Arizona soccer takes on rival ASU for final game
Wildcats end their season on the road
The Arizona women’s soccer team says that it is saving the best for last as it takes on arch-rival ASU on Friday at Sun Devil Soccer Stadium in Tempe, Ariz.
“We are working on staying focused and excited about the match,” head coach Lisa Oyen said. “We want to feel good going into the match while keeping in mind that we are going to have to work hard to build confidence throughout the week of training.”
In the past, the Sun Devils proved to be a dominating force on the field, winning 14 of the 17 matches in the series. The Wildcats managed to pull off two wins in the series in back-to-back years in 2008 and 2009.
In 2008, Arizona claimed victory 2-1 over ASU on the road. Just a year later, the Wildcats hosted the Sun Devils and won in double overtime with the same score.
This weekend, Arizona looks to not only improve the series record with ASU, but to add a seventh win to its record, giving the team its best record since the 2008 season. In the last three seasons, the Wildcats won one game in 2011, five in 2010 and four in 2009.
This season the stats are in the Wildcats’ favor with Arizona’s 49 percent shot on goal percentage compared to the Sun Devils’ 47 percent.
On the defensive end, junior goalkeeper Gabby Kaufman leads the Pac-12 with 100 saves, 39 more than ASU’s goalkeeper Chandler Morris has made. Kaufman is also ranked in the top ten goalkeepers with the highest save percentage in the Pac-12, at 76 percent, which is about 8 percent better than Morris’ percentage.
Both teams come into Friday’s match with exciting wins in double overtime last weekend. ASU beat Colorado 2-1 and Arizona shutout Utah 1-0.
“Managing our emotions and momentum in a rivalry game is always challenging,” Oyen said.
“Regardless of the results either team has had leading up to this game, this match has always been and will continue to be a tough, hard-fought match.”