Aggie Soccer Takes on Utah at Rio Tinto Stadium on Thursday
Sept. 21, 2009
LOGAN, Utah - KICKING OFF - Utah State returns home after four-straight matches on the road. This week, the Aggies will take on two of its biggest instate rivals in Utah and No. 18 BYU. USU faces Utah on Thursday, Sept. 24 at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah. Despite being played in Sandy, the Aggies are the home team. Following the match with the Utes, the Aggies will take on the Cougars of BYU on Saturday, Sept. 26 in Provo. The Cougars will be the third ranked team that the Aggies have played this season. USU lost to then-No. 20 Oklahoma State in Logan on Sept. 14 and No. 25 Washington in Seattle on Sept. 20.
GAMETRACKER - Fans can follow all the Aggie home matches through the USU web site at www.UtahStateAggies.com via GameTracker, a free service, which updates play-by-play and statistics throughout the game.
ON THE PITCH - Utah holds a 9-1 advantage over Utah State. The Aggies only win was a 1-0 overtime win in 1997. Utah State is still in search of its first win against BYU. The Cougars hold a 6-0 advantage. Last season, the Aggies fell to the Utes, 2-0, in Salt Lake City. BYU upended Utah State, 2-0, in Logan.
THE OPPONENTS - In its first overtime game of the season, the University of Utah soccer team (5-4-1) played to a 2-2 draw with LMU (5-3-1) on Sept. 20 on a neutral field in Los Angeles. The Utes surrendered a late 2-1 lead as the Lions pulled level with less than seven minutes remaining in regulation. Utah's goals came from senior midfielder Kelly Isleib, who netted her team-leading fourth of the year, and freshman forward Hanna Terry, her third of the season. The Utes are led by Isleib who has four goals and three assists for 11 points. Lauren Hair is second on the team in points with two goals and four assists for eight points. Hannah Turpen has started all 10 matches in goal for the Utes this season. Turpen has allowed 13 goals for a goals against average of 1.41. After a scoreless 85 minutes of play on Sept. 19, No. 18 BYU found its game-winning goal with only five minutes left in a 1-0 victory over Arizona. With the win, the Cougars improved 6-2-1 this season. BYU has wins over two ranked teams this season in Connecticut and Oklahoma State. BYU is led this season by Carlee Payne who has seven goals and three assists for 17 points this season. She has scored the game-winning goal in three of the Cougars six wins. Goalkeeper McKinzie Olson has allowed only six goals in nine matches for a GAA of 0.61.
HOME AWAY FROM HOME - The Aggies concluded a long four-match road trip last week against Washington and Seattle University. This week, Utah State will play a "home" match with Utah on Thursday, Sept. 24. The Aggies next "home" match will take place at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah. Rio Tinto Stadium is the home of Major League Soccer's Real Salt Lake. This is the first match that the Aggies have played in a professional stadium. USU's next true home match with take place on Oct. 1 against Idaho State.
THE BIG 100 - After being stuck on 99 for three matches, the Aggies finally won its 100th match as a program against Houston Baptist on Sept. 13. Utah State captured win 99 Stephen F. Austin on Aug. 30. USU had to wait until four matches later to get win 100 after two losses and a tie to start Sept. to finally get win 100.
TIME CHANGE - Utah State's match with BYU on Saturday, Sept. 26 has been changed from a 7:00 p.m. kickoff to a 8:00 p.m. due to BYU's home football game against Colorado State starting at 4:00 p.m .
THE YOUNG GUNS - In the Aggies 5-1 win against Houston Baptist, eight of the 11 starters were either freshmen or sophomores, including sophomores Shantel Flanary, Ellen Larsen and Danielle Shorts who scored four of USU's five goals. Of the 20 different Aggies to have seen playing time this season, 12 are underclassmen. Sophomore striker Shantel Flanary is the leading scorer on the Aggies with four goals and two assists for 10 points.
LEADERS OF THE PACK - Sophomore striker Shantel Flanary junior forward Lauren Hansen are tied for first on the team in points scored with four goals and two assist for 10 points. She and Flanary both have one game-winning goal. Junior Stefani Shiozaki is third on the team in points scored with six after having only one point her first two seasons. Shiozaki has broken through with her first collegiate goal in the tie with Wyoming and an assist in the win against Stephen F. Austin.
