No. 7 Trojans Head to NCAA Women's College Cup, Face No. 5 Georgetown in National Semifinal|
Nov. 30, 2016
THIS WEEK - No. 7 Trojans (17-4-2) advanced to the program's second NCAA Women's College Cup and are set to face No. 5 Georgetown (20-2-3) in the NCAA semifinals on Friday, Dec. 2 at 4:30 p.m. PT in Avaya Stadium in San Jose, Calif. The game will be televised on ESPNU. This is the second time in program history the Trojans have advanced to the College Cup (previously in 2007 when they won the program's only title). If the Trojans were to advance to the NCAA finals, the match will be on Sunday, Dec. 4 at 3 p.m. PT against the winner of the North Carolina/West Virginia semi that is taking place on Friday, Dec. 2 at 2 p.m. PT.
IN THE NCAA TOURNAMENT- The Trojans are in the midst of their 15th NCAA Tournament appearance. They earned a two seed for the second time in program history. The previous time was in 2007 when they went on to win the NCAA title. It's the highest seeding the program has ever seen. The Trojans are 18-11-5 all-time in the NCAA Tournament, including going 6-0 in 2007 to win the NCAA title. Under head coach Keidane McAlpine the Trojans are 3-1-3 in the postseason (three years). This is just the second time the Trojans have advanced to the NCAA Women's College Cup, with the previous time coming in 2007. That year on Nov. 30 the Trojans defeated crosstown rival UCLA 2-1 in the semifinals and Florida State 2-0 in the finals in College Station, Texas to win the program and the Pac-12 their first NCAA women's soccer title. The Trojans arrived in the semifinals after defeating Eastern Washington 3-1 in the first round, advancing in the second round 4-3 in penalty kicks after a 0-0 double-overtime tie against Texas A&M. Then the Trojans defeated Pac-12 foe Utah 1-0 with a 73rd minute goal by Leah Pruitt to advance the Trojans to the NCAA quarterfinal against Auburn, where a fourth minute goal by Alex Anthony held up as the Trojans won 1-0 to advance to the Women's College Cup. The Trojans played at home throughout the tournament, the trip to San Jose is the first time the No. 2 seed will be playing outside the friendly confines of McAlister Field.
Last year the Trojans advanced to the NCAA Round of 16, falling 2-0 to host Virginia in coach McAlpine's second season at the helm. Morgan Andrews scored five of the Trojans' six goals in that postseason run. After scoring two against Eastern Washington in the 2016 first round, she has now scored seven of the Trojans' 11 postseason goals over the last seven postseason games.
WINS - The Trojans 17 wins this season are the second-most in program history, with the most coming during the 2007 national championship season when they went 20-3-2. That year the Trojans also finished second in the Pac-12 and were a two seed in the NCAA Tournament.
AGAINST GEORGETOWN - This is the first time in program history the Trojans and Hoyas will meet. The Hoyas advanced in similar fashion to the Trojans, playing at home throughout the tournament, defeating Santa Clara 1-0 in the quarterfinal. The Trojans and Hoyas played two common opponents this season in Stanford and Santa Clara. The Hoyas fell 3-0 to Stanford at home on Aug. 21, while the Trojans defeated the Cardinal at home on Oct. 6. The Trojans opened the 2016 season at Santa Clara, falling 3-2 in double overtime to the Broncos. The Hoyas' last game was the quarterfinal victory over the Broncos.
AGAINST NORTH CAROLINA- The Trojans and Tar Heels have already faced off this year, with the Trojans defeating UNC 3-0 at McAlister Field on Sept. 11. Morgan Andrews had the game-winning header in the win. The three goals was also the most goals allowed by the Tar Heels (5-1-1) since a 4-3 overtime loss to Texas A&M on September 11, 2011. The win was the first victory for the Trojans over the Tar Heels in program history, with three previous losses. Overall the Trojans are 1-3 against the storied program. Last season the Trojans lost 2-1 in a tournament at Duke to the Tar Heels, then previously in 2002 (0-2) and in 1999 (0-5)
AGAINST WEST VIRGINIA- The Trojans are 1-0 against West Virginia, with the lone match coming in the Trojans' fairy tale 2007 NCAA National Championship run quarterfinals. The Trojans defeated the Mountaineers 1-0 in Morgantown to advance to that year's College Cup.
