No. 5 USC Women's Soccer Travels to Washington State, Washington
THIS WEEK - The No. 5 USC women's soccer team looks to extend its program record 11-game winning streak and stay atop the Pac-12 table with a pair of games on the road in Washington this week. The Trojans take on Washington State in Pullman on Thursday and then head to Washington on Sunday.
HOW TO FOLLOW - Both road games will be televised live on the Pac-12 Networks. Links for the broadcasts and live stats can be found on the women's soccer schedule page at USCTrojans.com. In-game updates will also be available on Twitter by following @USC_Wsoccer.
SOCIAL MEDIA - Keep up with everything USC women's soccer this year by following the Trojans on all of their social media platforms. You can follow @USCWsoccer on Instagram and @USC_Wsoccer on Twitter, and like USC Women's Soccer on Facebook.
SERIES VS. WSU - USC is 16-7-3 all-time against the Cougars. The Trojans have currently won seven straight in the series, dating back to 2014, when Head Coach Keidane McAlpine took over the program after two years at Washington State. USC picked up a 1-0 victory in Los Angeles last season.
SERIES VS. WASHINGTON - USC is 16-9-2 all-time against the Huskies. The Trojans have won four of the last five in the series, picking up a 5-0 win at home last season. Washington won 2-0 in Los Angeles in 2019.
LAST WEEK - USC played its lone game on the road last week, beating Oregon 3-1 in Eugene. Savannah DeMelo scored in the first half as the teams would take a 1-1 tie into the break. In the second half, the USC defense held firm, while Croix Bethune converted a PK and Penelope Hocking added an insurance goal in the 73rd minute. Hocking had a hand in all three goals, assisting DeMelo's and earning the PK after she was taken down in the area.
RISING IN THE RANKINGS - USC started the season ranked No. 14 in the preseason coaches poll, but after a pair of early losses, fell out of the rankings. Over the course of its 11-game winning streak, USC climbed back into the polls four weeks ago at No. 21, then jumped to No. 11 a week later. The Trojans are up to No. 5 in the last two polls. USC is also No. 15 in the RPI rankings. USC is the highest ranked Pac-12 team in both the coaches poll and RPI ratings. The Trojans' only two losses were to now No. 3 Pepperdine and No. 12 BYU.
OFFENSIVE OUTBURST VS UTAH - The Trojans put on one of the most impressive offensive displays in program history earlier this season, beating Utah 7-0 at home. The Trojans had six different goal scorers and an own goal in the game, scoring twice in the first half and five times in the second. USC's 7 goals were the most a Trojan team has scored since a program record 9-0 win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff in 2014, and were the most ever in Pac-12 play by a USC squad. The 7 goals also matched the second highest goal total of any team in Pac-12 history. UCLA has scored 8 goals in conference play twice and Stanford has done it once. The last team to score at least 7 goals in a Pac-12 game was Cal in 2015 (7-0 vs. UCLA). The Trojan defense more than held its own in the game as well, limiting the Utes to just three shots and only one on goal for the afternoon.
RECORD WIN STREAK - After losing its first two games of the year, USC has won 11 straight, including all 6 of its Pac-12 games so far. The Trojans have outscored their opponents 39-7 over that span. USC's last win at Oregon broke the program record for consecutive wins, which was set in 2016. The Trojans have given up more than one goal only once during the streak, a 4-2 victory on Aug. 28 at Utah Valley to kick off the 11-game streak.
RECORD BREAKER - Penelope Hocking became the Trojans' all-time leading scorer when she posted her 49th career goal against Colorado. Hocking struck in the 21st minute against the Buffs, passing Isabelle Harvey on the career list. Harvey's record of 48 goals had stood for 21 years before Hocking broke it. Hocking also moved into a tie for 14th on the Pac-12 career scoring list with her 50th goal against Utah the following game and is now alone in 14th after her 51st goal against Oregon. She and former Stanford star Catarina Macario are the only two players to crack the top 15 of the Pac-12's scoring list in the last 10 years.
PAC-12 CAREER SCORING LIST:
1. Kim Lynass, WSU (1990-93) – 83
2. Christen Press, STAN (2007-10) – 71
Lauren Cheney, UCLA (2006-09) – 71
Traci Arkenberg, UCLA (1994-97) – 71
5. Catarina Macario, STAN (2017-19) – 63
6. Danesha Adams, UCLA (2004-07) – 60
7. Sarah Rafanelli, STAN (1990-93) – 59
8. Kelley O'Hara, STAN (2006-09) – 57
Sydney Leroux, UCLA (2008-11) – 57
10. Laura Schott, CAL (1999-02) – 56
11. Joy Biefeld, CAL (1986-89) – 55
12. Lindsay Taylor, STAN (2008-11) – 53
13. Julie Foudy, STAN (1989-92) – 52
14. Penelope Hocking, USC (2018-21) – 51
15. Stacey Tullock, ASU (1998-01) – 50
- 2nd in Pac-12 with 9 goals, T-2nd with 22 pts
- Career numbers: 1st all-time in goals with 51, 2nd in points with 122 (leader: 135), 2nd in game-winning goals with 15 (leader: 21), 9th in assists with 20 (leader: 39) and 1st in shots with 254.
