Women’s soccer takes its 3-1-1 conference record into Houston this weekend to face the no. 2 team in the conference in the Houston Baptist Huskies. The two teams are a combined 7-2-1 in conference and highlight one of the top match ups of the weekend.
The Wildcats (3-1-1, 4-7-2) are coming off a pair of home wins last weekend against Northwestern State and an impressive Central Arkansas squad. Defense was the story line of the weekend, as ACU shutout both the Lady Demons, 2-0, and the Sugar Bears, 1-0.
ACU has gone 3-1 since their conference opening 1-1 draw at Elmer Gray Stadium against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Sept. 18. Since then, the Wildcats have won three of their last four games and have given up just two goals in those four matches.
Against Northwestern State, the Wildcats got on the board early with a goal from freshman Dylan Owens in the fourth minute of action. ACU struck again towards the end of the first half, as red-shirt sophomore Kate Seay gave the Wildcats a little bit of breathing room from the assists by junior Maria Gomez.
Two days later, Gomez recorded her first goal of the season as it turned out to be the difference maker for ACU against the Sugar Bears. Again, coming with a few seconds left in the first half, the Wildcats found the back of the net when Gomez took a free kick from 18-yards out and capitalized, giving ACU the 1-0 lead.
The Huskies (4-1, 6-3-1) have been rolling so far this year, especially in conference. HBU, like ACU, won both home matches last weekend against Southeastern Louisiana, 1-0 (OT), and Nicholls State, 3-1. The Huskies have won four of their last five by outscoring their opponents, nine goals to five.
The match up in Houston will exhibit all three conference players of the week from the past week. Junior goalkeeper Sydney Newton was given the goalkeeper player of the week and junior Kelsie Roberts earned defensive player of the week honors. Newton recorded a pair of shutout wins for ACU and owns a .833 save percentage (second in the Southland) with 65 saves this season (fourth in the Southland).
For HBU, freshman Sabriah Spencer earned the conference’s offensive player of the week award. The Ontario native recorded three goals over HBU’s last two games, including two game winners. She is among the leaders in the conference in shots, points and goals.
Defensively, the Huskies can make the case that they are the best defensive team in the conference. They are tied for the lead in the Southland in goals allowed with 11 and have allowed just over one goal per contest.
The game is scheduled for Friday at 5 p.m.