Oct. 13, 2005
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Game #13 - UAB (7-5-1, 3-0-1 C-USA) at Memphis (8-4-0, 2-1-0 C-USA)
Friday, October 14 7:00 p.m.
Mike Rose Soccer Complex (3,000) Memphis, Tenn.
The Tigers return home for a Friday night showdown with defending Conference USA champion UAB. The Blazers, who defeated the Tigers twice last season, come to Memphis for the first time since the 2002 season for a 7:00 p.m. kickoff at Mike Rose Soccer Complex.
Due to the rescheduling of last weekend's game at East Carolina, the Tigers will have their scheduled three-game homestand interupted next week. Memphis will travel back to Greenville, N.C. for a midweek game next Wednesday at East Carolina. They then return home for a Friday-Sunday doubleheader, taking on UCF for the first time school history on October 21 at 7:00 p.m. and Southern Miss in the home finale on October 23 at 1:00 p.m. The game against Southern Miss will be followed by senior day.
Series vs. UAB
Memphis is 2-8-0 in its history against UAB. The Tigers' last win in the series came in the 2002 season, which was also the last time that UAB and Memphis played in Memphis. Current seniors Robyn Smart and Courtnee Melton were freshmen on that team. The Tigers topped the Blazers 1-0 on October 20 of that year. Memphis' only other win in the series came in the 1997 season in Birmingham.
The Blazers are currently on a three-game winning streak and a five-game unbeaten streak. They tied their first conference game of the year with UTEP and have since reeled off three straight conference wins. They have scored 25 goals on the year but have given up almost as many at 21. Sally Palmer and Jill Porto lead the way offensively for UAB with nine and eight goals, respectively. After that duo, however, only one other player has as many as two goals and no other players have more than one. Katie Forbis, a native of Memphis, has seen the majority of the time in goal for the Blazers and has a 1.65 goals against average.
Last Year vs. UAB
The Tigers and Blazers met twice with UAB winning both games. The Blazers topped Memphis 2-1 in Birmingham during the regular season. The game was the second loss of a four-game losing streak down the stretch for the Tigers. Memphis kept to just a one-goal game despite being outshot 30-8. Then, in the quarterfinals of the Conference USA tournament in St. Louis, UAB topped Memphis 4-1 en route to winning the C-USA tournament championship.
Brooks Monaghan (Memphis, 1994) is in his sixth year as head coach at Memphis, where he holds a 47-56-5 career record. Prior to his tenure as head coach, he was the assistant coach in charge of goalkeepers for five years, serving since the program's inception in 1995. Just the second head coach in program history, Monaghan became the program's all-time winningest coach last year with his 35th career win.
Paul Harbin (Mercer, 1985) is in his 10th season as head coach at UAB, where he holds a 101-81-12 record with the Blazers. He is the only coach in program history at UAB. Last year, he led the Blazers to the C-USA tournament championship and the season before to the regular season championship. Prior to coming to UAB, he also coached at his alma mater, Mercer. Overall, he holds a 138-107-14 career record in his 14th year as a head coach.
UAB will be the third of four opponents this year for Memphis that won either its conference regular season or tournament championship last year. So far, the Tigers are 1-1 against these teams after beating Middle Tennessee (regular season Sun Belt) but losing to Samford (regular season Ohio Valley). The Blazers were the tournament champions of Conference USA in 2004. Memphis will also play SMU later this year, which won both the regular season and tournament championships in the WAC. Additionally, UCF finished in second place in the Atlantic Sun Conference in both the regular season and conference tournament and qualified for the NCAA Tournament last year.
Mississauga Duo Comes Through
The freshman duo of Joanna Alexopulos and Alexandra Atkinson are both from Mississauga, Ontario and were club teammates prior to coming to Memphis. The duo played a big part in Memphis' 2-1 win at Marshall on Sunday. Alexopulos drew the start at goalkeeper, her first-ever game at goalkeeper in her career, and came up with the win, making four saves and only allowing one goal, which came on a penalty kick. Atkinson, meanwhile, a center defender who has started all 12 games this year, played steadily on the defensive end of the field to help out her first-time goalie and also assisted on both of Memphis' goals in the game.
Hayes Continues Pace
Freshman forward Kylie Hayes scored Memphis' first goal of the game against Marshall and has now scored a goal in nine of Memphis' 12 games.
East Carolina Game Rescheduled
The game at East Carolina that was scheduled for last Friday night and was postponed due to rain and unplayable field conditions has been rescheduled for Wednesday, October 19 at 12:30 p.m., central time (1:30 p.m. eastern). This makeup game will now break up what was scheduled to be a three-game homestand to end the home schedule for the Tigers. Memphis will now play four games in a 10-day span due to the makeup.
Marshall was the third opponent that Memphis has played this year for the first time and the Tigers were able to pick up their first win against such opponents on Sunday against the Herd. The Tigers also met Samford and UTEP for the first time ever but lost to both of those teams. Later this year, Memphis will also meet UCF and SMU for the first time ever.
