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No. 10 Arizona Looks to Clinch Pac-10 Title in Oregon
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 11/03/2004
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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WHAT’S HAPPENING: The 10th ranked University of Arizona women’s soccer team (14-4-0 overall, 5-2-0 Pac-10) will travel to Oregon for the final weekend of regular season play. The Wildcats currently sit alone atop the conference and will look to clinch their first ever Pacific-10 Conference Women’s Soccer Title. Arizona will first take on Oregon State (8-9-1 overall, 2-4-1 Pac-10) at 12 p.m. PST on Friday, Nov. 5, followed by Oregon at 1 p.m. PST on Sunday, Nov. 7.

LAST TIME OUT: The Wildcats competed at home against USC and No. 5 UCLA. Arizona walked away with a weekend sweep winning 3-0 over USC and 1-0 over UCLA.

The Wildcats and the Women of Troy battled on Friday night through the beginning of the first half with each side having its opportunities. In the 34th minute, Wilks went one on one with the USC goalkeeper, Julie Peterson. Peterson tripped Wilks in the penalty box and gave her a penalty kick at 33:16. She placed the kick in the lower left corner past Peterson to give the Cats the 1-0 lead.

In the second half of play, Bailey added to the Wildcat lead at 61:52 by taking a pass from junior Mallory Miller and placing it past Peterson. Wilks secured the Wildcat win with a goal less than three minutes later off of assists from Bailey and freshman Kaity Heath.

In Sunday’s match against UCLA, junior midfielder Althea Jones registered the only goal of the game at 40:12 when she dribbled the ball from the Wildcats’ side of the field, through the midfield and through the Bruin defense to beat Henderson and give the Wildcats the 1-0 lead. Freshman Wildcat goalkeeper McCall Smith and Henderson tallied two saves each in the first half.

The Wildcats and the Bruins battled through a scoreless second half to give the Wildcats the 1-0 victory. The victory is the first for the Wildcats over the Bruins in the series history. UCLA had previously led the series 10-0-0.

ABOUT OREGON STATE: Oregon State returns 12 starters from the 2003 squad that went 7-11-2 overall, 3-5-1 Pac-10. The Beavers finished sixth in the Pac-10.

With one week of conference play remaining, the Beavers are 8-9-1 overall and are 2-4-1 in the Pac-10. OSU started the season at 5-0 with wins over San Diego State, UC-Santa Barbara, New Hampshire, UNC-Greensboro and Richmond. Oregon State then lost five in a row against Virginia Commonwealth, No. 6 Portland, San Francisco, Loyola Marymount and Penn State. The Beavers beat Gonzaga in their final non-conference match of the season. In the Pac-10, OSU has defeated Oregon and Washington State. The losses have come to No. 8 UCLA, USC, Washington and Stanford. The Beavers sole tie of the Pac-10 season came last weekend against California.

OSU’s points leader is freshman forward Jodie Taylor. Taylor has 30 points off of 14 goals and two assists. Oregon State’s goalkeeper is sophomore Melissa Onstad. Onstad has registered six shutouts with a 1.09 goals against average.

Oregon State is coached by Steve Fennah. Fennah is in his seventh season with Oregon State and is assisted by Heidi Slaymaker and Linus Rhode.

WILDCATS VERSUS BEAVERS: The Beavers currently hold an 5-3-1 series advantage over the Wildcats. Last season, Oregon State defeated Arizona, 2-1, on Oct. 31, 2003 in Tucson. The last time the Wildcats defeated the Beavers was on Oct. 21, 2001 in Tucson.

ABOUT OREGON: Oregon returns ten starters from last season’s squad that went 9-11-0 overall and 3-6-0 in the Pac-10, which was good enough for a seventh place conference finish.

In the 2004 season, Oregon has posted a 3-12-2 overall record and is 0-6-1 in the Pac-10. The three non-conference wins for the Ducks came against Weber State, Wyoming and Gonzaga. The six non-conference losses were to UC-Santa Barbara, No. 24 Utah, Central Connecticut state, Connecticut, No. 5 Portland and Portland State. In the conference season, Oregon has suffered losses to USC, No. 8 UCLA, Oregon State, No. 7 Washington, No. 14 Stanford and No. 13 California. The Ducks also tied Washington State.

The points leader for the Ducks is freshman Kami Kapaku. Kapaku has nine points off of four goals and one assist. The Ducks’ goalkeeper is junior Domenique Lainez. Lainez has competed in 16 matches and has a 2.44 goals against average off of 78 saves.

The Ducks are coached by Bill Steffen who has a 49-108-13 record in his ninth season with Oregon. He is assisted by Jon Kiester and Jon Galas.

WILDCATS VERSUS DUCKS: The Ducks hold a 5-1-1 series record over the Wildcats. Last season, the Ducks defeated the Wildcats 1-0 in Tucson on Nov. 2, 2003. Arizona’s only victory over Oregon came on Nov. 19, 2001 when the Wildcats defeated the Ducks, 2-1.

IN THE RANKINGS: The Wildcats are currently ranked the highest in the history of the program. Arizona has earned rankings in all four national polls and two regional polls. Arizona is ranked No. 10 in the Soccer America Top-25, No. 15 in the NSCAA Top-25, No. 16 in the Soccer Buzz Top-30 and No. 19 in the Soccertimes.com Top-25. Arizona is No. 4 in both the SoccerBuzz.com and in the NSCAA coaches poll regional rankings. Arizona is a part of the Western Region, which contains 47 teams.

PAC-10 POW: Freshman goalkeeper McCall Smith has been named the Pac-10 Women’s Soccer Player of the Week for Oct. 26-Nov. 1.  

