UVU soccer: women's team set for home opener vs. Weber State
OREM — After opening the year with a pair of road matches, Utah Valley University returns Thursday to Clyde Field for its home opener against in-state foe Weber State. Kickoff is scheduled for 8 p.m.
UVU (0-2-0) is looking to pick up its first win of the season in front of the home crowd after coming up short in its first two fixtures. A 3-2 loss at UTEP followed by a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Utah State have the Wolverines returning to Orem without a win despite a pair of gritty road performances.
Forwards Haley Curtis and Kali Stubbs tallied for UVU in El Paso, but a 2-2 score line shifted in the favor of the homestanding Miners after they scored the decisive goal in the 85th minute. From there, the Wolverines found themselves in a defensive struggle with defending WAC champion USU in Logan. UVU turned away 16 shots and withstood 10 corner kicks, but it was a penalty early in the second half that undid the Wolverines as the Aggies escaped with a narrow victory.
Curtis and Stubbs have provided the only UVU goals on the young season, with the former leading the team in shots on goal with five. Lexi Robison, a captain in the midfield, has the lone assist for the Wolverines thus far and has attempted three total shots. Goalkeeper Lauren Sack sits with 10 saves through the initial two games — a figure that currently paces the WAC.
Thursday marks the fifth official meeting all-time between UVU and Weber State, but the two sides have also faced off in six exhibitions since the Wolverines made the jump to Division I in 2003. The Wolverines have never beaten Weber State outside of exhibition play, trailing in the series 0-4-0.
Weber State (1-0-1) arrives unbeaten into Thursday's match and will be making its first trip away from Wildcat Field in 2013. WSU got the season started with a bang, rolling out a 3-0 win over WAC opponent Idaho. From there, it earned a 1-1 draw against UC Santa Barbara on Monday afternoon in its final home game before a six-game road swing.
The Wildcats' four scores on the season have come from four different players as sophomore forward Stacy Blair, senior forward Sarah Thurston and junior midfielder Mackenzie Day each struck against Idaho. Sophomore forward Mackenzie Harrison supplied Monday's only goal against the Gauchos. Chansi Crompton, a sophomore midfielder and last season's Big Sky Conference Newcomer of the Year, leads the team in assists with two, while sophomore defender Shaylee Peterson and Blair have each notched one. Goalkeeper Ryann Waldman has six saves and an .857 save percentage through the first two games of her senior campaign.
Thursday will also mark a reunion of sorts for UVU's Katelyn McLeod. The sophomore defender, who has logged 88 minutes this season, spent her redshirt freshman season at Weber State before transferring to Utah Valley.
UVU's return home will be short lived as it departs Orem for its next three fixtures. The Wolverines will stop in Pocatello to face Idaho State on Tuesday before continuing on to the Montana Cup in Missoula, Mont., where it will face old Great West Conference rival Houston Baptist and host school Montana.
Kellen Hiser is an assistant sports information director at Utah Valley University. For more information on Wolverine athletics, visit WolverineGreen.com.
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