First Place Owls Host Final Two Home Soccer Games This Weekend
Rice Meets UTEP Friday at 7 pm; Sunday Is Senior Day vs. Colorado College
Oct. 17, 2012
Rice Ticket Office Page
Catch home games on OwlVision All-Access (subscription service; available at game time) Live Stats vs. UTEP (available at game time)
Live Stats vs. Colorado College (available at game time)
C-USA Soccer Home Page
Just For Kicks, 2012 Edition
Rice Soccer 360! (a 360-degree photo of Rice Soccer)
THIS WEEK: The Rice soccer team, 9-5-3 overall and in sole possession of first place in the Conference USA standings with a 6-1-1 league record, is back home for a pair of games this weekend. The Owls host conference foes UTEP (10-7, 3-5) and Colorado College (10-3-4, 5-2-1) on Friday and Sunday (Oct. 19-21), respectively. Start times are slated for 7 pm Friday vs. the UTEP Miners and 1 pm against the Colorado College Tigers.
CATCH HOME GAMES LIVE ON OWLVISION ALL-ACCESS: All Rice home games are scheduled for a live web broadcast on OwlVision All-Access. OwlVision is a subscription-based service which provides a live video and audio feed on the Internet. All the information about watching Rice sports on-line is available at the All-Access Soccer Link (provided above). Broadcaster Charlie Adams has the call on Rice home soccer games this season.
LIVE IN-GAME STATS: Live in-game statistics for all Rice home matches and C-USA league games are posted on the web. At the start of the game go to the GameTracker link at the top of this page, the soccer schedule page, or on the home page of RiceOwls.com, and follow a text play-by-play of the action.
QUICK ON THE OWLS: The 2012 Rice soccer team features 18 letterwinners, including eight regular starters, from last season's team that posted a winning 10-7-4 record and reached the semifinals of the Conference USA Tournament. A total of seven newcomers are on the squad, all of which are freshmen with elite experience garnered from the club and high school ranks. The Blue & Gray has five veteran seniors, including captains Julia Barrow in the midfield and defender Lauren LaGro. Defenders Amy Beger and Hayley Williams are stalwarts on the Owls' backline, with Williams starting all 58 games in her Rice career heading into this weekend. Sophomore Quinney Truong has garnered national attention recently for her play in the midfield. Owl freshmen have also made a dramatic impact. Rookies Holly Hargreaves and Lauren Hughes are 1-2 on the team scoring while combining for 17 of the team's 22 goals. Hargreaves is tied for fifth in the nation in game-winning goals (with six). Freshman Jasmine Isokpunwu has been playing well as a rookie defensive starter.
FIRST ONE IN: Not only do the Owls enter the weekend in first place in the conference standings, Rice is officially the first team in the league to qualify for the C-USA Championship to be held Oct. 31 to Nov. 4 in El Paso, Tex. The league's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament is on the line at the annual postseason tournament, which features the top eight teams in a single-elimination format.
HEAD COACH NICKY ADAMS: Rice Director of Athletics Rick Greenspan promoted Nicky Adams to the Owls' head soccer coach on Nov. 15, 2010. Adams joined the Rice soccer staff as an assistant in January of 2003 and was named associate head coach in 2006. The former All-America soccer player and 2001 graduate of Texas A&M, has led the Owls to an 24-16-11 record since Sept. 18, 2010... She is assisted by coach John Adams (Cincinnati, 2003), who is in his third year with the team and Allison Martino (Texas A&M, 2008) who is in her second year at Rice.
REGIONAL RANKING: Rice soccer has zoomed up to fifth in the latest (Oct. 16) Central Region poll from National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA). The regional ranking is the Owls' third week in a row to be ranked. Rice was also regionally-ranked under Nicky Adams in October of 2011. Check out the organization's latest NSCAA/Continental Tire Central Regional Rankings at these links.
NSCAA Home Page
Central Regional Rankings (Oct. 16, 2012).
