Weekly Release #9 - Chasing Down The Crown

Chasing The Crown

With the season winding down, the Cougars are looking to position themselves for a fifth-consecutive Mountain West Conference title as they host first-place Wyoming (9-6-0, 4-0-0) on Thursday, Oct. 23.

The Cowgirls are riding high on a five-game winning streak that includes four conference victories with BYU and Utah left on their conference schedule.

BYU (11-4-1, 3-1-0) is currently in second place after falling to San Diego State last week, but the team has history on its side as the Cougars have never lost to Wyoming, holding an 8-0-0 all-time record against the Cowgirls.

In those eight games the Cowgirls have managed to only score a total of four points against the Cougars, while BYU has totaled 42 goals and shutout Wyoming four times.

Coming off a 2-0 win at home over Air Force, the Cowgirls are tied with Utah for first place in the MWC and have allowed only one goal from any conference school while recording seven in four games.

BYU is also coming off a win of its own after defeating UNLV in Las Vegas on Saturday. The Cougars have had strong offensive outings against MWC opponents, putting up 12 points while allowing only four goals.

Kick off is set for 7:00 p.m. at South Stadium on Thursday where it will be McDonad's Night and fans can get in for $2 with a voucher available at local McDonald's this week, there will also be free give aways during half time.

The Last Time

Senior Jeni Viernes gave BYU a 1-0 win over Wyoming last season, the smallest margin of victory the Cougars have recorded over the Cowgirls. Viernes scored with a header off a corner kick from teammate Aleisha Cramer-Rose in the 10th minute of the game. The Cougars out-shot the Cowgirls 23-3 for the game and came close on several shots, but were never able to extend their lead. Cowgirl goalkeeper Lori Sheider recorded nine saves in the game while allowing the lone goal. The win was also the fifth-consecutive victory in what would become the second longest winning streak in Cougar history with 13-straigh wins.

Scouting Report: Wyoming

The Cowgirls are playing their best soccer of the year right now as they have recorded wins in all four of their MWC games and sit atop the conference tied for first place with two games remaining. In their four wins, the Cowgirls have posted three shutouts while recording seven goals and allowing only one goal for a GAA of 0.25 -- tops in the conference. Wyoming also leads the MWC in saves with 7.75 saves per game against conference teams, thanks to the strong defensive play of keeper Lori Sheider. On offense, Mercy Adetoye is averaging one goal per game, but is unclear if she will be cleared to play in Thursday's game after suffering a knee sprain against New Mexico. Mari Gomes is the team's leading scorer with five goals and an assist on the year, followed by Adetoye's four and three from Darci Ferrell.

Going On 200

On Oct. 18, 2003, head coach Jennifer Rockwood coached her 200th career game as the Cougars traveled to Las Vegas to play UNL, and came away with a 3-2 win. Over the span of those 200 games, Rockwood has managed to win an impressive 18.85 games per season and currently ranks eighth among active Division I coaches in winning percentage with 78 percent of all her games ending in Cougar victories. Rockwood recently reached the 150 win plateau with a home victory over No. 14 USC on Oct. 3, 2003.

150 And Counting

On Friday, Oct. 3, Coach Jennifer Rockwood earned her 150th career-win as the Cougars defeated No. 14 USC 2-1 at South Stadium. Rockwood became the first Mountain West Conference coach to reach the 150 win plateau and currently ranks eighth among active Division I coaches. She is also the first MWC to reach 100 wins

ROCKWOOD AMONG COACHING ELITE

Rockwood currently ranks eighth in winning percentage among active NCAA Division I coaches with an impressive 142-39-3 (.780) overall record for her career. Anson Dorrance, John Walker, Chris Petrucelli, Becky Burleigh and the late Clive Charles are the only coaches ahead of her. Over the last seven seasons, Rockwood has averaged 18.85 wins per year, an average that has her ranked second behind only Anson Dorrance of North Carolina.

