The BYU women’s soccer team posted its first home win of the season on Saturday night against Long Beach State. The Cougars played strong on both sides of the ball and host the Oregon Ducks this week on Thursday at 7 p.m. Here are five things to know before heading out to South Field for the game.
1. Practice has been the key to success
“We’ve had some tough losses here, and they continue to battle every day at practice with good attitudes and hard work,” BYU coach Jennifer Rockwood said of the players after Saturday’s win.
Strong practice has been crucial to a quick turnaround for BYU.
“We come out every day and practice wanting to get better,” sophomore forward Ashley Hatch said after the game. “That’s what we’ve been doing, so we’ve obviously shown it tonight.”
2. Oregon will be active on both sides of the field
A stingy Oregon defense led by goalkeeper Abby Steele has allowed only four goals through six games. Its offense has also been busy, posting eight goals on the season. Midfielder Lilly Archer leads the offense with seven points, coming off two goals and three assists.
BYU posted 14 shots in Saturday’s win against Long Beach and will need to be aggressive in looking for scoring opportunities against an Oregon team that will be playing for its fourth shutout of the season. The Cougar defense will need to be just as strong as it was against Long Beach if it wants to keep things moving in a winning direction.
3. The Ducks won’t shy away from extra time
If scoring is low, Oregon will not be scared to play into a draw to take things into overtime. Last season’s matchup between the two teams ended in a 0-0 tie. The Ducks’ last three games have all needed extra time. Two of those games have gone into double overtime, with a 2-1 win coming against Cal State Fullerton and a 1-1 tie against Eastern Michigan. On Friday, the Ducks lost 1-0 to Portland State in a game that only needed one period of overtime.
4. Oregon wants a win away from home
The Ducks fly into Provo with a record of 5-2-1. None of those victories have been on an opponent’s turf. They had not lost a game in their last five until they lost to Portland State on Friday in a 1-0 overtime nail-biter. The Cougars are 3-0-1 all time against Oregon and will expect a win at this point in their two-week home stand.
5. If you want a free t-shirt, get to South Field early
The match up against Oregon will be the “Pack the House” game, with the first 4,000 fans in attendance receiving a special t-shirt to wear during the game. Fans won’t want to miss the action this Thursday, 7 p.m., at South Field.