Spartans Prepare For Two WAC Contests

October 13, 2010

Women's Soccer Preview:
San Jose State (7-5-1, 1-0-1 WAC) narrows in on its conference schedule traveling to Louisiana Tech (12-4-0, 2-2-0 WAC) on Friday, October 15 at 4:00 p.m. and New Mexico State (6-6-2, 0-4-0 WAC) on Sunday, October 17 at 12:00 p.m. in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Live Coverage:
Fans can follow both games via Gametracker at latechsports.com for Friday's game and nmstatesports.com for Sunday's game.  Links can be found under the Gametracker/Live Stats button on the front page.

Scouting Tech:
The Techsters are coming off a 2009 season that was the best in school history. They finished 12-7-1 and 1-7 in WAC play. They return eight starters and 12 letterwinners in head coach Kevin Sherry's fourth year at Louisiana Tech. Leading scorers Rachel King (12), Kiva Gresham (7) and Taylor Dennis (6) bring 60 points and depth to their frontline.  Gresham leads the WAC in assists with eight, and goalkeeper Caitlin Updyke leads the WAC with goals against average (0.75) and shutouts (5).  Tech drew even in the state of Idaho this past weekend, losing 2-0 at Idaho (October 8) and beating Boise State 1-0 (October 10), for their first-ever Western Athletic Conference road win.

The Series With LTU:
The Spartans' own a 4-0-1 advantage.  In the series, San Jose State holds a 14-2 scoring advantage over Louisiana Tech.  The only tie of the series came in 2008 at Spartan Stadium, 1-1 (2OT).  The Spartans beat Tech 3-1 last year in San Jose.

Zero At Ruston:
The Spartans have not allowed a goal when playing on Tech's home field in Ruston.  Both games ended in a shutout, 4-0 in the first contest in 2005 and 1-0 in 2007.

Scouting New Mexico State:
In 2009 the Aggies posted a 9-9-1 record and 4-3-1 mark in WAC play, earning a berth to the conference tournament in their inaugural season. NM State returns 16 players and adds 12 newcomers to the roster in 2010.  Crystal Burns leads the team in goals with six and leads the WAC in assists per game with seven. The Aggies fell at Boise State, 6-0, October 8, and at Idaho, 4-1, October 10. 

The Series With NMSU:
The all-time series is tied 0-0-1 following a double overtime 0-0 tie, Oct. 11, 2009 in San Jose.  San Jose State goalkeeper Nina Butera made three saves and the Spartans outshot the Aggies 21-11.

Words From Head Coach Jeff Leightman:
"We play two quality opponents this weekend and our first focus is Louisiana Tech. It can be a challenge to play on the road in a different time zone.   It's going to be a great game and a battle against LA Tech.  They have been on a great run and we expect a top-notch opponent.  New Mexico State is another quality opponent who played us tight, in an epic game last year.  The weekend will be challenging and we hope to come out with points."

40 Day Streak:
The Spartans lead the WAC in current unbeaten streaks. San Jose State has gone unbeaten in seven consecutive games (6-0-1) for the second time in program history. The Spartans previously had one 14-match unbeaten run, back in 2009.

Two Spartans Listed In Top 20 College Players To Watch:
Top Drawer Soccer lists weekly a "Conference Top 20 Players to Watch" list, and the most recent list (October 12) has two Spartans included.  Junior Jessica Ingram ranked at No. 7 and sophomore Kelsey Lord ranked No. 17.

Conference Rankings:
The 2010 WAC Soccer Individual Statistics, through October 12, included Spartans' top performers.  Averaging 5.50 shots and one assist per game, forward Kelsey Lord ranked near the top at second in both categories.  At the top, Lord tied for best, in total assists per game with two.  Midfielder Kayla Santacruz ranked third among WAC players in points per game (2.50), goals per game (1.00) and game-winning goals (1).

Last Week's Results:
The Spartans extended their unbeaten streak to seven matches this past weekend with a 1-1 tie at home against Hawai'i (October 8) and a 2-1 win at UC Davis (October 10).  Against Hawai'i, Jessica Ingram scored early in the 24th minute, but the Rainbow Wahine evened the score in the 64th minute.  The Spartans shot a season-high 25 shots.  At UC Davis, the Spartans rallied late in the second half to score a pair of goals, en route to a 2-1 win. The Spartans scored the equalizer in the 79th minute from a 25-yard shot by Cheryl Kute.  With less than two minutes remaining in regular play, Katie Knopp converted a rebound for the game-winner.   The Spartans finished the weekend 1-0-1, 0-0-1 WAC.

Coming Up:
SJSU hosts a pair of WAC opponents starting with Nevada on Friday, October 22 at 7:00 p.m. and Utah State on Sunday, October 24 at 1:00 p.m.