Nov. 1, 2010
RUSTON, La. -
Louisiana Tech hosts the WAC Soccer Tournament this Thursday, Friday and Sunday at the Lady Techster Soccer Field. In anticipation of that, LATechSports.com offers this preview of the WAC Tournament.
On Thursday No. 3 seed Idaho faces No. 6 seed Fresno State at 12:30 p.m. before No. 4 seed Louisiana Tech plays No. 5 seed Boise State at 3 p.m.
On Friday the Idaho-Fresno State winner plays No. 2 seed Utah State on Friday at 12:30 p.m. followed by the Louisiana Tech-Boise State winner facing No. 1 seed San Jose State at 3 p.m.
The championship match will take place at 1 p.m. on Sunday as the winner will not only be named WAC Champion, but also earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
Tickets are available for sale at the Louisiana Tech Ticket Office with an all-session pass available for $10 for adults and $5 for all WAC students with a student ID. Single day passes are $5 for adults. Fans 18 and under are free. For complete ticket information, please contact the Louisiana Tech Ticket Office by going to LATechSports.com, by calling 318-257-3631 or by e-mailing email@example.com.
The tournament will be streamed live through WACSports.com. All five matches can be seen on WAC.tv by accessing the soccer tournament package for a one-time price of $10.95. More information and how to subscribe to these video streaming events can be found at www.WAC.tv.
No. 1 San Jose State Spartans
Record: 11-7-1 overall, 5-2-1 WAC
About the Spartans: They won the WAC regular season title for the second-consecutive season.
Who to watch: Freshman forward Kayla Santacruz. She leads the WAC with eight goals and seven assists in conference matches.
Teams in the tournament they've beaten or tied: at Fresno State 2-1, Utah State 4-1, Boise State 3-0
Teams in the tournament they've lost to: at Louisiana Tech 5-4 (OT), at Idaho 2-1
Why they could win: In conference matches, the Spartans have had the best offense, leading the WAC in goals and assists. They have never won the tournament despite being the best team in the WAC the past two seasons.
No. 2 Utah State Aggies
Record: 9-6-5 overall, 5-2-1 WAC
About the Aggies: Won their second WAC regular season title, their first since 2008.
Who to watch: Senior forward Lauren Hansen. She leads the Aggies with eight goals on the season, two ahead of junior forward Shantel Flanary.
Teams in the tournament they've beaten or tied: at Louisiana Tech 1-0, Boise State 0-0 (2OT), Idaho 2-0
Teams in the tournament they've lost to: at Fresno State 1-0, at San Jose State 4-1
Why they could win: They have consistently been one of the top teams in the conference over the years as they have played in the semifinals in each of the last four WAC Tournaments.
No. 3 Idaho Vandals
Record: 14-6 overall, 5-2 WAC
About the Vandals: Idaho set a school record for overall wins and wins in conference play this season as they qualified for the WAC Tournament for the first time in school history.
Who to watch: Sophomore forward Chelsea Small. She ranks third all-time at Idaho in career goals scored. She has eight game-winning goals this season, a school record.
Teams in the tournament they've beaten or tied: Louisiana Tech 2-0, San Jose State 2-1
Teams in the tournament they've lost to: at Utah State 2-0, at Boise State 1-0 (OT), Fresno State 1-0 (OT)
Why they could win: They are one of two teams that have beaten top-seeded San Jose State. The Vandals could ride on the back of one of the most exciting strikers in the conference in Small to win it all.
No. 4 Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters
Record: 15-5, 5-3 WAC
About the Lady Techsters: Like Idaho, Louisiana Tech will take part in the WAC Tournament for the first time in school history after amassing a school record for wins overall and in conference play.
Who to watch: Senior forward Kiva Gresham. The Lady Techsters' all-time assist leader has become a prolific goal scorer with 12 on the season.
Teams in the tournament they've beaten or tied: at Boise State 1-0, San Jose State 5-4 (OT), at Hawai'i 3-0.
Teams in the tournament they've lost to: Utah State 1-0, at Idaho 2-0, Fresno State 2-0.
Why they could win: Possess the WAC's top scorer in junior forward Rachel King. With the scoring duo of King and Gresham, Tech is one of five schools in the country that features two players with at least 10 goals this season. Tech is also one of two schools in the conference to have beaten top-seeded San Jose State this season.
No. 5 Boise State Broncos
Record: 7-9-3 overall, 4-2-2 WAC
About the Broncos: The Broncos boast the conference's second-best offense and defense in WAC play. They average 1.88 goals per game and a goals against average of 0.88.
Who to watch: Goalkeeper Liz Ruiz. The junior leads the conference in saves percentage and has allowed just four goals all season in WAC play.
Teams in the tournament they've beaten or tied: at Utah State 0-0 (2OT), Idaho 1-0 (OT), Fresno State 2-2 (2OT)
Teams in the tournament they've lost to: Louisiana Tech 1-0, at San Jose State 3-0
Why they could win: They know how to win the tournament as they did it last season on their home turf to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
No. 6 Fresno State Bulldogs
Record: 7-8-4 overall, 2-3-2 WAC
About the Broncos: They are unbeaten in their last five matches after previously going without a win for eight straight matches.
Who to watch: On the stat sheet, no one on the Bulldog roster sticks out. Nicole Duff leads FSU with five goals and Laura Dodd is just behind her with four. Fresno State is also the only team in the conference that did not have a player named WAC Player of the Week.
Teams in the tournament they've beaten or tied: at Louisiana Tech 2-0, Utah State 1-0, at Boise State 2-2 (2OT), at Idaho 1-0 (OT)
Teams in the tournament they've lost to: San Jose State 2-1 (2OT)
Why they could win: Two of their three conference losses have been against teams that didn't qualify for the WAC Tournament. With wins over the 2-5 seeds, FSU has proven that it can beat the best teams in the conference. The Bulldogs have won two of the past five WAC Tournaments and in 2005, did so as a five seed.