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Soccer Hosts In-State Rivals
August 27, 2009

Aug. 27, 2009

Sooner Soccer (2-0) vs. Oral Roberts (1-0) and Tulsa (0-0)
 Games 3 and 4  Friday, Aug. 28 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, Aug. 30 at 7 p.m.
 Location  Norman, Okla.  |  John Crain Field (Capacity: 3,500)
 Internet  Live Stats | Webcast
 Promotions  Back to School Night | Family Day
 Tickets  Adults - $8, Children - $5 | Call or Purchase Online
 Game Info  2009 Media Guide | Weekly Releases

NORMAN, Okla.-- OU (2-0) will conclude the current four-game home stand this weekend against a pair of in-state rivals.  The action begins on Friday, Aug. 28, against Oral Roberts at John Crain Field at 7 p.m. 

The Golden Eagles were picked to finish seventh in the Summit League in 2009 and they return 10 starters and 18 letterwinners overall from last season.  In 2008, ORU finished fifth with a 3-5 conference mark and a 6-10-1 overall record.  The Golden Eagles opened 2009 with an impressive 1-0 win over SMU at home.

The Sooners and Golden Eagles last met in 2007 as OU triumphed with a 4-1 decision in Norman.  Prior to 2008, OU and ORU had met in 11 straight seasons.  OU leads the all-time series 9-2, including a 5-0 advantage at home, and has won the last three meetings.  The last OU loss in the series came in 2004, a 1-0 overtime decision in Tulsa.   Four of the all-time meetings have been decided by one goal (OU, 2-2) and three of the contest have been pushed into overtime (OU, 1-2). 

Game Four | Tulsa
Sunday's 7 p.m. showdown with Tulsa marks the end of the Sooners'  home stand.  The Golden Hurricane opens the 2009 season at home on Friday against Louisiana - Lafayette.   Tulsa returns 20 letterwinners and nine starters from a 2008 team that finished ninth in the Conference USA standings with a 8-9-3 overall mark and a 3-6-2 record in conference play.

OU and Tulsa have not met since 2005 when the Sooners recorded a 3-0 decision at home.  The Sooners are 2-1 at home against the Golden Hurricane and lead the all-time series 5-2.  The last time Tulsa topped Oklahoma was in 2000 in Edmond (Tulsa won 2-0).

Video: Wednesday Practice Report
SoonerSports.com caught up with coach Nelson on Wednesday to discuss the opening weekend, ORU and Tulsa, the loss of Sage Coralli (ACL) and the play of Devonshire and the defense.  Click the video links below to view footage from Wednesday's practice.

Video OU's head coach on trying to replace Sage Coralli
Video Nelson previews Oral Roberts and Tulsa
Video The coach discusses the play of Devonshire and the defense
Video Nelson talks about this week's practices

On the Web
Fans can follow both games on the web with live stats on SoonerSports.com and a video webcast on Oklahoma All-Access.

Player to Watch
#12 Michelle Alexander, Sophomore, Defender  |  Sugarland, Texas
The sophomore defender scored her first and second career goals in Sunday's 3-0 win over Sam Houston State.  Alexander is tied for the Big 12 lead in goals scored.  She was the only freshman to start all 19 games a year ago after playing forward in high school.
2009 Season Stats: 2 goals, 4 shots, 2 SOG, 2 starts

Promotions
The Sooners will celebrate "Back to School Night" on Friday as the first 250 kids will receive Sooner Soccer drawstring backpacks.  The game will be followed by a post-game autograph session with the players and coaches.  In addition, fireworks will be displayed after each OU goal is scored.

Sunday's game marks "Family Day" as fans will have a chance to win various raffle prizes for families, including a free Sooner Kids Club membership, OU soccer stuff and memorabilia.  The Sooners will sign autographs following the game.

