Soccer preview: No. 10 BYU
Sept. 18, 2010
MATCH #8: Texas (5-1-1) vs. No. 10 BYU
Strength of schedule ... The Longhorns continue the tough part of their non-conference schedule this Monday when they host No. 10 (NSCAA) BYU at 7 p.m. Central. The ranked Cougars are the third-straight opponent Texas has faced to be ranked in the NSCAA poll. Last weekend, Texas faced No. 12 Virginia (L, 0-4) and No. 22 William & Mary (4-0). The last time UT faced three-straight ranked opponents was in 2002 when they went 2-1 vs. No. 21 Duke (W, 2-1), No. 11 California (W, 2-1) and No. 3 Stanford (L, 1-0).
Texas in the top 25 ... Texas continues to move up in the polls with its 5-1-1 record. The Horns are ranked No. 20 in the Soccertimes.com coaches poll and make their first appearance of the season in the Soccer America poll in the No. 24 spot. In addition, Texas is receiving 22 points in the NSCAA coaches poll, good for 29th. The Horns have now been in the poll for three-straight weeks for the first time since Nov. 16, 2008.
Last time out (#12 Virginia and #22 William & Mary) ... Texas faced its first two ranked opponents of the season a week ago in Virginia (22) and William & Mary (22) at the Virginia Nike Soccer Classic in Charlottesville. After suffering its first loss of the season to the Cavaliers on Friday, the Horns rebounded and posted a 4-0 win over the Tribe on Sunday.
Myers advantage ... The Longhorns host 11 opponents during the 2010 season and already have a 3-0-1 record at home this year. Since 2002, Texas has posted a home record of 66-8-11 (.841) since 2002 and owns a record of 85-19-11 (.787) since Myers opened in 1999.
Texas ups the offense ... Texas' first seventh matches have seen quite the offensive clinic. The Horns have put up over 20 shots in three outings and posted at least one goal in all but one match. In the 3-1 win over UTSA (Aug. 27), UT tallied 26 shots for its most shots since 2007. Against Navy (Sept. 3), UT notched 25 shots and recorded five goals, for the most goals in a match since 2007. It also marked just the fourth time since 2006 that a UT squad has put up five or more goals in a match. The Horns followed up that outing with a 24-shot showing against UC-Riverside (Sept. 5).
Passing it around ... Through seven games, 10 different athletes account for Texas' 16 goals this year, six of which are newcomers or underclassmen. Sophomore Hannah Higgins leads the group with three goals while redshirt freshman Leah Fortune, sophomore Kristin Cummins and juniors Kylie Doniak and Amanda Lisberger have two goals apiece. Freshman Gabby Zarnegar, juniors Lucy Keith and Stacey-Ann Smith and senior Kate Incerto have each tallied one goal this season. The Horns also have 15 assists, which ranks third in the Big 12 for a total of 47 points so far this season.
Everyone scores ... Throughout Texas' first seven matches, there has not been a player to net more than one goal in an outing. It marks the first time since 2005 that that has happened, but during that 12-game span in 2005, Texas only posted 12 goals while this year's Horns have already netted 16.
Big win on the road ... Not only did the Longhorns shutout their first ranked opponent since 2008 when they posted a 4-0 victory over #22 William & Mary (Sept. 12) but it was also the Horns' biggest margin of victory over a ranked foe on the road since 2002 (4-0 win at No. 16 Nebraska).
On the attack ... During Texas' first five matches, the Horns averaged 15.1 shots per outing, marking the first time since the 2004 campaign (22.4 spm) that a Texas team has produced an average 17.8 shots or more over the first five matches of the season. Three of those matches saw 20+ Texas shots. In addition, UT averaged 11.2 shots on goal during that span.
Stifling defense ... While the Longhorns have been putting on the offensive pressure, the Texas defense has also stood out allowing two or less shots in two matches so far this season. The feat marks the first time since 2006 that a Texas squad has limited its opponent to two shots or less twice in a season.
Young line-up ... The first seven games this season have seen Texas go with a young starting line-up. The Horns are currently starting two true freshmen (Harris, Pedersen), one redshirt freshman (Fortune), four sophomores (Campise, Higgins, Cummins, Gaul), two juniors (Doniak, Keith) and two seniors (Birkhold, Campanelli).