AMHERST, Mass. -
The UMass women's soccer team will close out its home regular season slate this weekend with contests against Charlotte at 4 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 19, and George Washington at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 21 at Rudd Field. Sunday's game, Senior Day for the squad's three seniors, will also be "Women's Soccer Whiteout" presented by Supercuts Soccerfest. Pregame festivities will begin at 11:30 a.m., while the first 50 students in attendance will receive free t-shirts.
Charlotte enters Friday's match against UMass with a record of 10-4-1. After winning six straight, the 49ers dropped their first Atlantic 10 contest of the season to La Salle, 2-1, last weekend.
Amanda Jones leads the 49ers with 19 points on seven goals and five assists, including a game winner. Carrie Dail follows with six goals and five assists for 24 points.
Alex Kubrick has started nine of 15 matches for Charlotte in net, playing a total of 761:13. She holds a 0.59 goals-against average and an .898 save percentage with a record of 6-1-1. Annika McHenry has started the other six games, playing 634:19. She has a 1.42 goals-against average and a .800 save percentage.
Against The 49ers
UMass is 2-4-0 all-time against Charlotte including an 0-2 mark at Rudd Field. The Minutewomen took last year's contest in North Carolina by the score of 2-1 on Oct. 7, 2011. Current sophomore Tori Sousa assisted on Meghan Collins' game-winning tally in the 78th minute.
UMass last faced Charlotte in Amherst on Oct. 1, 2010, a 2-1 loss for the Minutewomen.
Scouting George Washington
George Washington enters the weekend with a record of 4-9-1, having lost its last five games, all Atlantic 10 contests. The Colonials fell to La Salle, 1-0, and Fordham, 2-1, in overtime last weekend.
Kristi Abbate leads the Colonials with seven points on three goals and an assist, including two game winners. Adriana Moya follows with three goals for six points.
Nicole Fasano has started nine of 14 matches for George Washington in net, playing a total of 872:25. She holds a 1.34 goals-against average and a .822 save percentage with a record of 3-5-1.
Against The Colonials
UMass is 18-6-3 all-time against George Washington including an 8-2-2 mark at Rudd Field. The Minutewomen are undefeated in the last four meetings with the Colonials at home, winning three matches and tying once.
The last time these teams met, UMass defeated George Washington, 2-0 on Oct. 28, 2011 in Amherst.
In The Atlantic 10
UMass is 108-70-7 (.603) all-time in Atlantic 10 matches and posted its highest conference wins total in 10 years last season with a record of 6-2-1.
First Goal Crucial
UMass is 7-0 when scoring the first goal of the match this season and 0-8 when its opponent notches the first tally.
Five of the Minutewomen's seven victories have come via shutout, while the squad has been held off the board in six of eight setbacks. Four of the eight losses were by one-goal margins.
Where They Stack Up Nationally
Out of 330 Division I women's soccer programs in the nation, UMass ranks 31st as a team in save percentage (.847).
Moa Mattsson is seventh nationally in game winning goals with five.
Minutewomen Among The A-10 Leaders
Goalkeeper Emily Cota is fifth in the Atlantic 10 in shutouts (4), third in shutouts per-game (0.44).
Goalkeeper Stephanie Gordon is first in the Atlantic 10 in saves per-game (8.71), third in save percentage (.871), and is sixth in total saves with 61.
Moa Mattsson is first in game-winning goals (5), fourth in goals (8), sixth in goals per-game (0.53), fourth in points (19) and fifth in points per-game (1.27).
Seven different players have combined for UMass' 15 goals on the season. Five of the seven logged their first career tallies.
Having already surpassed her freshman year total of six points, sophomore Moa Mattsson currently leads the Minutewomen in scoring through 15 matches with 19 points and scored her first of the season in a 2-1 loss to #6 UCLA in the teams' season opener.
Last Time Out
The UMass women's soccer team was unable to overcome a two-goal first half deficit, falling to Temple, 2-0 at the Ambler Sports Complex on Sunday afternoon.
Temple got on the board in the 29th minute and reinforced their lead at the 36:55, which proved to be an insurmountable lead for the Minutewomen.
UMass peppered Owls' goalkeeper Shauni Kerkhoff with eight shots on net, but she turned aside all eight to collect the shutout. Freshmen Jen Coppola and Jackie Bruno led the Minutewomen with four attempts at goal apiece as the squad out-shot Temple, 19-17. Corner kicks were even at 7-7, while fouls were 13-5 against the Owls.
UMass senior goalkeeper Emily Cota collected multiple weekly awards following her performance against Boston University and New Hampshire. She was tabbed Atlantic 10 and UMass Athlete of the Week and was named to the CollegeSoccer360.com Primetime Performers Weekly Honor Roll for Division I Women's Soccer.
Seeing her first action of the 2012 season, Cota posted back-to-back shutouts to help the Minutewomen to a pair of wins and made a total of 14 saves, seven in each contest at Boston University and vs. New Hampshire. The Minutewomen defeated the Terriers, 1-0, and followed up with a 2-0 win over the Wildcats.
The shutouts were Cota's 17th and 18th of her UMass career, moving her within one of the No. 5 all-time mark in program history.
Mattsson Named UMass Athlete Of The Week
Sophomore Moa Mattsson was named the UMass Athlete of the Week on Aug. 27, becoming the first Minutewoman to earn a weekly award this season.
Mattsson scored two goals, including the game-winner in UMass' first victory of 2012, at Bryant on Aug. 22. The first of her two tallies, which came just 93 seconds apart, was a beautiful strike from 35 yards out to help down the Bulldogs, 3-2.
