Live Stats vs. Wisconsin-Milwaukee (available at game time)
THIS WEEK: The Rice soccer team (0-0-1) returns to action with a pair of road games this weekend. The Owls travel to Milwaukee, Wis., to participate in the Milwaukee Cup co-hosted by Marquette and Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Rice plays at Marquette on Friday (Aug. 28) at 7:30 pm. The Owls then meet UWM at noon on Sunday (Aug. 30). The University of Michigan is the fourth participant in the Milwaukee Cup and is scheduled to play the host schools in the opposite order. An all-tournament team will be announced upon completion of Sunday's action.
LIVE IN-GAME STATS: Live in-game statistics for all Rice home matches are posted on the world-wide web. At the start of the game go to the respective live stats link at the top of this page, or on the home page of RiceOwls.com, and follow the action.
QUICK ON THE OWLS: There are 17 experienced letterwinners on the roster, including nine returning starters from last season's team that finished 10-9-0 and hosted the Conference USA Tournament. The Owls' incoming class of freshmen was rated among the best in C-USA... In a preseason poll of the league's 12 head coaches, senior midfielder Shelley Wong was named to the 2009 C-USA Preseason Team.
HEAD COACH CHRIS HUSTON: Now with her ninth Rice team from the soccer program she started from scratch, Chris Huston has guided the Owls to an established spot alongside the more experienced teams in the state of Texas and the NCAA. Her won-loss record at Rice is 82-64-11. The two-time Western Athletic Conference coach of the year owns a career college coaching record of 104-80-13. The former standout at the University of North Carolina served as the head coach at the University of Houston for two years after starting that program in 1998. Huston owns a career C-USA regular season record of 36-21-3. She is aided by associate head coach Nicky Adams (Texas A&M, 2001; seventh year), assistant coach Sebastian Vecchio (Memphis, 2005; first year) and volunteer assistant coach Craig Waibel, a defender on the Houston Dynamo who is now in his fourth season with the Owls.
DID YOU KNOW? This is the Owls' ninth varsity soccer team since starting the program in 2001, but this is coach Huston's tenth year with Rice University. She was hired by the school to begin the soccer program a full year before the new team was slated to take the field.
THE OPPOSITION - MARQUETTE: Marquette is 0-1-0 this season after opening on the road at Pepperdine last weekend. The Golden Eagles return eight starters and 22 letterwinners from last season's team that won 11 games.
THE MARQUETTE SERIES: Rice and Marquette are meeting in soccer for the first time. Chris Huston is, however, 2-0-0 against Marquette in her coaching career.
THE OPPOSITION - UW-MILWAUKEE: This week UW-Milwaukee (0-0-2) is receiving votes in a national poll. So far the Panthers have not allowed a goal in 220 minutes against two teams from the Big Ten Conference. Both games were played on the road last weekend.
THE UW-MILWAUKEE SERIES: It is the first soccer meeting for the Owls and UW-Milwaukee.
PLEASED TO MEET YOU: Rice is meeting the two Milwaukee schools in soccer for the first time. Since 2006 the Owls are 7-4-2 when facing an opponent the program has never played before.
THE FIRST ROADIE: The first time a team goes on the road is always a challenge. Rice soccer is 2-5-1 in its respective road debuts the last eight seasons. One of those two victories was when the Owls didn't have terribly far to travel. In 2004 Rice won its road debut 1-0 across town at the University of Houston. In 2006 the Owls defeated TCU in Fort Worth by the same margin. Rice and McNeese State tied 2-2 in Louisiana in 2007, but the Blue & Gray is 0-3-1 when the first roadie has been played out of state.