- Named Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week (10/11) after 2 goals and 1 assist against Colorado and Utah
- Last season was named to the All-America first team, a semifinalist for the MAC Hermann Trophy and the Pac-12 Forward of the Year, in addition to being an Academic All-American.
- Has been named to the All-Pac-12 team each of the last three years, and was also a Freshman All-American and the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year in 2018.
- Named to the Hermann Trophy Watch List this season. Was a semifinalist for the award last year.
CROIX BETHUNE - Bethune, who was named to the All-Pac-12 first team in her inaugural season this past spring, is tied for the team lead in points so far this year (8 goals, 6 assists, 22 points). Bethune has recorded at least a point in 10 of USC's 13 games and currently sits T-5th in goals (8) in the Pac-12, T-5th in assists (6) and T-2nd in total points (22). She was named the Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week after scoring the equalizer and providing the assist on the game-winner against Oregon State, and had a two-goal game at UC Santa Barbara.
ANNA SMITH - After battling for the starting job with All-American Kaylie Collins for the last three years, Smith came into the 2021 season as the Trojans' starting keeper and the only goalie on the USC roster with any collegiate experience. Smith has played every minute in goal, posting 5 shutouts. She was named the Pac-12 Goalkeeper of the Week on 9/6 after two clean sheets and a PK save against No. 16 Michigan and Western Michigan on the road. Smith has 2 PK saves this year. Her .807 save percentage is 4th in the conference. For her career, Smith has a 22-5-1 record and 8 shutouts.
PLAYER QUICK HITS:
- Freshman Aaliyah Farmer has started all but two games as the Trojans' holding midfielder, helping the team to 5 shutouts while also recording 2 goals and 2 assists.
- Freshman Brooklyn Courtnall has started every game at center back far this year, helping the team to 5 shutouts. She trails only GK Anna Smith in minutes played with 1,156. Courtnall posted her first career assist against CSUN, providing the helper on Hannah White's 71st minute strike.
- Freshman Simone Jackson, the No. 3 recruit in the country this past recruiting cycle, scored her first career goal against Utah Valley earlier this year. For the season, Jackson has 3 goals and 4 assists, and sits 4th on the team in pts. She had a 2 assist game against Utah.
- After suffering through injuries her first two seasons, Hannah White has become a real attacking threat off the bench for USC, posting 3 goals and 2 assists in 10 games played.
- Freshman Simi Awujo scored her first career goal against Western Michigan (9/5), freshman Julia Gomez scored her first goal against CSUN (9/19), freshman Helena Sampaio scored her first goal against Utah (10/10) and freshman Izzy Kimberly also scored her first goal against the Utes (10/10).
- In her last 3 games, senior midfielder Savannah DeMelo has two goals and two assists. She is 3rd on the team with 11 total points (4 G, 3A)
- Striker Jada Talley transferred to USC after an All-Pac-12 career at Arizona and is currently 6th on the team with 7 points (3 G, 1 A). Talley scored the game-winner on the road in Tucson against her former club on 10/3. She has 2 goals in her last 4 games.
- The Trojans are 7th in the country and 1st in the Pac-12 with 3.08 goals/game
- USC is 12th in the NCAA, 1st in the Pac-12 with 2.77 assists/game
- USC's 8.92 pts/game are 7th in the NCAA and 1st in the Pac-12
- 13 different Trojans have scored this year and 7 players have recorded multiple goals. 18 different USC players have recorded at least a point in a game this season.
HERMANN WATCH - USC's Penelope Hocking and Savannah DeMelo were both named to the preseason watch list for the MAC Hermann Trophy. Hocking was named a semifinalist for the award last season and DeMelo has been on the watch list each of the last 3 seasons.
LAST SEASON - The 2020 season was delayed until the spring of 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Trojans finished 7-3-4 overall and 6-3-2 in Pac-12 play, grabbing 2nd in the conference standings. USC made its 7th straight postseason appearance, continuing a streak that started when Head Coach Keidane McAlpine arrived in 2014. USC was bounced from the postseason in its opening game (2nd round/1st round bye) falling to Ole Miss in PK's.
ROSTER DEPTH - The Trojans enter the season with a 35-player roster. USC returns 20 letterwinners from last season, heading into the year with four All-Pac-12 honorees, three All-Region players and one First-Team All-American. The Trojans also brought in the No. 4 recruiting class in the nation and added All-Pac-12 transfer Jada Talley.
POSTSEASON HISTORY - USC has made 19 total NCAA Postseason appearances and seven straight since Keidane McAlpine took over the program in 2014. USC has won two National Championships in its history, becoming the first Pac-12 program to win a title in 2007 and then the first program from the conference to win a second title in 2016 (McAlpine's third year at the helm). The Trojans have only missed the postseason nine times in the program's 28 year history and have advanced past at least the first round in 13 of its last 19 tournaments. It its last seven posteason appearances, the Trojans have won at least one game five times.