This Week in WAC Soccer - Oct. 2
Denver Pioneers (9-1-3, 1-0-1 WAC)
Denver earned four points in its first two WAC matches, sitting level on points with Seattle U at the top of the standings after the conference’s opening weekend ... Denver defeated San Jose State 4-0 at home in its first-ever WAC match ... the team then tied Utah State 0-0 in double overtime on Sunday ... this weekend’s results stretched the Pioneers’ unbeaten streak to 12 matches ... senior forward Kaitlin Bast is in fifth in DU history in career points with 88 and tied for fifth in goals with 34 ... junior forward Kristen Hamilton moved into eighth in points with 81 ... Denver’s senior class is the fifth-winningest senior class in the nation, behind Stanford, Oklahoma State, Florida State and Dayton ... the Pioneers will open their conference road slate on Friday, when Denver takes on Louisiana Tech at 3 p.m. MT
Idaho Vandals (3-10-1, 0-1-1 WAC)
Idaho went 0-1-1 in its opening WAC weekend … the Vandals gave up two goals in a three-minute span to give away a 1-0 lead in the 81st and 84th minutes on Friday at Texas State … Idaho posted a draw against UTSA on Sunday when senior Erica Hart scored in the 52nd minute and senior keeper Liz Boyden saved her second PK of the season to preserve the tie in double-overtime … senior Chelsea Small’s assist on Sunday gives her 13 for her career, which is tied for third-most in school history ... this week, Idaho travels to play Seattle U on Sunday.
Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters (9-1-2, 0-0-0 WAC)
Louisiana Tech did not play this past week ... the team opens WAC play this week at home against Denver on Friday and New Mexico State on Sunday.
New Mexico State Aggies (1-8-3, 0-1-1 WAC)
The Aggies opened 2012 WAC play allowing only one goal in a pair of overtime matches this past week ... NM State tied Utah State, 0-0, in double overtime before suffering a 1-0 loss in overtime to San Jose State ... Elise Nordin led the Aggies with five shots over the two games, including two on goal ... Mikaela Bitner played all 210 minutes in goal for the Aggies, collecting 15 saves over the two matches ... Bitner also recorded a shutout in the 0-0 tie against Utah State ... this week, New Mexico State travels to play Louisiana Tech on Sunday.
San Jose State Spartans (3-7-1, 1-1-0 WAC)
San Jose State went 1-1-0 to open WAC play last week ... the team dropped a 4-0 decision at Denver in both team’s WAC openers ... the Spartans then bounced back to defeat New Mexico State 1-0 in overtime on the road ... Amanda Heins scored her first goal of the season in SJSU’s lone score of the week, proving to be enough to defeat New Mexico State ... the win over the Aggies marks SJSU’s first win since August 30 ... Zoe Makrigiannis earned her first-career shutout in a 1-0 OT win versus New Mexico State, while recording three saves in the match ... this week, NM State travels to play Louisiana Tech on Sunday.
Seattle U Redhawks (6-5-1, 1-0-1 WAC)
Goalkeeper Brianna Smallidge recorded six saves, allowing only one goal in 200 minutes of play over the weekend, recording a complete game shutout versus Texas State and allowed only one goal in the team’s 2OT draw, 1-1, at UTSA ... freshman Julia Moravec recorded her first career goal, the game-winner, at Texas State ... over the weekend, she co-led the team with two shots on goal in 88 minutes of play ... outside of goal, Kelly Beck, Julia Besagno, and Renee Vandermause played all 200 minutes over the weekend ... this week, Seattle U hosts Idaho in the team’s lone contest of the week.
UTSA Roadrunners (1-7-2, 0-0-2 WAC)
UTSA registered a pair of 1-1 ties during the opening weekend of WAC play last weekend ... it is the first time in program history that the squad has recorded a tie in back-to-back matches ... the Roadrunners tied Seattle U 1-1 in double overtime before tying Idaho 1-1 just two days later ... sophomore Liv Nyhegn and freshman Kauwela Neal scored their first goals of the season last weekend ... the Roadrunners now have seven goals on the campaign and those have come from seven different players ... UTSA has allowed just one goal in each of its last three matches and all three of those goals came in the second half ... this week, UTSA travels to play Utah State on Friday before playing at San Jose State on Sunday.
Texas State Bobcats (4-8-1, 1-1-0 WAC)
Texas State won its conference opener on Friday against Idaho 2-1 ... that improved the Bobcats’ all-time record in conference openers to 10-2-2 ... the Bobcats then dropped a 2-0 decision to Seattle U at home ... Texas State won for the first time this season when allowing a goal ... the three previous wins had come via shutout ... the Bobcats win vs. Idaho was also the first time winning after trailing at halftime ... this week, Texas State travels to play San Jose State on Friday and at Utah State on Sunday.
