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Desert run

Oct 14, 2021

WASHINGTON STATE (10-2-1, 4-1-0)
at Arizona State (8-5-1, 0-4-1) | Fri., Oct. 15 | 7 p.m. | Sun Devil Soccer Stadium
  Watch Live | ASU Live Steam 
  Live Statistics | StatBroadcast

> The Cougs play just once on the weekend with a tough match at ASU Friday night. The Cougs have won 8 of 12 in Tempe all-time with their last win coming in 2017.
> Last time out the Cougs got back on track with a shutout of Cal, 2-0, behind goals from Sydney Pulver and Elyse Bennett.
> WSU has recorded 10 shutouts on the year, the 7th time in program history with double-digit shutouts. 
> The Cougs have dominated on the road in 2021 going a literal perfect 6-0-0 with six shutouts and a 14-0 score differential.
> The 10 wins marks the fifth time in seven seasons under coach Shulenberger the Cougs have hit double-digit wins (2021 spring was just a 12 game season in which WSU went 6-3-3).
> The defense has been up to the task in 2021 allowing a nation's low four goals (0.31 GAA - 2nd in the nation) while posting 10 shutouts.
> Freshman Nadia Cooper leads the nation with a 0.13 GAA having conceded just once in nine appearances. Her 6 solo shutouts is one away from the Cougs' single-season top-10.
> The offense has scored 31 goals with 10 different players recording a goal and eight different game-winners. WSU's offense ranks 8th in shots per game (20.46) and 32nd in scoring (2.38 gpg). WSU is +27 in goals scored on the year.
> Elyse Bennett leads the attack with 8 goals and 19 points ranking 3rd in the Pac-12. She has scored three goals in five Pac-12 games.
> Under head coach Todd Shulenberger, the Cougs have gone 33-25-5 away from home (both away and neutral sites). WSU is 6-0-0 on the year on the road.
> WSU was picked 5th by the Pac-12 coaches in the preseason poll marking the third-straight year picked in the top half of the conference.

The Cougs hit the road to Tempe, Ariz. to take on a Sun Devil team struggling to find wins in Pac-12 play. Once ranked as high as #15 in the country, the Sun Devils have plummeted down the rankings after going 0-4-1 to begin conference play. However, the Sun Devils have spent the first half of the conference season playing against the top of the table in the Pac-12 which has been a factor in their conference record. The losses have come despite having the top offensive threat in the country in Nicole Douglas as the striker enters the game leading the nation with 14 goals. On the year the two teams have yet to have a common opponent.
All-time the Sun Devils have the edge in the series at 13-10-1 but it has been the Cougs that have been at their best in Tempe winning 8 of 12 played on the road at ASU. The two sides did not meet in the spring of 2021 due to Covid-19 issues with the last meeting coming in 2019 in a match the Sun Devils escaped Pullman with a 0-0 draw. The last time in Tempe the Sun Devils defeated the Cougs 3-1 in a game WSU wishes to forget as the team suffered a bevy of season-ending injuries in the contest including to then sophomore Elyse Bennett, the Cougs' leading scorer in 2021.

Getting back on track with another dominant performance on the Palouse, Washington State (10-2-1, 4-1-0) came up with its 10th shutout of the season pushing past Cal (5-4-3, 1-3-1), 2-0, Sunday afternoon at Lower Soccer Field. The Cougs did what they have done best all season, shutting down the Bears' offense while picking up timely scoring by their front line to grab the victory. The Cougs picked up goals from Sydney Pulver (PK - 35') and Elyse Bennett (54') to secure the victory.

On pace for a historic defensive season in 2021, the Cougars have been nearly perfect on the year having posted 10 shutouts and just 4 goals against in 13 contests.
The 10 shutouts makes the 2021 Cougs the 7th squad with double-digit shutouts in a season and within reach of the all-time record of 15 set in 2013.
The Cougs set the record for consecutive-shutouts at Colorado with their 6th-straight, snapping the previous mark of 5 set in 2013. They would capture the consecutive shutout minute record with nearly a full month of shutout soccer posting a record 578:45 minutes of scoreless soccer before #14 Stanford snapped the run.

~ Complete Release ~ (PDF)

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