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Soccer Back Home for Crucial Contests
October 15, 2009

Oct. 15, 2009

Soccer (7-7-1, 2-4) vs. Kansas (9-5-1, 1-4) & Missouri (8-4-3, 3-0-2)
 Games 16 and 17  Friday, Oct. 16 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, Oct. 18 at 1 p.m.
 Location  Norman, Okla.  |  John Crain Field (Capacity: 3,500)
 Internet  Live Stats 
 Promotions  Foam fingers, team photos, pom poms and more
 Tickets  Adults - $8, Children - $5 | Call or Purchase Online
 Game Info  2009 Media Guide | Weekly Releases

NORMAN, Okla.-- The Oklahoma Sooners (7-7-1, 2-4 Big 12) return home this weekend where they last defeated then-No. 13 Texas A&M on Sept. 27.  Since then, OU is 1-3 but remains in the hunt for one of the eight spots available for the Big 12 Championship on Nov. 4-8. 

The Sooners are tied for eighth place with six points, but trail three teams all with six points.  This weekend presents an opportunity to strengthen its position as OU hosts a Kansas team (9-5-1, 1-4) right behind it in 10th place on Friday at 7 p.m. in Norman.  The Jayhawks are 2-4 since opening Big 12 play and split last weekend’s home games against Texas Tech (W, 3-2) and Colorado (L,1-0).

KU returns 20 letterwinners and nine starters from the 2008 team that was 13-8-2 overall, finished seventh in the Big 12 at 4-5-1 and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Sophomore forward Emily Cressy leads the 2009 offense with six goals and 15 points.  Defensively, the Jayhawks have split time in goal between senior Julie Hanley (4-4-1, 1.44 GAA, two shutouts) and freshman Kat Liebetrau (5-1, 1.16 GAA, two shutouts).

The Jayhawks lead the all-time series, 8-4-1, after last year’s 1-1 tie in Norman.  OU won the 2007 game, 2-1, in Lawrence but Kansas has had success in Norman with wins in 2006 and 2004.  The Sooners are 2-2-1 at home against the Jayhawks. In addition, seven of the 13 games in the series have been decided by one goal or less, including the last three meetings (1-1-1).

Game 17 | vs. Missouri
Missouri (8-4-3, 3-0-2) enters the weekend undefeated in Big 12 play and plays at Baylor on Friday night. The Tigers and Sooners will battle at 1 p.m. in Norman on Sunday.  Missouri won both of its games last weekend at home against Colorado and Texas Tech.

The Tigers return 15 letterwinners and eight starters from last season’s team that finished 16-5-2 overall, 7-3 in Big 12 (third) and won the Big 12 Postseason Championship and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament.  The 2009 Tigers are led by a pair of seniors with forward Michelle Collins’ five goals and four assists and goalkeeper Tasha Dittamore (1.59 GAA, two shutouts), the reigning Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week.

Missouri has shut out Oklahoma in the last two meetings and owns a 7-4-1 all-time advantage.  Missouri won the 2008 game at OU and is 4-2 all-time in games played in Norman.  The Sooners own a 3-2-1 edge when the game is decided by one goal or less.

On the Web
Fans can follow both games on the web with links to live stats via the schedule page on SoonerSports.com.   

Promotions
On Friday, all kids in attendance will receive a mini foam finger and the first 250 fans will get an OU team photo.  In addition, fireworks will be displayed after every Sooner goal and the team will be available for autographs following the game.

On Sunday, all youth soccer players that wear their team uniform will receive $4 admission at the door.  The first 250 fans will receive pom poms the game will be followed by a autograph session.

Tickets on Sale
Single game tickets for the 2009 soccer season are on sale.   Three of the final four regular season games will be held at the Sooners' home and one of the premier collegiate soccer facilities in the nation, John Crain Field at the OU Soccer Complex.

Please contact the OU Athletics Ticket Office at (405) 325-2424 or (800) 456-GoOU for more information.

Single-Game Ticket Prices
$8 - Adults
$7 - Faculty/Staff
$5 - Youth, Senior Citizens & Letterwinners

Player to Watch - Dria Hampton, Freshman, MF  |  Piedmont, Okla.
The highly touted recruit leads OU with four assists and is second on the squad with three goals.  The third goal was Hampton’s first game winner of the season and gave OU its first road win of 2009 last Friday at Iowa State.  The goal broke a 10-game scoreless streak for Hampton, who is the eighth player in OU history to post double digit points as a freshman.
2009 Season Stats: 15 starts, three goals, four assists, 10 points, 42 shots (26 on goal)

Next Weekend
Oklahoma plays its final road game of the regular season slate on Friday, Oct. 23 at Oklahoma State.  The Bedlam Series, presented by The Oklahoman and Oklahoma Farm Bureau Insurance, gets underway at 7 p.m. at the Cowgirl Soccer Complex in Stillwater.  The Bedlam matchup marks the only game on the weekend for OU, which concludes the regular season on Oct. 30 at home against Baylor for Senior Night.

Last Time Out
The Sooners split a pair of road games over the weekend. On Friday, OU posted a 1-0 victory on Dria Hampton’s game-winning goal.  The Sooners dropped a 5-2 contest on Sunday at Nebraska despite two goals from Whitney Palmer.

Sooner Profile - Lauren Alkek
When she first arrived in Norman, Lauren Alkek envisioned herself as a major scoring threat for the Sooner soccer program.  Click here to read more and view an interview with Alkek.

Palmer Ranks Top 10 in NCAA in Goals/Points
Heading into the ninth week of the season, Whitney Palmer has posted 14 goals, including scores in five of the last six games (7 goals).  What is even more impressive is that the 14 goals is tied for fifth in the country and is highest total for a Sooner in a single season (prev: 13 - Logan Womack – 2001).  Palmer already is among the program’s most prolific goal scorers in OU history as a junior, currently ranking in the top five of 11 different offensive categories, including second place with 28 career goals. Earlier this year against Tulsa, she became just the second player in school history to record a hat trick. Below is a look at her stats in the OU record book:

Career Records
2nd with 28 goals
2nd with 59 points
T-4th with 6 game-winning goals
5th with 156 shots

Single Season Records
1st with 14 goals in 2009
1st with 30 points in 2009
4th with 8 goals in 2008
10th with 16 points in 2008
T-3rd with four game winners in 2007

Misc. Records
T-1st with three goals in a game
T-1st with goals in four consecutive games
T-1st with two assists in one game

2009 vs. 2008
In her second season at the helm, Nicole Nelson doubled the Sooners’ win total after 11 games from a year ago.  In addition, at this point last season, OU was 1-13-1 after 15 games compared to the current 7-7-1 record.

Home vs. Away
While it’s no secret that OU has fared better at home with a 6-2 record compared to an 1-5-1 mark on the road, the season stats highlight the Sooners’ home-field advantage.  In eight home games, OU has outscored its opponents 17-6 and is averaging 2.13 goals per game on 21 shots and 4.25 corner kicks.  In the Sooners’ seven road contests, they are averaging 1.14 goals on 10.1 shots and 2.7 corner kicks per game.

Attendance Marks
Thanks to the fans, the Sooners have recorded two top-10 attendance marks in 2009.  On Sept. 25 vs. Texas, the fourth best crowd at the OU Soccer Complex was on hand with 1,150 fans.  On Aug. 28 vs. ORU, the attendance was 814, eighth best all-time.  After eight games, OU is averaging 715 fans at home compared to the 451 average in 2008 (10 games).  

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