RALEIGH, N.C. – Hoping to carry its momentum from its historic run to the Southeastern Conference Tournament final, the Razorback soccer team will begin its 2017 NCAA Tournament in Raleigh, North Carolina against 21st-ranked NC State. First kick is slated for Noon CT and will be televised on ACC Network Extra via ESPN3.com.
Arkansas is in the national tournament for the second-straight season and fourth time in the last five years. All four of the Razorbacks’ appearances in the NCAA Tournament have come under current head coach Colby Hale, who has built up a 4-1-2 record in those appearances.
Including SEC Tournament games, the Razorbacks are 9-5-4 in postseason matches, all coming in the last six seasons.
The Razorbacks have never lost a first round match in those three NCAA appearances, two of which came on the road at Oklahoma State (2013) and Oklahoma (2014). Arkansas hosted a first round match for the first time last season and defeated Memphis, 2-1, in overtime on a game-winning header by Lindsey Mayo.
Arkansas and NC State have only faced off twice in their histories back in the 1992 and 1993 seasons. NC State won the matchup in 1992, 1-0 in Raleigh, while Arkansas won the match the following season, 4-2, in Macon, Georgia.
Senior Jessi Hartzler is the only current Razorback to have scored in an NCAA Tournament match as she scored Arkansas’ equalizer goal against Memphis in last year’s first round match.
Going into Saturday’s matchup with the Wolfpack, Arkansas brings in a head full of steam after its run to the SEC Tournament final last week. Over the course of five days, the Razorbacks won three games, including a shutout of top-seed South Carolina, which hadn’t trailed in a match in more than a month.
Over the last four matches, Arkansas’ defense has been on display, totaling two shutouts and three goals allowed on 18 shots on goal. Redshirt junior keeper Jordan Harris has continued to excel in the net for the Razorbacks making two or more saves in each of the last four matches and has racked up eight solo shutouts, ranking second in the SEC and 39th in the nation.
Saturday’s match with the Wolfpack will be broadcast on ACC Network Extra, which is available via WatchESPN.com and the Watch ESPN app.
Live stats for the match will be available on ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
>> Making it’s fourth appearance in the last five years, Arkansas earned a second-straight berth in the NCAA Tournament and will face No. 21 NC State in Raleigh, N.C. for the first round.
>> In its three prior appearances in the NCAA Tournament, Arkansas has never lost its first round matchup, earning wins over Oklahoma State (2013), Oklahoma (2014), and Memphis (2016).
>> All four of Arkansas’ NCAA Tournament appearances have come under head coach Colby Hale. Arkansas had never made the tournament field prior to 2013 when Hale became head coach.
>> Of Arkansas’ 11 wins this season, nine have come by way of a shutout and all 13 points in conference play were by shutout also. Arkansas’ 10 shutouts are good for second in the SEC and tie for the most in school history (2009).
>> In nine of those shutouts, the Razorback defense has held opponents to 17 shots or less and a .338 shot on goal percentage. Redshirt junior goalkeeper Jordan Harris has eight full shutouts this year.
>> The Razorbacks reached the Sweet 16 in 2013, its first-ever tournament appearance, defeating Oklahoma State, and St. John’s before falling to Duke.
>> Since Colby Hale became the head coach in 2013, Arkansas has only missed the NCAA Tournament one time.
>> Freshman Parker Goins still leads the team in goals (9) and points (25) heading into the NCAA tournament. Both are top-five totals among all SEC players.
>> Arkansas is coming off an amazing run through the SEC Tournament, reaching the tournament final as the eight-seed. It was the lowest-seeded team to ever reach the final in tournament history.
>> 23 of Arkansas’ 43 goals this season have come from freshmen. Freshmen Parker Goins (9) and Taylor Malham (6) lead all Razorback goal scorers this year.
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