BYU Statistc Break Down

BYU currently rank in the top three in every statistical category in the MWC this season. The Cougars are averaging 24.50 shots per game and three goal per contest, both categories are tops in the conference. Senior Terra Bigelow has scored a goal in three out of four conference games and ranks second in the MWC for total goals and goals per game. Bigelow is also the team's leading scorer with six goals on the year. Senior Aleisha Rose isn't far behind with two goals against conference foes, ranking her fourth in total goals and fifth in goals per game. Rose is the conference leader in assists with nine assists and her 17 points on the year places her second overall. With the game on the line, nobody has come up bigger for the Cougars than freshman Annie Zwahlen who is second in the conference for game-winning goals. Her three game winners have included the winning goals against No. 7 Tennessee and No. 14 USC. Goalkeeper Ashley Smith has 4 shutouts on the year while the Cougar team has the second most in the MWC with seven on the year.

Last Week's Games: SDSU & UNLV

In a game that was dominated by defense, the No. 12 BYU women's soccer team fell to conference rival San Diego State by a score of 1-0 Thursday night in San Diego. The Cougars are on their third road trip of the season where they are now 1-2-0 on the year. This is the first time in the last six attempts that the Aztecs have managed to come away with a win over the Cougars who are bidding for their fifth straight Mountain West Conference title. On the game, the Cougars managed to out shoot the Aztecs 10-4, but were unable to get any of those shots into the net. BYU still holds an all-time 7-6 record against SDSU, but the Aztecs have also beaten the Cougars more times than any other team that the Cougars have played in the NCAA.

The No. 12 BYU women's soccer made sure that head coach Jennifer Rockwood's 200th game as the Cougars head coach was victorious as they defeated UNLV by a score of 3-2 in Las Vegas Saturday night. In Saturday's game, the team's leading scorer, senior Terra Bigelow, put the Cougars on the board first with a shot from 15 yard out that found the back of the Rebel net to give BYU the early 1-0 lead. Seven minutes later sophomores Krissa Campbell and Jaime Rendich teamed up to increase the Cougars to 2-0 as Rendich's cross in front of the goal found Campbell's head. Before the end of the first period the Rebels managed to score a goal of their own when Cougars goalkeeper Natalie Evans deflected a Rebel shot and UNLV's Jessica Brown was there to smack the ball between the posts. The goal sent the teams' into the break with BYU up 2-1. After out shooting the Rebels 17-7 in the first period, the Cougars looked to increase their lead going into the second. Sophomore Brooke Thulin came through for BYU in the 64th minute as she fired a shot into the upper left-hand corner to put the Cougars up 3-1. The Rebels answered back with an Angie Inzana shot that brought UNLV within one at 3-2, but it wouldn't be enough as the Cougars would hold on to win the game.

Tops of the NCAA

Category No. Name Actual

Assists in one game 2 Aleisha Rose 4

Assists per game 23 Aleisha Rose 0.56/game

Tops of the Mountain West

Category No. Name Actual

Shots/game 1 BYU 18.69/game

Points/game 1 BYU 6.56/game

Goals 1 BYU 36 total

Goals/game 1 BYU 2.25/game

Assists 1 BYU 3 total

Assists/game 2 BYU 2.06/game

GAA 2 BYU 0.85/game

GA 2 BYU 14 total

Shutout percentage 2 BYU 0.44 /game

Corners/game 1 BYU 7.31/game

Attendance 1 BYU 1,252/game

Home Attendance 1 BYU 1,589/game

Away Attendance 1 BYU 612/game

Individual No. Name Actual

Shots/game 3 Lydia Ojuka 2.81/game

4 Aleisha Rose 2.75/game

Points 2 Aleisha Rose 17 total

Points/game 3 Aleisha Rose 1.21/game

Goals 4 Terra Bigelow 6 total

Goals/game 5 Terra Bigelow 0.38/game

Game-winning goals T-2 Annie Zwahlen 3 total

T-4 Lydia Ojuka 2 total

T-4 Jaime Rendich 2 total

Assists 1 Aleisha Rose 9 total

Assists/game 1 Aleisha Rose 0.56/game

Assists in one game 1 Aleisha Rose 4 total

Shutouts 3 Ashley Smith 4 total

Shutout per game 2 Ashley Smith 0.33/game

GAA 2 Ashley Smith 0.80 in 902:22

The Assist Queen

Senior All-American Aleisha Rose tallied four assists against Southern Utah on Setp. 8, setting a new BYU school record and South Stadium record for most assists in a single game. The previous record of three assists was shared by Natalyn Lewis, Athelia Graham and Shauna Rohbock. With her assist on Terra Bigelow's goal in the 52nd minute against SUU, Rose became the No. 1 all-time career assist leader at BYU, passing Michelle J. Peterson who set the mark in 2000 with 38 career assists.

