AUBURN, Ala. – As the college soccer season heads into the final month of the regular season, the Arkansas soccer team hopes to make a big push for the postseason starting with a road match at Auburn on Thursday before coming home to face No. 3 South Carolina on Sunday at Razorback Field.
Kick off with the Tigers is slated for 6 p.m. at the Auburn Soccer Complex and will be televised on the SEC Network. Sunday’s match with the Gamecocks will have a start time of 5 p.m. at Razorback Field on ESPNU.
Arkansas is looking to break out of a tough stretch as of late as it only has one victory in its four conference matches with the lone win against Mississippi State and a tie at Vanderbilt. Sitting on four points, the Razorbacks are in ninth place in league play, which would put them in the 10-team SEC Tournament field if the season ended today.
The Razorback offense is still one of the most efficient in the SEC and the nation as the team is averaging 2.46 goals per game, the second-best rate in the conference and 18th in the country. In five of its six wins this year, Arkansas has scored two or more goals and has two games with six or more goals scored.
Thursday’s match with Auburn will be the first time the two teams have faced off since last year’s SEC Tournament semifinals where the Razorbacks came away with the 3-1 victory. However, Arkansas only has two wins over the Tigers in the last five meetings and hasn’t won in Auburn since 1999.
As for South Carolina, the Razorbacks are looking for their first victory over the Gamecocks since 2005, but have fought to a draw three times (2006, 2012, 2015) in the last 11 contests, including the last meeting in Fayetteville (2015).
Both matches will be televised nationally as Arkansas’ match with Auburn will be broadcast on the SEC Network starting at 6 p.m. Sunday’s match with the Gamecocks will be televised on ESPNU starting at 5 p.m.
Jenn Hildreth (PxP) and Heather Mitts will have the call for the SEC Network on Thursday. Mike Watts (PxP) and Cat Whitehill (Analyst) will be in the booth for ESPNU on Sunday.
Live stats for the match will be available on ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
Razorbacks Go Pink Sunday Against South Carolina
Join us in wearing pink for our Annual Pink Match presented by Mercy where we raise awareness for breast cancer research. In addition to Kids Day Sunday activities, the first 200 kids in attendance will receive a 2017 Razorback Soccer Kids Scarf! Fan promotions surrounding this SEC matchup include a Pink Razorback Soccer Bracelet giveaway to all fans in attendance and Razorback Soccer Socks to the first 200 U of A Students.
>> Arkansas faces one of its toughest weeks as it travels to Auburn to face the Tigers on Thursday before coming home to face 3rd-ranked South Carolina on Sunday at Razorback Field. Thursday’s match will be on the SEC Network, while Sunday’s match will be televised on ESPNU.
>> The Gamecocks will be the fourth ranked opponent that the Razorbacks have faced this year and third in four matches going back to its game with No. 20 Ole Miss on Sept. 24.
>> Senior Katie Kienstra scored her fourth goal of the season last week at No. 23 Texas A&M, giving her 10 points for the year. She’s one of three Razorbacks (Parker Goins, Stefani Doyle) with 10 or more points this season.
>> After going down with an ankle injury against Vanderbilt and missing the match against Ole Miss, freshman Parker Goins returned to the field against Texas A&M, playing 35 minutes and recording one shot on goal. She still leads all Razorback players with seven goals on the year and 18 points.
>> Goins’ seven goals ties for the second most by an Arkansas freshman over the last 17 years, trailing current teammate sophomore Kayla McKeon, who scored nine goals in her first season.
>> Redshirt junior goalkeeper Jordan Harris has started five-straight matches leading up to Thursday’s contest in Auburn. Over that span, she has averaged 3.00 saves per game and allowed four goals over 470 minutes of play for a 0.77 goals against average.
>> Senior Jessi Hartzler has been Arkansas’ ironwoman over the last two years. This season, she has started all 13 matches and logged 1,169 minutes. In 2016, she started every match (24) and logged 2,108 out of a possible 2,220 minutes.
>> The Razorbacks continue to lead the SEC with 34 assists this season, good for seventh in the nation. Of Arkansas’ 32 goals, only three have come off corner kicks. Arkansas had eight goals off corners in 2016.
>> Over the last six seasons under Colby Hale, Arkansas is 6-21-3 against ranked opponents. Three of those wins came last season as part of Arkansas’ record-setting 18-win season.
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