⚽️ Kansas Opens Season at Wisconsin Thursday Night
|Kansas (0-0) at Wisconsin (0-0)|
|When||Thursday, Aug. 17 at 7 p.m. CT|
|Where||Madison, Wis. // McClimon Track/Soccer Complex|
|Notes||Kansas | Wisconsin | Big 12|
|Social Media||@KUWSoccer | @kansassoccer | Facebook|
MADISON, Wis. – The 29th season of women’s soccer at the University of Kansas kicks off on Thursday, Aug. 17, at McClimon Track/Soccer Complex in Madison, Wisconsin, as the Jayhawks face the Badgers. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. CT and the game will be broadcast on BTN+. A subscription is required to watch the game.
Kansas returns 16 letterwinners, including eight starters from the 2022 squad that qualified for the Big 12 Championship for the first time since winning the tournament in 2019. The Jayhawks also welcome seven newcomers to the mix with six freshman (Caroline Castans, Sophie Dawe, Montelene Dymond, Siera Herbert, Jocelyn Herrema, Olivia Page) and one transfer, sophomore Camryn Bliss from Ole Miss.
The group of starters returning features senior Shira Elinav who led the Jayhawks in goals last season and sophomore Lexi Watts, a 2022 Big 12 All-Freshman Team selection. The duo combined to score 14 of the team’s 30 goals in 2022. Overall, Kansas returns 70% of the team’s scoring production from a season ago.
Mark Francis enters his 25th season directing the program in 2023, which is his 28th season overall as a head coach. He has led the program to nine NCAA Tournament appearances, two Big 12 Championships and finished with a winning percentage of .500 or better in 17 of his 24 seasons. Kansas finished the 2022 season with a record of 9-9-2.
Wisconsin is coming off a season in which it finished with a record of 11-5-3 and 6-3-1 in Big Ten play. The Badgers return their top two goal scorers from 2022 with Emma Jaskaniec and Aryssa Mahrt back for their senior seasons. Erin McKinney, who was Wisconsin’s goalkeeper last season, also is back for the Badgers.
In 2022, Kansas started its season by playing four Big Ten opponents in the first five matches. KU finished with a 3-1 record against Big Ten opponents, including a 1-0 victory against Northwestern who finished the season ranked No. 11 in the final United Soccer Coaches poll.
Kansas is 13-8-3 in regular season openers during Mark Francis’ 24-year tenure as head coach, including a 3-1-1 mark in the last five seasons. KU is 14-11-3 all-time in season openers.
HOW TO FOLLOW ALONG
Thursday’s match will be broadcast on BTN+. A subscription is required to watch the game.
Kansas will remain on the road as the Jayhawks head to Chicago to play Loyola-Chicago on Sunday, Aug. 20. The match is scheduled for 1 p.m. CT at Loyola Soccer Park and will be broadcast on ESPN+.