Freshman forward Adele Letro has a team-best seven goals this season. (Credit: Russell Isabella)
Oct. 25, 2005
Utah (13-5, 6-0 MWC), riding a six-game winning streak, closes out its regular season against archrival BYU (15-1-2, 4-1-1 MWC) on Friday at 7:00 p.m. at South Stadium in Provo, Utah.
The Utah vs. BYU game will be broadcast live on KBYU-TV. A live audio broadcast will also be available on UtahUtes.com as a part of Utah All-Access, a premium multi-media package that can be purchased on the web site.
In The Rankings
Utah is receiving votes in the NSCAA/adidas Top 25 poll and is tied with Arizona for eighth in the West Region rankings.
The Utes are 15th in the Soccer Buzz West Region rankings.
Mountain West Title Belongs To Utah
Utah has already clinched the Mountain West title heading into the final weekend of the regular season. The Utes are 6-0 in conference play. BYU is in second place with a 4-1-1 record, trailing the Utes by a game and a half with one game to play. The Cougars dropped their Mountain West Conference opener to New Mexico 1-0 at home on Oct. 6 and tied San Diego State 1-1 last Saturday in San Diego.
The Utes have won their second Mountain West Conference regular-season championship in the last three years, also claiming the title in 2003. The Utes won the MWC Tournament title in 2003 and 2004.
The Cougars, ranked No. 12 in the NSCAA/adidas poll, are 15-1-2 overall and 4-1-1 in Mountain West Conference play. Last weekend in a pair of road games, BYU defeated UNLV 1-0 on Thursday night and tied San Diego State 1-1 on Saturday afternoon. BYU started the season with nine consecutive wins before tying Eastern Washington 0-0 on Sept. 24 at home. Its only loss on the season came to New Mexico 1-0 at South Stadium on Oct. 6. The Cougars are 8-1-1 at home this season.
Jamie Rendich Beck (M/F, 5-7, Sr.) leads BYU with 10 goals and seven assists. Bobbi Tillotson (M, 5-9, So.) has six goals and seven assists. Erika Woodbury (GK, 5-8, So.) has a 0.29 goals-against average and 44 saves in 18 games this season. Head coach Jennifer Rockwood is 180-57-12 in her 11th season at BYU.
BYU leads the all-time series 13-3 and is 5-2 games played in Provo. After losing the first 12 games in the series, Utah won three in a row (including twice in Provo) during the 2002 and `03 seasons. Last season, the Cougars defeated the Utes 2-1 on Oct. 30 in Salt Lake City.
Utah wrapped-up the Mountain West Conference title with a pair of wins on the road. The Utes rallied for two second-half scores to defeat San Diego State 2-1 on Thursday afternoon at the SDSU Sports Deck. San Diego State had a 9-7 advantage in shots in the first half and scored in the 29th minute. However, the Utes battled back to outshoot SDSU 9-5 in the second half and get their first come-from-behind win of the season.
Utah's first score came in the 55th minute. Katy Reineke dribbled along the goal line after a short corner and passed to Adele Letro, who fired away and forced a save by Cat Burson. Burson could not control the ball, however, causing in a scramble in front of the net. Whitney Dorsey pounced on the lose ball and took the shot for her second goal of the year. At the 59:35 mark, Kim Lloyd collected the ball out of the air and slipped a pass to Reineke. The freshman from Salt Lake City made a cut past one defender and shot from 25 yards out for her second goal of the season. Utah had a 6-1 advantage in corner kicks and forced Burson to make nine saves for the Aztecs. Ashley Mason made four saves for the Utes.
Mason made three saves and Amanda Feigt converted Utah's only shot on goal versus the Rebels. UNLV had a 7-6 advantage in shots and a 4-3 edge in corner kicks. Rebel keeper Jenna Huff had allowed just one goal in 555 minutes all season before Feigt got to her in the 63rd minute. The Utes worked the ball to the right side of the field, where Dorsey crossed it to Feigt. Feigt got her foot on the ball and immediately took the shot with good pace from 10 yards out for her sixth goal of the season.
Freshman forward Jen Christoffers had surgery on Tuesday for a torn ACL. She has been out since Sept. 25.
Sophomore defender Melissa Crespo is back from hamstring strain after sitting out the game at UNLV last Saturday.
Junior defender Tasia Duarte may be cleared this week after being out since Sept. 25 with a fracture in her knee.
Head Coach Rich Manning
Rich Manning is 55-17-8 in his fourth year at Utah. Last season he guided Utah to its third straight NCAA Tournament appearance, its second consecutive MWC Tournament title and a 13-6-3 overall record. In 2003, Manning was named the West Region Coach of the Year by the NSCAA/adidas and Soccer Buzz. The Utes went 16-2-2, won the MWC regular-season (6-0-0) and tournament titles, and went to the NCAA Tournament. In 2002, Manning 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. Before joining the Utah program, Manning was an assistant and associate head coach at Santa Clara (1998-2001).
