NORMAN, Okla. -- The Oklahoma Sooners continue their current six-game home stand this weekend with Purdue and Stephen F. Austin. On Friday, the Sooners host the Boilermakers at 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday, OU will battle the Ladyjacks at 1 p.m.
TICKETS AND PROMOTIONS
Gates will open one hour before each game at John Crain Field on the corner of Imhoff Road and Chautauqua Avenue. Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for children (K-12). OU students receive free admission with a valid student ID. For more information, including information on group rates, contact the OU ticket office at 800-456-GoOU.
On Friday and Sunday, the first 250 fans will receive a free OU bucket hat. Sunday’s game is also a “Kid’s Corner” day, featuring sign making, face painting and an inflatable playground.
FOLLOW LIVE ACTION
Friday's game can be seen live on the O-Zone, SoonerSports.com’s premium web site, by clicking the following link. Live Stats can also be tracked by clicking the link below.
SCOUTING THE BOILERMAKERS
For the fifth consecutive game this season, OU will square off against a first-time opponent when it hosts Purdue on Friday. The Sooners have played each of the first four games of 2006 against first-time opponents (Washington, Hawai’i, Michigan and Michigan State).
The Boilermakers (4-1-1) are riding a three-game winning streak after topping Loyola Chicago, 1-0, on Tuesday in West Lafayette. Prior to that game, Purdue swept the Big 12 last weekend at home with a pair of shutouts over Texas Tech, 4-0, and Baylor, 2-0, and is receiving votes in this week’s top 25 polls. (Soccer Buzz and NSCAA/adidas).
Senior goalkeeper Lauren Mason, the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week, has two shutouts this season. Mason played every minute in goal for the Boilermakers last season and has played all but 73 minutes in 2006. Mason has allowed five goals in 2006, four of which came in Purdue’s only loss of the season against San Diego.
Purdue enters Friday averaging just under two goals per game and is led by the offensive play of sophomore Jessica Okoroafo (3 goals and an assist). Okoroafo was named the Big Ten’s Freshman of the Year after she tied Purdue’s single season goals record with 10 (including six game winners).
Purdue (11-7-2) finished second in the Big Ten last season with a 7-2-1 record. The Boilermakers have made the NCAA Tournament three of the last four years and lost in the first round of the 2005 Tournament to UW-Milwaukee in penalty kicks.
SCOUTING THE LADYJACKS
The Sooners and Ladyjacks will square off for the second time in history on Sunday at 1 p.m. In the first meeting on Sept. 9, 1998, Stephen F. Austin topped OU 2-1 in Texas.
Stephen F. Austin, who plays Oral Roberts on Friday in Norman at 5 p.m., most recently squeezed out a 3-2 victory in overtime last Sunday at home over Centenary and lost at Louisiana Tech on Friday.
Sophomore Francesca Tierno has started in goal for the Ladyjacks each of the last three games and has a 1.61 goals-against average. Tierno has seven saves opposite the five goals she has allowed in 280 minutes of action.
Offensively, senior Shahin Pabani leads the squad with four goals and nine points overall. Before the season started, Pabani ranked third on the school’s all-time list in points (53) and second in goals (23).
In 2005, Stephen F. Austin finished 14-4-0 overall (7-0 in the Southland Conference) and lost in the semifinals of the conference tournament.
LAST TIME OUT
After a disappointing 0-2 start to the season in Hawai’i, the Sooners returned home and split with a win against Michigan State on Sunday, 1-0, after falling to visiting Michigan on Friday, 2-0.
The Sooners’ first win of 2006 was made possible by Shana All’s second career game-winning goal and Jennifer Nichols’ eighth career shutout on Sunday against the Spartans.
The Sooners will remain at home and conclude the six-game home stand to host Oklahoma State and Oral Roberts next weekend. The Sooners kick off the Big 12 season with the Cowgirls on Friday, Sept. 15 at 7:30 p.m. Sunday’s match-up against the Golden Eagles is also slated for a 7:30 p.m. start time.
