Soccer Travels East for Tribe Invite
September 06, 2007

Sept. 6, 2007

- Week 2 Game Notes (PDF)

NORMAN, Okla. -- The OU soccer team is coming off a 2-0 weekend to open the 2007 season and will look to carry that momentum into this weekend's games in the Tribe Invitational in Williamsburg, Va. 

The Sooners will kick off the tournament against host William & Mary (1-1) at 6 p.m. (CT) at Albert-Daly Field.  On Sunday, OU will conclude action against Virginia Commonwealth (0-2).   The Sooners have never met the Tribe or the Rams in the program's 11-year history.

Click Here to listen to a live broadcast of the game as provided by William & Mary.  Live stats and video will not be available this weekend in Williamsburg, Va.

Oklahoma (2-0) vs. William & Mary (1-1)
Friday, Sept. 7 - 6 p.m.
Williamsburg, Va. - Albert-Daly Field

The Tribe began the season with a 2-0 loss to UNC Greensboro on Friday but bounced back with a 3-0 victory over N.C. State on Sunday.

The Tribe, picked to win the Colonial Athletic Association this season, finished 2006  with a 16-1-4 overall record and advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the 21st time in school history.  That mark ranks third all-time in NCAA history behind North Carolina and Connecticut (24 each).  William & Mary has advanced to the postseason in 14 of the last 15 years, including three Sweet 16 appearances and two years in the Elite Eight.

William & Mary returns 19 letterwinners and eight starters from a 2006 team that was 8-0-2 at home.  Leading the scoring attack is junior Claire Zimmeck. A 2007 Preseason Hermann Trophy Watch List Honoree, was named the conference's Freshman of the Year and an All-American (Soccer Buzz) after tallying 14 goals and four assists a year ago.

Oklahoma (2-0) vs. Virginia Commonwealth (0-2)
Sunday, Sept. 9 - 11 a.m.
Williamsburg, Va. - Albert-Daly Field

Virginia Commonwealth was 11-6-3 in 2006 and returns 14 letterwinners and seven starters from that squad.  It opened 2007 last weekend with a pair of defeats to Seton Hall (4-0) and Villanova (3-0).   

VCU was picked to finish sixth in Colonial Athletic Association and has finished in the top three of the CAA standings in each of the past three seasons.  The Rams have earned berths in the championship game in two of those years.

The Rams did not make the NCAA Tournament in 2006 but advanced to the second round of the postseason in 2005.

VCU is led by junior midfielders Stephanie Power and Megan Flanagan, the top two returning scorers from the 2006 season.  Power tallied 11 points (3 goals, 5 assists) and Flanagan contributed two goals and four helpers.

TUESDAY PRACTICE REPORT sat down with OU head coach Randy Evans at Tuesday's practice and discussed last weekend's action and previewed the upcoming weekend against William & Mary and Virginia Commonwealth. 

In addition, coach Evans talks about the impact of the newcomers and their progression at this point in the season.  Five freshmen in that group started the 2007 opener and, overall, 11 played in the 8-0 victory over Alabama A&M.

Tuesday Practice-Report
Video  Coach Evans previews the upcoming weekend.
Video  The Sooners' head coach talks about the newcomers' impact.

The Sooners opened the 2007 season in successful fashion last weekend with a pair of wins over Alabama A&M (8-0) and Oral Roberts (4-1) at home.  Friday's meeting with the Bulldogs was the first in school history.  On Sunday, the Sooners took a 9-2-1 advantage in the all-time series with in-state rival Oral Roberts.  OU has won the last three meetings in that series by an average of three goals.

After the first weekend, the Sooners find themselves leading the Big 12 in goals scored (12), assists (7) and points (31).  OU also ranks among the best in shots taken with 47, holding down the No. 2 spot in the conference. 

OU freshman Whitney Palmer was impressive in her first weekend as a Sooner.  Palmer started both games and tallied the Sooners' first goal of each game and finished the weekend with three scores.  Palmer, along with three other Big 12 players lead the conference with three goals scored and six points overall.

The Sooners set a program record for most for goals scored in a season opener in Friday's 8-0 win over Alabama A&M.  OU broke the record established on Sept. 1, 1997, when it opened the year with a six-goal performance against Tulsa.

The win over Alabama A&M was also largest margin of victory in school history.  The previous high came during the Sooners' 8-1 victory over Drury on Sept. 1, 1997. 

Friday's scoring total also tied a school record for goals scored, also established in the 1997 game against Drury.

Senior Audri Habibi and freshman Whitney Palmer each tallied two-goal games over the weekend.  Habibi scored both her goals during the Alabama A&M game and Palmer found the back of the net twice against Oral Roberts.  Kady Kelly (2003-06) was the last Sooner to score two goals in a game.  Kelly scored twice against Stephen F. Austin on Sept. 10, 2006. 