On the wins over SDSU and UNLV - "Last weekend was very rewarding. To defeat two quality teams on the road that were battling for the conference crown is a tremendous achievement. We are very proud of our conference title. We hope to play our best soccer of the year as we head into the most important parts of our season."
On playing BYU - "Being part of the BYU-Utah rivalry is a great privilege. Our team gets to experience the passion and pride that the students and fans of each school carry with them. Not everyone has that opportunity. The game itself will be a great challenge. BYU has had a terrific season. They will be fired up to play us. And the environment will be electric."
"We have great respect for their team. They are well coached. They have personality players in the attack. Jamie Beck and Katie Larkin, in particular, can unbalance a defense on their own. They have one of the best defenses in the country. It will be a tremendous test for our players to see if we can play against one of the best."
MWC Statistical Rankings
In the team statistics as of Oct. 24, Utah ranks second in shots (14.39 per game), second in points (4.72 per game), second in goals per game (1.61), second in assists per game (1.50), third in goals-against average (0.71), tied for fourth in saves (4.17 per game), second in shutouts (9), sixth in fouls (10.78 per game), and fourth in corner kicks (3.44 per game).
In the individual rankings as of Oct. 24, Adele Letro ranks third in shots per game (3.06), tied for fifth in points per game (0.94), fifth in goals per game (0.39) and tied for second in game-winning goals (3) ... Amanda Feigt is 10th in points per game (0.78), tied for eighth in goals per game (0.33) and tied for second in game-winning goals (3) ... Jen Christoffers is tied for ninth in assists per game (0.22) ... Whitney Dorsey is tied for ninth in assists per game (0.22) ... Kim Lloyd is tied for ninth in assists per game (0.22) ... Katy Reineke is tied for ninth in assists per game (0.22) ... Ashley Mason is fourth in saves per game (4.06), second in shutouts and second in goals-against average (0.73).
Utah's 13 wins this season equal the second-best mark in the 11-year history of the program. The Utes also got 13 wins in 2004 (13-6-3), 2002 (13-4-3), 2000 (13-7-1) and 1999 (13-7-0). Utah set the school single-season wins record with 16 victories in 2004.
Utah is 6-0 in Mountain West Conference play with one game remaining. The Utes have finished undefeated and untied in league play once before, going 6-0 in 2003.
Utah has a 259-170 advantage in shots and an 114-88 edge in shots on goal over its opposition this season. The Utes also have a 1.58-0.71 advantage in goals scored per game.
Adele Letro leads the Utes with seven goals this season, followed by Amanda Feigt with six goals and Melissa Wayman with three. Wayman, Whitney Dorsey, Kim Lloyd and Katy Reineke each have a team-best four assists.
Utah has faced four 2004 NCAA Tournament teams this season, going 1-3 in those games. Utah defeated UNLV (1-0) in Las Vegas, Nev., on Oct. 22. The Utes lost at Arizona (1-0 OT) on Sept. 16, to California at home (1-0 2OT) on Sept. 25 and at Pepperdine (1-0) on Sept. 30.
The Utes lost three in a row and five of six games to end their nonconference season. Utah was held scoreless in all of five of the losses. Three of those defeats came to teams ranked in the NSCAA/adidas Top 25.
Utah won its first six games of the season for the best start in school history.
Utah is 5-5 against NSCAA/adidas Top 25 teams in four seasons under Rich Manning. In the Utes' three games against a ranked teams this season, Utah lost at No. 22 Arizona (1-0 OT) on Sept. 16, fell to No. 9 California (1-0 2OT) at home on Sept. 25 and lost at No. 10 Pepperdine (1-0) on Sept. 30. In 2004, the Utes won at No. 7 UCLA (2-1) on Oct. 1. Utah was 2-1 against NSCAA/adidas Top 25 teams in both 2002 and `03.
Utah is 0-2 in overtime games this season.
Other than giving up four goals to Cal State Fullerton on Sept. 25, goalkeeper Ashley Mason had allowed just nine goals in the other 17 games. Mason has made 73 saves with a 0.73 goals-against average in 18 games this season.
Utah scored a season-high four goals against Idaho on Sept. 4. The Utes have also scored three goals in five other games.
Utah closed out its home schedule with an 8-1 record. The U. had its first night game ever at Ute Field against Purdue on Sept. 9, drawing a season-best crowd of 1,141.
Utah heads to Las Vegas for the 2005 Mountain West Conference Soccer Championship, hosted by UNLV. Quarterfinal games will be played on Wednesday (Nov. 2), the semifinals on Thursday (Nov. 3) and the championship game on Saturday (Nov. 5) at Noon (PST). The championship game will be shown tape-delayed on CSTV at 8:00 p.m. (MST).