Mattsson was named player of the week for the second time this season after scoring the game-winning goal and notching an assist in a 3-1 victory over Rhode Island on October 6th.
Mattsson Collects Second Weekly Honor Of The Season
Moa Mattsson was tabbed the UMass Athlete of the Week on Oct. 9 after scoring the game-winning goal and notching an assist in a 3-1 win over Rhode Island.
The sophomore has now scored the game winner in each of the last four of the Minutewomen's victories and logged her fourth match of the year with three points or more against the Rams. The Uppsala, Sweden native now sits tied for eighth all-time in UMass history for game-winning goals in a single season, as well.
Youth Is Served
Eight of UMass' 11 starters against UCLA in the season opener were either first or second-year players for the Minutewomen. Four of the eight--Rebecca Sverrisdóttir, Madison Smith, Jen Coppola and Georgia Gibson --are true freshmen.
Freshman Jackie Bruno also saw her first collegiate action, playing 14 minutes as a reserve.
A Formidable Schedule
In its first seven matches to open the 2012 season, UMass faced five teams that either earned rankings or received votes in the NSCAA Preseason Poll.
The Minutewomen began with #6 UCLA and hosted (RV) Harvard on Aug. 31.
UMass faced preseason-ranked #3 Wake Forest and #22 Virginia Tech in Winston Salem on the weekend of Sept. 7-9 and defeated preseason #23 Boston University on Sept. 14.
Three of UMass' five setbacks thus far have come against ranked foes, two of the three were by one-goal margins (2-1 vs. #6 UCLA and 1-0 vs. #17 Wake Forest).
UCLA, currently ranked #3 in the latest poll, remains undefeated at 12-0-2. UMass is one of five teams to score against the Bruins as the squad has allowed five goals through 14 matches.
Cota, enters her final year at UMass coming off her best season of her career to-date. In 2011, Cota posted a record of 12-4-1 with 10 shutouts, good for sixth in program history for shutouts in a single season and most by an individual since Briana Scurry in 1993. She logged a 0.82 goals-against average and a .874 save percentage on her way to NSCAA All-Mid-Atlantic Region, All-New England and All-Atlantic 10 recognitions.
Currently, Cota is fifth all-time in program history with 20 career shutouts, one away from tying Kristin Walker (2004-07) for fourth. She ranks fourth in career saves, as well, with 283.
After winning two championships at Northeastern (a CAA tournament title in 2008 and a regular season crown in 2009, Stephanie Gordon saw action in five games in net, drawing four starts in her first season with the Minutewomen in 2011. She posted a record of 2-1-1, including one shutout, and made nine saves in her UMass debut, a 2-1 triumph over New Hampshire. Gordon left Northeastern as the program's career leader in goals-against average (1.09) and earned 2009 All-CAA Second Team and 2008 CAA All-Tournament Team recognition.
In the 2-1 loss to #6 UCLA, Gordon matched her career high with 11 saves, a mark she had previously set against Hofstra while at Northeastern on Oct. 31, 2009.
She bested that career high in the following match, stopping 16 shots at Bryant.
Deep On Defense
Despite graduating 2011 all-region defender Meghan Collins, UMass returns a bulk of talent on defense, some who will see action in the midfield this season.
The Minutewomen bring back five defenders who played in 18 or more games last season.
Among those five, co-captains Jess Howe and Lauren Skesavage were two of five UMass players who started all 21 games last fall. Howe has missed just two matches in her three-plus collegiate seasons for a total of 72 career starts. Skesavage has played and stared 54 of 55 possible matches in her career thus far with the Minutewomen.
As a team, UMass posted 11 shutouts in 2011, including five consecutive, for the most clean sheets by a Minutewomen squad since 1997.
UMass' group of seven sophomores features four players who started 11+ games and appeared in 17 or more of the team's 21 contests last season as freshmen.
Returning leading scorer Tori Sousa posted 12 points as a freshman on four goals and four assists, tying for the team lead in helpers. Sousa posted a team-high nine points in A-10 play (3g, 3a, 2 gwg) last season en route to Atlantic 10 All-Rookie Team honors.
Classmate Moa Mattsson is second to Sousa among scorers returning with six points (1g, 4a) as a rookie in 2011. Mattsson, who started all 21 matches last fall, collected multiple postseason accolades, including NSCAA All-Mid-Atlantic Region, Atlantic 10 All-Conference and Atlantic 10 All-Rookie honors.
The Matz Era At UMass
UMass is 29-24-2 (.545) over head coach Ed Matz' first two-plus seasons, including a record of 13-9-1 (.587) in Atlantic 10 matches and a trip to the A-10 final in 2011.
In just two year's time, the squad jumped over 200 spots in the RPI, finishing 2011 with a #46 ranking after concluding the 2009 season at #257.
Under his direction, UMass players have earned nine All-Atlantic 10 honors, five all-region accolades and three All-New England selections.
Matz is 128-115-27 all-time as a women's head coach, with an overall record (men & women) of 211-189-43.
Home Sweet Home
UMass is 231-72-12 (.752) all-time at home with a 53-41-3 (.562) mark at Rudd Field.
The Minutewomen posted an 8-2-1 home record in 2011, including eight shutouts and a victory over #20 Boston University.
UMass will wrap up the regular season with a weekend at St. Bonaventure and Duquesne on Friday and Sunday, Oct. 26 and 28. The matches are set for 3 p.m. and 1 p.m., respectively.