Smith, from Salt Lake City, Utah, led the Wildcat defense to a pair of shutout wins over USC and then-No. 5 UCLA last week. Against USC on Oct. 29, Smith had key saves early in the first half to keep the game scoreless until the Wildcats opened the scoring in the 34th minute. Smith had six saves on the night to lead Arizona to a 3-0 victory and her ninth shutout of the season.

Against UCLA on Oct. 31, Smith posted four saves against a Bruin team that leads the Pac-10 in goals scored. The 1-0 shutout marked Arizona’s first-ever win over the Bruins in the 10-game series history. As a result of the two wins last week, the Wildcats are in position to clinch their first-ever Pacific-10 Conference title heading into the final weekend of league play. With her 10th shutout, Smith is the new Arizona career shutout leader. She also paces the Pac-10 in shutouts (10) and saves (83) on the season.

This is Smith’s first Pac-10 Player of the Week honor and Arizona’s sixth weekly honor all-time.

IN THE STANDINGS: With the 5-2 Pac-10 record, the Wildcats are currently in first place in the Pac-10. The five wins are the most conference victories for Arizona in the program’s history. The Wildcats will look to clinch the Pac-10 Women’s Soccer Conference Title in this weekend’s matches.

IN THE PAC: Arizona is among the leaders in quite a few categories in the Pac-10. The Wildcats are tied for first in the conference in assists and are second in points registered with 104, goals with 35, fewest goals allowed with nine and most shutouts with ten.

1. Arizona (5-2-0 Pac-10, 14-4-0 overall)

2. UCLA (5-3-0, 12-6-0)

3. Stanford (4-2-1, 12-4-2)

4. ASU (4-2-1, 8-8-1)

5. California (3-2-2, 10-4-3)

6. Washington (3-3-1, 12-4-1)

7. Washington State (3-3-1, 8-6-3)

8. USC(3-5-0, 9-8-1)

9. Oregon State (2-4-1, 8-9-1)

10. Oregon (0-6-1, 3-11-2)

Individually in the Pac-10, junior Mallory Miller is seventh in shots taken with 46 and points with 19, while leading the conference in assists with nine. Freshman goalkeeper McCall Smith is third in goals against average at 0.49. She leads the conference in save percentage (.902), saves (83) and shutouts (10).

SEASON RECAP: The Wildcats have defeated No. 4 Washington, Washington State, No. 10 Stanford, USC and No. 5 UCLA. The two conference losses for Arizona came on the road against No. 14 California and Arizona State. Prior to Pac-10 competition, the Wildcats had nine non-conference wins over Iowa State, Drake, UC-Irvine, Fairleigh Dickinson, Duquesne, Northern Arizona, Brigham Young, Weber State, and Colorado College. The two losses of the non-conference schedule came against ranked opponents, No. 16 West Virginia and No. 25 Pepperdine. Eight of the 12 Wildcat victories have been shutouts.

TOUGH DEFENSE: The Wildcats have limited their opponents to nine goals in 18 matches, while posting 10 shutouts. The only match in which the Wildcats allowed more than one goal came on Sept. 10 against No. 16 West Virginia when the Mountaineers defeated the Wildcats, 2-0. Four of the Wildcats’ goals against have come in the first half, with five being scored in the second half.

OFFENSIVELY: Arizona has scored 35 goals this season. Seven of those came on Sept. 5 when the Wildcats defeated the Fairleigh Dickinson Knights 7-0 at home. The Wildcats have scored 14 times in the first half, 20 in the second and once in overtime.

ON THE ROAD: The Wildcats are 5-3-0 on the road this season with a 1-2-0 road record in the Pac-10.

LOOKING AHEAD: This weekend’s matches will conclude regular season play. The Wildcats will then return to Tucson in anticipation of the NCAA Tournament selection announcement on Monday, Nov. 8 at approximately 2 p.m. No team in the ten-year history of soccer at Arizona has ever made the NCAA Tournament.

TOUGH COMPETITION: Four of Arizona’s opponents are ranked in this week’s Soccer America poll. The Wildcats have defeated No. 17 Washington, 3-1, No. 14 Stanford, 1-0 and No. 11 UCLA, 1-0. The Wildcats lost to No. 13 California, 1-0. UA’s three wins over ranked teams are the most in school history.

CROWD SUPPORT: In nine home games this season, the Wildcats have had an average attendance of 582. The highest attendance at a home game came on Sept. 3 against UC-Irvine when there was a crowd of 811. The Wildcats went 8-1 at home during the regular season with only three goals allowed.

LEADING THE POINTS: Tucson native junior Mallory Miller continues to lead the Wildcats in points with 19. Miller has been a part of 14 goals for the Wildcats with five scored and nine assists. Seniors Kamaya Damwijk and Candice Wilks lead the Cats in goals with six each. Three of Wilks’ scores have been game-winning goals.

IN THE RECORD BOOKS: With 22 goals in her career, senior Candice Wilks is three away from Nikki Jones’ record of 25. Junior Mallory Miller is now tied with Jones as the all-time leaders in assists with 14. With 70 games started in her Wildcat career, senior Lindsey Peeples is two starts away from being tied with the program’s all-time leader, Twila Kaufman.

HEAD COACH DAN TOBIAS: Dan Tobias is in his second season as the head coach of the Arizona women’s soccer team. As the third head coach in Arizona’s 10-year history, Tobias has a record of 19-15-1 at UA and coached the Wildcats to the best Pac-10 finish in the program’s history in 2003. He was named the 2002 Pac-10 Coach of the Year as the head coach at Washington State.

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