PROVO, Utah - The BYU women's soccer team opens its 2012 season on the road against UC Irvine this Friday, August 27. The game is the season opener for both teams.

BYU has played the Anteaters twice in the program's history. The last time the two teams met was back in 1997 at UC Irvine with the Cougars coming away with a 3-2 victory.

The Cougar squad returns seven starters, highlighted by 2011 All-American and Hermann Trophy Candidate Lindsi Lisonbee Cutshall, Scholar All-American Carlee Payne Holmoe, seniors Jessica Ringwood & Dana Oldroyd Cusick and juniors Rachel Manning & Niki Fernandes.

The Anteaters are looking to win their third-straight season opener with a win in 2011 over UT-San Antonio and in 2010 against Idaho. UC Irvine was chosen to finish second in this year's Big West Preseason Poll after finishing first in 2011 and 2010 in the regular season. Heading into this season, UC Irvine lost an overall six starters, including three of the team's best defenders, which gave up just six goals in eight league games last season. Junior Natalia Ledezma is going to be the top returnee for the Anteaters with more than five goals last season.

Live stats for the game are available through the UC Irvine women's soccer schedule page.

Whitney Jordan works in the BYU Athletic Communications with the women's soccer and men's volleyball teams. She can be reached at for questions relating to soccer and for volleyball questions.