Southern Utah University women’s soccer team looks to continue its best start in program history with two home games this week.
The Thunderbirds are now preparing for their Western Athletic Conference debut versus the University of Texas, Rio Grande Valley on Friday, Sept. 16. Kickoff will be at 4 p.m. The second homestand of the week is against another WAC foe in Stephen F. Austin State University on Sunday, Sept. 18, with kickoff at noon.
SUU soccer is back in action coming off a loss to California State, Fullerton last time out. The Thunderbirds are off to the best start in program history at 5-1.
In the early stages of the season, the Thunderbird offense set the tone, outscoring opponents 23-2 this season. The Thunderbirds are also getting attention on the national stage, being ranked first in the country in points per game and scoring offense. Their current average is just over 10 points per game and just under 4 goals per game.
Freshman Sammie Sofonia leads the way for the Thunderbirds with six goals and 12 points on the season. Sofonia is ranked in the top ten nationally, both in total goals and goals per game.
On the defensive side, redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Megan Short is ranked 38th in the nation in goals against average with a .556 percentage.
Looking at the opponents
Texas Rio Grande Valley has had an up-and-down season with a 2-5 record. Wins against Texas Southern University and Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi. The Vaqueros’ offense has struggled with only seven goals on the season compared to the 12 goals their opponents have scored.
Sophomore Amy Hislop and junior Ana Recarte-Pacheco lead the Vaqueros with two goals each.
Stephen F. Austin has also struggled this season and is currently riding a four-game losing streak with a 1-5-1 record. The Ladyjacks’ only win of the season was a road victory against Prairie View A&M University.
Sophomore Lily Hargove leads the Ladyjacks with two goals on the season.
It is a new era for Thunderbird soccer with Southern Utah having only faced Texas Rio Grande Valley once before in a 1-0 losing effort on Sept. 6, 2019, in Edinburg, Texas.
The Thunderbirds will play Stephen F. Austin for the first time in program history.
This will be the only time in the regular season that the Thunderbirds face off against both teams. Southern Utah will face the University of Texas, Rio Grande Valley, on Friday, Sept. 16, with kickoff at 4 p.m.
The Thunderbirds will play Stephen F. Austin State University on Sunday, Sept. 18, with kickoff at noon. Both games will be held at the Thunderbird Soccer Field and will be streamed on ESPN+.
Article by: Anthony Colasuono
Photo courtesy of SUU Athletics