Ranking Or No Ranking

The Cougars are 3-1-1 against opponents ranked in the top 25 this season. BYU defeated No. 7 Tennessee 1-0, No. 14 Kentucky 2-1, and tied No. 17 Michigan 0-0 in double overtime. No. 2 Florida defeated the Cougars 3-2 in overtime for their only loss to a ranked team. At home the Cougars are 1-1-1 and 1-0-0 on the road with the lone road game being against Kentucky.

Rose On Hermann Trophy Watch List

Three-time All-American senior Aleisha Rose, of the BYU women's soccer team, was named to the Missouri Athletic Club's Hermann Trophy watch in late August. The M.A.C.'s Hermann Trophy is college soccer's equivalent to the Heisman Trophy and represents the highest level of individual achievement in the sport.

Rose, a preseason All-American, is one of 15 athletes who make up the watch list that includes the top Division I athletes in the country. Past recipients include some of the biggest names in soccer, such as Mia Hamm, Kristine Lilly, Shannon MacMillan, Cindy Parlow, Claudio Reyna, Tony Meola and Alexi Lalas.

Rose Named Preseason All-America

In August, Soccer America announced its 2003 preseason All-Americans, and heading up the list is three-time All-American senior Aleisha Rose of the BYU women's soccer team. Rose is one of 11 athletes that makes up the 2003 Soccer America preseason All-American list.

Rose, a native of Lakewood, Colo., is one of the most decorated athletes to ever play for the Cougars and has been an integral part to the team's success the past three seasons.

Cougar Awards in 2003

National

Preseason All-American - Aleisha Rose

Hermann Trophy candidate - Aleisha Rose

Soccer Buzz Elite Team of the Week:

- Midfielder, Aleisha Rose 9/16

Soccer America Team of the Week:

- Defender, Claire Thomas 9/8

- Midfielder, Aleisha Rose 9/16

- Forward, Annie Zwahlen 10/6

Conference

Offensive Player of the Week - Aleisha Rose 9/15

Defensive Player of the Week - Nicole Jensen 9/2

- Claire Thomas 9/8

- Britney Holman 10/6

Cougar Awards in 2002

National

NSCAA ALL-AMERICAN: Aleisha Cramer-Rose, 2nd Team

NSCAA All-West Region: Aleisha Cramer-Rose, 1st Team; Jeni Viernes, 1st Team; Brooke Bowman, 3rd Team

SOCCER BUZZ ALL-AMERICAN: Aleisha Cramer-Rose, 3rd Team; Brooke Bowman, Freshman 3rd Team

SOCCER BUZZ ALL-WEST REGION: Aleisha Cramer-Rose, 1st Team; Jeni Viernes, 1st Team; Brooke Bowman, All-Freshman Team

Conference

MWC PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Jeni Viernes

MWC FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR: Brooke Bowman

MWC FIRST TEAM: Aleisha Cramer-Rose, Jeni Viernes, Brooke Bowman

MWC SECOND TEAM: Annie Hoecherl, Charlene Lui

MWC TOURNAMENT MVP: Jeni Viernes

MWC TOURNAMENT TEAM: Aleisha Cramer-Rose, Jeni Viernes, Jennifer Fielding-Henry, Brooke Bowman

MWC ACADEMIC ALL-CONFERENCE: Brooke Bowman, Aleisha Cramer-Rose, Jennifer Fielding-Henry, Katherine Gabbart, Britney Holman, Charlene Lui, Terra Smith-Bigelow, Jeni Viernes

Standing Room Only

A record crowd packed into South Stadium on Friday, Sept. 5 to watch the Cougars take on the No. 7 Tennessee Lady Vols. The game drew a standing-room-only crowd with 2,758 fans in attendance, breaking the old record of 2,191 set one week earlier in the season opener against No. 17 Michigan. That mark fell once again as 2,412 fans were on hand to watch No. 2 Florida and BYU battled to a 3-2 overtime Gator win on Sept. 26.

