NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen Preview

(Photo: Bill Dally/ISIPhotos.com)

And then there were three. Every Pac-12 team featuring on Aussie on its roster has advanced to the Sweet Sixteen, and there is no reason to think all three won’t make it to the Elite Eight. However, there are some tantalising matchups on the board, including two rematches of regular season contests.

Stanford (Beattie Goad)

Sweet Sixteen: v Penn State – 8am, Monday November 25

Live on Pac-12 Network

Stanford have been utterly dominant throughout the first two rounds, scoring 19 goals and conceding a grand total of zero. However, this game against Penn State shapes as a tasty encounter for the neutrals and a potential heartstopper for fans of the Cardinal and Nittany Lions. Stanford do have the wood on Penn State so far this season, with the teams meeting in the season opener. The Cardinal won that game 2-1, outshooting the home side 17-9 in the process. With this game being played on Stanford’s home patch, one would be forgiven for expecting Stanford to just keep marching on as they have done for most of this season. However, Penn State didn’t earn a #4 seed being mediocre, winning the Big Ten tournament before knocking off Arizona 4-3 in overtime in the NCAA Tournament second round.

UCLA (Rachel Lowe, Teagan Micah)

Sweet Sixteen: v Wisconsin – 11am, Monday November 25

Live on UCLA Live Stream

UCLA haven’t quite been as dominant as Stanford, but with 4-1 and 5-0 wins under their belt to this point, the Bruins are in outstanding form heading into their contest with Wisconsin. This game also represents a rematch of a regular season fixture, with the Bruins and Badgers facing off on UCLA’s home patch in September. UCLA won that game 1-0 in a remarkably tight game, with Teagan Micah forced to make five saves in a match-saving performance. With UCLA a #2 seed for the tournament and Wisconsin a #3 seed, this shapes as potentially one of the tightest of the eight games in the Sweet Sixteen.

Teagan Micah has been largely untested in the opening two rounds, but plenty shapes to change in this fixture. The senior has already proven crucial to one UCLA victory in a game between these teams, and it would not be a surprise to anyone if the Matildas World Cup squad member reprises that role in this contest. Rachel Lowe also enjoyed an extended stint on the pitch in the demolition of Clemson in the second round, but the freshman’s minutes against Wisconsin may depend on the scoreline at any particular time.

Washington State (Aly Hay)

Sweet Sixteen: v West Virginia – 9am, Monday November 25

Live on ACC Network Extra (US Only)

Washington State produced one of the upsets of the tournament to get to this point, defeating #1 seed Virginia, giving the Cougars every reason to be confident heading into this fixture against West Virginia. However, that won’t make the contest against the Mountaineers an easy one, with West Virginia comfortably handling Georgetown 2-0 in the first round before edging to a 1-0 overtime win against Central Connecticut State in the second round. Just three years removed from a national championship game appearance, West Virginia may not be the same team they were then, but they are still in the nation’s top echelon. However, Washington State are probably a better side than their lack of seeding suggests, with a number of elite players on the roster. The draw has partially opened up for them with their defeat of Virginia, but they now have to take advantage.

Once again, it is highly unlikely that we see Aly Hay take to the pitch as the Cougars’ third-string goalkeeper, but as a freshman, that is hardly cause for concern at this stage.

NCAA Tournament Second Round Wrap

(Photo: Rand Bleimeister/UCLA)

We started with five, and three teams featuring Aussies remain alive following the second round of the NCAA Tournament. All three Pac-12 teams advanced, with UCLA and Stanford cruising, and Washington State securing a deserved upset over #1 seed Virginia in a thrilling encounter.

Stanford (Beattie Goad) v Hofstra (Monique Iannella, Grace Watson Carr)

Final Score: Stanford defeated Hofstra 4-0

Three Aussies featured across the two rosters in what would be the final college game for either Beattie Goad or Monique Iannella. Eventually, it was Goad, the only one of the three to take to the pitch, and Stanford who secured the 4-0 victory courtesy of a second-half barrage. Hofstra had largely kept Stanford in check throughout the first 45 minutes, with a third-minute goal for Madison Haley the only tally of the first half. However, three goals in the space of less than four minutes blew the game wide open as Stanford’s one-goal advantage became four in the blink of an eye. With no more goals forthcoming, the Cardinal would cruise to a spot in the Sweet Sixteen, whilst Hofstra’s season came to an end.

