Oct. 28, 2009
THIS WEEK: With a 3-1-1 record in the last five games, the Rice soccer team returns home for a Conference USA crosstown showdown this Friday night (Oct. 30). The Owls (5-10-3, 3-6-1) host rival Houston (4-11-2, 2-6-2) at 7 pm in the Rice Soccer Stadium. Bragging rights in the annual battle for the collegiate soccer city championship are at stake. Eight Rice seniors making their final home appearance will be honored before the start of the match. The full schedule of C-USA games this week appears below.
CATCH THE GAME LIVE ON OWLVISION ALL-ACCESS: Friday night's soccer showdown with Houston is slated for a live broadcast on OwlVision All-Access. OwlVision is a subscription-based service which matches a live, play-by-play audio and feed to create a television-like broadcast on the Internet. The broadcast is live on the web, but it is also available in an archived format on the All-Access page. Join broadcaster Court Jackson for the Rice call of the soccer team's final home game of the regular season. More information for watching Rice sports is at the same All-Access Soccer Link (provided above).
LIVE IN-GAME STATS: Live in-game statistics for Rice matches are posted on the world-wide web. At the start of the game go to the live stats link at the top of this page, or on the home page of RiceOwls.com, and follow a text play-by-play of the action.
QUICK ON THE OWLS: The Owls have been playing well the last few weeks, posting a 3-1-1 record in the last five outings. The lone loss in that span was to current C-USA leader UCF, the No. 11-ranked team in the country. The tie was up in the high altitude of Colorado Springs to Colorado College team that only needed to play for a tie to clinch a spot in the upcoming C-USA Tournament. A closer look at the team's full record in in order. Each loss has been by a single goal and seven have been a narrow 1-0 margin. Rice has posted good wins over talented Memphis and UTEP teams.
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 87-74-13. The two-time Western Athletic Conference coach of the year owns a career college coaching record of 109-90-15. 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 39-27-4. 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 : Houston is 4-11-2 overall and 3-6-1 in conference. True freshman Katelyn Rhodes leads the team with three goals while the forward tandem of Jessica Zavalza and Lauri Byrne have combined for 63 shots.
THE RICE-UH SERIES: Rice and Houston have met every year since the Owls started its soccer program in 2001. The Blue & Gray leads the all-time series 4-3-1, but Houston won the most-recent meeting last season across town at UH's Robertson Stadium by a 1-0 score. Both teams are so keen to win this rivalry game that each meeting has been a closely contested battle. Six of the eight Rice-UH soccer games have been determined by a narrow one goal margin. The only time there wasn't a one-goal difference in the score was the 2007 game held at Rice (2-0) and the 1-1 tie in 2005... If you don't think these two teams get physical, then consider there were almost three times as many fouls called in last year's Rice-UH soccer game (21) than there were in last year's Bayou Bucket football game (8).
OSTENDORF EARNS C-USA HONOR: IRVING, Tex.-- Rice senior Katelyn Ostendorf has been named the Conference USA Defender of the Week for women's soccer the league office announced Monday (Oct. 26) from its headquarters in Irving, Tex. Memphis freshman forward Taylor Isenhower was named the C-USA Offensive Player of the Week. Both awards are for games Oct. 19-25... Ostendorf was one of only two Owls, and the only Rice defender, to play all 200 minutes of the back-to-back shutouts over the weekend. Both matches were on the road against Colorado College and UTEP, two of the league's top offensive teams who both had identical perfect home records in conference (5-0-0). Ostendorf, who had missed a game last week because of an injury, returned to action and played all 110 minutes of the 0-0 double-overtime tie Friday at Colorado College. She also played all 90 minutes in the 1-0 road win at UTEP on Sunday. This is Ostendorf's first Player of the Week honor this season and second of her career (Oct. 1, 2007).
