Following a week of rest after a challenging 0-2 stretch in Florida against the conference’s premier teams, the UConn women’s soccer team will be in action again for a Friday night contest against territorial foe and travel partner Temple in their final game of the regular season.
The match-up with the Owls (6-9-2) will be preparation for American conference tournament play as well as the annual senior night ceremony for the Huskies (6-8-3). Temple did not qualify for the conference tournament.
Much like their location in the conference standings, the Owls find themselves located in the lower tier in most statistical categories compared to the rest of the conference. They do lead the conference in fouls with 203, 20 more than the next highest team, good for an average just a smidge under 12 per game. Despite that, they are tied for second least in yellow cards.
In net sophomore Morgan Basileo has the conference’s second worst goals-against-average at 1.41 but is a spot higher then UConn’s senior keeper Courtney Hofer who is last with a 1.50 mark.
Not very potent offensively, Temple is led by senior forward Gabriella McKeown with five goals and an assist for 11 points, an identical line to UConn’s leading scorer freshman forward Kess Elmore.
Junior Kerri McGinley, freshman Emma Wilkins and senior Elana Falcone also have three goals each for Temple. The Huskies are supplemented by junior forward Vivien Beil who has three goals and five assists as well as freshman Yamilee Eveillard who has four goals.
Outside of their regular conference opponents, the Owls and Huskies share the commonality of taking on Central Connecticut State in New Britain this season. The Owls fell 1-0 on Sept. 23rd in their last non-conference game while UConn 3-0 on Sept. 3 as part of a two-game tournament.
Unlike last year when their first-place standing allowed them to host the 2016 conference championship, this will be the final game of the year at Joseph J. Morrone stadium and subsequently the final performance on campus for the team’s seniors.
Redshirt senior Faith McCarthy has only appeared in seven games, but the teams’ other four seniors have played much larger roles for the squad this year.
Sabrina Toole has played in all 17 games for the Huskies, starting most of them and had scored three goals.
Danielle Gottwik and Tanya Altrui have appeared in 14 and 10 games respectively, and each has netted an assist while being counted on for attacking from the wings.
Hofer, a transfer from TCU but a Farmington native, missed the first nine games of the season with vision complications but provided a presence the team sorely needed. This was her only year in Storrs.
The team is currently in fifth in the conference standings but could feasibly jump Memphis with a victory and Tiger’s loss. The game will be important for positioning in the upcoming conference tournament.
Matt Barresi is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.