Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
UA Soccer Opens 2011 Season Tonight
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: August 19, 2011
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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Aug. 19, 2011

2010 Stats (PDF)  |  2011 Schedule  |  2011 Season Outlook

Arizona (0-0) at San Diego State (0-0)

Friday, Aug. 19 • 4 p.m. PT
San Diego, Calif. • SDSU Sports Deck
Live stats (courtesy

Arizona (0-0) at Pepperdine (0-0) 
Sunday, Aug. 21 • 1 p.m. PT 
Malibu, Calif. • Tari Frahm Rokus Field 
Live Stats (courtesy 

This Weekend: The Arizona women's soccer team hits the pitch to kick off its 2011 season with a pair of road matches in Southern California ... This weekend's matches are first competition for any of UA's teams in the 2011-2012 academic calendar ... The Wildcats seek a more positive start to the new campaign after dropping a pair of matches in Southern California (vs. San Diego and at Pepperdine) to begin the 2010 season ... UA boasts a significantly more experienced roster than a season ago, with ample depth and the welcomed return of several players who missed considerable playing time with injuries/illness a year ago ... The UA roster features one senior - goalkeeper Ashley Jett - along with nine juniors, eight sophomores and seven freshmen ... The UA soccer program begins its 18th season since debuting in 1994.

About the Cats: Arizona enters the 2011 season with eight returning starters and high expectations following a 5-13-2 campaign a season ago ... The Wildcats return players with 234 combined starts in their collegiate careers ... Forward Renae Cuellar, who scored six goals and had three assists in the first six games of 2010, returns after missing the final 14 matches due to a knee injury ... Senior goalkeeper Ashley Jett returns after playing every minute in goal over the course of the final 18 matches last season ... Several of the UA's seven freshmen could make their collegiate debuts this weekend.

Noting the Aztecs: Friday's match will mark the season-opener for both schools ... The Aztecs were tabbed for a first-place finish in the Mountain West in the league's preseason coaches' poll ... SDSU finished 2010 with a 8-10-3 overall record (5-2 Mountain West) and welcomes back seven starters off that squad ... The Aztecs have defeated the Wildcats in each of three all-time meetings between the schools ... SDSU downed UA 1-0 in Tucson in the most recent meeting (Sept 30, 2007) ... The first meeting came in UA's first-ever soccer season in 1994 (SDSU won 3-0 on Sept. 20).

Noting the Waves: Sunday's match will be the second of the year for each team as Pepperdine opens at California on Friday ... Returning players account for 25 of the 26 goals and 13 of the 19 assists registered by Pepperdine last season .... The roster consists of four seniors, seven juniors, four sophomores, one redshirt freshman and 10 true freshmen ... Pepperdine defeated Arizona 4-2 in San Diego, Calif., last season in the most recent meeting. For Openers: Arizona enters Friday's season-opener against San Diego State with an all-time record of 7-10 in season-opening matches. However, the Wildcats have won four of their last seven openers despite dropping a contest against the University of San Diego last season. Arizona has opened a season against a school from California each year dating back to 2008 (Cal Poly - 2008, UC Irvine - 2009 and San Diego - 2010).

Head Coach Lisa  Oyen: Lisa Oyen enters her second full season as head coach of the Arizona women's soccer program. In her two seasons at the helm, Oyen has provided stability to the program that is seeking its first winning season 2005. She has improved talent, depth and skill on the roster, and revitalized the Wildcats' recruiting efforts. Her 2010 team - her first full year in charge - was hit hard by injury and illness, but showed its toughness and resilience in a 5-13-2 campaign. Oyen served as a co-interim head coach for the final seven games of 2009, before being named the head coach after the season. She has a career coaching record of 6-19-2 counting all 27 games she has been a head coach or co-interim head coach. Prior to becoming a head coach, she served as an assistant at the school for seven seasons.

Filling up the Stat Sheet: Despite playing just six of 20 games, Cuellar posted team-leading figures in most of the major stat categories: goals (6), points (15) and shot percentage (.231). Cuellar didn't achieve the team lead in these categories by a small margin either; despite missing 14 games, her six goals doubled the number two goal-scorer on the squad, her 15 points were nine more than her closest competition and her .231 shot percentage was 55 points higher than the second highest percentage. Her one game-winning goal and three assists tied for the most on the team.

Jetting into the Record Books: Senior goalkeeper Ashley Jett recorded 104 saves in 2010, the most in the Pac-10. Arizona has had a rich history at her position; since 2001, seven UA goal keepers have led the Pac-10 in saves. Her 104 saves are the second most in the conference since UA's Chelsea McIntyre stopped 109 shots on goal in 2006.

Up Next: After this weekend's matches, the Wildcats will return to Tucson for the start of classes on Monday, Aug. 22. They will also begin their preparations for the 2011 home-opener against South Carolina on Friday, Aug. 26. That match is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. (MST).

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