Beattie Goad was the only Aussie to see any playing time, finishing with a pair of shots in a 46-minute outing off the bench.

Texas Tech (Demi Koulizakis)

Second Round: lost 3-2 to Michigan

A whirlwind start and a whirlwind finish kept this game exciting throughout the contest, but in the end, Demi Koulizakis and her Texas Tech side bowed out of the competition, bringing an end to Koulizakis’ college career. The Red Raiders shipped a goal early to fall in a 1-0 hole, but responded almost just as quickly to knot things up at 1-1 after 22 minutes. Michigan would add goals in the 63rd and 84th minutes to put themselves up 3-1, but Texas Tech refused to lie down. It was Koulizakis herself providing the assist on Savanna Jones’ 89th minute goal to ensure a frenetic last couple of minutes, but Michigan held on for the 3-2 victory to advance to the Sweet Sixteen.

Koulizakis would play 67 minutes in what turned out to be her final college game, tallying a shot as well as the assist for her team’s second goal.

UCLA (Rachel Lowe, Teagan Micah)

Second Round: defeated Clemson 5-0

Clemson had found it tough to score in their opening round game against Vanderbilt, progressing on penalties after a 0-0 draw, and little changed against Rachel Lowe, Teagan Micah, and UCLA. There was just one little problem for the Tigers: UCLA had far more success than Vanderbilt at putting the ball in the back of the net. With the scoreboard reading 4-0 at halftime, the game was effectively over as a contest by the time the teams headed to the locker rooms. A fifth goal nine minutes from time ensured that the Bruins would have more goals than Teagan Micah would have saves, as the senior shut down Clemson on four occasions in a complete game performance.

Rachel Lowe enjoyed an extended stint off the bench, playing 53 minutes in midfield in the rout.

Washington State (Aly Hay)

Second Round: defeated Virginia 3-2

In one of the most exciting matches of a day filled with thrillers, Washington State managed to pull out the upset over #1 seed Virginia. The Cougars opened up a 1-0 lead just 12 minutes into the contest, only to be pulled back by the Cavaliers just 6 minutes later. Star attacker Morgan Weaver would restore Washington State’s advantage on the half-hour mark, but Virginia came out firing after halftime and it seemed all but inevitable that an equaliser would follow. Just seven minutes into the second half, the goal came to tie the game at 2-2, but there would be one final twist in the tale. With just 8 minutes to play, Weaver teed up MacKenzie Frimpong-Ellertson for what would turn out to be the winning goal in a famous upset victory on the road.

As backup goalkeeper, Aly Hay did not feature for the Cougars as star custodian Ella Dederick played out the full 90 minutes.

NCAA Tournament Second Round Preview

(Photo: Rand Bleimeister/UCLA)

With five teams featuring Aussies still alive in the NCAA Tournament, a quarter of all games on Saturday will feature at least one Australian. Stanford and Hofstra face off, guaranteeing a path through to the Sweet Sixteen for at least one Australian. Meanwhile, UCLA and Texas Tech come into their games as favourites, whilst Washington State have a real chance of springing an upset against top-seeded Virginia.

Hofstra (Monique Iannella, Grace Watson Carr)

Second Round: @ Stanford – 2pm, Saturday November 23

Live on Stanford Live Stream

Hofstra only just managed to sneak through their first round fixture against Loyola Chicago in overtime, and things won’t get any easier as they travel to #1 seed Stanford for their second round match. Having manage just one goal on fifteen shots in their tournament opener, the Pride will need to be far more ruthless in taking what few chances the Stanford defence may offer, as it is highly unlikely they will get another fifteen opportunities. At the other end, keeping Loyola Chicago to just four shots on target was an encouraging start. The Hofstra defence will need to pull out a performance at least on that level if they are to slow down the rampant Stanford attack, which is in red-hot form at the moment. If Hofstra did win, it wouldn’t be the first time a top-seeded Stanford side lost in the second round in recent years; Santa Clara knocked the Cardinal out in overtime in 2016 after Andi Sullivan’s ACL injury forced the US national team midfielder out of the game.

Unfortunately, we are unlikely to see backup goalkeeper Grace Watson Carr in this game, whilst Monique Iannella misses out through injury.

