Aggies start SEC play in Starkville

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COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The No. 15 Texas A&M Aggies open their eighth SEC soccer campaign Thursday when they travel to Starkville for a 7 p.m. match against the Mississippi State Bulldogs.

The match is streamed on SEC Network+ with Anthony Craven (play-by-play) and Chris Nasuti (color analyst) on the call. The match may be heard on 97.3 FM KAGC in the Brazos Valley with David Ellis (play-by-play) and Curt Magnuson (color analyst) on the call. Fans can listen to every match worldwide, on RadioAggieland.com, the Radio Aggieland app and 12thMan.com/live.

The Aggies are 5-2 all-time in SEC openers. Four of the seven matches have been decided by one goal. The other three contests resulted in 3-0 victories for the Maroon & White.

Jimena López leads the squad in scoring with 13 points on four goals and five assists. Ally Watt has added 10 points on four goals and two assists. Texas A&M’s defense has been stout, posting a 0.47 goals-against average and six shutouts. Shantel Hutton set the Aggie freshman record for consecutive shutouts with five in a row. Her streak ended after 563:26 without surrendering a goal - also an A&M freshman record.

Watt ranks sixth among all active NCAA Division I players with 37 goals. South Florida’s Evelyne Viens leads the country with 56 goals followed by Boise State’s Raimee Sherle with 50. Watt is the only SEC player with more than 30 goals.

The Bulldogs are 5-3-0 on the season. Mississippi State owns wins over Alabama A&M (4-0), Eastern Washington (1-0), Idaho (2-1), Tennessee-Martin (3-0) and South Alabama (1-0). The Bulldogs have dropped decisions against BYU (2-1), Memphis (4-0) and Boston College (2-0). MaKayla Waldner leads the team with 10 points on five goals. Monigo Karnley has seven points on two goals and three assists. Gabby English has seven starts in goal, logging a 1.13 goals-against average and two shutouts in 559 minutes of action.

The Aggies are 7-0-0 all-time against Mississippi State, outscoring the Bulldogs, 23-3. The first three meetings the Aggies outscored Mississippi State, 17-0, but the last three contests have been 2-1 wins for Texas A&M. Last season, the Aggies got a goal from Ally Watt in the 60th minute and Ásdís Halldórsdóttir in the 77th. Texas A&M owned a 26-22 edge in shots and Cosette Morché made seven saves.