Oct. 12, 2016
BOCA RATON, Fla. - The Florida Atlantic University women's soccer team, currently in fourth place in the Conference USA standings, hosts two tough league opponents this weekend at the FAU Soccer Stadium.
The Owls (7-6-2, 3-2-1 C-USA) have 10 points in conference play, tied for fourth with four matches to go. Every win is crucial towards the fight to advance to the postseason, as just eight of the 14 teams qualify. Currently, 11 teams have six points or more, including the Owls and both of the squads coming to Boca Raton on Friday and Sunday.
First on the docket is current C-USA leader WKU (10-4-0, 5-1-0), Friday at 7 p.m. The Lady Toppers have 15 league points and have won seven of eight matches, the last two shutouts of Middle Tennessee (1-0) and UAB (2-0). Prior to that was their only conference defeat, 2-1 on the road to North Texas.
The team features the top goal-scorer in the league (Chandler Backes, with 10 on the season), along with the toughest goalkeeper to score on statistically (Allison Leone, who has given up just eight goals for a .611 GAA).
The Owls and Lady Toppers have a longer history than most in-conference opponents, as the squads met up seven times as members of the Sun Belt. All-time, WKU leads the series 5-2-2, with one of the ties coming last season in Bowling Green, Kentucky, a scoreless, double-overtime affair. FAU is looking for their first win against the Lady Toppers since a 1-0 decision in the Sun Belt Championships in 2006.
On Sunday, the Owls will face off against Marshall (4-6-3, 2-3-1), who sits in sixth place in the conference ledger alone with seven points. Their 2-0 loss on Sunday to Middle Tennessee snapped a modest three-game streak without a loss.
The Thundering Herd are led by Jordan Sackaris with six goals, and Sydney Arnold, tied for second in C-USA with six assists. FAU has won each of the two matchups in the series, both at Marshall's venue in Huntington, West Virginia (2-1 in 2013 and 1-0 in overtime last season).
The next shutout posted by FAU goalkeeper Sydney Drinkwater will break the women's program all-time career mark of 25. She has seven of the team's eight this year, which is fifth all-time for a single season, (ahead of her includes her own eight in 2014 and 10 during last campaign). She is second among C-USA keepers in shutouts, third in GAA and third in saves this year.
Senior striker Sammy Rowland continues to pace the squad with five goals, tied for 10th-highest among league players. Her three game-winning goals ties for second.
To watch these all-important matches in person, call 1-866-FAU-OWLS or visit https://oss.ticketmaster.com/aps/fau/EN/buy/browse?i%5B0%5D=242.