Battle of the Palouse
> Washington State remains at home with another contest against a regional rival, this time in the battle of the Palouse as Idaho crosses the border Friday night. WSU holds a 12-1-0 all-time record having won the last 12 contests between the two sides who have not met in the regular season since 2018.
> WSU will continue to play in the "Bubble" early in the season due to winter weather, opening the year away from Lower Soccer Field for the first time since 1992. The Cougs have previously played at Martin Stadium when away from their home turf.
> Under head coach Todd Shulenberger, the Cougs have gone 37-14-4 at home in five seasons including winning a program record 10 games in 2018.
> The Cougs are a perfect 2-0-0 on the year after defeating Eastern Washington, 4-1, in the home opener last week. WSU dominated the night with the lone blemish coming from a PK in the 4' before scoring four goals to grab their 6th straight win over the Eagles.
> The offense has been clicking having scored 6 goals in two games with five difference scorers including a pair of first time scorers in freshmen Alyssa Gray and Margie Detrizio.
> The Cougs enter the third week of the seasons still ranked #19 in the TopDrawerSoccer.com poll, the third-straight week at #19. WSU is the fifth highest ranked team in the Pac-12.
> Senior Elyse Bennett has come out firing leading the team with two goals and one assist. The senior scored in back-to-back games for the first time since her freshman season.
> Freshman Margie Detrizio has wasted no time getting into the mix in her first season having posted one goal and one assist in her first two collegiate game.
> Sophomore Grayson Lynch returned from hip surgery with a bang scoring her first goal of the year in the 7'. Lynch had been out since September rehabing.
> WSU's freshmen have made an immediate impact notching two goals (Gray, Detrizio) and three assists (Detrizio, Whieldon, McGill) in two games.
> The senior class continues to cement its legacy as the most decorated class in program history having won 41 games (record is 50 wins) and advancing to at least the second round in each of their three seasons, a program first.
COUGS VS IDAHO
The Cougs take on their regional rival Idaho Friday as the two sides square off for the 14th time and the first time since 2018. WSU holds a 12-1 record all-time having won 12-straight including a perfect 7-0 record at Pullman. In addition to the wins, the Cougs have posted a 34-5 edge on the scoreboard having allowed just one goal at home in seven games.
In 2018, the lone matchup with current players, the Cougs won 3-0 at Lower Soccer Field. Gomera-Stevens, Bennett, McLyn, and Minniss all started in the contest while Pulver, Hernandez-Repreza, and Barton came off the bench.
WSU RANKED #19
Entering the week the Cougars remained ranked #19 in the TopDrawerSoccer.com poll (the only poll that has updated this season). WSU was preseason #19 after finishing the 2019 season ranked #4. The #4 ranking was the Cougs' all-time high.
The Cougs rank as the fifth-highest team in the Pac-12 trailing Stanford, UCLA, USC, and Cal.
BENNETT BACK IN HER GROOVE
Taking over as the Cougs' primary target up top, senior Elyse Bennett is off to a quick start in 2021 notching a team-best two goals and one assist in the first two games. The game-winner at Seattle U was her 5th career winner. The goals in back-to-back games marks the second time in her career and first since her freshman season.
Last season, Bennett recorded five goals and five assists, finishing third in scoring on the team.
For her career, the senior has notched 12 goals and 8 assists. She is in search of the Cougs' all-time top-10 which starts at 18 goals.
LYNCH RETURNS WITH A BANG
After missing nearly six months due to hip surgery, sophomore Grayson Lynch returned to the field with a bang scoring her first goal of the season just 6:03 into her debut against Eastern Washington. The speedy striker was the Cougs' best forward in the spring before Covid and injury shutdown WSU's workouts.
In her first season, Lynch saw limited action behind the Cougs veteran front line scoring one goal and assisting on another in 24 games.
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