HOW THE AGGIES STAND - Shantel Flanary and Lauren Hansen are tied for fifth in the WAC in goals scored with four. They are also both tied for ninth in the league in goals per game, standing tied for ninth. As a team, the Aggies are fourth in the WAC in points scored with 39. The 15 goals that USU has scored is also third behind first-place Louisiana Tech and Boise State.
FIRST-TIME SCORERS - When sophomores Danielle Shorts and Ellen Larsen both scored goals on Sept. 13, they both earned their first collegiate goals. They are not the first Aggies to get their first collegiate goals this season. Junior midfielder Stefani Shiozaki had only one assist in her first two seasons at USU, this season she already has two goals and one assist this season for five points. Shiozaki scored her first collegiate goal in a 1-1 tie against Wyoming on Sept. 6. Freshman Natalie Norris also added her first goal as a collegian earlier this season.
MORE NEWCOMERS - The offense is not the only place where newcomers can be found. Junior Aleena Shelton, a transfer from BYU, saw her first action this weekend. Shelton split time in goal with sophomore Molli Merrill. Shelton allowed only one goal and registered four saves in 90 minutes of action.
MILESTONE MAKERS - Junior forward Lauren Hansen moved up to third on the the Utah State point total with 51 points after a goal against Seattle on Sept. 20. Brigid Turner (2000-03) is second on the all-time list with 73 points. Hansen has averaged 20.5 points per season in her first two campaigns. If she sustains this average, she will pass the Aggies' all-time point scorer Jayme Gordy (1997-2000) who scored 77 in her storied USU career. Senior midfielder Lindsey Smart is one match away from tying the all-time record for matches started. Smart has started 72 matches in her Aggie career. The all-time leader is Sierra Smith (2003-06) who started 73 matches.
O CAPTAIN! MY CAPTAIN! - The Utah State squad has voted on tri-captains for the 2009 season. Seniors Lindsey Smart and Sydne Porter-Garner and junior Lauren Hansen were all named captains by their peers.
THE COACH - Entering her seventh season at Utah State is Heather Cairns, who became the winningest coach in school history after recording her 27th career victory on Sept. 30, 2006, defeating Eastern Washington 1-0. In her five seasons at the helm of the Aggies, Cairns has compiled a 60-58-11 (.508) record passing former head coach Stacy Enos (1996-2000) who went 26-59 (.306) in five seasons with the Aggies.
WAC INFORMATION - The WAC will continue its regular-season play as a single round-robin format (plus a points system) for a total of eight conference matches. The number of WAC matches has increased due to the addition of New Mexico State this season. The points system allows each team to receive three points for a win and one point for a tie. The six teams with the most points at the end of the regular season will advance to the WAC Tournament which will be held Nov. 5-6, 8 in Boise, Idaho.
2009 WAC TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE
First Round - Thursday, November 5 No. 3 vs. No. 6, 12:30 p.m. No. 4 vs. No. 5, 3:00 p.m.
Semifinals - Friday, November 6 Winner 3/6 vs. No. 1, 12:30 p.m. Winner 4/5 vs. No. 2, 3:00 p.m.
Championship - Sunday, November 8 Championship Match, 1:00 p.m.
1 - This will be the first time that Utah State soccer has played a match in a Major League Soccer arena when the Aggies take on Utah in Rio Tinto Stadium on Sept. 24.
2 - The number of Big 12 Conference teams that USU has faced this season, splitting the matches with a win against Texas Tech and a loss against No. 20 Oklahoma State.
3- After this week, USU will have faced three ranked teams in Oklahoma State, Washington and BYU.
6A - States represented on the Utah State roster besides the Beehive State of Utah, including Arizona, California, Georgia, Idaho, North Carolina and Washington.
6B - Junior midfielder Stefani Shiozaki has six points this season off of two goals and two assists.
9 - The number of freshmen the young Aggie team has on the roster this season.
14 - Number of career assists junior Lindsey Smart has. She is the all-time assist leader in USU history.
15 - The total number of goals that the Aggies have scored in their first nine matches.
21 - Head coach Heather Cairns' total number of WAC wins. She has a record of 21-4-3 (.804) to lead all current WAC coaches in winning percentage.
37 -Total number of saves sophomore goalkeeper Molli Merrill has in nine matches this season.
72 - The number of matches that durable senior Lindsey Smart has played in her Aggie career. She needs to play in nine matches this season to become the all-time leader in matches played, passing defender Jessie Malaska (2005-08). She is one match shy of being the all-time leader in matches started.