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Utah State soccer continues road trip at BYU Thursday

By Doug Hoffman

For the Deseret News

Published: Thursday, Sept. 22 2011 9:25 a.m. MDT

LOGAN — Continuing its longest road trip of the season, the Utah State women's soccer team travels to rival BYU on Thursday at 7 p.m. in Provo. This is third of five straight matches on the road for USU.

The Aggies (8-2-0) are 2-0 against teams from the Beehive state this season, with wins against Weber State and Utah.

USU is looking to snap a two-match losing streak after dropping road matches to Tulsa and No. 2 Oklahoma State last week. Despite the losses, the Aggies remain ranked in the National Soccer Coaches' Association of America (NSCAA). This week, USU holds a No. 10 West Regional ranking.

Like Utah State, BYU has lost two straight matches to schools from Oklahoma. Last week, the Cougars fell to both Oklahoma State and Oklahoma on the road. So far this season, BYU is 4-3-2. USU and BYU have played five common opponents this season. Both teams have wins over Utah, Idaho State and Cal State Fullerton, while both lost to Oklahoma State. USU defeated Rice while BYU tied the Owls, 0-0.

The Cougars hold a 8-0-0 record against Utah State. The teams first met in 1996 when BYU captured a convincing 6-0 win. Last year, when the two squads met, the Cougars were ranked No. 8, which was the highest-ranked team that USU had played until last week when the Aggies took on No. 2 Oklahoma State. BYU captured that meeting, 3-0.

The Cougars are led offensively by Jennie Marshall, with seven points off of two goals and three assists. Colette Jepson and Auna Doria are both tied with five points off of two goals and on assist. In goal, McKinzie Olson has played the bulk of the minutes, allowing nine goals in just under 900 minutes for a 0.95 GAA.

The Aggies are led by senior forward Shantel Flanary's team-leading 17 points off of eight goals and one assist. Sophomore midfielder Jennifer Flynn is second in points, with three goals and two assists for eight points. In goal, senior Molli Merrill has played the bulk of the minutes for USU this season. She has allowed only seven goals in 10 matches for a 0.73 GAA.

USU soccer can be followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/USUAthletics.

Both matches this weekend can be followed through the USU website at www.UtahStateAggies.com via GameTracker, a free service that updates play by play and statistics throughout the game.

Doug Hoffman is the assistant athletic director for Utah State University.

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