PREVIOUSLY: EL PASO, Tex. -- Senior forward Jessica Ross scored the lone goal of the game in the second half and the Owls' defense made the margin stand-up as the Rice soccer team claimed a 1-0 Conference USA road victory over longtime league rival UTEP on Oct. 25 at University Field in El Paso... Two Owl goalkeepers, Meghan Erkel and Catherine Fitzsimmons, combined for seven of the team's eight saves to help preserve the shutout win. The Blue & Gray needed every defensive stop it could muster against a talented UTEP team that had amassed a 13-5-0 overall record, was tied for second place in the C-USA standings and had not lost a home game all year. The Owls' defense was up to the challenge and stretched its current streak without allowing a goal to more than 310-consecutive minutes... Just two days before the defense did a solid job to keep C-USA foe Colorado College off the scoreboard on the road in Colorado Springs, but all Rice had to show for it was a scoreless tie. Determined to change the final result, while keeping the same defensive effort, the Owls got off to a solid offensive start and finally put a goal on the scoreboard late in the contest... Rice had nine shots in the first half and led the Miners in corner kicks by a margin of 5-0. The Blue & Gray dropped to just six shots in the second stanza, but didn't let UTEP do too much better on the other side with seven shot attempts by the Miners. In the 75th minute there was a scramble for the ball in the UTEP keeper's box. Ross, a veteran from Carlsbad, Calif., made the most of her chance to get possession and then opportunistically tapped-in a shot attempt past the Miner keeper... The ball found the back of the UTEP net for Ross' first goal of the season, and the second of her career. That was all the room Rice would need to hang on for the final 15-plus minutes and finish out for the win.
FOR THE RECORD: The Owls have set two individual records this season. Against Marshall senior Erin Scott became Owls' new career statistical leader for shots. The standout forward from Richardson, Tex., currently leads the team in shots (39) and has the new school career record set at 204... On Sept. 6 Meghan Erkel set a new school record with 16 saves against regionally-ranked TCU. Her 16 saves broke the previous school record of 13 set on two occasions by Amanda Garrison, in the program's debut season of 2001 and equaled a year later in 2002.
TWO ALL-TOURNAMENT HONOREES: The duo of Erin Scott and Meghan Erkel were both honored for their play on Aug. 28-30 with selection to 2009 All-Milwaukee Cup Team. The All-Milwaukee Cup Team was selected by the head coaches of the four participating teams in the recent event, including UW-Milwaukee, Marquette, Michigan and Rice. Scott played 156 minutes in the two Milwaukee Cup games and led the Owls in shots. Erkel played all 180 minutes in-goal and made a total of 15 saves.
GREAT SCOTT: Erin Scott is the school record-holder for shots and she is fast-approaching a number of career milestones at Rice, such as having...
* 21 career goals for second place all-time. Scott needs just one to tie the school record of 22.
* 17 career assists for second place all-time and needs seven to tie the school record of 24.
* 59 career points to tie for second place all-time and now needs five to tie the school record of 64.
Not only is the "Dangerous" Scott a great soccer player, she has recently been featured in Rice University's Tomorrow's Leaders and in the long-awaited Just For Kicks feature (link provided at the top of the page).
CAREER CLIMBING CORALLI: Senior defender Alexa Coralli made the 72nd start in her career Sunday at UTEP, the sixth-most in school history.
STEADY "EDDIE'S" STARTING STREAK: Sophomore midfielder Kate Edwards has been in the starting lineup for all 58 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 longest streaks on campus, but NOT affiliated with Baker College!
"O" PLAYS "D": After an injury sidelined her almost all of last season, senior Katelyn Ostendorf has made up for lost time. She has played in 1586 of the team's 1693:12 minutes this season (93.7 percent). Long a defender, the versatile Ostendorf has also been moving forward as of late to help the offense.
ROLL OUT THE BARROW: With her game-winning goal at Stephen F. Austin, freshman Julia Barrow became only the 11th player in school history to record a game-winning goal with her first career goal. Two Owl sophomores, Annie Kadota and Hope Ward, accomplished the feat as freshmen last season and Erin Scott did the same as a freshman in 2006.
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 pulchritudinous Owl duo of Ashley Anderson and/or Kelly Brolan for more details.
Email Ashley Anderson
Email Kelly Brolan
View some event photos
JUST FOR KICKS: Fans will once again have a chance to get some extra insight to the Rice soccer team via the Internet. 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.
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: Conference USA league games are in full-swing this weekend. The upcoming C-USA slate is as follows...
Thursday (Oct. 29)
UAB at Memphis, 7 pm
Tulsa at SMU, 7 pm
Friday, Oct. 30
East Carolina at Marshall, 6 pm
Southern Miss at (11) UCF, 6 pm
Houston at Rice, 7 pm
UTEP at Colorado College, 8pm