WSU soccer set for stellar season

WSU to open season Thursday in Michigan


JAKE HULL, Evergreen reporter

WSU Women’s soccer is set to open their 2022 regular season Thursday as they travel to Ann Arbor, Michigan.

WSU is coming off a 14-3-4 2021 season. In the first round of the NCAA Tournament, they beat Montana 3-0 then lost to Tennessee 0-2 in the second round to end their 2021 season.

WSU faced three ranked opponents last season, they lost 1-0 to No. 14 Stanford, had a 0-0 tie in double overtime with No. 5 USC and 1-1 double overtime tie with No. 8 UCLA.

The Cougs were ranked 19th Nationally by the Top Drawer Soccer preseason poll last week. The highest in season history.

Fifth-year Sydney Studer picked a Division-1 player to watch honor from United Coaches, Fifth-year Mykiaa Minniss has also been added to the United Coaches preseason Division-1 Defender to Watch list for the 2022 season. Sophomore Nadia Cooper was added to the preseason Goalkeeper to Watch list as well.

WSU has been predicted to finish third in the Pac-12 this season, making it their highest preseason prediction in program history. This was also the first time WSU has picked up first-place votes in the preseason in the conference.

Thursday the Cougs played an exhibition match against Gonzaga in Pullman where the game was cut short at halftime due to lightning, WSU was winning 3-1.

The Cougs have eight non-conference games before their first conference game of the season. Of the non-conference games, five of them will be home.

After Michigan, WSU will host the Portland Pilots and then the Eastern Washington Eagles the following Sunday.

WSUs first game in September will be in Seattle as they take on Seattle U.

Following Seattle U, WSU has three straight home games against Denver, Cal Poly and Northern Colorado. The last away conference game of the season is in Moraga, California when the Cougs face Saint Mary’s.

The first conference game of the season is September 23 when WSU travels to Corvallis, Oregon to take on the Oregon State Beavers.

Sept. 29 marks the first home conference match of the season for WSU as they take on the Colorado Buffaloes.

The Cougs’ first game in October is on the second as they host the Utah Utes.

After Utah, the Cougs travel to California for games against the Cal Golden Bears and Stanford Cardinal.

Oct. 14 is when the Oregon Ducks come to Pullman for one game. The following Thursday is the start of games against both Arizona schools with the Arizona State Sun Devils on Thursday and the Arizona Wildcats on Sunday.

Oct. 27 is the Cougs second trip to California when WSU takes on the UCLA Bruins and the USC Trojans on Oct. 30.

The one and only matchup between the Cougs and the Washington Huskies will be Nov. 4 in Pullman.

On the Cougs’ roster, they have six seniors and five fifth-years. The seniors are Grayson Lynch, Rose Young, Isabella Weaver, Bridget Rieken, Brianna McReynolds and Mackenzie Frimpong-Ellertson. The fifth-years are Studer, Elaily Hernandez-Repreza, Aaqila McLyn, Minniss and Telly Vunipola.

There are also a number of young guns on the roster as the Cougs have seven freshmen. They are Aurora Schuck, Savannah Walenczak, Lily Boyden, Kiki Smith, Peyton Price, Jensyn Lins and Lexi Lerwick.

There are a total of seven sophomores on the team. These sophomores are Cooper, Reese Tappan, Aaliyah Bluett, Lindsey Turner, Khalia Gathright, Brae Cole and Jaiden McClellan.

Six Juniors round out the rest of the roster, these Juniors include, Aniah Cutler, Margie Detrizio, Musuai Isaia, Alyssa Gray, Marin Whieldon and Jenna Studer.

Impact players this year for the Cougs are, Frimpong-Ellertson, Studer, Lynch, Weaver, Minniss and Cooper.

Conference matchups this season that are intriguing for the Cougs are against both Stanford and UCLA. The Cardinal were ranked as the first-place team in the Pac-12 in the preseason voting with 116 total points and six first-place votes. The Bruins had 112 points and four first-place votes while the Cougs had 100 points and two first-place votes.

Following WSU in the preseason rankings is USC with 88 points, Colorado with 79 points and Cal with 70. Oregon State has 22 points in 11th place and Arizona has 15 points to round out the preseason soccer rankings.