Spreading the Wealth
After its game this past weekend, Memphis has now had 17 different players record at least one point this year through 12 games. Only seven players that have seen action have not recorded a point. Last year, only 16 different players recorded points in 19 games.
With the regular season more than halfway over, Memphis has just four players that have played in and started every game this year. Only Kylie Hayes and the defensive backfield of Alexandra Atkinson, Kate Murphy, and Halley Jo Sullivan have started every game for the Tigers this season.
Mikami Records Second Hat Trick
Junior forward Shoko Mikami recorded her second hat trick of the year and second in three games with three goals against Tulane on Friday night. Mikami, who had become the first Tiger to record a hat trick since Jessica Gjertsen in 2000 when she turned the trick against Middle Tennessee on September 18, became the first player to record two hat tricks in a season since Gjertsen did in 2000. Gjertsen had three hat tricks in 2000 while the Tigers as a team had four with Candice Spiniolas having the other.
Last year, Memphis individuals recorded goals in back-to-back games only three times. This year, through 11 games, it has been done four times already. Shoko Mikami has done it three times now with her goals against Tulane and UTEP, while Kylie Hayes also has recorded goals in back-to-back games, in fact six straight games.
Tigers Top 2004 Totals in 10th Game
Memphis surpassed its total of 84 points from all of last year in just its 10th game. Currently, the Tigers have 108 points on the year. Memphis also has surpassed its goal total from last year (28) and assist total from 2004 as well (28), which came in 19 games. Memphis now has 36 goals and 36 assists on the year in 12 games. The Tigers have also recorded at least one goal in 16 of the 24 halves they have played this year, not including overtime periods.
Long Time Coming
It only took 58 career games to do it, but senior defender Courtnee Melton recorded her first career goal in the 6-0 win over Tulane. Melton, one of two seniors on the team this year and a local product out of Bartlett, Tenn., scored Memphis' second goal of the game. It was also her first points in nearly three years, as her only career points before the Tulane game were two assists she recorded as a freshman in 2002.
Hayes Sets Record with Streak
Earlier this year, freshman forward Kylie Hayes made history by becoming the first player in school history to score a goal in both five and six straight games. The previous record for consecutive games with a goal was held by Meredith Smith, who scored in four straight games in 1996.
So far this year, it is nearly a sure bet that either Kylie Hayes or Shoko Mikami or both will score a goal each game for the Tigers. At least one of them has recorded at least one goal in 11 of the 12 games so far this year and they have scored in the same game in six of the Tigers' 12 games.
Last year, Memphis individuals only recorded two multiple-goal matches the entire year. Shoko Mikami's second hat trick of the year against Tulane was the fifth individual multiple-goal match this year. Listed below are the players that have recorded multiple-goal matches this year.
Name (Goals) Opponent (Date)
Asuka Kubota (2) Tenn. Tech (8-28)
Shoko Mikami (2) Tenn. Tech (8-28)
Kylie Hayes (2) Evansville (9-4)
Shoko Mikami (3) Middle Tenn. (9-18)
Shoko Mikami (3) Tulane (9-30)
More Offensive Facts
- Last year, Memphis' top point producer had just 15 points all season long. This year, its point leader, Shoko Mikami, already has surpassed that with 29 points in 12 games. Two others have also already passed that as Kylie Hayes has 25 points and Asuka Kubota 15 points.
- Last year's top goal scorers on the team each had only six goals apiece. This year, Mikami has 13 goals already and Hayes has scored 10 goals all in 12 games.
- Last year's assist leader had six assists in 19 games. This year, Nicky McLeod has already accumulated six assists in 12 games while both Kylie Hayes and Asuka Kubota have five assists apiece.
Tigers Set Mike Rose Attendance Record
With a crowd of 739 at the Ole Miss game, Memphis set a record for home attendance at the Mike Rose Soccer Complex. It was also the second-largest home crowd ever for the women's soccer program.
Records In Danger of Being Broken
With all its offensive prowess this year, Memphis has several individual and team season records that very well could fall by the end of the year. The box on the right lists these records.
Shoko Mikami became the second Memphis player this year to score a goal in three straight games, joining Kylie Hayes. She also became just the eighth player in school history to score a goal in three straight games. Listed below are the players in Tiger history that recorded goals in at least three straight games.
Shoko Mikami 2005
Kylie Hayes (6 straight) 2005
Alison Baker 2002
Alison Baker 2001
Becca Amrozowicz 1999
Jennifer Vossen 1996
Christy Caswell 1996
Meredith Smith (4 straight) 1996
Briones Named Conference USA Defensive Player of the Week
Sophomore goalkeeper Isabel Briones had what was probably the best week of her still relatively young collegiate career as Memphis beat UT-Martin and Missouri State and for her efforts was named the Conference USA Defensive Player of the Week. Briones, who is in her third year at Memphis after redshirting as a freshman and only appearing in five games last year, recorded back-to-back shutouts for the first time in her career with wins over Skyhawks and Bears. They were the third and fourth respective shutouts of her career.
Memphis' second and third goals against UT-Martin were scored just :15 seconds apart. Last year, the least amount of time in between goals was 2:20 between goals by Madison Cheek and Caroline Barrett against Alabama A&M.