The Sooners have scored 12 goals in their first two games, the most for any two-game span in school history.    The previous high came against Oral Roberts (five goals) and Drury (four goals) in back-to-back games during the 2001 season. 

OU scored 30 goals last season and had 11 different goal scorers.  After two games in 2007, eight different Sooners have contributed to the 12 goal total.

Under head coach Randy Evans, the Sooners are 32-0-1 when scoring three or more goals.  The lone tie in that span came against Texas on Oct. 6, 2006 in Austin.  The Sooners eclipsed the three-goal mark  on three occasions last season.

Senior Colleen Keester tied a school record during Friday's 8-0 win over Alabama A&M.  Keester's two-assist performance was the 12th time in school history that a Sooner assisted on two goals  in a game.  The last Sooner to accomplish the feat is current senior Audri Habibi.  She assisted on two goals on Oct. 8, 2006 versus Iowa State.

After playing every minute of the last two seasons, senior goalkeeper Jennifer Nichols has been part of her share of shutouts at Oklahoma.  Nichols ranks second all-time at OU with 14 career shutouts.  Nichols split time on Friday with redshirt freshman Tara Macdonald during the Sooners' first shutout of 2007 and played the entire game against Oral Roberts.  Overall, Nichols and the Sooners have held opponents to one goal or less in 26 games in 2005, 2006 and 2007.

Oklahoma and SMU played 89 minutes of scoreless soccer at Wescott Field on Aug. 26 until the ball deflected off a Mustang defender on senior Tenesha Duncan's cross at the 88:59 mark. The Mustangs had trouble clearing the ball out of their defensive end and surrendered the only score of the game on their own goal.

The 2007 class, which has been labeled by the OU coaching staff as the program's top recruiting class, produced in the first weekend of the season.  Five of the freshmen (Lauren Alkek, Kelsey Allison, Ashley Bolden, Tiana Dickson and Whitney Palmer) started both contests and four freshmen (Allison, Dickson, Palmer and Caitlin Stojkovic) tallied goals in the first game.   Overall,  OU has 14 freshmen on the roster and 11 of those newcomers (three redshirts) played over the weekend.

Oklahoma is 5-1-1 in the last seven season openers.  The Sooners' five-game unbeaten streak ended last year when they dropped a 1-0 decision to Washington.  The tie in that span came in 2004 against Saint Louis in Norman.  OU is 6-5-1 lifetime in the first game of the year, including a 2-1-1 record at home.

OU will face seven first-time opponents in 2007, including Alabama A&M, William & Mary, Virginia Commonwealth, Long Beach State, Cal State Fullerton, Middle Tennesse and Butler.  OU finished 2006 with a 3-4 record against first time opponents (wins over Michigan State, Stephen F. Austin and Northern Iowa and losses versus Washington, Hawaii, Michigan and Purdue).

 In his ninth year at OU, head coach Randy Evans is 45-20-5 (.679) against non-conference opponents. The Sooners finished 2006 with a 5-4 mark against teams outside of the Big 12.  In 2005, OU posted its best non-conference record (8-1, .889 winning percentage) in program history.  The last time OU had a losing non-conference record was during the 1999 season, Evans' first year.

Freshmen Lauren Alkek (Victoria, Texas) and Whitney Palmer (Plano, Texas) were selected to U.S. National Select Women's Team (Under-23) as announced by the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA) on July 9.   The two Sooners were part of a group of 32 members vying for spots on the national team at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif.

The Sooners return eight starters and 14 letterwinners from the 2006 squad that finished the year at 8-11-1.  In addition, four players return with three years of starting experience in Shana All, Lauren Harris, Allyson Kucera and Jenny Nichols.  Kucera has started the most games (57) than any other Sooner on the roster prior to the 2007 season.

A live web cast will provided for select games this season and will be available on Oklahoma All-Access,'s paid site.  Lives stats will also be available for free for all of OU's home games and a portion of the road contests.  Both links can be accessed on soccer's schedule page. The All-Access purchase helps support OU Athletics and memberships are available monthly for $9.95 or annually for $99.95.  Below is a look at this season's schedule:

Friday, Aug. 31 
Alabama A&M - 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, Sept. 2 
Oral Roberts - 3 p.m.

Thursday, Oct. 4 
Baylor - 7 p.m.

Friday, Oct. 19 
Texas Tech - 7 p.m.

Friday, Oct. 26 
Colorado - 7 p.m.

Sunday, Oct. 28 
Texas - 1 p.m.

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