WVU women’s soccer’s dance continues Sunday

WVU Women's Soccer

The West Virginia University women’s soccer team continues play in the 2019 NCAA Tournament a match against Washington State on Sunday, Nov. 23, at 5 p.m., in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Sunday’s match will be streamed live on ESPN3. WVU is 23-17-5 all-time in the NCAA Tournament and has played in the third round of the tournament in four of the last five seasons. Dating back to the 2015 season, the Mountaineers have outscored their tournament opponents, 34-14.

“Anytime you get to the Round of 16, any opponent that you play is going to be tough,” coach Nikki Izzo-Brown said. “Washington State is a well-coached team that likes to test you from the first whistle, so we are going to have to bring our best game on Sunday.”

Sunday’s match marks the second meeting between the Mountaineers and Cougars after the two sides battled to a 1-1 draw in Knoxville, Tennessee, on Sept. 7, 2008.

WVU enters the match with a 12-7-2 overall record after earning a 1-0 win over Central Connecticut State on Nov. 22 in double overtime. Sophomore forward Alina Stahl was the hero for the Mountaineers after she netted a cross from classmate Lizzie Mayfield at the 105:46 mark.

The Mountaineers backline recorded its second consecutive shutout in the match, marking its eighth clean sheet of the season. The shutout was the seventh of the season for senior goalkeeper Rylee Foster. Foster, who ranks third amongst all active student-athletes in Division I and places second on the school’s career shutouts list with 39. A member of the All-Big 12 Second Team, Foster is third on the career shutouts list among active Division I players.

Stahl leads the Mountaineers with 18 points (8 G, 2 A) this season. Stahl also paces the team with five game-winners on the year, while Mayfield leads the squad with five assists.

Washington State enters the match with a 14-6-1 record in 2019. The Cougars have earned back-to-back upsets on their way to the third round of the tournament, knocking off No. 14 Memphis, 1-0, on Nov. 15 and No. 3 Virginia, 3-2, on Nov. 23. The win on Friday marked WSU’s 14th win of the season, which is tied for the most in program history.

Washington State has outshot its opponents 377-202 this season while holding a 40-24 advantage in goals.

The Blue Devil’s offense ranks No. 21 in the country in points per game (6.38) and is 30th nationally with 44 goals on the year. Senior forward leads the Cougars in goals (12) and points (29), while junior defender Brianna Alger paces WSU with 10 dishes this season.

Redshirt senior Ella Dedrick is the projected starter in goal. She has registered 63 saves and has seven shutouts on the year.

WVU is 3-3 all-time in the NCAA Tournament Round of 16 after the Mountaineers fell to N0. 10 Penn State, 3-1 in 2017. WVU has advanced to the Round of 16 seven times, the quarterfinals three times and made its first appearance in the NCAA College Cup in 2016.

The winner of Friday’s match will advance to face the winner of No. 5 South Carolina and No. 11 Kansas on November 29th or 30th at an on-campus site to be determined. 

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