Now That's Efficiency
Not only did freshman Sarah MacGregor record her first career point by assisting on Asuka Kubota's first Memphis goal against Tennessee Tech, but she also recorded the assist just :29 seconds after entering the game as a substitute.
Now That's Really Efficient
Freshman Lauren Everhart topped MacGregor's feat by recording her first career point just :10 seconds after entering the game against Missouri State. She stole a goal kick by MSU's goalie and dished to Shoko Mikami for a goal and her first career assist.
Still, neither topped last year's quickest point, which went to Elaine Sedgewick, who assisted on a Mary Shelton goal just :06 seconds after entering the game in Memphis' 5-1 win over Charlotte on October 8th.
The win over Evansville was Memphis' first win on a neutral field since the 1997 season and the first ever win in program history on a neutral field during the regular season. Memphis' only two previous wins on neutral fields came in the 1996 and 1997 seasons and both were Conference USA Tournament games. The Tigers now have a 3-5-1 all-time record on neutral fields.
Mikami Surpasses 2004 in One Game
Shoko Mikami, who led the nation in scoring in Division II while playing at Christian Brothers University two years ago, surpassed both her point and goal totals from last year in just one game by scoring two goals and recording one assist for five points against Tennessee Tech. She had just three points (1g, 1a) last year while playing in just 11 games after recovering from a knee injury for much of the first half of the season.
Long Time Coming
The seven goals scored by Memphis against Tennessee Tech were the most since a 9-0 win over Rhodes on September 1, 1999, which was also the season opener that year. The seven-goal margin of victory was also the most since that same game.
For the second straight year, Memphis recorded a shutout on opening day. It was also the fourth time in school history that the Tigers won in a shutout on opening day.
Goalie Helps Out
Goalkeeper Isabel Briones did something against Tennessee Tech that rarely happens for a goalie, and it was just the second time in Memphis women's soccer history that it happened. She recorded an assist. She assisted on Shoko Mikami's second goal of the day by punting the ball well beyond midfield after making a save. The punt was played out of the air by Kylie Hayes, who dribbled with it before dishing to Mikami for the score. The only other time in program history that a goalie recorded a point was when goalkeeper Heather Chinellato recorded an assist during the 1998 season.
Recruiting Class Ranked Highest Ever at Memphis
The incoming recruiting class of this year, consisting of 14 freshman and one sophomore transfer, was ranked 27th in the country by Soccer Buzz, the highest ever ranking for Memphis. The Tiger newcomers were the highest ranked team in Conference USA in the rankings and they were also ranked eighth in the Central Region. Below is a list of how other C-USA teams ranked in the national rankings, followed by teams that were ranked in their region.
8. Memphis (Central)
8. UCF (Southeast)
13. Rice (Central)
13. UAB (Southeast)
17. SMU (Central)
19. Tulane (Central)
23. UTEP (Central)
23. East Carolina (Southeast)
From National Team to Memphis
Three newcomers on the Tigers have come to Memphis with national team experience for their respective countries. Sophomore Asuka Kubota played on the Japanese Under-19 National Team, freshman Joanna Alexopulos played for the Canadian Under-17 National Team, while freshman Aika Young is a member of the Guam National Team.
Freshman Joanna Alexopulos spent her summer playing with Toronto Lynx of the W-League. The W-League is part of the United Soccer Leagues, which is the largest organization of soccer leagues in North America. The USL sponsors both professional and amateur leagues in both the U.S. and Canada. The W-League is now recognized as the highest level of women's soccer in North America due to the WUSA folding a few years ago. Alexopulos saw action in 12 games for the Lynx, whose roster also included former Tiger Yuiko Konno.
Two members of the Tiger roster were named All-Americans at their previous school. Sophomore transfer Asuka Kubota was an NAIA All-American at Martin Methodist College last year while freshman Chloe James was a high school All-American as a senior at Roger Bacon High in the Cincinnati area.
Alaskan Pipeline to Memphis
Memphis has a very diverse roster, boasting representatives from 10 states and five countries. One of the more unique things about the Lady Tigers is that two members hail from the State of Alaska, which is remarkable considering that Memphis is over 4,000 miles from Anchorage, where both sophomore Halley Jo Sullivan and freshman Kate Murphy hail from. According to research conducted by Matt Beltz of the Memphis athletic media relations office, Memphis is one of only three Division I women's soccer teams in the country that have at least two players from Alaska on its roster. The only other teams in the country that have as many players from Alaska as Memphis are Montana and Valparaiso, which both have three players each from The Last Frontier.
From All Corners of the World
For the second straight year, the Memphis roster has representatives from a number of different states and countries. Last year, the Tigers had players from 12 different states and five different countries on their roster and 40 percent of the roster was made up of foreign players. This year, Memphis has representatives from 10 different states and five different countries and just over 30 percent of the roster is made up of foreign players.
Mike Rose is Home Once Again
For the second straight year, the women's soccer program will play all of its home games at the Mike Rose Soccer Complex. Last year was the first year that all home games were played there after only playing conference games there for the previous two years.