Soccer seniors close out home careers
Playing for the final two times at Murphey Field at Mulcahy Soccer Stadium this season, Arizona soccer (9-4-1, 3-3-0) will look to send off its seniors with a pair of victories this weekend when Stanford and California come to town. With Stanford coming in as the No. 4 team in the country, according to the NSCAA Coaches Poll, this will be the third straight weekend the Wildcats have faced a team ranked in the top 25.
Last weekend, the Wildcats’ trip to Los Angeles to take on No. 1 UCLA was a disaster. Trailing only 1-0 at halftime, Arizona surrendered five goals in the second half and lost 6-0, easily the team’s worst performance of the season.
Senior midfielder Julia Glanz, who will be making her final appearance in front of the home crowd at Murphey Field, believes the team will respond to the disappointment of last weekend.
“We definitely feel like we can bounce back,” Glanz said. “Resiliency is one of the team’s core values, and we’ve shown that all season.”
Friday night’s matchup at 7 p.m. sees the Wildcats take on the No. 4 Stanford Cardinal, a team that has only suffered one loss the entire season when it fell to No. 1 UCLA a few weeks ago. The Cardinal has been one of the most dominant defensives in the Pac-12 Conference this season, allowing its opponents to score only four goals the entire season with sophomore goalkeeper Jane Campbell, one of the best in the conference with a .28 goals against average. Another sophomore, forward Ryan Walker-Hartshorn, leads the team in goals with eight.
On Sunday at 1 p.m., the Wildcats host their final home game of the season when they are scheduled to take on the Cal Golden Bears. Cal had a terrific start to the season, winning nine of its first 10 games and ramking as high as No. 10 in the country, but it has been a struggle since Pac-12 play has begun. Coming into this weekend, the Golden Bears are only 2-3-1 in the conference and have managed only one win their last five games played. If Cal hopes to turn around their recent skid, it will likely have to lean on senior midfielder Taylor Comeau, whose 19 points are good for sixth-best in the Pac-12.
Sunday’s game against Cal will be senior day for six Wildcats: defenders Brie DeFelice and Mykaylin Rosenquist, midfielders LeeAndra Smith and Glanz, forward Ali Doller and goalkeeper Gabby Kaufman.
The game will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks.Wildcat head coach Tony Amato said this weekend’s games will be tough but that he is excited for his team, especially the seniors.
“We’re looking forward [to] it,” Amato said. “It’s our last two home games, and we’re looking to play two top-25 caliber teams in the country. So, we know it’s going to be a challenge, but we’re excited to play and that’s what it’s all about. For our seniors, it’s their final time playing here at home, and it will be a special moment for them.”
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