-1 overtime win over TCU. Hamilton leads the WAC in points and goals with 16 and 7, respectively.
Other offensive nominees included: Texas State sophomore midfielder Tori Hale.
Defensive: Brittany Beddow, Fr., D/MF, Louisiana Tech
Beddow moved to the defender position this week due to an injury on the LA Tech squad. Beddow helped anchor the Bulldog defense to a pair of shutout victories over McNeese State (1-0) and UT Tyler (1-0, OT). Beddow helped the LA Tech defense allow only six shots, only one of which was a shot on goal in the win over McNeese State. Beddow also helped on the offensive side with an assist on the game-winning goal against McNeese State and a scored the game-winning goal at UT Tyler in overtime.
Other defensive nominees included: Idaho sophomore defender Emily Ngan ... Texas State sophomore defend er Michelle Bucy ... Utah State senior defender Natalie Norris.
Goalkeeper: Liz Boyden, Sr., GK, Idaho
Boyden played all 180 minutes over the weekend, earned her 14th career shutout and made 11 combined saves as the Vandals posted a split against Utah Valley and UNLV. She made five saves in Friday’s 1-0 shutout win over Utah Valley, then made six more against UNLV, including two stops on two one-on-one breaks in the second half. Boyden’s only goal surrendered was an own goal. She shut down a regionally-ranked UNLV team that was on a six-game winning streak and that was averaging 2.5 goals per home game this season.
Other goalkeeper nominees included: Texas State junior Natalie Gardini ... Utah State senior Ashlyn Mulford.
WEEK 6 HIGHLIGHTS
Denver and Louisiana Tech each went 2-0-0 last week to keep the top spots in the WAC’s non-conference standings. Denver defeated TCU 2-1 in overtime before droppinig Portland 3-1 on the road. Kristen Hamilton recorded a hat trick in the 3-1 victory over the Pilots, earning her WAC Offensive Player of the Week honors. LA Tech downed McNeese State 1-0 before defeating UT-Tyler in overtime 1-0. The two shutouts earned Lady Techster Brittany Beddow WAC Defensive Player of the Week honors. Seattle U and Idaho also picked up a win last week. Seattle U defeated Utah Valley 4-2 at home, while Idaho also defeated the Wolverines 1-0.
DENVER ENTERS NATIONAL POLLS AT NO. 18
Denver landed a spot in the Soccer America women’s top-25 poll on Tuesday. The Pioneers enter the poll at No. 18, sandwiched between San Diego State at No. 17 and Michigan at No. 19. The Pioneers are also receiving votes in the Soccer Times top-25 poll.
DU’S HAMILTON RECEIVES WEEKLY NATIONAL HONORS
Denver junior forward Kristen Hamilton has been named the CollegeSoccer360.com National Primetime Player of the Week for week six, the publication announced Tuesday. Hamilton’s hat trick at No. 13/15 Portland on Sunday afternoon, led the Pioneers to their first top-25 win since DU beat No. 1 Stanford on September 23, 2007. With her three goals, Hamilton now has 30 in her career and is two behind a pair of Pioneer alumna for eighth on DU’s all-time list. Before Sunday, Portland had given up just four goals in its first eight matches. Tuesday was Hamilton’s first career National Player of the Week honor. Earlier this week, Hamilton was named to the Top Drawer Soccer Team of the Week, tabbed WAC Offensive Player of the Week and was named the WAC Player of the Week by College Sports Madness.
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 fi rst round to Auburn.