HOME SWEET HOME
The Sooners won nine out of 10 home games last season and have a chance to break into double digit wins this season with 10 games still scheduled at John Crain Field at the OU Soccer Complex. Last weekend against Michigan and Michigan State, OU began a six-game home stand. OU is 47-27-7 lifetime at home, including a 32-10-5 mark over the last five seasons.
Entering Sunday’s game against Michigan State, OU recorded 21 shots in three games. Against the Spartans, the Sooners fired a season-high 17 shots, the highest shot total since firing 20 against Oklahoma State on Oct. 28, 2005. Despite the boost on Sunday, the Sooners have not held an advantage in the shot count during a game this season.
The Sooners will face seven teams that advanced to last year’s NCAA Tournament (Michigan State, Purdue, Colorado, Texas A&M, Texas, Iowa State and Nebraska) in 2006. Those teams each had 11 wins or more last year and combined to go 89-49-16 in 2005.
OU has never faced Purdue or Michigan State in regular season play. The Sooners will also play five other teams this season for the first time (Washington, Hawai’i, Michigan, Northern Iowa and Missouri State).
EVANS VS. NON-CONFERENCE OPPONENTS
In 2005, OU posted its best non-conference record (8-1, .889 winning percentage) in program history. The previous best was set by the 2001 team that went 7-1 (.875). The last time OU had a losing non-conference record during a season was in 1999, current head coach Randy Evans first year.
Evans, now in his eighth season at OU, is 39-19-5 (.659) against non-conference opponents.
OU TABBED SIXTH IN BIG 12 PRESEASON POLL
Oklahoma was picked to finish in sixth place in the Big 12 Conference, according to a coaches poll released by the league office.
Texas A&M was picked to win the 2006 Big 12 soccer championship after receiving seven of 11 first place votes (coaches are not allowed to vote for their own team or players) and totaled 97 points. Nebraska was chosen second with two first place votes and 83 points. Texas was a close third with two first place votes and 82 points.
The Sooners followed Colorado and Kansas at No. 4 and No. 5, respectively, and were picked to finish ahead of Oklahoma State, Missouri, Iowa State, Baylor and Texas Tech.
2006 BIG 12 SOCCER PRESEASON POLL
1. Texas A&M (7) 97
2. Nebraska (2) 83
3. Texas (2) 82
4. Colorado 72
5. Kansas 69
6. Oklahoma 51
7. Oklahoma State 47
8. Missouri 42
9. Iowa State 31
10. Baylor 18
11. Texas Tech 13
OU SOCCER COMPLEX RENOVATIONS
The University of Oklahoma Athletics Department has completed Phase II of the OU Soccer Complex, a $4.5 million renovation. The addition of a state-of-the-art press box and grandstand is joined by a multi-use building located between the soccer complex and the Headington Family Tennis Center at the corner of Chautauqua Avenue and Imhoff Road.
Phase II construction began in November of 2005 and the new facility is comprised of spaces for student-athletes, coaches and fans of both soccer and tennis.
The OU soccer and tennis clubhouse features a training room, locker rooms, video and conference rooms, team facilities, and equipment, laundry and other support services.
The press box is equipped with camera decks and a media level complete with the latest technologies. The attractive conference room/meeting area serves as a versatile location for team meetings and activities, and will be used to host special guests, parents, donors and media.
In addition to increasing the seating capacity to 3,500, the complex also includes concessions, restrooms and a ticket booth to give fans a complete family atmosphere for watching Division I soccer.
The Sooners finished the preseason with a 2-0 mark after defeating TCU, 4-1, at home on Aug. 15 and topping North Texas, 3-2, on Aug. 18 in Denton.
Below is a look at the individual statistics throughout the preseason:
Daphne Fitzpatrick - 2
Shana All - 2
Kady Kelly - 2
Lauren Harris - 1
Kady Kelly - 2
Shana All - 1
Daphne Fitzpatrick - 1
Allyson Kucera - 1
Jennifer Nichols - 6