ANDREWS HERMANN TROPHY SEMIFINALIST- Andrews becomes the third Trojan in program history to be named a MAC Hermann Trophy semifinalist, joining Amy Rodriguez in 2008 and Kristin Olsen in 2009. She was named the third-best collegiate player at the 2016 midseason by TopDrawer Soccer. Andrews started all 23 games, ranking second on the team with nine goals, second with 21 points (9 goals, 3 assists). She is also tied for the team lead with four game-winning goals. Overall Andrews has scored in six different games, three of those being multi-goal outings. Andrews has a knack for coming up big in big games, scoring two goals, including the game-winner on Oct. 6 as the Trojans upset then-No. 1 Stanford 3-0. She also scored the game-winning goal against then-No. 8 North Carolina on Sept. 11 as the Trojans upset the Tar Heels 3-0. She also tallied two goals at Oregon on Sept. 29th and two goals against Eastern Washington in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
UNBEATEN STREAK - The Trojans saw their five-game unbeaten streak snapped against UCLA at the end of the regular season. Earlier in the season, the team saw its program-record 10 game winning streak snapped against Cal, 1-0 on Oct. 9. Previously the Trojans had nine game winning streaks in 2008 and 2009.
Sammy Jo Prudhomme - The Pac-12 Goalkeeper of the Year, set a new program record with 11 shutout victories in the regular season. The previous record was nine regular season shutouts by Kristin Olsen in 2007. Including postseason she had 14 total to her name, also setting a new program record. Currently the team has 15 total shutouts, with Prudhomme tallying 14 individually (13 being victories). Her .906 save percentage ranks fifth nationally, while her 14 shutouts are third-best in the nation. In the regular season she led the Pac-12 by only allowing an impressive nine goals in 19 games. Earlier in the season she led the team on a seven-game shutout streak, tallying 726 minutes of shutout soccer over eight games, good for 27th best nationally all-time. She earned Pac-12 Goalkeeper of the Week honors four times.
Mandy Freeman - Freeman was named Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year for the first time in her career, while earning All-Pac-12 First Team honors for the second time (previously in 2013 for her freshman campaign). Freeman, a defender and midfielder, assisted in 11 shutouts on the regular season to put USC fifth in the nation in shutout percentage to end the regular season. USC led the league in goals against average at 0.47, which is the eighth-best mark in the country in the regular season. USC finished the regular season with 47 goals scored and nine goals allowed, the second-best goal differential in the league. Freeman is the second Trojan in as many years to earn the honor, as fellow senior Kayla Mills was named Defensive Player of the Year in 2015.
ALL PAC-12 HONORS - Sammy Jo Prudhomme, the Pac-12 Goalkeeper of the Year and Mandy Freeman, the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year headlined the conference honors, as they were also named to the first team. The Trojans collected eight honorees, the most in school history. Both Mills and Andrews earned first team honors for the second-straight season. Joining Prudhomme and Freeman on the first team is Morgan Andrews and Kayla Mills, while Alex Anthony and Savannah Levin were first team honorees. Katie Johnson earned honorable mention accolades, while Julia Bingham was named to the All-Freshman team.
THE Leah Pruitt FACTOR- The San Diego State transfer, who would be a starter on most squads, has been a spark plug up top for the Trojans. The regular substitution pattern has her coming into the game towards the 30th minute of the first half, changing the tempo of the contest, and then starting the second half. She has been especially productive starting the second half. In the first 15 minutes of the second half she has been impactful, tallying two of her three goals in that time span (46:03 mark vs. Kansas and 48:54 mark vs. Washington State. Five of her team-leading six assists also came within that time span (45:42 vs. Oregon, 46:11 vs. Oregon, 48:23 vs. Washington, 55:35 vs. Stanford and 57:59 vs. Arizona State). She also scored the game-winning goal in the 73rd minute to push the Trojans into the Elite Eight.
