The two teams have only met twice before with each winning once on their home field. UALR took a 3-0 victory in Little Rock, Ark. back in 2004, the first year of the LA Tech soccer program. Tech evened the series in Ruston in 2009 with a 1-0 shutout victory by Cat Buchanan and a late goal in the 77th minute by Mallory Feece.
Emily Brennan and company will look to break the series tie and get the offense back on track after being shutout in both games of the Trojan Classic tournament in Troy, Ala. this past weekend. The offense had gotten off to a blazing start, scoring 20 goals in their first four games, but has since struggled to capitalize on their scoring opportunities.
"The team is so young the performances on the road have been below par," said head coach Kevin Sherry. "They are still getting used to balancing the strain of travel with game day mental toughness. Home comforts will provide better focus and clarity, but we must learn as a team to toughen up on the road if we wish to achieve our goals."
UALR has dropped all five games so far this season to the likes of Missouri State, Austin Peay, Western Illinois, Ole Miss and most recently a 4-1 loss to Central Arkansas. Their offense has struggled to put the ball in the net with only three combined goals, one each from Paige Mason, Ariel Galletti and Alyson Rohane. Lexus VanPelt leads the team in shots on goal with five.
After the Western Athletic Conference's announcement this past Monday of Tech's Heather Fitzgerald and Mette Rudolfsen as Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week, this brought the honoree total to four for the Techsters after only three weeks of action.
The team only needs one more player to be awarded as conference player of the week to break the program record for the most in one season. The last time it was done was 2010 when Caitlin Updyke, Rachel King, Kiva Gresham and Taylor Dennis took the honor in their respective week.
With the temperature expected to hit the mid-90's tomorrow evening, the Ruston Soccer Club has donated 20 large golf umbrellas for fans to use to protect themselves from the heat and sunlight. The umbrellas are returned after use and can be found at the bleachers every game day.
"A big thank you to Ruston Soccer Club for doing this," said Sherry. "The community has been our most loyal and biggest fans, and we feel honored they are helping our game day experience with the donation."
LA Tech All-Access subscribers can listen to and watch a live video stream of the game by logging on through LATechSports.com, the official website of Louisiana Tech Athletics. Live stats will be available through the link provided on the schedule page. Twitter users can get updates of the game as well by following @LaTechSOC.