WHAT’S HAPPENING:The University of Arizona women’s soccer team (6-4-0) travels to Fullerton, Calif., to face Cal State Fullerton (4-4-1) before opening up Pac-10 play next weekend. The Wildcats and Titans will face off at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 28.
LAST TIME OUT: No. 5 Portland, the defending national champs, ended the Wildcats four-game winning streak with a 2-0 win. Arizona had a strong defensive effort, allowing only two goals despite Portland’s constant pressure. UA struggled offensively recording only six shots in the game and one shot on goal. The Wildcats then suffered a loss to No. 14 BYU, 1-0. In the first half, Arizona and BYU battled to a 0-0 tie. The Cougars were able to apply more offensive pressure in the second half recording 11 shots to Arizona’s two. At the 72:16 mark, BYU’s Katie Fellows was able to break the tie in what ended up being the game-winning goal.
LOOKING AHEAD: Last season, Arizona was unable to finish non-conference play on a high note. The Wildcats fell to BYU 2-1 in their last match before Pac-10 games began. Four of the last five years, the Wildcats have been unable to win their last game before entering Pac-10 play. Arizona’s only win came in 2004 when the Wildcats defeated Colorado College 1-0 before winning their first three games in Pac-10 play. Despite Arizona’s loss to BYU last season they were again able to start the Pac-10 3-0.
FAMILIAR FOE: The returning Wildcat players will face former teammate Nicole Scheid when Arizona and Cal State Fullerton face off. Scheid, a junior, played at Arizona for two years before transferring to the Titans after last season. Scheid has played in all nine of Fullerton’s game, recording two assists
OFFENSIVE DROUGHT: Arizona has been shut out in its last two games going scoreless for 180 minutes. In its previous eight games, the Wildcats averaged 1.625 goals per game and averaged a goal every 57 minutes. Arizona’s previous longest offensive drought this season came during the first three games when the Wildcats did not score a goal for 159 minutes.
IN THE RECORD BOOKS: This year’s team has already put its stamp on Arizona soccer by tying two program records. The Wildcats’ four-game winning streak tied the previous longest winning streak from 2004. Arizona’s two overtime wins so far this season also ties the season record held by the 2000 squad.
TOPS IN THE PAC-10: Arizona leads the Pac-10 in saves and average saves per game with 55 and 5.50, respectively. Individually, Gianna DeSaverio ranks second in goals scored (5) and third in points (13). Chelsea McIntyre ranks first in saves made (54), and second in save percentage (.871) and saves per game (5.40).
FAST START: Arizona continues to get off to a fast start this year. The Wildcats have scored 10 of their 13 goals this season in the first half. Arizona has scored nine before the 30:00 minute mark, five times to give it an the early lead. The Wildcats have also recorded fourteen more shots in the first period than their opponent.
DRAMATIC ENDING:Through ten games, the Wildcats have already competed in three overtime games. Arizona is 2-1 in such contests, winning both games that ended in the first extra period, while losing one game in double overtime.
FAMILIAR FACES: Both Chelsea McIntyre and Savanah Levake have played every minute of Arizona’s ten games this season. McIntyre played in only one game last season, while Levake played in 17 of the Wildcats’ 22 games.
IN GOAL: Through ten games, Chelsea McIntyre has done a solid job replacing McCall Smith. McIntyre has allowed only eight goals, five less than Smith through the same number of games, and made 54 saves while posting four shutouts. McIntyre has a 0.77 GAA while Smith had a 1.24 GAA through ten games last season.
REPLACING MILLER: Gianna DeSaverio leads the Wildcat offense with five goals and three assists. In total, she has scored or assisted on seven of the Wildcats’ 13 goals. DeSaverio, who has helped replace graduated All-American Mallory Miller in the UA lineup, has already bettered her output from last season when she had three goals and two assists in 22 matches.
STEPPING UP: Through ten games, Arizona defensive stats have improved from last year. The Wildcats have scored three less goals this season, but they have also allowed five less. This season’s team has posted a 6-4-0 record while the 2005 squad went 5-3-2 through eight games.
ABOUT CAL STATE FULLERTON: Cal State Fullerton has a 4-4-1 record so far this season. It is currently on a three-game losing skid, falling to Texas, San Francisco and Santa Clara. The Titans game against the Wildcats will be only their second game at home in ten contests. Lauryn Welch leads the Titans with four goals and two assists. Fullerton’s goalkeeper is Karen Bardsley and she has started all nine games this season. She holds a 1.17 GAA, allowing eleven goals so far.
The Titans went 19-4-0 last season, 6-1-0 in the Big West Conference. Fullerton returns four starters and 11 letterwinners from last year’s squad.
Fullerton is coached by Ali Khosroshahin, who is in his sixth season with the Titans. He has a 68-36-5 career record.
TITANS VS. WILDCATS: Cal State Fullerton leads the series 1-0-1. In the teams’ 1996 matchup, the Titans and Wildcats played to a 2-2 tie in double overtime.
ARIZONA IN THE RANKINGS: Arizona entered the NSCAA/adidas poll this week at the No. 24 spot. The Wildcats also moved up two spots in the Soccer Buzz West Region poll to No. 9.
Pac-10 IN THE RANKINGS: In addition to Arizona’s national ranking, UCLA is ranked No. 5 in the Soccer Buzz and NSCAA polls and No. 6 in the Soccer America poll. California stands as No. 13 in the Soccer Buzz and NSCAA polls and No. 15 in the Soccer America poll. Southern California is ranked No. 22 in the Soccer Buzz poll.
Additionally, Pac-10 teams hold five of the top-15 spots in Soccer Buzz’s West Region Poll,
1. Santa Clara
11. Long Beach St.
13. San Diego
14. Loyola Marymount
15. UC Riverside
NATIONAL HONORS: After posting two shutouts in the Four Points Sheraton Cats Classic the weekend of Sept. 8-10, Chelsea McIntyre received national recognition. The sophomore goalkeeper was named the Soccer Times Player of the Week. She was also a part of Top Drawer Soccer’s Team of the Week and Soccer Buzz’s Elite Team of the Week.
HEAD COACH DAN TOBIAS: In 2005, Tobias led the Wildcats to a 11-8-3 overall record and a 4-4-1 record in the Pac-10. Additionally, Tobias led the team to its first berth in the NCAA Sweet 16 in the program’s history. In three years, Tobias has compiled a 38-29-5 record at Arizona.