The Wildcats prepare to hit the road to travel to Arizona then California to take on Grand Canyon and California Baptist for conference play.
ACU comes off of their off week, rested and ready to take on the second half of the conference.
“I think it’s good to get a breath of fresh air,” head coach Casey Wilson said. “To get our legs back and nursing out any bumps and bruises, just trying to get back on track.”
On Friday, ACU meets with Grand Canyon, a new WAC competitor, for the first time this season.
Grand Canyon, the 2021 WAC conference champions, currently holds a 5-5-2 overall season record with a 1-3-1 conference record going into this matchup. They hold their single conference win from their matchup against Stephen F. Austin last week, 1-0.
Compared to their 2021 season, Grand Canyon held a shots percentage of 17.1 percent while for 2022 they hold a 7.3 percent. For the entirety of last season, the Lopes held their opponents to 24 goals, while having allowed 15 goals thus far.
Gianna Gourley leads Grand Canyon with strong offensive stats. Gourley records eight goals, with two games having more than one goal. She tallies 51 shot attempts, holding one-fourth of the teams’ attempts alone.
“We are gonna have to dig deep,” Wilson said. “Make sure that we are ready to play. We have proved this year that we can execute, it’s just a matter of being able to execute for 90 minutes. We are excited to go out and play in a great atmosphere.”
On Sunday, the Wildcats then head to California to take on California Baptist, also for the first meeting this season.
California Baptist has an overall season record of 5-3-3 and a conference record of 2-2-1. The Lancers have gained wins from fellow WAC competitors Grand Canyon, 3-1, and Seattle U, 1-0.
The five-year veterans of the WAC ran a split 2021 season with a 4-4-2 conference record. Similar to the 2021 season, so far in the 2022 season, the Lancers are outnumbered by their opponents in goals by double.
California Baptist currently holds a well-rounded aggressive offense with three players recording four goals so far this season. Lourdes Bosch, who has recorded four goals, has also tallied 25 shot attempts with 10 on goal leading the Lancers.
“If you go through all the games we’ve played in conference,” Wilson said. “The opportunities are there, it’s just a lot of times we talk about changing the trajectory of the game by maybe scoring an early goal and we can change how the other team plays.”
The Wildcats head into this weekend looking for their first win of conference. Despite securing a win so far in conference, ACU has a shot percentage of 11.5 percent and 13.1 shots per game, outranking their opponents.
Jordan Michie, senior forward from Arlington, and Chayse Thorn, sophomore forward from Rowlett, both lead the Wildcats with four goals and tallies a combined 39 shot attempts between the two of them. 11 players currently hold a shots-on-goal percentage over .500, giving ACU a strong offensive game.
“It just comes down to finishing chances and putting the ball on frame,” Wilson said. “When you have an opportunity. I think our team just needs to get hot and getting hot would mean getting out there and scoring early in the game.”
The Wildcats take on Grand Canyon on Friday at 9 p.m. central time in Phoenix, Arizona, and California Baptist Sunday at 3 p.m. central time in Riverside, California, streaming on ESPN+.