Utah State Aggies (5-2-6, 0-0-2 WAC)
Utah State went 0-0-2 to open WAC play last week ... the Aggies tied New Mexico State 0-0 in double overtime on the road before playing to the same result at Denver on Sunday ... offensively, Jennifer Flynn led the Aggies with seven shots, including three on goal over the two matches ... senior defender Natalie Norris was the anchor of the solid Utah State defense as the Aggies earned a pair shutouts ... Norris was the key to the defense as USU used different goalkeepers in both matches ... making only her second career start, Jeannie Woller shut down one of the most potent offenses in the WAC, leading Utah State to a 0-0 overtime tie against No. 18 Denver ... Woller had a season-high six saves against the Pioneers ... this week, USU hosts UTSA and Texas State in Logan.
WAC SOCCER PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Offensive: Kaitlin Bast, Sr., F, Denver
Bast tallied four points in a 4-0 win over San Jose State on Friday night. Bast’s through ball to junior forward Kristen Hamilton gave DU a two-goal cushion in both team’s WAC opener. Her goal gave Denver a three-goal lead in the 57th minute, on a calm finish from inside the box into the upper 90. Bast’s second assist came on another through ball, this one to junior midfielder Nicholette DiGiacomo. After the weekend, Bast is part of the fifth-winningest senior class in the nation. Bast ranks fifth in DU history in career points with 88 and is tied for fifth in goals with 34.
Other offensive nominees included: Idaho sophomore midfielder Katie Baran … San Jose State junior defender Amanda Heins … Seattle U sophomore forward Stephanie Verdoia.
Defensive: Natalie Norris, Sr., D, Utah State
Norris was the anchor of the Utah State defense as the Aggies earned a pair of 0-0 double overtime ties at New Mexico State and at No. 18 Denver. Norris was the key to the defense as USU used different goalkeepers in both matches. Against the Pioneers, the USU backline faced 24 shots against one of the toughest offenses in the WAC. In two matches, Norris and the Aggie defense faced 36 shots in 220 minutes without allowing a goal. Norris played every minute of both matches last week.
Other defensive nominees included: Idaho junior defender Nitalia Zuniga … San Jose State senior defender Helen Phan … Seattle U junior midfielder Monique Escalera … UTSA junior defender Anka Grotle.
Goalkeeper: Lara Campbell, Sr., GK, Denver
Campbell gave the Pioneers 172 shutout minutes in goal last weekend, leading the Pioneers to a pair of shutouts (one shared, one solo). Campbell’s biggest save of the weekend came in the final minutes of the second overtime against Utah State, preserving the Pioneers’ point in the match. After the weekend, Campbell is a part of the fifth-winningest senior class in the nation. She tallied six saves on the week.
Other goalkeeper nominees included: Idaho senior goalkeeper Liz Boyden … San Jose State freshman goalkeeper Zoe Makrigiannis … Seattle U freshman goalkeeper Brianna Smallidge … UTSA freshman goalkeeper Katarina Pus … Utah State freshman goalkeeper Jeannie Woller.
WEEK 7 HIGHLIGHTS
Denver and Seattle U are tied for the top spot in the WAC after the first week of competition. Both teams opened league play with 1-0-1 records. Denver defeated San Jose State 4-0 before tying Utah State 0-0. Seattle U tied UTSA 1-1 before defeating Texas State 2-0. Denver’s Kaitlin Bast had the most impressive offensive performance of the week, recording one goal and two assists for four points on the week. UTSA’s Simone Boye had a league-best 10 shots last week. DU’s Lara Campbell helped her team to a pair of shutouts last week. NM State’s Mikaela Bitner had a WAC-best 15 saves on the week.
DENVER RANKED 19th-NATIONALLY THIS WEEK, THREE WAC TEAMS RANKED IN THE TOP-10 WEST REGION
For the second-straight week, Denver has earned a spot in the Soccer America women’s top-25 poll The Pioneers are ranked No. 19 this week, sandwiched between Virginia Tech at No. 18 and Michigan at No. 20. The Pioneers are also receiving votes in both the NSCAA poll and the Soccer Times top-25 poll. In the NSCAA West Regional Poll, Denver is ranked fifth, while Utah State is ninth and Seattle U is tenth.
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 Nov. 1-2 and 4. 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 fi rst round to Auburn. The following is a list of sites and dates for the 2012 NCAA Tournament:
First/Second Rounds (16)
November 9, 10 or 11, 2012
On campus sites TBD
Third Rounds (8)
November 16 & 18, 2012
On campus sites TBD
November 23, 24, or 25, 2012
On campus sites TBD
Women’s College Cup
November 30 and December 2, 2012
Host: University of San Diego
San Diego, Calif.