WVU-OU to Battle Thursday on FOX Soccer


By Tim Goodenow for WVUsports.com
October 17, 2012 04:49 PM
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The No. 19 West Virginia women’s soccer team plays host to Oklahoma on Thursday, Oct. 18, in its final home match of the regular season. The match, scheduled for 7 p.m. at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium, will be nationally televised by FOX Soccer as part of the NSCAA College Soccer Game of the Week.

“Any time you get the opportunity to showcase your program on TV, it’s exciting,” says coach Nikki Izzo-Brown. “I hope our students and fans come out one more time to create some noise and send our seniors off on a positive note.”

Tomorrow’s match also is a “Dollar Night” with all tickets, hot dogs, popcorn and Coca-Colas available for one dollar each. Admission is free for WVU students with a valid student ID.

The first 100 fans will receive a free WVU wristband courtesy of EZToUse.com, and 50 WVU women’s soccer scarves will be tossed into the crowd.

An Oktoberfest celebration also will be held at Dick Dlesk tomorrow night. As part of the popular Oktoberfest festival, the game will feature an evening full of American and German food and drink, including a Biergarten. German dishes such as sausage, pretzels, potato salad and more will be served in a tent adjacent to the seating area. Two German beers and domestic beers also will be available for purchase.

“It’s critical to get points this late in the year, as a lot is at stake with postseason seeding up for grabs,” adds Izzo-Brown. “Our ladies know we have a tough challenge ahead of us with a surging Oklahoma team.”

The Mountaineers own a 9-3-4 record overall and sit atop the Big 12 Conference with a 5-0-1 mark. The Sooners arrive in Morgantown with a 6-7-4 record, having won two straight matches to form a 2-2-2 conference mark.

West Virginia is coming off a 1-1 draw with 20th-ranked Baylor on Oct. 12. Junior midfielder Kara Blosser gave the Mountaineers a 1-0 lead in the 26th minute before the Bears tied the match with a goal off a free kick with 13 seconds remaining in regulation. Goalkeeper Sara Keane was named the league’s defensive player of the week for her efforts in tying a career high with eight saves.

Matt Potter is in his first season as head coach at Oklahoma, joining the Sooners after nine successful years at Washington State. OU is riding a two-match win streak following a pair of home wins over Kansas and TCU last weekend.

The Sooner offense has been shutout only four times this season. Senior forward Renee Cuellar has more than half her team’s goals, scoring 11 goals with one assist for a team-best 23 points.

“Cuellar is a very dynamic forward who has some international experience to bring to her game,” says Izzo-Brown. “She’s a true goal scorer, so they always have her as a threat.”

Defensively, the Sooners are led by senior defender Katharine Nutman and goalkeeper Kelsey Devonshire. Devonshire has started 77 games in net for OU, setting the school record for career saves, and is second in career shutouts.

The OU defense has allowed 22 goals this season, and has only allowed more than one goal in four of 17 matches this season.

West Virginia is riding an 11-match unbeaten streak. Fans unable to attend can follow the action via GameTracker at WVUsports.com.



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