Stanford (Beattie Goad)

Second Round: v Hofstra – 2pm, Saturday November 23

Live on Stanford Live Stream

If Hofstra are underdogs against Stanford, that must mean that Beattie Goad’s side come into the game as favourites. Having banged home 15 goals in a record-shattering performance against Prairie View A&M, the Cardinal are in ruthless form of late. Stanford came into the tournament on the back of a perfect Pac-12 season, with their only loss to date coming on the road at Pepperdine early in the campaign. Should Stanford not get too far ahead of themselves, they ought to roll to a solid victory by multiple goals onto a matchup against Arizona or Penn State in the Sweet Sixteen.

Beattie Goad earned a start against Prairie View A&M, tallying three shots on target in her time on the pitch. The senior has been in solid form of late, and is proving to be crucial to Stanford’s chances of securing a second national title in three years.

Texas Tech (Demi Koulizakis)

Second Round: v Michigan – 8am, Saturday November 23

Live on ESPN3 (US Only)

Texas Tech eked out a shootout victory over Pepperdine in the first round, and now face a Michigan side that struggled to get out of its own way against Bowling Green in their own tournament opener. The Red Raiders started well against Pepperdine, taking an early 2-0 lead before allowing Pepperdine to tie things up at 2-2 with goals either side of halftime. However, having come through a heart-stopping penalty shootout in which goalkeeper Madison White came up with saves on Pepperdine’s final two shots to secure the win, Texas Tech will be looking to put together a more clinical performance across the 90 minutes.

Michigan may have needed a winner 11 minutes from time to escape with a win against Bowling Green, but don’t be fooled by that performance. The Wolverines have dropped just five games this season, and have wins over Penn State, Washington State, and Rutgers among their 16 victories to this point. They are certainly a top-notch side, and on a neutral field in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, anything could happen. But if Demi Koulizakis and the Texas Tech attack can start the way they did against Pepperdine, don’t expect the Red Raiders to slip up and let their opponents back into the game again.

UCLA (Rachel Lowe, Teagan Micah)

Second Round: v Clemson – 3pm, Saturday November 23

Live on UCLA Live Stream

UCLA were barely troubled in their 4-1 first round victory over Lamar, but things won’t be quite so easy against Clemson, who won their way through on penalties against Vanderbilt in the first round. The Tigers kept a clean sheet against the Commodores in the first round, allowing just six shots on target in the 0-0 draw after 110 minutes. However, that was their first clean sheet in 11 games as their attack generally got the job done, scoring multiple goals on five of those occasions.

It will be interesting to see which Clemson side comes out – the one that we’ve seen for most of the season, or the one that produced a goalless game less than a week ago. Not that UCLA will mind either way – their attack can break down even the stingiest of defences, and a defence backed up by Teagan Micah will make life hard for Clemson’s attack. Nonetheless, the Bruins will have to be at or near their best to get past what could be a tricky contest.

Teagan Micah will almost certainly once again start for the Bruins as the senior looks to return to the College Cup for the second time in three seasons. Meanwhile, Rachel Lowe’s performance off the bench against Lamar was highly encouraging, and may just have earned the freshman extended minutes this weekend.

Washington State (Aly Hay)

Second Round: @ Virginia – 11am, Saturday November 23

Live on ACC Network Extra (US Only)

When the opposition has the big #1 next to their name in the bracket, and you don’t have a number next to your name at all, it’s safe to say that you’re coming into the game as outsiders. Somehow, it’s not likely that Virginia’s status as a top seed in their quarter of the bracket will faze Washington State one iota. The Cougars have played a number of ranked teams close this season, defeating California in overtime, and dropping one-goal decisions to Arizona and UCLA in the regular season. A 1-0 win over #14 Memphis in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament brought Washington State to this point, and they have every right to be confident in their ability to spring an upset.

Of course, it won’t be easy by any stretch. Virginia’s only loss this season came to fellow national #1 seed North Carolina, having cut a swathe through the powerful ACC as well as a non-conference schedule that featured three more ranked teams. But the Cougars feature one of the top goalkeepers in the nation in Ella Dederick, and an attack featuring an elite forward in Morgan Weaver. It might take Dederick standing on her head to keep Washington State in the game, but if Weaver gets her chance, you can just about back her in to take it.

As a backup goalkeeper, it is doubtful that we will see Aly Hay take to the field in this game as the freshman gains experience training alongside Dederick this season.

NCAA Tournament First Round Wrap

It was a perfect weekend for the Aussies in the NCAA Tournament, as all five teams picked up victories to move onto the second round. Beattie Goad and Stanford broke a number of records in a ruthless victory over Prairie View A&M, but undoubtedly the most excitement was to be found in Texas Tech’s shootout victory over Pepperdine as Demi Koulizakis’ college career was extended for at least one more game.