PRIMETIME PERFORMER: Sophomore midfielder Quinney Truong was named to the CollegeSoccer360.com week-nine Primetime Performers Honor Roll after the Owls' road wins at Memphis and UAB. The Fort Worth, Tex., native has two goals and two assists as a starter in all 17 games this season.
HUGHES NAMED A C-USA PLAYER OF THE WEEK: IRVING, Tex. - Freshman Lauren Hughes has been named the Conference USA Offensive Player of the Week for soccer, the league office announced from its headquarters in Irving, Tex., on Monday (Oct. 15)... Hughes scored a pair of goals and played 155 minutes in Rice's undefeated 2-0-0 weekend. The Owl rookie took a combined nine shots in the two matches to lead the team, including seven on goal for a .778 shots-on-goal percentage. She scored the game-winning goal in Thursday's nationally-televised game against Memphis, and followed that up with a goal in the fourth minute of the game Sunday on the road at UAB... East Carolina junior goalkeeper Christiane Cordero earned the league's weekly defensive award.
HAIL SENIORS!: Sunday's game against Colorado College has been designated as the Owls' annual Senior Day. Prior to the start of the 1 pm contest, Rice seniors Julia Barrow, Amy Beger, Alex Burton, Lauren LaGro and Andie Obermeyer will be introduced with their families in special pregame ceremony.
RICE UNIVERSITY CENTENNIAL:Rice University has been celebrating its centennial, 1912-to-2012, this season. The Owl athletic teams, including soccer, have been wearing a patch with the Centennial's commemorative logo for each of their respective seasons. Alas, because of impartial scheduling the Owl soccer team was in Memphis and not present when the various Centennial celebrations were happening on-campus last week (Oct. 11-14). "That's OK," one of the Owl players quipped after a recent practice, "we'll just go when they have it the next time."
PREVIOUS OUTING - Owls Top UAB 3-2 Sunday In Alabama: BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The trio of Lauren Hughes, Quinney Truong and Holly Hargreaves all scored goals to give the visiting Rice soccer team a 3-0 lead, but the Owls had to hold-off a late UAB rally over the game's final 20 minutes to claim a 3-2 Conference victory over the Blazers Sunday afternoon in Birmingham, Ala... Rice not only held-on for the road win Sunday, the Owls also held-on to sole possession of first place in the C-USA standings. The Blue & Gray improved to 9-5-3 on the season and 6-1-1 in C-USA action for a total of 19 points (three points are earned per C-USA win and one point per tie). Rice has a three-point lead on Colorado College (16 points) after the conclusion of Sunday's league games... "We're happy for the win today, and we're still in first place," said Rice head coach Nicky Adams. "We did a good job to work and create an early goal, and we kept it up to add another one later in the first half... "We tell the players, `the teams in this conference are dangerous and play hard the full 90 minutes'," coach Adams explained. "(The players) also have to understand that once you're in first place, other teams will have even more desire to get a win. Credit to UAB for playing hard all the way. We wanted to win and we did, but this is a win where I hope we learned something."... The Owls went right to work to get on the scoreboard. In the fourth minute, senior team captain Julia Barrow served a sharp cross from the right side that sliced across the front of the goal. Hughes darted in by the left post and headed the ball in diagonally to the back right side of the Blazer net. Hughes' eight goal of the season gave her a share of the team lead in goals and the Owls a 1-0 advantage... UAB attempted counter attacks that Owl keeper Amy Czyz was able to grab for saves. Rice doubled the margin to 2-0 midway through the half. In the 23rd minute, Truong lined up a free kick from well outside the 18 after a Blazer foul. Truong blasted the ball over a wall of UAB defenders and into the top left corner of the goal for her second score of the season... Rice looked like it might turn the game into a run-away in the second half with a goal that stretched the margin to 3-0. In the 53rd minute, Hargreaves took control of the ball on the left wing deep in UAB territory. The rookie from New Hope, Pa., dribbled past a defender and took an attempt from 14-yards out that sailed past the keeper and into the goal... Hargreaves re-gained the team lead in goals (from the tie with Hughes) thanks to her ninth of the year. With a little more than 20 minutes left in regulation Rice's team-lead in goals seemed to be the only question left in the game, but UAB clearly had other ideas... The Blazers continued to fight and added a goal in the in the 70th minute. Mary Catherine Combs found Johanna Liney with a pass in the Rice box. Liney headed-in a shot attempt to make the score 3-1. In the 83rd minute, Liney found Kirsten Ebert with a corner kick to make it 3-2. UAB seized some momentum, but the Blue & Gray didn't allow another shot for the remainder of the game... "We worked pretty hard to get where we are in the conference right now, and it's fair to say we have a lot of work left," said Barrow, a veteran who Sunday helped the Owls record the soccer program's first win in Birmingham since joining the conference in 2005. "There's a lot to play for. We'll get refocused for more big games coming up."
