Cougar soccer faces off against Seattle Redhawks

WSU starts season looking to repeat last year’s opener

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Cougar soccer faces off against Seattle Redhawks

Then-junior forward Morgan Weaver weaves her way past University of Washington then-junior goalkeeper Siena Ruelas as she drives toward the goal on Nov. 2nd, 2018 at the Lower Soccer Field.

Then-junior forward Morgan Weaver weaves her way past University of Washington then-junior goalkeeper Siena Ruelas as she drives toward the goal on Nov. 2nd, 2018 at the Lower Soccer Field.

OLIVER MCKENNA | DAILY EVERGREEN FILE

Then-junior forward Morgan Weaver weaves her way past University of Washington then-junior goalkeeper Siena Ruelas as she drives toward the goal on Nov. 2nd, 2018 at the Lower Soccer Field.

OLIVER MCKENNA | DAILY EVERGREEN FILE

OLIVER MCKENNA | DAILY EVERGREEN FILE

Then-junior forward Morgan Weaver weaves her way past University of Washington then-junior goalkeeper Siena Ruelas as she drives toward the goal on Nov. 2nd, 2018 at the Lower Soccer Field.

KURIA POUNDS, Evergreen reporter

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After a 5-0 victory over the San Diego State University Aztecs in an exhibition match, WSU soccer looks to start its season off with a road win against the Seattle University Redhawks in its season opener 7 p.m. tonight at Championship Field.

Seattle University also won its exhibition game 3-2 against British Columbia.

The Cougars look to repeat last season’s season opener when they defeated the Redhawks 3-1.

WSU is currently ranked fourth in the preseason rankings from the PAC-12, behind Stanford, UCLA and USC. Key players for the Cougars include sixth-year goalkeeper Ella Dederick and midfielder Averie Collins, a graduate transfer from Stanford.

Senior forward Morgan Weaver said she is excited to see how this young team will play, not just on Thursday, but throughout the season.

“They never give up. We have the momentum, and we’re going to keep fighting until the whistle blows,” Weaver said.

After last season’s NCAA tournament, finishing with a record of 13-6-1, 5-5-1 in the conference, the Cougars look to improve with the young talent on the team.

Assistant Coach Jon Harvey said he is looking to grow from the exhibition game.

“We played a bunch of young players in [the exhibition] game,” he said. “We have a veteran group, and we want to see them fine-tune the technical and tactical sides of things that we left on the table.”

Harvey said he knows how experienced this group is and expects them to create their own goals for the season, whether that be the tournament or a championship.

“That’s our standard here at Washington State, and that’s always what we’re shooting for,” he said.

Junior forward Elyse Bennett said the team is a good cohesive unit now and sees the potential for this season. In her eyes, she said, the expectation for the season is to make this a positive experience for her teammates so they will want to stay on the team.

“We have a lot of returners and a lot of people coming off injuries that are back,” she said. “The freshmen are obviously going to come in and step up and elevate the team.”

Kickoff for this match is set for 7 p.m. Thursday at Championship Field. The game can be seen live from the WAC Digital Network.