Hofstra (Monique Iannella, Grace Watson Carr)

First Round: defeated Loyola Chicago 1-0 (OT)

Hofstra dominated the majority of the contest, but couldn’t convert that dominance into goals as the Pride were forced into extra time by Loyola Chicago. Outshooting their opponents 15-11, Hofstra were able to create a number of solid chances, but found themselves unable to find the back of the net in normal time. But a beautiful team move in the 94th minute changed everything. Following passes by Miri Taylor and Bella Richards, Sabrina Bryan finished off the base of the far post to send the Hofstra faithful into raptures as their team moved on to face Beattie Goad and Stanford in the second round. Neither Grace Watson Carr nor Monique Iannella featured for Hofstra as the Pride used just one substitute throughout the contest.

Stanford (Beattie Goad)

First Round: defeated Prairie View A&M 15-0

Stanford broke all kinds of tournament records in their ruthless 15-0 win over Prairie View A&M, dominating on their way to a second-round matchup against Aussie-laden Hofstra. Three goals in the first 15 minutes set the tone, but the Cardinal didn’t slow down, breaking the previous NCAA Tournament record for goals in a game with their 11th in the 70th minute, and tallying another four just for good measure. Reigning MAC Hermann Trophy winner Catarina Macario finished with 4 goals and 5 assists, also setting an NCAA Tournament record for most points in a game. Things shape to be slightly more difficult against Hofstra in the second round, but Stanford will still come in as heavy favourites next Friday. Beattie Goad’s performance last week earned the senior a start for the Cardinal, with the senior registering three shots on target in a 52-minute outing.

Texas Tech (Demi Koulizakis)

First Round: drew 2-2 with Pepperdine (Texas Tech advanced 4-3 on penalties)

Texas Tech took an early 2-0 lead against Pepperdine, with Demi Koulizakis drawing the foul that led to the Red Raiders’ second goal as the hosts looked in complete control after 11 minutes. Things swung even further in Texas Tech’s favour as Pepperdine’s goalkeeper was forced off after a collision and striker Devyn Gilfoy was forced to deputise. However, it was Pepperdine who rallied to tie the game at 2-2 just after halftime, eventually outshooting Texas Tech 21-7. Despite this, the teams could not be separated after 90 minutes. 20 minutes of extra time couldn’t split the pair, sending the game to penalties. With her team down 3-2 in the shootout after three rounds, Texas Tech goalkeeper Madison White came up with saves on Pepperdine’s final two attempts as the Red Raiders advanced with a 4-3 win in the shootout. As per usual, Koulizakis started for the Red Raiders, playing 99 minutes as they advanced to face Michigan in the second round.

UCLA (Rachel Lowe, Teagan Micah)

First Round: defeated Lamar 4-1

UCLA were unlikely to be troubled by Lamar in their first round matchup, and it proved as such, with the Bruins running out 4-1 victors. Canadian star Jessie Fleming opened the scoring 9 minutes in, and by halftime the scoreline had reached 3-0, with Teagan Micah forced to make just one save in the same time span. Micah would take an early mark after 52 minutes, whilst UCLA would add one more to their tally before Lamar grabbed a late consolation with less than a minute to play. Rachel Lowe came off the bench in her return to action following Young Matildas commitments, attempting 3 shots with one on target in 41 minutes of action.

Washington State (Aly Hay)

First Round: defeated Memphis 1-0

Memphis may have been ranked in the coaches’ poll coming into this game, but it was Washington State who dominated much of the contest on their home patch in Pullman on their way to a 1-0 victory. The Cougars outshot their opponents 9-1 in the first half, but couldn’t find the back of the net until just after the hour mark as Makamae Gomera-Stevens tallied the game’s only goal. With Memphis tallying just two shots on target against one of the nation’s best goalkeepers in Ella Dederick, finding a goal would be tough. It proved as such, as Washington State emerged victorious to move on to face Virginia in the second round. Backup goalkeeper Aly Hay did not feature for Washington State in their win over Memphis as Dederick played the entire 90 minutes.

College Matildas W-League Preview

(Photo: The Southern Conference)

Adelaide United is certainly the place to look for former NCAA Division I players in the W-League in 2019/20, with no less than four members of the Reds having played in college. Usual suspects Alexandra Huynh and Amy Jackson are back for another season in the W-League, whilst former Houston midfielder Rebekah Horsey finally gets a crack at the bigtime, having signed with Canberra United.

