Sept. 10, 2009
|Sooner Soccer (4-1-1) at LSU (2-1-1)|
|Game 7||Friday, Sept. 11 at 7 p.m.|
|Location||LSU Soccer Complex | Baton Rouge, La.|
|All-time series||LSU leads 2-0-1|
|Internet||Live stats | Audio|
|Game Info||2009 Media Guide | Weekly Releases|
NORMAN, Okla. -- The Sooners (4-1-1) will look for their first road win of the 2009 season on Friday, Sept. 11 at Louisiana State (2-1-1). OU will kick off its third straight road game at 7 p.m. at the LSU Soccer Complex in Baton Rouge, La.
LSU started the season ranked No. 25 in some preseason polls but dropped the opener, 2-0, at home against Memphis. Since the loss, the Tigers have bounced back to go undefeated in the last three games. In that span, LSU has outscored the opposition, 5-1, with wins over Southern Miss and South Florida and a tie against Central Florida.
The Tigers finished second in the Southeastern Conference in 2008 before advancing to the NCAA Tournament. LSU was picked to finish second again in 2009 by the league’s coaches as it returns 13 letterwinners and eight starters. In 2008, the Tigers posted a 14-4-2 overall record and a 7-3-1 mark in conference play.
Senior midfielder Melissa Clark, an All-SEC and all-region performer in 2008 after tallying six goals and six assists, leads the Tigers’ offense with three goals and seven points this season. Sophomore goalkeeper Mo Isom returns after garnering All-America honors in 2008 and leading the SEC with a 0.85 goals-against average. Isom has two shutouts in 2009 with a 0.71 GAA and 17 saves.
Friday’s game marks the fourth meeting in the series between Oklahoma and Louisiana State. The Tigers won the first and only meeting in Baton Rouge, 2-0, during the Sooners’ inaugural 1996 season. The last two meetings were played in Norman, including a 4-0 LSU win in 2008 at the OU Soccer Complex. The other meeting took place during the 1999 season in Norman when the Sooners recorded a program-record 51 shots, including 23 on goal. Despite the flurry of shots, LSU and OU battled to a 2-2 tie after 110 minutes of action.
On the Web
Fans can follow all of Friday’s action on SoonerSports.com. Links can be found above for free audio and live stats provided by LSU.
Player to Watch - Whitney Palmer, Junior, Forward | Plano, Texas
Palmer scored the 20th goal of her career on Sunday at Vanderbilt, placing her in sole possession of fourth place all-time at OU and making her the second fastest Sooner in program history (44 games) to reach the 20-goal plateau. Logan Womack, the program's all-time leading goal scorer, reached 20 career goals after 38 games.
Palmer leads the Big 12 with 14 points and six goals and ranks second in shots taken (26) and is tied for sixth in assists (2).
2009 Season Stats: 6 starts, 6 goals, 2 assists, 26 shots, 16 SOG
OU returns to the friendly confines of John Crain Field to host Lamar on Friday, Sept. 18 at 7 p.m. and USC on Sunday, Sept. 20 at 1 p.m. The Sooners have not faced either opponent.
Last Time Out
The Sooners finished 0-1-1 on their first road trip of the 2009 season. On Friday at Middle Tennessee State, the Sooners scored first but were forced to rally from behind and sent the game into overtime on Whitney Palmer’s goal with less than a minute remaining in regulation. OU tied MTSU 2-2 before travelling to Vanderbilt on Sunday where it suffered its first loss. The Commodores topped the Sooners, 3-1, with three unanswered goals. Palmer scored the Sooners’ lone goal of the game, her Big 12 leading sixth of the season.
Hampton Has Two Assists, Ties Record
Freshman midfielder Dria Hampton tied a school record with two assists in Friday’s 2-2 tie at Middle Tennessee. She is the fourth Sooner to accomplish the feat in 2009 (Michelle Alexander, Ashley Farrand and Whitney Palmer) and her performance marks the 16th time in school history. Hampton is second in the Big 12 with four assists and first with 29 shots.
Spreading the Wealth
Seven different Sooners have scored goals after six games, surpassing the amount of scorers (5) from a year ago. In addition, the group has equaled the amount of goals scored in 2008 with 14. While Whitney Palmer leads the squad with six scores, Michelle Alexander and Dria Hampton rank second with two goals. The latest goal-scorer, freshman Katharine Nutman, tallied her first goal in her debut on Friday at Middle Tennessee.
After Six Games
While the Sooners have completed just over 30 percent of the regular season schedule, they are off to one of their better starts when looking at the first six games of a season. OU is 4-1-1 so far in 2009 and only trails the 2002 Sooners who were 6-0 and the 2001 and 2005 OU squads that started 5-1.
Shots on Goal
The Sooners have dominated opponents this season with a 70-31 advantage in shots on goal. After six games, OU already has 131 overall shots compared to 207 last season (68 on goal). The Sooners recorded a season-high 32 shots against Sam Houston and a team-best 15 shots on goal against Tulsa.
Palmer Records Hat Trick; Moves into Fourth
Junior forward Whitney Palmer became the second player in school history to record a hat trick on Aug. 30 vs. Tulsa, tying the mark set by Logan Womack in 2002, the program’s all-time leading goal scorer. Palmer was named the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week for her efforts and has since moved into sole possession of fourth place on OU’s all-time goals scored list. Below is a look the top four goal scorers in OU history:
|1. Logan Womack||34||2000-03|
|2. Jonette Coquat||26||1998-01|
|3. Savannah Scott||22||2003-06|
|4. Whitney Palmer||20||2007-present|
Sooners in Big 12 Ranks
While Kelsey Devonshire leads the Big 12 with three shutouts, two other Sooners find themselves atop of a league statistic after three weeks of play. Whitney Palmer leads the league with 14 points and six goals while Dria Hampton leads the league with 29 shots. Refer to page four for each of the Sooners ranked in the top 10 in the Big 12 statistics this week.
As a team, OU is ranked first or second in nearly every category; goals, assists, points, shots, corner kicks, saves and shutouts.
Sooners Ranked 10th in Central Region
For the second straight week, the Sooners are listed 10th in the coaches’ poll for the central region. Last week, OU was receiving votes in the top 25 by the same organization.