Aggies Set for Home Opening Weekend
Courtesy: New Mexico State University  
Release:  09/04/2012

This Week

The New Mexico State soccer team returns to Las Cruces to host Sam Houston State, Friday, Sept. 7 at 4 p.m. in the home opener at the new soccer complex. NM State also hosts Weber State, Sunday, Sept. 9 at 1 p.m.

Sam Houston State

The Bearkats are 2-4-0 after two matches in the Texas A&M Soccer Invitational, Aug. 31 and Sept. 2 in College Station, Texas. Sam Houston State fell to Saint Mary's, 1-0, and No. 16 Rutgers, 2-0. Junior midfielder Tricia Mallory and freshman midfielder Ashley Alonzo pace the offense with a goal apiece. Defensively, senior goalkeeper Michele McCullough and freshman Kylie Hambleton have split time in goal for the Kats. McCullough has a 0.93 goals against average, 22 saves, .880 save percentage and a shutout, and Hambleton has a 0.67 goals against average, 15 saves, .882 save percentage and a shutout.

Series Notes

Friday's meeting is the first in the series for the Aggies and BearKats.

Weber State

The Wildcats are currently 0-4-0 on the season, but they host Utah Valley, Wednesday, Sept. 5 and play at UTEP, Sept. 7 before meeting the Aggies. Weber State suffered a pair of 1-0 losses to Utah, Sept. 1 and Wyoming, Aug. 26. Freshman forward Mackenzie Harrison has a team-high seven shots including four on goal, and junior goalkeeper Ryann Waldman has played all 360 minutes in goal with a 1.50 goals against average, 18 saves and .750 save percentage.

Series Notes

Weber State has a 1-0-0 lead in the all-time series following a 3-0 win last season in Ogden, Utah, Sept. 18, 2011.

Previous Meeting

The seven-match unbeaten streak for NM State was snapped with a loss at Weber State, 3-0, Sept. 18, 2011. Goalkeeper Jessica Schutter started her second game of the year and grabbed a game-high five saves.

Aggies Beat Southern Utah

NM State won its first game of the season with a 1-0 decision over Southern Utah in its second match of the UC Riverside Tournament in Riverside, Calif., Sept. 2. Sophomore forward Katelyn Smith scored her first career goal, and sophomore forward Layla Todd had her first assist of the season. Defensively, junior goalkeeper Mikaela Bitner collected the win with seven saves and the Aggies' first shutout of the year in her first action of the season.

Aggies Tie UC Riverside 1-1

In the first overtime match of the season, NM State tied UC Riverside, 1-1, in a double overtime contest, Aug. 31, in the first contest of the UC Riverside Tournament. Sophomore forward Layla Todd scored the first goal of the season. NM State posted a season-high eight shots on goal and tied a season high with 14 shots in 110 minutes of action. After trailing 1-0 at halftime, the Aggies evened the score at 1-1 in the 88th minute. Senior midfielder Elise Nordin and junior midfielder Mary Kate Koziol found Todd, who sank a shot from 17 yards away, to force overtime. The defenses dominated extra time, and junior goalkeeper Jessica Schutter recorded a personal-best seven saves.

Bitner Earns WAC Goalkeeper of the Week Honor

Junior goalkeeper Mikaela Bitner was named the WAC Goalkeeper of the Week for Aug. 27-Sept. 2. This is her first conference award of the season and the second of her career. Bitner recorded a shutout in a 1-0 win over Southern Utah, Sept. 2. She played all 90 minutes in the victory and recorded seven saves. After missing the 2011 season due to injury, Bitner returned for a win and a 0.00 goals against average.

Offense Produces at UC Riverside

In the UC Riverside Tournament, the Aggies posted a season-high eight shots on goal against the tournament host Highlanders. In the 1-0 win over Southern Utah, NM State recorded its third consecutive game with 14 shots and had a season-high eight corner kicks. Overall this season, sophomore forward Jennae Cambra and sophomore midfielder Katie Smith are leading the team with eight shots each.  

Todd Sparks Aggie Offense

In her first appearance of the season, sophomore forward Layla Todd scored her first goal of the season in a 1-1 double overtime draw at UC Riverside, Aug. 31. She had a team-high four shots and three on goal in 85 minutes. Todd now has four career goals. In the 1-0 win over Southern Utah, Sept. 2, Todd recorded the assist on the game-winning goal, which was her first of the season and third of her career. 

Katelyn Smith Scores First Career Goal

At the end of the first half against Southern Utah, sophomore forward Layla Todd sent a cross to the center of the box that found sophomore forward Katelyn Smith, and she recorded her first goal in the 43rd minute that gave NM State a 1-0 lead.

Nordin and Koziol Share the Ball

Senior midfielder Elise Nordin and junior midfielder Mary Kate Koziol each recorded an assist on the Aggie' first goal of the season in the 1-1 double overtime tie at UC Riverside, Aug. 31. The assist was a career first for Nordin and fourth for Koziol.

Defensive Dominates

The Aggies recorded their first shutout of the year in the 1-0 win over Southern Utah. NM State only allowed a first half goal against UC Riverside, and currently, the Aggies have played 159 consecutive minutes without giving up a score.

Aggies Edged in Season Opener

NM State suffered a 1-0 loss at Boise State to open the 2012 season in the first match of the Holiday Inn Classic in Boise, Idaho, Aug. 17. At halftime, the match was tied at 0-0. Sophomore midfielder Katie Smith led the NM State offense with three shots. In the 67th minute, Boise State scored the lone goal of the match to take a 1-0 advantage.

Aggies Fall to Idaho State

NM State registered a 2-0 loss to Idaho State, Aug. 19, in its second match of the Holiday Inn Classic in Boise, Idaho. Sophomore midfielder Katie Smith and junior midfielder Mary Kate Koziol posted a game-high four shots for the Aggie offense. Senior midfielder Lauren Cope also contributed three shots. The Aggies had a 14-9 advantage in shots in the contest but couldn't convert. After a scoreless first half for the second consecutive match, Idaho State scored first in the 55th minute and then added another goal at the 63rd-minute mark.

New Look in Las Cruces

In its fourth season, NM State has a new home. The Aggies are playing in the new soccer-only complex.

Class of 2013

This year's senior class is the Aggies' first four-year class. Six of the seven seniors started the program in the fall of 2009 including Lauren Cope, Vanessa Thomas, Yolanda McMillion, Cassie De Leon, Elise Nordin, Courtney Irwin, and Megan Hendler joined the Aggies as a sophomore.

Aggies Welcome Four Newcomers

NM State added four newcomers to the roster in 2012. Head coach Blair Quinn's first recruiting class includes defender Mikaela Haley, midfielder Tatiana Raygoza, forward Samantha Sandoval and midfielder/forward Miranda Valdez.

Haley, a Rio Rancho, N.M. native, directed Cleveland High School to the state semifinals and third-place district finish as a senior in 2011. Raygoza arrived from Baldwin Park, Calif., and she led the SoCal Blues club team to the Region IV Championship and a national title appearance in 2011. Sandoval joined the Aggies from Albuquerque and Volcano Vista High School following a state title in 2010. Valdez arrived in Las Cruces from Orange, Calif., after leading Orange Lutheran High School in goals (19) and assists (11).

Looking Ahead

The Aggies host I-10 rival UTEP in a midweek contest, Wednesday, Sept. 12 at 4 p.m. NM State then travels to Montana, Sept 14 and New Mexico, Sept. 16.

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