Isabel Hodgson | Adelaide United

College Career: East Tennessee State (2015-18)

Isabel Hodgson may have spent four years at East Tennessee State, but the Buccaneers legend was never out of an Adelaide United jersey for too long, even spending one college off-season playing for the Reds in 2015/16. An interrupted stint with the Reds last season saw Hodgson make seven appearances and score one goal before returning to Johnson City to complete her degree, but the dynamic attacker now returns for a first full W-League campaign since 2014/15. Hodgson also finds herself in good scoring form of late, banging home eight goals in nine NPLW appearances with Adelaide City on the way to securing grand final success.

Kahlia Hogg | Adelaide United

College Career: Florida State (2012-13), Colorado (2014-16)

Kahlia Hogg’s 2018/19 season was blighted by injury, but Adelaide United coach Ivan Karlovic nonetheless brought the versatile wide player back into the fold for 2019/20. Having played for Canberra United before leaving for college and Western Sydney Wanderers upon her return, Adelaide is Hogg’s third W-League club, and it may also be the place at which the former Florida State and Colorado winger gets her chance to truly shine. Whether deployed in the backline or further up the pitch, Hogg appears primed for a breakout season in the W-League after appearing 24 times for Illawarra Stingrays in NPL New South Wales this season.

Dylan Holmes | Adelaide United

College Career: Colgate (2015)

It’s fair to say that Dylan Holmes’ year at Colgate wasn’t the most enjoyable or successful time, but since returning to Adelaide, the midfielder has flourished. Holmes picked up the NPL South Australia Coaches’ Player of the Year after a fantastic season for Adelaide City in which the club secured the league and grand final double. Having played 12 games for Adelaide United in 2018/19, Holmes returns for her third W-League season as one of four Aussies to have played in college in the Reds squad. Having started every game in 2018/19, Holmes shapes as an integral player as Adelaide United looks to atone for that campaign’s late-season jitters which eventually cost them a first finals berth.

Laura Johns | Adelaide United

College Career: Massachusetts (2013-16)

A midfielder throughout her college days at Massachusetts, Laura Johns found herself deployed at fullback for much of the 2018/19 W-League season, performing admirably throughout the campaign. Like most of this year’s players, Johns featured for the Reds prior to playing in college, making six appearances in 2012/13 before returning to play 20 more games across the last two seasons. Having made 11 starts in the 2018/19, Johns is firmly entrenched as a member of the Adelaide United squad, emerging as a wide attacking threat whilst capably handling her defensive duties. Johns also enjoyed an outstanding season in NPL South Australia this season, finishing in a tie for fifth in Player of the Year voting with former Kennesaw State defender Nicole Calder.

Isobel Dalton | Brisbane Roar

College Career: Colorado (2016-18)

A Brisbane Roar player even before leaving for college, Isobel Dalton returns home in 2019 after three seasons at Colorado and a brief spell at Nottingham Forest in the English FA Women’s National League North. Despite not receiving a lot of playing time at Colorado as part of a stacked midfield unit, Dalton showed her class on a number of occasions when given the opportunity on a Colorado team that has gained a solid footing in the Pac-12 over the last few seasons. Now, the English-born Queenslander returns home to shore up the Brisbane Roar midfield alongside the likes of Matildas duo Katrina Gorry and Elise Kellond-Knight, and American import Celeste Boureille.

Rebekah Horsey | Canberra United

College Career: Houston (2012-13)

It’s not often that a player returns from college and waits six years to make their W-League debut, but that is exactly how the career of Queenslander Rebekah Horsey has panned out. An integral part of the Lions FC side that completed a Premiership-Championship double in NPL Queensland this year, Horsey was outstanding in the midfield of a team that scored 108 goals whilst giving up just 22 in 24 regular season games. A defensive presence first and foremost, Horsey will likely be tasked with shielding the Canberra United back four as the team in green looks to make a return to the finals for the first time since finishing top of the table in 2016/17.