South Stadium

For the past eight years South Stadium, formerly South Field, has been the battlefield for the Cougars as they have taken on, and defeated, the top teams in their conference and in the NCAA. The Cougars have amassed a 80-13-2 (.861) record at home, a record that is among the best in the nation over the same time period.

Of those 80 home-game wins, an outstanding 44 have ended in a shutout. The Cougars consistently hold their opponents scoreless when playing at South Stadium with 55 percent of all their games ending in shutout victories, while BYU has been shutout only five times in the stadium's history.

The Stadium's crowds consistently rank in the top 15 in the NCAA for the largest crowds in the country. With an average attendance of 1,075 fans during the 2002 campaign, the Cougars had the 15th largest attendance average in the country making South Stadium one of the toughest places for opponents to play in college today.

The Rockwood File

In only eight short years, head coach Jennifer Rockwood has taken the BYU women's soccer team to national prominence and established herself as one of the premier coaches in Division I soccer today.

Rockwood currently ranks eighth in winning percentage among active NCAA coaches with an impressive 142-39-3 (.780) overall record for her career, with the likes of Anson Dorrance, John Walker, Chris Petrucelli, Becky Burleigh and Clive Charles being the only coaches ahead of her. Over the last seven seasons, Rockwood has averaged 18.85 wins per year, an average that has her ranked second behind only Anson Dorrance of North Carolina.

In eight years as head coach, Rockwood has guided the Cougars to five conference championships. After going undefeated in conference play and winning their fourth straight Mountain West Conference title last season, the Cougars managed to remain the only team to win the conference title in the history of the MWC.

On the national scene, Rockwood and her teams have made six consecutive appearances in the NCAA Tournament and reached the "Sweet Sixteen" in 1998 and 2000. Under the watch of Rockwood, the Cougars have also had seven consecutive top-25 finishes including last season's No. 23 finish.

Among the many achievements and awards she has received over her career, Rockwood has been honored with two Coach of the Year citations, one by the Western Athletic Conference in 1996, and then by the MWC in 2000. She also became the first MWC coach to eclipse the 100-win total mark when the Cougars shutout Milwaukee-Wisconsin 2-0 on Sept. 23, 2000.

Under Rockwood's tutelage, a long list of All-American soccer players has emerged from BYU's program. These athletes include Aleisha Rose, Jeni Viernes, and Michelle Jensen. Among the players who have been coached by Rockwood are four athletes that were drafted by the women's United Soccer Association: Shauna Rohbock, Maren Hendershot, Sara Reading, and Staci Reynolds.

Prior to becoming the head coach, Rockwood led BYU's highly successful club soccer team for seven years. In that time she amassed an overall record of 128-25-9, and in the final two years she took her teams to the Western National Collegiate Club soccer Association (NCCSA) title and placed second in the NCCSA National Championships.

The Lake Oswego, Ore. native was a three-sport athlete in college playing soccer, basketball, and track. After one year at Ricks College on a basketball scholarship, she transferred to BYU where she became a four-year starter at center midfield on the Cougars' club soccer team. Rockwood has also coached in the Utah ODP, youth club programs, and at the high school level.

ROCKWOOD, YEAR-BY-YEAR

Year W L T Conference

1995 11 8 1 WAC

1996 22 1 0 WAC

1997 19 4 0 WAC

1998 20 5 0 WAC

1999 21 4 0 MWC

2000 19 4 1 MWC

2001 14 7 1 MWC

2002 16 6 0 MWC

2003 10 3 1 MWC

Total 153 43 4 (.780)

BYU club team under Rockwood:

128-25-9 (.790), six years (1989-1994)

Fresh Faces

This season's incoming class of Cougar freshman can be expected to make strong contributions to the team, with five of the nine recruits hailing from Utah.

With the loss of some key defenders from last year's squad, expect freshmen Claire Thomas, and Nicole Jensen to make an immediate impact for BYU.

Jensen was a 2002 All-State selection out of Denver, CO, and Thomas was a 2002 and 2003 Barons All-Tournament Team selection as well as a 2002 second-team All-Palomar athlete, and joins the team at 16 years of age.

