COLLEGE STATION -- The No. 11-ranked Texas A&M soccer team takes to the road this weekend to face Texas Tech in Lubbock, Texas, before traveling to No. 12 Colorado. Friday’s game kicks off at 7 p.m., while Sunday’s match is set for 2 p.m.
The Aggies (12-3-1, 5-2-1 Big 12) sit in second place in the Big 12 and look to regroup after dropping their last two conference contests at Kansas, 1-0, and against No. 20 Missouri, 3-0. The young A&M squad was not able to find the back of the net, despite outshooting its opponents 37-20.
Colorado leads the Big 12 with 20 points and a 6-1-2 league record, while Tech is eighth with nine points and a 3-6 record in conference play.
Senior Laura Grace Robinson has a team-high 13 points (5 goals, 3 assists), followed by freshman Jennifer Kmezich (5 goals, 2 assists) and sophomore Rachel Shipley (4 goals, 4 assists) with 12 points each. Junior Amber Gnatzig adds four goals and three assists and freshman Bri Young has four goals and one assist.
Freshman Becca Herrera leads the team and is ranked fifth in the Big 12 with six assists. Freshman Beth West contributes five assists.
Sophomore goalkeeper Kelly Dyer posts five shutouts and leads the league with four in Big 12 matches. She is second in the conference with a .851 save percentage and third with a 0.71 goals-against average. Dyer has made 57 saves this season.
Fans can follow Aggie soccer on the road with free live audio and live stats on AggieAthletics.com. Fox Sports Rocky Mountain will televise the Texas A&M vs. Colorado match locally.
SCOUTING TEXAS TECH
The Red Raiders (8-7-1, 3-6-0 Big 12) are eighth in the league and blanked Iowa State, 2-0, before being shut out by Nebraska, 3-0, last weekend. Tech won Big 12 matches against the Cyclones, Baylor and Oklahoma and is eighth in the league with nine points. TTU is 5-3-0 at home.
Junior Brittney Harrison (17 pts) and red-shirt freshman Taylor Lytle (15 pts) lead the team’s offense. Harrison is fourth in the conference with seven goals and Lytle has a team-high seven assists, including a league-leading five in Big 12 play. In goal for the Red Raiders is senior Tina Rincon who has made 78 saves for five shutouts. She holds a .780 save percentage and 1.33 goals-against average.
Tom Stone is 15-15-3 in his second season as head coach of Tech.
VERSUS THE RED RAIDERS
The Aggies are 13-1 against Texas Tech all time and are on an eight-game winning streak dating back to the 2000 season. Five of those eight contests have been shutouts. In the most recent meeting, the Aggies downed Tech 5-0 for sole possession of the 2007 Big 12 regular season title. Former A&M soccer player Ashlee Pistorius netted two goals and Gnatzig, junior Nicole Ketchum and junior Cydne Currie scored one goal apiece.
The 12th-ranked Buffaloes lead the Big 12, are on a five-game unbeaten streak and are 12-2-3 overall. Their only conference loss was at Missouri, 1-0. CU played to a scoreless tie at Iowa State and to a 1-1 tie against Oklahoma State.
The team’s attack is led by 2007 All-Big 12 player Nikki Marshall. The junior’s 20 points and eight goals rank third in the league. Expect plenty of strikes to come from Marshall as she leads the league with 76 shots. Senior Gianna DeSaverio totals 16 points and has a conference-high five goals. Senior Kristin Radlinksi has the best goals-against average in the Big 12 at 0.49. She’s been forced to make 36 saves with a .837 save percentage.
Seventh-year head coach Bill Hempen holds a 81-45-18 record at the helm of CU soccer.
VERSUS THE BUFFALOES
A&M leads the series 15-1-1 with the Buffs earning their only win against the Aggies, 3-2, in double overtime at the Big 12 Tournament in 2006. Last season, A&M defeated CU 4-2 with goals from returners Gnatzig and Shipley. The Aggies netted four goals in a 13-minute span after being down 2-0 at the half.
THE LAST TIME
The last time A&M soccer dropped two consecutive matches was in 2006, after which it went on a 10-game winning streak. In 2005, an 11-game unbeaten streak followed two straight Big 12 losses.
BIG 12 PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Dyer was named the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week on Oct. 14 and was selected for the conference award for the third time in 2008, a feat no other Big 12 player has accomplished this season. Former A&M soccer player Ashlee Pistorius is the only other Aggie to be named player of the week three times in a single season.
Dyer was A&M’s eighth Big 12 Player of the Week named this season. This team effort breaks the Aggies’ previous record of six such honors in one season.
A&M is ranked 11th in the top-25 polls and was also ranked 11th in the second release of the NCAA Women’s Soccer Ratings Percentage Index (RPI). North Carolina, Stanford, Portland, UCLA and Notre Dame are listed as the top five. Oklahoma State (10th) is the only Big 12 school ahead of the Aggies in the rankings.
After Hurricane Ike forced the cancellation of the Aggie’s match against Princeton earlier this season, A&M recently picked up a game on Thursday, Oct. 30 against Houston Baptist. The contest is slated for 6:30 p.m. at the Aggie Soccer Stadium and marks the last regular season home game.
IN THE BIG 12
A&M is ranked second in the league in goals (37) and goals per game (2.31), third in assists (29), points (103), assists per game (1.81) and goals allowed (14) and fourth in goals-against average (0.70). The Ags are first in Big 12 shutouts (5) and tally seven on the year, which ranks third.
AGGIES TOUGH 2008 SCHEDULE
A&M faced six ranked opponents this season and holds a 3-2-1 mark No. 12 Colorado will be the last top-25 challenger the Aggies go up against in the ‘08 regular season.
A&M IN THE POLLS
After suffering two conference losses last week, Aggie soccer fell five spots in the polls to No. 11 in the Soccer America Women’s Top 25.
THE 12TH MAN
The 12th Man was in support of A&M soccer this past Sunday with a crowd of 3,815 – the largest crowd on a Sunday since Sept. 29, 2006 when there were 3,819 fans in attendance. The Aggie Soccer Stadium is averaging a crowd of 3,655 per game. With more than 6,700 attending the home opener, A&M most likely holds the top two spots for the highest regular season attendance in the nation. In addition, A&M has the highest attendance figures in the Big 12.