Amy Jackson | Melbourne Victory

College Career: Florida International (2007-09)

Anyone who’s watched the W-League for a significant period of time already knows what Amy Jackson brings to the table. A versatile midfielder who has also been deployed in defence during her time with both Melbourne clubs, Jackson returns to Victory after spending the last four seasons with crosstown rivals Melbourne City. A three-time W-League champion with Melbourne City, Jackson now returns to her original club to help them attempt to build on last season’s premiership success. Jackson is also on the cusp of becoming a member of the vaunted 100-game club, having made 90 appearances in the W-League to this point. One of the league’s most experienced players, Jackson will provide outstanding leadership alongside the likes of English star Natasha Dowie and recently capped Matildas centre back Jenna McCormick.

Alexandra Huynh | Western Sydney Wanderers

College Career: Colorado (2013-15), Troy (2016)

To say Alexandra Huynh bleeds red and black would be an understatement, so it is little surprise to see the former Colorado and Troy defender back with Western Sydney Wanderers for the 2019/20 season after not playing in the W-League in 2018/19. Since moving to Brisbane after her return from college, Huynh has spent the last two seasons as a mainstay of the Souths United defence in NPL Queensland, and even scored one of the goals of the season in 2019 with a peach of a free kick. However, Huynh’s actual job this season will be shutting down opposition attacks as a Wanderers squad that looks to be the best the club has put together in a number of seasons attempts to break their finals duck.

2019 NCAA Tournament Preview

(Image: Rand Bleimeister/UCLA)

2019 sees five teams featuring Australians enter the NCAA Tournament, and all have real opportunities to make deep runs. Beattie Goad and Stanford have secured the #1 overall seed, and we could see the Cardinal face another Aussie-laden side in Hofstra in the Round of 32. Meanwhile, Teagan Micah and Rachel Lowe will look to lead UCLA back to the College Cup for the first time since 2017 after a sublime finish to the regular season. Demi Koulizakis will look to bang home a few goals as Texas Tech attempt to take advantage of their #4 seeding, whilst backup goalkeeper Aly Hay will no doubt be ready if called upon for Washington State.

Hofstra (Monique Iannella, Grace Watson Carr)

First Round: v Loyola Chicago – 5am, Sunday November 17

Hofstra dominated the Colonial Athletic Association once again in 2019, securing their third consecutive conference championship with an undefeated league season that culminated in a 5-1 win over James Madison in the title game. The Pride finished 15-3-2, with all three of their losses coming to top-25 RPI sides as they ran roughshod over the majority of their opponents. Having earned hosting rights for the opening round, Hofstra now face Missouri Valley Conference champions Loyola Chicago. The Ramblers put together a solid season, albeit in a weaker conference than Hofstra, dropping just four games on their way to the conference title. Hofstra will certainly be favoured here, but should they get through Loyola, improving upon last year’s second-round exit will be tough; the Pride are slated to face Beattie Goad’s Stanford outfit on the road in the Round of 32.

It unfortunately seems unlikely that either Grace Watson Carr or Monique Iannella will see any playing time in this one, but if the game descends into a blowout, we could see some bench cameos in the latter stages.

Tale of the Tape

Hofstra Team Loyola Chicago
15-3-2 Record (W-L-D) 14-4-1
16 RPI Rank 57
2.5 Goals Per Game 1.84
1.35 Goals Conceded Per Game 1

Stanford (Beattie Goad)

First Round: v Prairie View A&M – 2pm, Saturday November 16

The overall #1 seed in the tournament for the fourth consecutive season, Stanford have once again carved out an exceptional regular season and given themselves the best possible chance at tournament success. Smashing home an impressive 72 goals in an 18-1 campaign that included a perfect conference record, Stanford look primed for a repeat run to the College Cup for the third consecutive season. Standing in their way first up is Prairie View A&M, the champions of the SWAC. However, first round games have barely proven to be an obstacle in recent seasons. Stanford have scored 16 goals and conceded just 1 in their last three opening round encounters, with that one conceded goal coming in a 9-1 win over Utah Valley in 2017.

It also shapes to be intriguing to see how much playing time Beattie Goad sees in the tournament this year. Having come off the bench for much of the season, the Victorian tallied two assists in a Senior Day start, and that may have garnered Goad a few more minutes on the pitch at the most crucial stage.

Tale of the Tape

Stanford Team Prairie View A&M
18-1-0 Record (W-L-D) 13-7-0
1 RPI Rank 246
3.79 Goals Per Game 1.4
0.52 Goals Conceded Per Game 0.95

Texas Tech (Demi Koulizakis)

First Round: v Pepperdine – Saturday November 16

Texas Tech reached the Big 12 semi-finals before falling to TCU, but had been all but guaranteed an at-large bid for at least a couple of weeks prior to that defeat. A well-balanced Red Raiders team with a stingy and defence and high-powered offence dropped just three games across the course of the season, snagging a #4 seeding in the process. However, they have been rewarded with a tricky opponent in the form of Pepperdine. The Waves may have dropped six games this season, but one of their 11 wins came against the might of Stanford, handing the Cardinal their only loss of the season.

