Sun Devil Soccer Travels to Texas to Face SMU, TCU
Sept. 13, 2007
Tempe, Ariz. - The Arizona State University soccer team travels to Texas for a pair of matches this weekend. The Sun Devils take on the SMU Mustangs Friday, Sept. 14 at 7 p.m. local time (5 p.m. AZ) in Dallas. The Sun Devils remain in Texas for a match against the TCU Horned Frogs on Sunday, Sept. 16 at 1 p.m. local time (11 a.m. AZ).
All home Arizona State matches will have live statistical updates available on the official web site home of the Sun Devils, thesundevils.com. Fans can go to the soccer team page, click on the schedule link and then click on the Gametracker link for the match they wish to view.
The Sun Devils split their games last weekend as they dropped their home opener to No. 3 Texas 1-0, but rebounded back for a 1-0 shutout of Charlotte. Freshman Karin Volpe netted her second goal of the season for the game-winner against the 49ers.
Through their first four games, the Sun Devils have only allowed three goals and have twice recorded a shutout. Last season, the Sun Devils posted seven shut outs on the year, second most in school history.
Sophomore GK Briana Silvestri earned her first career start as a Sun Devil in the season opener versus Idaho State. So far, she has collected nine saves and recorded two shutouts on the season. The two shutouts ranks her tied for first in the Pac-10 in that category and tied for second in shutouts per game (.50). Also, her goals agains average (.75) ranks fourth in the confernence.
Freshman Karin Volpe currently leads the Sun Devils in scoring this season with two goals. She scored the first collegiate goal of her career in the loss to UNLV. Her second goal came as the game-winner against Charlotte this past weekend. Her two goals ranks her tied for seventh in the Pac-10 in total goals and tied for ninth in goals per game. Also, both goals this season have been unassisted.
While the Sun Devils remain unranked in the national polls, they have cracked the SoccerBuzz West Region poll at No. 15. SMU, who ASU faces Friday, is currently No. 9 in SoccerBuzz's Central Region poll.
Making Their Debut
Through the first two matches of the season, 19 of the 26 players on the roster have seen action on the pitch in 2007. Four of the 19 were true freshmen; Alexandra Elston, Erica Long and Karin Volpe all recorded their first collegiate starts. Freshman Jessie Richardson also saw time on the pitch during the first weekend.
As always, the Sun Devils will once again play a solid schedule of opponents, including a Final Four participant from one year ago in UCLA. Arizona State also has matches slated against six foes ranked in the Soccer Buzz Top 25, including No. 2 Stanford, No. 4 Santa Clara, No. 6 Texas, No. 7 UCLA, No. 17 USC and No. 23 California. Two of the six matches will be on the road, both of which are Pac-10 contests.
Welcoming Coach Boyd
Boyd was named as head coach of the Arizona State University women's soccer program on March 30, 2007. The third head coach in the 11-year history of the Sun Devil program, Boyd brings a successful track record and years of collegiate coaching experience to Tempe following a 10-year stint as the head coach of Pac-10 rival California where he collected a 124-63-20 record and eight appearances in the NCAA tournament.
The coaches of the Pac-10 Conference conducted a vote prior to the season and the Sun Devils were selected to finish seventh in the league.
One Last Time
Five of the 26 Sun Devils on the roster for the 2007 season are entering their senior campaigns, led by forward Courtney Crane. Also on the offense for the Sun Devils are seniors Lara Kezer and Alissa Oldenkamp, both of whom will be competing in their final seasons for ASU. The defense will be led by two seniors, Kyleyn Felts and Lauren Niblett.
Green as Grass
On the opposite end of the spectrum, the Sun Devils will have nine true freshmen and 10 sophomores in 2007. Leading the way will be sophomores Liz Harkin and Carly Kallas, as well as, true freshmen Alexandra Elston and Karin Volpe.
Along with the nine incoming freshmen, the Sun Devils welcome new assistant coach Blair Quinn. Quinn, a former professional soccer player, also coached at the Kansas and Loyola Marymount prior to coming to ASU.
In recent years, the members of the Arizona State University soccer program have been the walking definition of a 'student-athlete' as the Sun Devils have held the top team grade-point average (GPA) of any varsity team on campus.Following the 2006 season, six Sun Devils earned academic honors. Senior Kim Bingham was joined by Kyleyn Felts in earning Pac-10 First Team All-Academic honors. Alissa Oldenkamp was named to the second team, while Lara Kezer, Lauren Niblett and Kylla Sjoman were honorable mention selections. Bingham and Felts were also named to the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District VII First Team.
Looking At: SMU
The Sun Devils and Mustangs will be meeting for the second time in the head-to-head series in 2007. SMU defeated the Sun Devils in the first meeting. SMU (2-0-0) is currently ranked No. 9 in the Central Region poll according to SoccerBuzz. The Mustangs are coming off a 2-0 victory at Kansas Sept. 9. After their match with the Sun Devils, SMU plays host to Texas Tech Sunday.
Looking At: TCU
The match between the Sun Devils and Horned Frogs will mark the first ever meeting between the schools. TCU is 2-2-0 to start the 2007 season. The Horned Frogs defeated Texas-San Antonio 1-0 Tuesday. Before their match with ASU, TCU will host Texas Tech Friday Sept. 14 in Fort Worth, Texas.
Arizona State will face foes from two different conferences this weekend, including its 27th match with a member of the Mountain West Conference (TCU) and its third against Confernece USA (SMU). While the Sun Devils have never faced TCU, they hold an all-time mark of 13-12-1 against members of the Mountain West Conference. ASU is 1-1-0 against Confernece USA opponents.
Following this weekend's matches, the Sun Devils return home for a match with No. 4 Santa Clara Friday, Sept 21 in Tempe. They then travel to New Mexico to take on the Lobos Tuesday, Sept. 25 before returning home for a five-game home stand.