Coug Soccer schedule goes live
PULLMAN, Wash. – Getting back to a semblance of normal, the Washington State University soccer team has solidified its 2021 schedule with dates and opponents as announced by the conference office Tuesday morning. In addition to setting opponents, the conference has selected the games that will appear on the Pac-12 Network with the Cougs appearing on national television eight times during the conference season.
Kicking things off for the entire athletic department, the Cougs play four of their first six at home at Lower Soccer Field while getting the ball rolling Aug. 13 on the road against Idaho in the team's lone tune-up exhibition prior to the start of the regular season. The new year officially begins Aug. 19 at home against Arkansas State as the Cougs face the Red Wolves for the first time in program history. 10 days later the Cougs play host to Eastern Washington to close out the month and their season-opening home stand. The Cougs will look to continue their dominance over the Eagles who came to Pullman in February and saw WSU hit the back of the net four times in a 4-1 win to open the spring home season. All-time the Cougs are a perfect 6-0 against EWU, all at Pullman, and have outscored the Eagles 26-4 in those games.
Hitting the road for the first time in 2021, the Cougs travel to San Diego State to take on the Aztec Sept. 2 in the first regular season meeting between the two teams since 1996 and WSU's first trip to San Diego since 1993. In the spring, the Cougs went 2-3-0 away from Pullman while the team went 7-4-0 on the road during their College Cup run in 2019.
Returning to Lower Soccer Field, the Cougs play their final two home non-conference contests with matchups against Hawai'i (Sept. 5) and Seattle U (Sept. 9). Against Hawai'i the Cougs will look to keep their perfect record intact against the Rainbow Wahine having won all seven contests in the all-time series. The two sides last met at Hawai'i Sept. 19, 2019 with the Cougs coming out on top, 1-0. The matchup with Seattle U marks the fourth-straight season the two teams have met on the field but the first time the game comes in the middle of non-conference play rather than to open the season. The Cougs have won the last five meetings between the two teams and have gone 15-1-0 in 16 all-time matchups.
Finishing non-conference play, the Cougs hit the road for their final three games beginning with a trip to Lawrence, Kansas to take on the Kansas Jayhawks for the first time in program history. From there, WSU travels to Colorado to take on Denver (Sept. 17) and Northern Colorado (Sept. 19). In the spring, Denver took home the Summit League title and earned itself a trip to the NCAA Tournament where the Pioneers advanced to the second round. All three previous matchups between the Cougs and the Pioneers came on neutral fields with the teams splitting the three at 1-1-1, the last of which came in 2010 at Spokane, Wash. Against the Bears, the non-conference finale marks just the second meeting all-time between the two teams with the Cougs having won the only other matchup, 3-2, back in 2004.
Pac-12 play begins immediately for the Cougs upon their return from Colorado as WSU hosts Arizona (Sept. 24) in what will be the first of eight games for the Cougars on the Pac-12 Network. The two teams did not meet in the spring of 2021 as the scheduled contest was cancelled due to Covid-19 protocols.
Right back to the Rocky Mountains, WSU heads the Mountain Schools to take on Utah (Sept. 30) and Colorado (Oct. 3). The Cougs went 1-0-1 in the spring against the two sides, finishing with a 0-0 draw with Utah at home while downing the Buffaloes 1-0 in overtime at Boulder. The Cougs did sneak in a 2-0 win over Utah in what was deemed a non-conference contest to help the two teams fill out their spring schedules.
Back home, the Cougs play four of their next five at Lower Soccer Field to close out their home regular season schedule against the elite of the Pac-12. On the night of Oct. 7 WSU hosts a Stanford squad looking to get back on track after giving up the Pac-12 title in the spring for the first time in half a decade. Sunday, Oct. 10 the Cougs host Cal to finish off the Bay Area school road trip to Pullman. WSU did not face the two teams in the spring as both games were cancelled due to Covid-19 protocols.
A quick trip to Tempe, Ariz. to face Arizona State (Oct. 15) breaks up the home stand for the Cougs as WSU looks to get back in the win column against the Sun Devils for the first time since 2017. Since winning 1-0 in 2017, the Cougs have lost one and drawn one against ASU in the last two meetings while the 2021 spring game that was scheduled was cancelled due to Covid-19 protocols.
The final home series pits the Cougs against the top two teams in the Pac-12 from the spring campaign beginning with USC Thursday, Oct. 10. The Cougs lost a tough one in Los Angeles in the spring against Trojans but get a chance for redemption as USC comes to Pullman for the first time in three seasons. The weekend finishes with senior day, Sunday, Oct. 24 as the reigning conference champs, UCLA, come to Pullman for the first time since 2017 when WSU picked up its biggest win in program history with a defeat of then the No. 2 team in the nation.
The regular season concludes with three on the road for WSU beginning with a trip to Oregon (Oct. 28), Oregon State (Oct. 31) and finally Washington (Nov. 5) for the Apple Cup Series. The three teams finished the regular season in Pullman against the Cougs in the spring with WSU going 1-0-2 against the trio picking up a win over Oregon State and draws with Oregon and Washington. The finish for the Cougs will be critical as WSU looks to get back into the postseason in 2021 and reestablish themselves as one of the elite programs in the country.
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