Rich Manning (right) will look to direct Utah to its second straight win over a ranked team Friday against No. 6 Texas A&M.
Sept. 2, 2003
Utah (2-0-0) heads to the Lone Star state to play at No. 6 Texas A&M (2-0-0) on Friday at 7:30 p.m. (CDT) and at Baylor (2-0-0) on Sunday at 7:00 p.m. (CDT).
Scouting Texas A&M
The Aggies are ranked No. 6 in the NSCAA/adidas poll ... They are 2-0-0 after getting two wins at home last weekend, defeating TCU 6-0 on Friday and No. 22 SMU 3-1 on Sunday ... Texas A&M returns six starters and 13 letterwinners from last year's team that went 20-5-1, advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament and won the Big 12 Conference (9-0-1) ... Head Coach G. Guerrieri is 173-47-6 in 11 seasons at Texas A&M ... Emma Smith (F, 5-9, Jr.) has scored two goals and has one assist this season ... Kristen Strutz (M, 5-10, Sr.) has two goals ... Utah is 0-2-0 all-time against Texas A&M. The Utes lost to the Aggies 4-0 on Sept. 19, 1997 in College Station, Texas and 2-1 on Sept. 6, 1999 in Salt Lake City ... Live game audio can be found on the Texas A&M website at www.AggieAthletics.com. From there, go to the women's soccer page and click on the 2003 Aggie Soccer live match audio link.
The Bears are 2-0-0 after getting two wins at home last weekend, defeating Eastern Washington 2-0 on Friday and North Texas 4-3 in overtime on Sunday ... Utah is their next opponent ... Baylor returns 11 starters and 14 letterwinners from last year's team that went 8-9-2 overall and placed 10th in the Big 12 Conference (2-6-2) ... Head Coach George Van Linder is 95-48-9 in eight seasons at Baylor ... Ginny Rosario-Tull (F, 5-6, Jr.) has three goals this season ... Utah is 0-1-0 all-time against Baylor, losing 3-2 on Sept. 21, 1997 in College Station, Texas.
In The Polls
* Utah received votes to rank 30th in the NSCAA/adidas poll released Sept. 1. The Utes were ninth in the West Region rankings.
* The Utes were listed among the teams receiving votes in the Soccer Buzz Magazine poll released Sept. 2. Soccer Buzz also had the Utes No. 10 in the West Region.
* Utah was ranked 29th in the SoccerTimes.com preseason poll, receiving nine votes.
Utah won its first two games of the season, getting victories at home over Colgate (3-2) on Friday and No. 17 Michigan (4-1) on Sunday.
Missy Dennis scored two goals and assisted on another as the Utes won their season opener 3-2 over Colgate. Dennis scored the game-winner the seventh minute out of the intermission. She had four of Utah's nine shots on goal. Amber Brower also scored a goal. The Utes outshot Colgate 16-10 with eight shots in both periods. The Raiders had seven shots on goal. Both Raider goals came against Kaycie Zimmerman, who was starting her first game. Zimmerman also made two saves in the first half. Another freshman, Ashley Mason, made three saves after taking over at halftime
Utah pounded four goals past goalkeeper Suzie Grech in the first 48 minutes to cruise to a 4-1 win over 17th-ranked Michigan. A crowd of 1,103 was in attendance at Ute Field. Sophomore Carisse Winegar was involved in three of the scores with a goal and two assists. Lauren Field, Melissa Wayman and Brower also scored goals for the Utes. Utah converted four of its five shots on goal with two of the goals being set up by corner kicks. Mason, who played the entire game, allowed only one goal and made four saves. Michigan ended Mason's shutout bid in the 76th minute with a close range shot placed in the lower right corner by Kate Morgan.
Brower Named MWC Offensive Player of the Week
Utah senior midfielder Amber Brower was named the Mountain West Conference Women's Soccer Offensive Player of the Week on Monday. This is her first player of the week honor.
Brower, a Hyrum, Utah, native, scored two goals and had an assist as the Utes defeated Colgate and No. 17 Michigan last weekend. In Utah's victory over Colgate, she knocked in a goal to tie the game at two apiece. Against the 17th-ranked Wolverines, Brower put the game out of reach in the 41st minute with her goal, making the score 3-0. She also assisted on a goal.
Head Coach Rich Manning
Rich Manning is 15-4-3 in his second season at Utah. Last season, he led Utah to a 13-4-3 mark, including a 4-1-1 record in Mountain West play, and the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Manning was also named the 2002 MWC Coach of the Year. Before joining the Utah program, Manning was an assistant and associate head coach at Santa Clara (1998-2001). During his tenure, the Broncos made the NCAA College Cup three times and captured the 2001 national title.
Quoting Rich Manning
On playing Texas A&M and Baylor: "The trip to Texas this week provides us with some great challenges. We are playing one of the top programs in the country in Texas A&M. We are playing against two coaches that I have great respect for in G. Guerrieri (Texas A&M) and George Van Linder (Baylor). We will play in front of hostile crowds. We will have a grueling travel schedule and we may encounter some interesting weather. I am sure that we will know a lot more about ourselves after this weekend."
* Freshman goalkeeper Ashley Mason has only given up one goal in 135 minutes. She played the second half against Colgate, shutting out the Raiders in 45 minutes and making three saves. She started and played the entire game against Michigan on Sunday. She shut out the Wolverines until the 76th minute and made four saves.
* The win over Michigan improved Utah to 3-0 against teams ranked in the NSCAA/adidas Top 25 at Ute Field under second-year head coach Rich Manning. Last season, the Utes defeated fourth-ranked Portland, 2-0, on Sept. 1 and 18th-ranked Kentucky, 3-0, on Sept. 8.
* Utah will be up against four NSCAA/adidas preseason nationally ranked opponents and four 2002 NCAA Tournament teams this fall. Michigan (No. 17) lost 4-1 Ute Field on Aug. 31 and lost 4-1. Florida (No. 21) visits Salt Lake City on Sept. 28. The Utes will face Texas A&M (No. 6) in College Station, Texas, this Friday and conference rival BYU (No. 24) in Provo, Utah, Nov. 1.
Michigan and Texas A&M were NCAA quarterfinalists last fall. Idaho State and BYU, two teams Utah plays on the road, also made the NCAA Tournament. Florida, which comes to Ute Field on Sept. 28, was the 1998 NCAA champion and 2001 semifinalist.
* Utah's 2003 recruiting class was ranked 37th in the country and ninth in the region by Soccer Buzz magazine. The ranking is the highest of any recruiting class in the Mountain West Conference and the best in the history of the Utah program.
* Utah opened the 2002 season without a defeat through its first seven games (5-0-2), which was the best start in the program's eight-year history. The Utes also ran their record to 11-1-3 before suffering their second loss of the season.
Utah returns to Salt Lake City to host Weber State on Thurs., Sept. 11 at 3:00 p.m.