· The Trojans are coming off two games against difficult opponents. On Friday night, UALR ended a four-game homestand with a 3-1 loss against UAB. Alyson Rohane
scored the Trojans’ lone goal in that game to bring the score within one, but a late strike by the Blazers ended any hopes of a UALR comeback.
· Freshman Sara Cavanagh
made her first start since Sept. 6 in that game, racking up a career-best seven saves.
· On Sunday, UALR hit the road to face Ole Miss. The Rebels – now ranked No. 24 in the nation – scored three goals in the first 18 minutes and played staunch defense the rest of the way in a 3-0 victory.
· Cavanagh again got the start in that contest, making six more saves. Ashley Barksdale
had UALR’s only shot in the game.
· UALR usually plays Arkansas State closer to the end of the conference season, with the teams’ last five clashes coming in late October. This will be the earliest UALR has played the Red Wolves in program history. The earliest in the year the teams had previously met was Oct. 2 back in 2000.
ABOUT ARKANSAS STATE
· The Red Wolves, based in Jonesboro, begin Sun Belt Conference play with a 5-3-2 record in their non-league games. Arkansas State is on a two-game winning streak after defeating UAPB 5-0 on Friday and Murray State 3-1 on Sunday.
· Arkansas State finished the 2012 season in fifth place in the Sun Belt but second among teams that return in 2013. They reached the conference tournament in 2012, falling to Western Kentucky in the first round 1-0. The Red Wolves have the second-best out-of-conference record among Sun Belt schools this year.
· Arkansas State is currently in the top three of Sun Belt teams in goals, points and points per game. Loren Mitchell is the team’s highest scorer with six goals and three assists for 15 points. The Red Wolves offense is averaging 2.50 goals per game and 2.50 assists per game.
· Amanda Lee has been the leader in goal, turning in a goals against average of 1.46 with 40 saves and a .784 save percentage.
· Coach Tafadzwa Ziyenge is in his fourth year with the team and has a 30-32-7 record at Arkansas State.
THE SERIES AGAINST ARKANSAS STATE
Sunday will bring the 14th meeting between UALR and Arkansas State, as the teams have played every season since 2000. The Red Wolves have a 7-4-2 advantage all-time against the Trojans including a current streak of two consecutive wins. UALR’s last victory over Arkansas State came in double overtime in 2010. In fact, of the 14 games in this series, six have gone to overtime. Only two of the 13 meetings have been won by more than two goals. When the teams met in 2012, the Trojans got a goal from Ariel Galletti to start the contest, but the Red Wolves scored the next three to claim a 3-1 victory.
A WIN AGAINST ARKANSAS STATE WOULD…
…Start the Trojans out 1-0 in Sun Belt Conference play for the first time since 2008…equal the team’s Sun Belt Conference victories from all of 2012…be the Trojans’ first win against Arkansas State since 2010…be UALR’s second win against an Arkansas foe this season…double UALR’s win total from all of 2012.
UALR IN SUN BELT PLAY
Since the Trojans joined the Sun Belt Conference in 2000, the team has compiled a record of 31-89-4 in conference games. UALR’s best conference season came in 2007 when it went 5-5-1 against Sun Belt foes. The Trojans have never finished a conference schedule above .500. Last season, the Trojans went 1-9 in the Sun Belt, defeating Florida Atlantic 3-1 in mid-October. The top three teams from the Sun Belt conference last season (North Texas, Middle Tennessee, FIU) all left the league after 2012, so the conference should be wide open in 2013.
SUN BELT PRESEASON POLL
UALR was picked to finish eighth in the conference by the Sun Belt coaches in their preseason poll released in late August. The Trojans got 23 points in the voting, six ahead of last-place ULM. Western Kentucky got eight first-place votes and was picked to win the conference handily. Arkansas State came in second in the coaches’ voting.
The Trojans are now finished with their non-conference season, ending those games with a 3-6-0 record. UALR improved over last season’s non-conference record by two victories. The Trojans were 1-7 in non-conference games last season.
CAVANAGH MAKING SAVES
Freshman goalie Sara Cavanagh had the two highest save totals of her young career over the weekend, stopping seven shots on Friday against UAB to set a new high. She then added six assists in the game at Ole Miss. Cavanagh, who has played in five games this year, made 13 of her 18 saves all season in those two games. Cavanagh’s career-high of seven saves comes one weekend after Kylie Wilson – who remains third in the Sun Belt with a 1.12 goals against average – set a new career high with seven saves against Louisiana Tech.
ALWAYS IN THE MIX
Alyson Rohane scored the Trojans’ lone goal last weekend, knocking a ball home from outside the penalty box against UAB. Rohane is constantly involved in the play for the Trojans, and she leads the team with 22 shots and 10 shots on goal. She is also tied for the team lead with six points on two goals and two assists.
LUCKY NUMBER 13
Rohane’s goal against UAB on Friday was UALR’s 13th of the season, equaling its total from all of 2012. The team needed 18 games last season to reach that total. On its current pace of 1.44 goals per game, UALR will end the 2013 season with 24 goals, its highest total since scoring 30 in 2008.
The Trojans completed their longest home streak of the year on Friday when they played their fourth consecutive contest at the Coleman Sports & Recreation Complex. UALR has competed a total of six times at home so far this season and has four home dates left. The Trojans play in Little Rock on Oct. 4 and 6 as well as on Oct. 18 and 20. UALR is 3-3 at home but winless at 0-3 on the road.
Paige Mason is tied for the lead in the Sun Belt Conference in the game-winning goals category. Mason’s goals against UAPB and Missouri State gave UALR wins. Seven other players in the Sun Belt also have two game-winning goals in 2013.
Three Trojans players are coming close to having their names listed in the top 10 in school history in different categories. Juniors Ariel Galletti and Alyson Rohane have seven assists each, and an eighth assist would tie them for 10th in school history. Likewise, Adrianna Queen is eight points away from 36 in her career, a number that would place her in 10th at UALR all-time.
Weather for the 1-0 win over Missouri State on Sept. 8 reached 102 degrees, causing both teams to use substitutions liberally. The Trojans saw 20 total field players on the pitch. Only four UALR players stayed in for all 90 minutes: Paige Mason, Kailie Holloway, Linnea Kogsta and Kylie Wilson.
CAREER NUMBERS WATCH
Against UAB and Ole Miss:
· Ashley Barksdale played in her 30th career game.
· Betsy Blackwood and Alyson Rohane eclipsed 3,000 career minutes, and Paige Mason reached 2,000.
· Adrianna Queen needs eight more points to tie for 10th in school history (36).
· Ariel Galletti and Alyson Rohane need one more assist to tie for 10th in school history (8).
· Holly Holland is 30 minutes away from 2,000 in her career.
· Sara Cavanagh is only two saves away from 20.
The Trojans begin their home conference schedule next weekend when South Alabama and Troy come to Little Rock. The Trojans and Jaguars play on Friday at 7 p.m., and the Troy faces UALR on Saturday at 1 p.m.