Demi Koulizakis has been a crucial part of the Red Raiders attack all year, producing four goals and five assists to be among the best Aussies in both categories. Texas Tech will need not only Koulizakis, but the entire attack to be at their best if they are to secure a second victory in as many years against Pepperdine; the Red Raiders knocked off a nationally ranked Waves side 1-0 early in 2018.

Tale of the Tape

Texas Tech Team Pepperdine
15-3-2 Record (W-L-D) 11-6-2
20 RPI Rank 46
2.1 Goals Per Game 1.79
0.65 Goals Conceded Per Game 1.16

UCLA (Rachel Lowe, Teagan Micah)

First Round: v Lamar – 1pm, Saturday November 16

Live on UCLA Live Stream

Between September 19 and October 3rd, UCLA’s results went as follows: draw, win, loss, loss. That is but ancient history now though, as the Bruins won eight of their last nine games, only dropping a 1-0 decision to Stanford. That barnstorming finish earned UCLA a 2nd seed that looked rather unlikely six weeks earlier, and with it a match against Southland Conference champions Lamar. The Cardinals feature one of the most prolific offences in the nation, chalking up 69 goals in 22 games. However, they are yet to face a defence of UCLA’s ilk, much less a goalkeeper of Teagan Micah’s class. UCLA concede an average of less than a goal per game, with Micah keeping seven clean sheets this season.

Rachel Lowe should also be back for the Bruins after her Young Matildas commitments, having finished fourth at the recent Under 19 Asian Championship. The freshman has seen a decent amount of playing time in her first season, and will no doubt be champing at the bit to get her first taste of NCAA Tournament action.

Tale of the Tape

UCLA Team Lamar
14-4-1 Record (W-L-D) 16-6-0
7 RPI Rank 87
1.95 Goals Per Game 3.14
0.78 Goals Conceded Per Game 1.87

Washington State (Aly Hay)

First Round: v Memphis – 12pm, Saturday November 16

Live on Washington State Live Stream

On paper, Washington State have found themselves in one of the tightest games of the opening round as they take on Memphis, who sit a single position above them in the RPI rankings. Memphis have lost just twice this season, with one of those losses coming in the American Athletic Conference championship game. However, Washington State will host this game and have lost only twice in nine games on the Palouse this season. If they are to secure victory, the Cougars will have to slow down Memphis’ attack, which has produced 2.7 goals per game. Fortunately, Washington State give up just 1.16 goals per game, but on the 12 occasions they did concede a goal this year, they gave up multiple goals on five occasions. Memphis’ defence is even more stingy, conceding just 0.55 goals per game, but they have rarely faced teams of the same calibre that Washington State have.

As a backup behind one of the top goalkeepers in the nation in Ella Dederick, it of course seems unlikely that Aly Hay will see any playing time in this year’s tournament. However, with Dederick moving on to the professional ranks next season, expect to see the Canadian-Australian between the sticks in future tournaments.

Tale of the Tape

Washington State Team Memphis
12-6-1 Record (W-L-D) 17-2-1
27 RPI Rank 26
1.89 Goals Per Game 2.7
1.16 Goals Conceded Per Game 0.55

Where Could They Meet?

Hofstra v Stanford – Round of 32
Hofstra v Texas Tech – Final
Hofstra v UCLA – Semi-Final
Hofstra v Washington State – Final
Stanford v Texas Tech – Final
Stanford v UCLA – Semi-Final
Stanford v Washington State – Final
Texas Tech v UCLA – Final
Texas Tech v Washington State – Final
UCLA v Washington State – Final

2019 Week 12 Wrap

(Photo: Jim Shorin/ISIPhotos.com)

Beattie Goad has come off the bench in recent weeks, but received a starting berth on her own Senior Day and took the opportunity with both hands as the Cardinal routed local rivals California 4-0. Stanford took a 2-0 lead inside the first 15 minutes, with Goad tallying an assist on the second. The senior found Carly Malatskey in space out wide with a neat pass, before Malatskey tucked a finish just inside the near post to deliver Stanford a handy advantage.