Tickets on Sale
Single game tickets for the 2009 soccer season are on sale to the public.  The 19-game regular season slate is highlighted by 11 regular season contests 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

Next Weekend
OU hits the road for the first time this season with a weekend trip to Tennessee.  On Friday, Sept. 4, the Sooners will travel to Middle Tennessee for a 7 p.m.  game in Murfreesboro.  On Sunday, Sept. 6, OU takes on Vanderbilt in Nashville at 1 p.m.

Last Time Out
Oklahoma (2-0) is coming off an impressive weekend that featured a pair of 3-0 victories over Missouri State on Friday and Sam Houston State on Sunday.  Several freshmen made their debuts and contributed right away with three different newcomers (Dria Hampton, Jessica Johnson and Brianna Turang) tallying points and freshman goalkeeper Kelsey Devonshire recording two shutouts in goal.  Sophomores Jordan White and Kelsey Kraft delivered the game-winning goals on Friday and Sunday, respectively.

2-0 Starts
OU won the first two games of the season for the third time in the last five years and the seventh overall as it continues the program's 14-year history. 

Palmer tied for fifth all-time
Junior forward Whitney Palmer wasted little time in scoring her first goal of 2009.  When she found the back of the net in the season opener, Palmer moved into a tie for fifth place at OU in career goals scored.  Below is a look the top five goal scorers in OU history:

 Rank, Player  Goals  Years
 1.  Logan Womack  34  2000-03
 2.  Jonette Coquat  26  1998-01
 3.  Savannah Scott  22  2003-06
 4.  Lauren MacIver  18  2002-05
 5.  Krissy Dawson  15  2000-02
 5.  Whitney Palmer  15  2007-present

Devonshire Shines in Debut
While several freshmen saw significant minutes in the opening weekend, freshman goalkeeper Kelsey Devonshire accomplished a feat no other Sooner had done in OU history.  Devonshire's shutout over Missouri State in the season opener was the first recorded by a Sooner goalkeeper in a debut.  Devonshire followed it up with another blanking on Sunday, this time against Sam Houston State.  She leads the Big 12 in that category.

Click here to read about the freshmen's performances over the weekend and how it compares to other past debuts.

Sooners in Big 12 Ranks
While Kelsey Devonshire leads the Big 12 with two shutouts, three other Sooners find themselves atop of a league statistic after the opening weekend.  Michelle Alexander is tied atop the goals scored list with two, while Whitney Palmer and Dria Hampton are tied for the league lead in assists with two.  Refer to page four for each of the Sooners ranked in the top 10 in the Big 12 statistics this week.

Spreading the Wealth
Five different Sooners have scored goals after two games, tying the amount of scorers from a year ago.  Sophomore Michelle Alexander leads all Sooners with two goals while Jessica Johnson, Kelsey Kraft, Whitney Palmer and Jordan White have all found the back of the net once this season.

Season Openers
OU is 6-2-1 in the last nine season openers after topping Missouri State on Aug. 21. The two defeats in that span came last year at Colorado College (L, 3-1) and in 2006 at Washington (L, 1-0). The tie occurred in 2004 against Saint Louis in Norman. OU is 7-6-1 lifetime in the first game of the year, including a 3-0-1 mark at home.  Overall, OU is 7-5-1 in home openers.

Palmer Preseason All-Big 12
OU junior forward Whitney Palmer was named to the All-Big 12 soccer preseason team as voted on by the conference's coaches.  Palmer is the first Sooner since Logan Womack (2002) to be named to the preseason team and the third in the program's 13 year history (Christen Secrest - 2000).  She led OU with eight goals in 2008, third most by a Sooner in a single season, and was named to the All-Big 12 second team. As a true freshman, the Plano, Texas, native was named to the All-Big 12 Newcomer team with six goals scored.

2009 Oklahoma Soccer Guide
The official source of information for the Sooner soccer program.
 
Produced by the OU Athletics Media Relations Department, this award-winning publication includes updated player and coaching staff bios, roster, a 2009 season preview and opponent capsules. In addition, it contains a complete history of the Sooner soccer program including individual and team records, award winners, year-by-year statistics and all-time series records.

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