Sarah Duncan and the Utes host No. 11 California on Friday night
Sept. 24, 2013
Match-up: Utah vs. No. 11 California
Date: Friday, Sept. 27
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. MT
Location: Ute Field
Promotion: Avalanche Club Night; Residence Hall Association Night; First 300 students to show their U-ID will receive a free promotional item
News and Notes
This Weekend's Action
Utah soccer begins Pac-12 play with a home contest against No. 11 California on Friday night. It is the first of three home games over two weekends for the Utes as they try and make an impact on the conference race.
Utes Stay Unbeaten at Home
Utah soccer pushed its unbeaten run at home against non-conference opponents to 11 games with a 3-0 victory over Utah State and 1-1 draw at Oklahoma. Against USU, the Utes scored all their goals during a 12-minute span of the second half. Taylor Slattery broke the ice in the 59th minute when she headed in a corner kick for the first goal her career.
Four minutes after opening the scoring, Utah tallied another goal when Kaycee Buckley opened her 2013 account. The sophomore took a pass from Katie Taylor and weaved past two USU defenders before firing a shot into the net. A few moments later, a USU foul in the box gave Taylor a penalty try for her team-leading fourth goal of the season to cap a three-point night.
Lindsey Luke returned to the lineup after missing two weeks and promptly picked up where she left off, notching her fourth shutout of the season against the Aggies. She then made six saves against the Sooners on Sunday
California Golden Bears
Cal is led offensively by two dynamic players in Samantha Witteman (6G, 3A) and Ifeoma Onumonu (6G, 2A) who both rank in the top 10 among Pac-12 players in scoring. This past weekend, Emily Kruger made a career-high 11 saves against Santa Clara to earn Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week honors while Witteman scored a hat trick in the win over St. Mary's.
The All-Time Series
Utah embarks on its third year in the Pac-12 with an all-time record of 9-12-1 against conference foes. The Utes are 0-5 all-time against the Golden Bears and have been out-scored 15-3. Utah hosted the Golden Bears last season, falling 3-1 with the goal being scored by Harley Spier.
Defense Denying Opponents
Utah notched three-consecutive shutouts to open 2013 and set a new school record by keeping its opponents off the board for 397 minutes to start a season. This eclipsed the previous mark from 2005 of 321 minutes.
The Utes are allowing less than one goal per game (0.67) and have a team goals-against average of 0.62 (6 GA in 890 minutes). Utah goalkeepers have made 46 saves, tops in the Pac-12 and notched five shutouts.
In the five games she has played, goalkeeper Lindsey Luke has allowed one goal during 510 minutes of game action. This means the sophomore leads the league in goals-against average at 0.18 and save percentage at .957.
Cheyanne Mulcock started four games for the Utes and ranks seventh in the league with a 0.75 GAA. She notched her first shutout of the season in a blanking of Weber State.
Robison Excels in New Role
Junior defender Jill Robison was named to CollegeSoccer360's Primetime Performers Weekly Honor Roll on Aug. 27. The Layton native was a forward last season for the Utes and started 16 games. However, she moved to a defensive role during the offseason and has flourished. Robison has provided a steady presence this season providing link-up play to the midfielders and forwards while adding a pair of assists.
Experienced Group of Utes
Utah returns every single player that scored a goal or recorded an assist in 2012. That experience should benefit the Utes throughout the season. Utah had 10 players score goals last year and 19 different Utes started in the second Pac-12 season for the club.
Utah defender Avery Ford was selected by College Sports Madness to its Pac-12 Preseason All-Conference Team. An Honorable Mention All-Pac-12 Conference selection last year, she started all 19 games as part of a defense that ranked third in the Pac-12 in goals allowed per game (1.11).
Ford finished third on the squad with six points, assisting on back-to-back game-winning goals against Washington State and Washington. This year, she is tied for fourth on the team in goals and tied for the team lead in assists.
Utah in the Rankings
Utah is currently ranked ninth in the NSCAA/Continental Tire NCAA Division I Women's Pacific Poll as of September 24. The last time Utah was ranked in the final NSCAA Poll was in 2006 when the Utes finished 23rd in the country.
UCLA was selected as the preseason favorite to win the 2013 regular season Pac-12 title. The 2012 Conference runner-ups collected 117 points and 7-of-11 possible first-place votes. Four-time defending Conference champion Stanford was a close second, tallying 115 points.
Behind them were California (99), Washington (77), Arizona State (74), Oregon State (70), Washington State (70), USC (65), Utah (37), Colorado (27), Oregon (21) and Arizona (15).
Utah Soccer Scarves Are Back for 2013!
There's still plenty of time! Show your support for Utah Soccer and all of Utah's athletic teams by calling 801-581-UTIX or visit www.UtahUtes.com. Purchase of a scarf gets you free entrance to Utah soccer games.