Goad would do something quite similar in the build-up to Stanford’s third goal after halftime. This time, Goad found Sophia Smith out wide, who cut in before curling home past the goalkeeper’s outstretched hand. Stanford finished the game outshooting California 39-1, with 17 of those on target. The win completed a perfect Pac-12 season for Stanford, who look set to go into the NCAA Tournament as the #1 overall seed as they look for a second national championship in three seasons.

Texas Tech may not have been able to get a win in their Big 12 semi-final against TCU, but Demi Koulizakis was nonetheless dangerous for the Red Raiders. Just 53 seconds into the contest, Koulizakis’ shot from distance could only be tipped down by the goalkeeper, with the ball dropping into the path of Jordie Harr, who managed to direct the ball home despite the close attention of a TCU defender. However, despite Texas Tech outshooting their opponents 21-10, the Horned Frogs scored with their only two shots on target of the evening to secure a 2-1 smash-and-grab victory, leaving Texas Tech to await their position in the NCAA Tournament bracket.

Eliza Ammendolia remained a threat for Hawaii until the very last moment of the Rainbow Wahine’s season, with the All-Conference selection again proving dangerous despite her team’s 3-0 loss to Cal State Fullerton in the Big West semi-finals. The freshman tallied one of Hawaii’s five shots on target in a complete game performance, but Cal State Fullerton were clinical, putting 10 of their 12 shots on target as they rolled to victory. The loss also saw Kiri Dale’s outstanding college career come to an end, with the redshirt senior proving to be an integral member of the Hawaii side for the last three seasons since transferring from Iona.

Whilst neither Monique Iannella nor Grace Watson Carr have seen much playing time this year, they will still take away special memories from this season as Hofstra secured their third consecutive CAA Championship. Having dominated all season, the Pride put a bow on things in the best way possible, rolling to a 5-1 victory in the championship game over James Madison.

Player of the Year Points:

3: Beattie Goad (Stanford)
2: Demi Koulizakis (Texas Tech)
1: Eliza Ammendolia (Hawaii)

Complete Results

Alabama State (Sophie Bui)

This week: lost 1-0 to Prairie View A&M

Sophie Bui started and played 45 minutes in Alabama State’s season-ending loss to Prairie View A&M.

Fairleigh Dickinson (Sam Roff)

This week: defeated Bryant 2-0; lost 1-0 to Central Connecticut State

Sam Roff started her final two college games, playing 82 minutes in the win over Bryant and 33 minutes in the Northeast Conference championship game loss to Central Connecticut State.

Hawaii (Eliza Ammendolia, Kiri Dale)

This week: lost 3-0 to Cal State Fullerton

Eliza Ammendolia played the full 90 minutes for Hawaii in their loss to Cal State Fullerton, tallying 3 shots with one on target. Kiri Dale came off the bench in her final game for the Rainbow Wahine, playing 15 minutes.

Hofstra (Monique Iannella, Grace Watson Carr)

This week: defeated James Madison 5-1

Neither Grace Watson Carr nor Monique Iannella featured for Hofstra as the Pride secured the CAA championship with a win over James Madison.

La Salle (Claudia Jenkins, Alyssa Van Heurck)

This week: lost 1-0 to Saint Louis

Claudia Jenkins played the full 90 minutes in La Salle’s season-ending loss to Saint Louis, making two saves. Alyssa Van Heurck also started, posting a shot in a 50-minute outing.

Southeast Missouri State (Siena Senatore)

This week: lost 2-1 SIU-Edwardsville

Siena Senatore started for Southeast Missouri State in what turned out to be her last college game, playing the full 90 minutes.

Stanford (Beattie Goad)

This week: defeated California 4-0

Beattie Goad started for Stanford in their win over rivals California, contributing a pair of assists as well as a shot in a 60-minute outing.

Texas Tech (Demi Koulizakis)

This week: lost 2-1 to TCU

Demi Koulizakis played the full 90 minutes in Texas Tech’s conference tournament loss to TCU, tallying four shots with two on target.

UCLA (Rachel Lowe, Teagan Micah)

This week: defeated USC 4-2

Teagan Micah played the full 90 minutes in UCLA’s victory over cross-town rivals USC, but did not make a save. Rachel Lowe missed this game due to Young Matildas commitments.

Washington State (Aly Hay)

This week: lost 1-0 to Washington

Aly Hay did not feature for Washington State in their loss to Washington.