W. Soccer to Face UNM on the Road in Pivotal MW Game
Oct. 24, 2017
SAN DIEGO -
Game Week Preview
- SDSU will go into the game with a lot riding on the outcome. The Aztecs are currently tied for third place in the Mountain West standings with Boise State (20 points) and both are one point behind New Mexico (21 points), which is in second place. San Diego State defeated the Broncos earlier in the year, 2-0, in Boise. The top two teams in the standings will receive a quarterfinal bye at the MW Championship in Las Vegas.
- The Aztecs are playing their best soccer of the season at the right time and are coming off impressive wins at Air Force, vs. Wyoming and vs. Colorado State. SDSU gave the Falcons their first conference loss of the season, then dominated the Cowgirls by outshooting them 15-0 to start the game before rallying for the victory, and then blanked an offensively gifted Rams team that had scored six goals in their previous three games.
- Over the course of its three-game winning streak, San Diego State has outscored the opposition, 9-1. The one goal came on Wyoming’s only chance in the first half of SDSU’s 2-1 win. The Aztecs ended up outshooting the Cowgirls, 27-5, and attempted nine more corner kicks (10-1).
- SDSU’s seniors and freshmen led the way in regards to the team’s scoring last week. Senior Aliyah Utush supplied the goals vs. Wyoming with the help of freshman Chloe Frisch on the first score and the assist from freshman Mia Root and senior Hailey Balma on the second. Root provided two goals vs. Colorado State and senior Angela Mitchell posted the game’s third goal. Utush assisted on Root’s second goal of the game and Mitchell’s second goal of the season.
- SDSU’s defense has been the best in the league since the conference season started and it was on display this past weekend. Despite the goal vs. Wyoming, the unit held the Cowgirls to just five shots, including two by starters, and allowed one corner kick. Then vs. the Rams, the defense, led by seniors Dani DeRosa and Stacie Moran, sophomores Gabby English and Ariana Robles, and freshman Sarah Broacha, limited CSU to seven shots and three corner kicks. The performance came against a squad that featured 15 players who had scored at least one goal coming into the contest.
- With their effort, the Aztecs head into the final game of the regular season having allowed six goals, which is the fewest goals allowed in conference play, three fewer than the next closest foe (Fresno State, San José State). San Diego State has also shut out a league-high five teams and allowed multiple goals just once in Mountain West action.
- English has been spectacular since the start of the conference season. Playing behind a stout backline, English has the fewest saves among all MW goalkeepers (28) and owns a miniscule 0.59 goals against average. She is also tied for first with four shutouts and nearly had a fifth, but was pulled from the Colorado State game with just over 20 minutes to play and the Aztecs leading, 3-0.
- SDSU has a chance to tie the school record for consecutive 10-win seasons on Friday. A victory at UNM would give the Aztecs seven straight double-digit win efforts, matching the run produced from 1993-99 and netted 93 victories. SDSU currently sits at nine wins for the year and 93 wins since the first year of the current six-season streak in 2011.
- To try and secure a school-record-tying seventh straight 10-win season, San Diego State will have to do it on the road. The Aztecs, however, have been one of the top teams in the league away from home in conference play, going 3-1 in the process. Three other teams have three MW road wins (New Mexico, SJSU, Utah State), but only the Spartans and Aztecs have one defeat.
- The Aztecs head to The Land of Enchantment with an 11-7-7 all-time record vs. the Lobos. New Mexico spoiled SDSU’s Senior Night a year ago when it prevailed in overtime, 2-1. The teams have split the last four meetings, but San Diego State has won four of the last six contests and won on its last two trips to Albuquerque (1-0 overtime win in 2013, 2-1 win in 2015). The game at New Mexico is just the third time SDSU has played at UNM Soccer Complex since the start of the 2011 campaign.
- Following the game at New Mexico, San Diego State will prepare for the Mountain West Championship, which is set for UNLV. The tournament is set to take place on Tuesday, Oct. 31, Thursday, Nov. 2, and Saturday, Nov. 4. The top two seeds receive byes into Thursday’s semifinal round. Heading into this week’s games, only one bye remains after San José State won the regular-season title.
- Against the other five teams slated for the MW Championship, the Aztecs have allowed only one goal thus far, which was to Fresno State. SDSU and the Bulldogs played to a 1-1 double-overtime draw.