KU Looks to Bounce Back on the Road

Oct. 11, 2006

Complete Release in PDF Format
Download Free Acrobat Reader

The University of Kansas soccer team (7-6, 2-3 in Big 12) will look to bounce back from a pair of losses over the weekend when it travels to Iowa State and Missouri this weekend. The Jayhawks will face the Cyclones in Ames, Iowa on Friday at 7 p.m., and the Tigers Sunday at 1 p.m., in another chapter of the Border Showdown. The matches will be KU’s final two on the road for the regular season.

Iowa State enters Friday’s match with KU tied with the Jayhawks for sixth-place in the Big 12 standings and have won three straight at home. After starting the season with three losses, the Cyclones (6-9, 2-3 in Big 12) have played .500 soccer the past six weekends.

Junior midfielder Brittanie Waddell leads the team with five goals and 11 points this season, including a pair of game-winners. Sophomore forward Leslie Hill is tops on the team with a pair of assists.

Freshman goalkeeper Ann Gleason has played every minute in net for the Cyclones this season and has a 2.33 goals against average and a .684 save percentage.

Head coach Rebecca Hornbacher is in her fifth season at ISU and has an overall record of 36-50-8. The Cyclones return eight starters from last year’s squad which finished 11-7-1.

KU leads the all-time series between the schools, 7-4, but has not won in Ames since 2003. ISU won last year’s meeting, 3-1 at home.

Iowa State on the web: www.cyclones.com

Missouri enters the weekend desperate for its first conference win. After starting the season with seven-straight victories, the Tigers (8-6, 0-5 in Big 12) are in danger of missing the Big 12 Tournament for the first time since 1997.

Sophomore Ashley Hamblin leads the team with five goals and five assists this season, while freshman Breanna Thornton is second with 10 points (4 goals, 2 assists).

Sophomore goalkeeper Mallory Forst has started all 14 matches in net for the Tigers this season and owns a 1.41 goals against average and a .648 save percentage. Forst is tied with KU sophomore Julie Hanley for second in the Big 12 with four shutouts this season.

Head coach Bryan Blitz is in his 11th season at MU and holds a record of 110-103-9 at the school. Blitz’ team returns seven starters and 12 letterwinners from last year’s squad which finished 9-8-3.

The Border Showdown rivals have split 12 previous meetings, 6-6. KU has emerged victorious in the last four contests, including a 3-2 double-overtime win last season in Lawrence.

Missouri on the web: www.mutigers.com

KU was swept at home for the first time since 2001 over the weekend, dropping a pair of 1-0 matches to No. 18 Texas and No. 8 Texas A&M. On Sunday, Amy Berend’s goal in the 94th minute broke a scoreless tie and lifted No. 8 Texas A&M past KU. For much of the afternoon, the Jayhawks outplayed the eighth-ranked team in the country. KU had several more opportunities than the visiting Aggies, but couldn’t finish. Texas A&M took advantage of a misplayed ball in KU territory to earn its sixth conference win of the season.

On Friday, Priscilla Fite’s goal in the 52nd minute pushed No. 18 Texas past the Jayhawks. Opportunities were few and far between on both sides as the teams combined for just five shots on net and one goal.

Throughout the 2006-07 athletic season, the University of Kansas and the University of Missouri will once again be participating in the Border Showdown presented by Midwest Ford Dealers. Each year, the Jayhawks and Tigers compete in the Border Showdown, a points-based contest that will encompass 14 sports from each school.

KU won last year’s competition, 23-17, including a 3-2, double-overtime triumph on the soccer field. So far this season, the Tigers lead 1-0 with a volleyball win in Columbia on Oct. 4.

The Jayhawks played in their sixth-consecutive 1-0 match on Sunday, marking the first time this has happened in team history. The previous high was three straight 1-0 contests, in which KU lost all three, in 1998. The team has gone 2-4 in the six-consecutive 1-0 contests over the last three weeks.

Junior Afton Sauer reached a milestone in Friday’s match against No. 18 Texas. The 5-foot-8 defender started her 55th consecutive contest in a Jayhawk uniform against the Longhorns, which ranks as the third-longest streak in school history. Sauer, who has only come out of action once this season, passed former teammate Lauren Williams, who had 54 straight starts from 2002-04.

Former KU goalkeeper Meghan Miller holds the team record with 86 consecutive starts from 2001-04. Two other current Jayhawks, sophomore midfielder Missy Geha and defender Jenny Murtaugh have started every match of their careers.

Opponents have found the path to the Jayhawks’ goal especially tough to navigate this season. KU is averaging 1.06 goals allowed per match, including an 0.56 goals against average over its last seven contests.

Over the weekend, the Jayhawks held No. 18 Texas and No. 8 Texas A&M to just one goal each. The Aggies came into Sunday’s match averaging 3.08 goals per game and 22.6 shots. KU held the eighth-ranked team to one goal and just 13 shots in 93 minutes of play.

Sunday afternoons have brought out the best in the Kansas soccer team this season. Despite a 1-0 loss to No. 8 Texas A&M on Oct. 8, the Jayhawks have won five of their first six matches played on Sunday. In KU’s five Sunday wins, three of them have been shutout victories.

However, Fridays have not been kind to KU this season as the team enters this Friday’s match at Iowa State with a 2-5 mark on the final day of the work week.

The Jayhawks will begin their final homestand of the regular season next weekend with matches against Baylor and Texas Tech at the Jayhawk Soccer Complex. KU will host the Bears on Oct. 20, at 3 p.m., and the Red Raiders on Oct. 22, at 1 p.m.