HOWARD SIDELINED: Preseason all-Conference USA honoree Jessica Howard has been sidelined for the entire 2012 season due to an injury. Howard was a first team C-USA selection in 2011 who led Rice in goals (8), game-winning goals (4), points (19), shots (57) and shots-on-goal (24). The Dallas, Tex., native was versatile enough to start at both forward and in the midfield and posted the fourth-highest single-season goal total in school history.
SIZZLING CZYZ: Sophomore goalkeeper Amy Czyz has been sound-and-solid in 17 starts this season. So far Czyz has maintained an .821 save percentage and a 1.01 goals-against average. The California native is ranked 19th in the nation among the current NCAA leaders in goalkeeper minutes (1,519). The NCAA ranks 150 goalkeepers in four statistical categories, including minutes, goals-against average, saves, and saves-percentage. Czyz is one of only two C-USA keepers to rank in all four categories.
ON UTEP: The Miners are one of the hottest C-USA teams, winning three of their last four with the lone loss being to nationally-ranked UCF by a narrow 1-0 margin. UTEP has the second-most wins in the conference (10) and is tied for second in the league in goals with 31.
THE RICE-UTEP SERIES: Rice and UTEP are longtime rivals dating back to when both schools were members of the Western Athletic Conference, including the Owls' very first year to start a soccer program in 2001. When the teams clash on Friday, the Owls and Miners will meet for the 16th time overall. That will tie for the most games that Rice has faced any one opponent (SMU 16 times). In 15 career meetings, Rice leads the all-time series with UTEP 8-5-2. The teams finished in a tie in each of the last two meetings from a year ago.
ON COLORADO COLLEGE: The Tigers hold second place in the C-USA standings with 16 points and have an RPI of 50 that is the second-best in the conference. Colorado College has posted nine complete game shutouts heading into its game at the University of Houston on Friday night.
THE RICE-COLORADO COLLEGE SERIES: Rice leads the all-time series with Colorado College 3-2-1. The Owls dropped a 1-0 match to the Tigers last year in Colorado Springs, but claimed a 2-1 victory the last time the teams played in Houston in 2010.
JUST FOR KICKS: Fans will once again have a chance to get some extra insight to the Owls' soccer team via RiceOwls.com. Over the course of the season the players will be featured one-by-one in a question & answer segment titled "Just For Kicks." Fans can check out the feature at the link at the top of this page.
C-USA PLAY: Conference USA's high-flying brand of soccer is coming down the home stretch. The conference slate of games for this weekend is as follows:
Friday, Oct. 19
Marshall at Southern Miss, 4 pm
East Carolina at (16) UCF, 6 pm
Memphis at Tulsa, 6 pm
Colorado College at Houston, 7 pm
UTEP at Rice, 7 pm
UAB at SMU, 7 pm
Sunday, Oct. 21
Marshall at (16) UCF, Noon
Colorado College at Rice, 1 pm
East Carolina at Southern Miss, 1 pm
UTEP at Houston, 1 pm
Memphis at SMU, 2 pm
UAB at Tulsa, 2 pm