Among the Utah athletes headed to BYU is the 5A MVP in 2002 Elizabeth Affleck (redshirting the 2003 season) out of Alta High School and the two-time 4A MVP Courtney Asay from Mountain View High School.

The Cougars' incoming class ranks along side with the best classes the school has ever had. Affleck and Bobbi Tillotson were both members of the 5A State Championship Alta High School, and Asay, Haylee Cuthbert, and Ali Williams all played for the three-time 4A State Championship Mountian View Bruins.

Home Sweet Home

The 2003 regular schedule is set to be one of the best home game schedules in school history. The Cougars will be playing 13 of their 19 regular season games at South Stadium. Highlighting this season's home schedule will be three teams that finished in the 2002 NSCAA top-25: No. 11 Michigan, No. 10 Tennessee, and No. 22 USC. BYU will also host four teams that are ranked in the NSCAA preseason top-25: No. 14 Tennessee, No. 17 Michigan, No. 19 USC and No. 21 Florida.

In the past home field advantage has paid great dividends for the Cougars as the team has amassed an impressive 61-10-1 record at home. In the those games BYU has managed to shut out its opponent 38 times, while losing only four games in a shutout.

Also included in the home schedule is the 1998 NCAA Championship team, Florida, as well as in-state rivals Southern Utah, Weber State, and Utah. The Cougars and Utes will face-off in the final regular season home game for BYU on Nov. 1 at South Stadium.

With seven teams on the regular season schedule that qualified for the 2002 NCAA Tournament, this year's schedule promises to be one of the most competitive seasons for the Cougars who finished No. 23 in the NSCAA final rankings last year and are No. 24 in the NSCAA preseason poll.

Cougars Picked Second in mwc preseason

The Mountain West Conference announced its 2003 preseason poll Monday with the league's coaches selecting BYU to finish second behind Utah.

One point and one vote separated the Cougars and the Utes in the voting, with BYU totaling 33 points and three first place votes, while Utah grabbed 34 points with four first place votes.

For the 2003 season BYU returns eight starters and 11 letterwinners while the Utes return six starters and 14 letterwinners.

MWC Preseason Coaches' Poll

Pl. Team (1st pl. votes) Points

1. Utah (4) 34

2. BYU (3) 33

3. New Mexico 26

4. UNLV 19

5. San Diego State 18

6. Air Force 9

7. Wyoming 8

Four-straight MWC Titles

With a 2-1 win over Utah in the final game of the regular season, BYU ensured itself a fourth-straight MWC Regular Season Championship.

The Cougars first goal of the game came in the 41st minute on a header by sophomore forward/midfielder Kimmie Davis. Senior forward Jeni Willardson-Viernes put BYU up 2-0, scoring her sixth game-winning goal of the season in the 64th minute on a pass from junior All-American Aleisha Cramer-Rose. Utah's only goal came on a penalty kick by Ute forward Shauna Gurr-Bingham.

Going into the MWC Tournament the Cougars earned a first-round bye before defeating San Diego State 9-2 in the second-round. The win advanced BYU to the championship game where they came out on top of New Mexico 5-1, winning their fourth consecutive MWC Championship title.

To date, the Cougars remain the only team in the MWC to ever win the either conference crown.

Living Live

For the remainder of the 2003 season, all Cougar home games will have Live Stats available online at www.byucougars.com/soccer_w by simply clicking on the 2003 schedule and then selecting the appropriate "Live Stat" link with the corresponding game. Live Stats provides an opportunity for those who cannot be at South Stadium to still follow and enjoy BYU Women's Soccer.

Injury Update

Senior Aydre Soff tore her meniscus in practice on Sept. 4, and is done for her career. Freshman goalkeeper Meredith Simmons is out for the season due to a torn MCL she suffered in practice Sept. 3 . Sophomore midfielder Brooke Bowman has a sprained MCL and will be redshirting the remainder of the season.

Practice and Interviews

Practice is held weekdays from 2:15-4:30 on Haws Field. Interviews with Coach Rockwood and/or members of the Cougar soccer team are schedules through the BYU Athletic Media Relations office. To schedule an interview, Please contact Jason Wells at (801) 422-8999 or by

e-mail at soccer_sid@byu.edu.

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