Soccer to play two home weekend games against Arizona schools

Cougs play Arizona State Thursday, followed by Arizona Sunday



WSU forward Brianna McReynolds battles for the ball during an NCAA women’s soccer match against Oregon, Oct. 14.

JAKE HULL, Evergreen reporter

WSU soccer (8-3-3) is two victories away from double-digit wins on the season. This weekend they have a chance to reach that milestone as both Arizona schools come to town. 

First, the Cougs will play the Arizona State Sun Devils Thursday, then will finish the weekend Sunday as they host the Arizona Wildcats.

The Cougs are coming off a 1-1 draw with the Oregon Ducks on Friday. Coug forward Margie Detrizio found herself coming off the bench in the game as she has been on a bit of a scoreless streak, but coming off the bench gave her the intensity she needed as she scored the only goal for WSU in the game, bringing her total to eight. 

“We got to be more comfortable in front of the goal,” said head coach Todd Shulenberger

The Cougs looked strong in the game, but could not get past the Ducks goalie Leah Freeman more than once, who is first in the Pac-12 in saves.

“If one goal goes in here early it’s going to open up at some point,” Shulenberger said.

Against the Sun Devils, WSU is 10-13-3 all-time. Their most recent meeting was in October 2021 where the game was a draw. The first time these teams met was in 1996 when WSU won 2-0. The last two matchups between these two teams have both been draws.

On the season, the Sun Devils are 6-3-3. They started their season with a 1-1 draw with South Dakota State, then followed it up with a 2-1 victory against Boise State. 

Arizona State then went on a five-game winning streak, including a 3-2 victory against Colorado and a 2-1 victory against Cal. After the streak, the Sun Devils got swept by the Los Angeles schools and lost to Stanford giving them their three losses on the season. Their most recent game was a scoreless draw against Utah.

Arizona State is led by Nicole Douglas and Eva van Deursen. Douglas has nine goals on the season, tied for third in the conference while van Deursen has five goals on the season. Lucy Johnson has six assists on the season to lead the Sun Devils.

Defensively, Sun Devil goalie Pauline Nelles has allowed 15 goals on the season and saved 45 shots. Her 45 saves are tied for fourth in the conference. 

Against the Arizona Wildcats, WSU is 16-9-1. The last matchup was in September 2021 when the Cougs won 2-0. The first-ever matchup was a 4-0 victory for the Cougs in 1995. Until last season, the Wildcats won six straight against the Cougars.

On the season Arizona is 5-6-2. Their first game this season was a 2-1 victory against Iowa State. After a 1-1 draw with Nebraska, the Wildcats lost their first game to Grand Canyon University by a score of 1-0. 

After losing to then-ranked No. 10 Pepperdine, Arizona got back to winning ways against UC Davis. The Wildcats have a 2-4 Pac-12 record, their wins came against USC and Colorado. 

The Wildcats are led by Sami Baytosh and Nicole Dallin who both have two goals to lead Arizona. Defensively, goalie Hope Hisey has allowed 13 goals and saved 49 shots so far. Her 49 saves are third-best in the conference. Her 13 goals allowed is also the fifth-lowest in the conference. 

If the Cougs want to get the weekend sweep they need to produce chances early in both games and be more clinical with their shooting to produce more goals. Defensively, the Cougs are strong- and need to be dominant to keep both the Wildcats and Sun Devils scoreless.