DEFENSIVE STRONG - The Trojans ended a seven-game shutout streak with an Oregon goal in the 76th minute on Sept. 29, beating the previous program record of six, set in 2006. They did not surrender a goal in 729 minutes, setting a new school record for minutes shut out. The previous record was 654 set during the 2006 streak. Prior the goal given up in the 76th minute of the contest at Oregon on Thursday, the last goal they gave up was on Aug. 26 at Long Beach State in the 66th minute. In 2015 the Trojans were the only squad to have three-straight shutout matches against Pac-12 opponents. Sammy Jo Prudhomme went on a streak earlier this season, 726 minutes of action (three minutes in the North Carolina game went to backup keeper Julia Murphy) of shutout soccer, which puts her 27th in the NCAA record book for the longest individual goalkeeper consecutive shutout minutes streak.
RACKING UP THE WEEKLY HONORS- Redshirt senior goalkeeper Sammy Jo Prudhomme earned her second-straight Pac-12 Goalkeeper of the Week honor and fourth of the year after making five saves over two shutout victories last week. She also earned back-to-back honors earlier this season after the Auburn Soccer Classic and North Carolina weekends. Senior defender Savannah Levin earned her first career Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week honor after helping lead the Trojans to a 2-0 victory at Arizona State. The senior scored her first goal of the year en route to the honor. Mandy Freeman earned her first Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week honor of her career, after the Trojans tallied another shutout as they defeated visiting Arizona 4-0 at McAlister Field in the Pac-12 opener on Sept. 23. Freeman and the Trojans thwarted 15 shot opportunities, including a tough second half where the Wildcats had 12 shots alone. The victory set a program record with seven-straight shutout victories. This was the first time in her career that Freeman has been named Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week. Last season she earned her first weekly honor, Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week after a two-goal, two-victory weekend. Ally Prisock earned Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week honors for the first time in her career, as she led a stalwart Trojan defense that did not allow a goal against Loyola Marymount and then-No. 8 North Carolina.
IN THE STATS - The Trojans finished the regular season second in the conference with 40 goals scored (2.11 average per game) and with the stingiest defense in the conference with just nine goals allowed in 19 games (0.47 goals per game). The team also led the conference with 12 shutouts. Alex Anthony ranked eighth in the conference with nine goals and also sat at sixth with 23 points. She ranked second the conference with 3.84 shots per game. Leah Pruitt ranked fourth in the conference with 0. 40 assists per game and fourth with her six assists overall. Sammy Jo Prudhomme finished the regular season third in the Pac-12 with 78 saves overall and third with 4.11 saves per game. Her save percentage of 0.897 ranked first, and her 11 solo shutouts were tied for first in the conference, while she also ranked first in shutouts per game, with 0.58/game and her goals against average of 0.47 was tops in the Pac-12.
NATIONALLY SPEAKING - The Trojans currently rank eighth nationally with a 0.652 shutout percentage and fifth nationally with a 0.907 save percentage. In goals against average the Trojans rank eighth with 0.425. The team's offense ranked 26th nationally with 45 total goals. The team's win-loss-tied percentage of 0.783 ranks 12th. Individually, goalkeeper Sammy Jo Prudhomme ranks sixth nationally with a 0.906 save percentage, third nationally with 14 shutouts and eighth with a goals against average or 0.426.
SENIOR CLASS - Senior defender Mandy Freeman was named one of 30 candidates for the prestigious Senior CLASS Award, given to the nation's most well-rounded student-athlete in each sport. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
IN THE RECORD BOOKS - Morgan Andrews has already made her mark in the USC record book, less than two seasons into her USC career. She has tallied 21 goals for the Trojans in her career, putting her tied for 10th in the USC career record book for goals scored with fellow senior Katie Johnson.