Broncos take third trip in history east of the Mississippi River.
► What’s Happening - Boise State University (1-1-0) heads off to the east coast this weekend to compete in the Navy Invitational at Annapolis, Md. The first match will be a battle between Broncos as Boise State takes on the Rider University Broncs (0-0-0) at 2:00 p.m. (Mountain) Friday at the Glenn Warner Soccer Facility. They will follow that up with a Sunday morning encounter with their host the U.S. Naval Academy Midshipmen at 10:00 a.m. (Mountain). Both games will be the first meetings ever against these institutions for Boise State. The Boise State-Navy match will feature the Western Athletic Conference’s Preseason Offensive Player of the Year, junior Shannon Saxton, versus the Patriot League’s Preseason Defensive Player of the Year, senior Shelly Moeller.
► Broncos Head East of the Mississippi - This will be the third time in program history that Boise State has played east of the Mississippi River. It is the first trip across the country since the 2001 season when the Broncos played at the St. Bonaventure (N.Y.) Invitational Sept. 7-9.
► Boise State’s Record Versus East Coast Teams - The Broncos are 3-4-1 all-time versus teams located east of the Mississippi River. However, they are 0-3-1 in contest played east of the river which include losses at Florida International (3-0) and Miami, Fla. (7-0) in 1999, and a neutral site loss to Duquesne (2-1) along with a scoreless draw at St. Bonaventure in 2001. Boise State is 3-1-0 against eastern teams in games played west of the Mississippi River. All four contests were on neutral sites and include a 1-0 loss in Flagstaff, Ariz., to Bowling Green in 2005, a win over Siena (5-1) in 2002 at Pocatello, Idaho, a victory against IUPUI (4-1) in 2005 at Cedar City, Utah, and most recently a win over VMI (2-1) last year in Flagstaff, Ariz.
Trivia note to those wondering about the games played against Louisiana Tech (WAC school) and UL Monroe, the state of Louisiana is west of the Mississippi River.
Looking at Boise State...
► What’s Happened so Far - Boise State enters the second week of the 2009 campaign with a 1-1 record. The Broncos are coming off a split at Seattle (L 1-0) and at Portland State (W 3-1) last week to open the season. Chelsea Robinson, Cheyenne Jones and Maureen Fitzgerald all recorded goals in the victory over the PSU Vikings, Shannon Saxton, Ashley Walsh, and Adrienne Lommasson recorded the assists. Starting goalkeeper Liz Ruiz stopped 15-of-17 shots on goal during the two contests recording an 88.2 save percentage and a 1.00 goals against average on two goals allowed.
► In General - The 2009-10 academic year is the 40th anniversary of women’s athletics at Boise State University and the 12th for the soccer program. The Broncos are entering their ninth season as members of the Western Athletic Conference where they have been picked to place fourth in this year’s league race by the head coaches of the nine member institutions. Boise State is coming off a school record 11 wins in 2008 going 11-8-2 overall and 3-3-1 in league play to place fourth.
► Briefly About the Team - Boise State features a young squad with 21 underclassmen on the roster of 28: eight true freshmen, two redshirt freshmen, 10 sophomores, and one redshirt sophomore. Joining the underclassmen are three seniors and four juniors. Five of the seven upperclassmen back are returning starters.
► What’s Back for Boise State - Boise State returns 18 veterans and seven starters from last year’s roster, and welcome eight newcomers. The seven starters back are seniors Jen Burns (goalkeeper) and Kaylea Perenon (midfielder), juniors Shannon Saxton (forward), Cheyenne Jones (midfielder), and Malia Hendrix (defender), and sophomores Chelsea Robinson (midfielder) and Lindsay Roberts (defender). The Broncos return four of their top five scorers but lost two to injury forcing them to redshirt in 2009. Saxton and Robinson are the top two scorers back recording six and three goals respectively.
► The Head Coach - The 2009 season marks Steve Lucas’ 10th as head coach of the Broncos where he currently owns a 74-80-18 record to date. This is Lucas’ 12th season overall with the program after serving two years as the assistant before his promotion in 2000.
Looking at the Rider Match...
► About Rider - Friday’s match with Boise State is the season opener for Rider. The Broncs are members of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference where they are picked to place eighth in this year’s MAAC race by the league’s coaches. They went 2-14-3 overall last season and 1-7-1 in league finishing in ninth place out of 10 schools. They return eight starters and 11 letterwinners from last year’s squad. Senior Kate Murphy is the top returning goal scorer from last year when she score two, while junior Lauren Musumeci is the top point scorer with six last season on one goal and four assists. Drayson Hounsome is in his second season at the helm of the Rider program.
► The Series - Boise State and Rider have never met previously. However, the Broncos have played a MAAC school before defeating Siena College 5-1 at the ISU Bengal Classic on Sept. 7, 2002 in Pocatello, Idaho.
Looking at the Navy Match...
► About Navy - Navy is coming off a sweep in its season opening weekend with road victories in South Carolina where they defeated South Carolina-Upstate 3-0 and Francis Marion 6-2. The Midshipmen are members of the Patriot League where they are picked to win their third conference crown in four years. They went 15-4-3 overall and undefeated 5-0-2 in league last year placing first. Navy is led by the Patriot League’s Preseason Defensive Player of the Year in senior Shelly Moeller, the defender has twice been named the conference’s postseason defensive player of the year in 2006 and 2008. Carissa Youker, a junior, is the top returning scorer recording seven goals and two assists in 2008. Carin Gabarra is in her 17th season at the U.S. Naval Academy where she has gone 202-93-25.
► The Series - Sunday’s encounter featuring Boise State and Navy will be the first meeting between the two programs in history and the first for the Broncos against the members of the Patriot League.