OWLS BATTLE BAYLOR TO 1-1 DRAW: Senior forward Erin Scott scored the game-tying goal in the second half as the Owls and visiting Baylor soccer teams battled to a 1-1 deadlock in the season-opening game for both teams Aug. 21 on-campus at the Rice Soccer Stadium... After lightning in the area delayed the start for almost two hours, the longtime regional rivals did their part to play as close to the witching-hour as they could. The tie held for the full 90 minutes plus two 10-minute overtimes. Both teams will now have to wait a little bit longer for that first win. The ray of sunshine, and there weren't many of those around the originally scheduled game time in the Houston area, was that both teams are still unbeaten... Baylor struck first with the game's opening score. In the 18th minute Rice goalkeeper Meghan Erkel and Bear freshman Hanna Gilmore collided in front of the goal which stopped one Baylor offensive threat, but Lotto Smith charged in and alertly played the deflection to create another. Smith found the back of the Rice net with a shot from inside the 18 to give Baylor a 1-0 lead... Rice managed only four shots in the first half, but doubled-up its offensive pressure with eight shots in the second. The Owls' north-Texas senior tandem of Scott and Ashley Lucas converted on a corner kick to tie the game in the 49th minute. Scott cut in front of the goal and Lucas found her leaping in the traffic with a brilliant serve. Scott headed the ball from the right side to left for the game-tying goal... The score was the 19th of Scott's career, moving her into sole possession of third place on the Rice's career goals list. The standout from Richardson, Tex., now needs just one more goal to move into a tie for second place in the Owl ledgers and three more to tie Sarah Yoder's school record 22 set in 2004... Scott may not have inched-up any further on the career goals list Friday, but it wasn't for a lack of trying. In her 105 minutes of action she led the Blue & Gray with six shots, including three on-goal. The school record for career shots will also be within her sites in a few short weeks... Lucas played only 79 of the game's 110 minutes and took three shots with two on-goal. She made the most of her opportunities, and with good reason. The veteran from Dallas was injured in 2008 and has played in only three college games the last two years. Her assist on Scott's score was her first since 2006 - when a lot of her teammates on the current roster were still in high school... Rice had plenty of silver linings behind the night's early lightning. Senior defender Katelyn Ostendorf also returned to action after missing almost all of last season with an injury. Not only was she back at full speed, but was one of five Owls to play all 110 minutes. Four freshmen meanwhile, Megan Aultman, Julia Barrow, Victoria Rellas and Alex Burton, made their respective collegiate debuts and played well... The Owls out-shot Baylor in the two-overtime periods by a combined total of 8-4. Rice also held an 11-8 advantage in corner kicks for the entire game. Neither team was able to get in front on the scoreboard in the 1-1 draw.
CAREER CLIMBING CORALLI: With a start on the backline last week vs. Baylor, senior Alexa Coralli moved into a tie for tenth place on the Owls' all-time list for career starts with 55. Coralli tied another stalwart defender, Laura Barber (2003-2006) for career starts and now needs only two more starts to move quickly into sole possession of eighth place on the list.
STARTING STREAKS: Sophomore midfielder Kate Edwards has been in the starting lineup for all 41 games Rice has played since she arrived on campus. Edwards starting streak dates back to her freshman season of 2007. It's one of the best streaks on campus, but NOT affiliated with Baker College!
SISTER ACT: Two new members this year's soccer team are following in the footsteps of their older sisters. Freshman midfielder Victoria Rellas is the younger sister of Jackie Rellas (2001-2004). Freshman goalkeeper Andie Obermeyer is the younger sister of Amber Obermeyer (2002-2003).
SOCCER ALUMNAE LUNCHEONS: A splendid time was had by all at the most-recent monthly luncheon of the Rice soccer alumnae. More than a dozen Owls joined their head coach, Chris Huston, to get caught-up with the latest goings-on. At the August meeting the alumnae got to meet new assistant coach Sebastian Vecchio, who is working with the goalkeepers this season. If you are a Rice soccer letterwinner and would like to attend a future monthly luncheon, contact the super-awesome Owl duo of Ashley Anderson and/or Kelly Brolan for more details.
Email Ashley Anderson
Email Kelly Brolan
View some event photos
WONG NAMED PRESEASON ALL-CONFERNCE: Senior Shelley Wong was named to the 2009 Conference USA preseason team. The senior midfielder from Virginia Beach, Va., is one of 12 players named to the C-USA preseason team selected by the league's 12 head coaches. A year ago Wong earned first team all-conference honors and was twice selected as the C-USA offensive player of the week. The veteran led the Owls and tied for second in the conference with nine goals scored. She scored two goals in a game on three different occasions to help lead Rice to wins over Tulsa, Marshall and Texas-San Antonio. Wong rarely came out of a game for the Blue & Gray, playing 90 or more minutes nine times.
BEGER SIDELINED: Sophomore defender/forward Amy Beger has been sidelined with an injury she suffered in the off-season.
OTHER C-USA ACTION: There is a full slate of Conference USA games this weekend. The league's weekend schedule is as follows...
Friday, Aug. 28
Drake at Colorado College, 5 pm
UCF at (1) North Carolina, 6 pm
Marshall at Duquesne, 6 pm
Houston at (25) Texas, 7 pm
Arkansas-Little Rock at Memphis, 7 pm
SMU at (21) Oklahoma State, 7 pm
Southern Miss at LSU, 7 pm
Belmont at UAB, 7 pm
Rice at Marquette, 7:30 pm
Louisiana-Lafayette at Tulsa, 7:35 pm
Stephen F. Austin at UTEP, 8:30 pm
Sunday, August 30
UCF vs. (11) Duke, 11 am
Marshall vs. Manhattan, Noon
Rice at UW-Milwaukee, Noon
East Carolina at Gardner-Webb, 1 pm
Clemson at UAB, 2 pm
Texas Tech at UTEP, 3 pm
(24) Washington State at Colorado College, 3:30 pm
SE Louisiana at Southern Miss, 4 pm
Tulsa at Oklahoma, 7 pm
All Times Central.