Soccer To Take On Arkansas In Regular Season Finale
Baton Rouge, La. – The LSU soccer team will host its final home match of the 2021 regular season on Thursday night as they take on the No. 4 Arkansas Razorbacks at LSU Soccer Stadium. First kick is set for 7 p.m. CT, and the Tigers will honor 10 seniors prior to the match for Senior Night.
LSU comes into the contest with a record of 10-6-0 on the season; the Tigers have accrued a record of 3-6-0 in SEC play. Arkansas has won 14 straight matches and enters the game with a season record of 14-2-0 (9-0-0 SEC).
LSU will be honoring 10 seniors for Senior Night. The list of student-athletes being honored prior to the game is Jade Odom, Grace Haggerty, Chiara Ritchie-Williams, Savannah Mills, Wasila Diwura-Soale, Tinaya Alexander, Athena Kuehn, Tiana Caffey, Riley Dixon, and Molly Thompson. The ceremony honoring our 10 seniors will begin at 6:44 p.m.
Come in your best trick or treat costumes as free candy will be given out at the game. The top three costumes in attendance will also win a LSU soccer scarf. Gates for the match open at 6 p.m. One dollar hot dogs will also be sold at the concession stands.
LSU leads the all-time series history with Arkansas having won 14 of the 27 matches. The Razorbacks have won 10 times and there have been three draws. LSU won 10 straight from 2004-13 and 11 out of 12 from 2004-15. The two teams most recently met in the season opener of 2020 and Arkansas won by a score of 2-0.
The two teams met three years ago in Orange Beach for the SEC Tournament title and the Tigers prevailed in PKs to win their first ever SEC Tournament title. Shannon Cooke scored a top bins equalizer in the 72nd minute to bring things even, and then the Tigers put the Razorbacks away 4-1 in penalties.
The Tigers enter Thursday night in a must win scenario if they want to advance to the SEC Tournament. The Tigers are currently in 11th place with nine points while Florida and Texas A&M occupy the 9th and 10th slots with 10 points apiece; the top 10 teams make it to Orange Beach. Florida plays South Carolina Thursday night, and Texas A&M is facing off with Missouri.
First things first, LSU has to win. If the Tigers were to win, they will get a bid to the SEC Tournament as long as both Texas A&M and Florida don’t win outright. A draw does the Tigers no good as they would lose tiebreakers to Florida and Texas A&M if they had the same amount of points.
LSU has played 101 matches against ranked opponents since the inception of the program in 1995. Sian Hudson has led the Tigers to a record of 4-4 against ranked foes including three wins on the road. When she arrived, the program only had three true road Top 25 wins; now it has six. The ranked wins have come over No. 14 Ole Miss (November 2020), No. 15 USF (August 2021), No. 19 UCF (August 2021), and No. 21 Arizona State (September 2021).
NCAA RPI Release
The Tigers check in at No. 55 in the latest NCAA RPI rankings. A win versus Arkansas would go a long ways as they are ranked No. 2 currently in RPI.
In The Record Book
Chiara Ritchie-Williams is the school record holder in minutes played (8,176), games started (90), and matches played (93). She officially took sole possession of the school record for matches played and matches started on October 21 versus South Carolina.
Mollee Swift keeps climbing the charts in a number of areas as well. Her 140 saves in an LSU uniform rank as the seventh most in LSU history, but she has a ways to go before she catches up to Roby DesOrmeaux who is in the sixth slot with 183 saves. Swift’s 17 wins in net rank as seventh most in school history, and her career GAA of 1.04 in a Tiger uniform ranks as the second lowest average over a career currently behind Mo Isom’s school record GAA of 0.86. Swift also picked up the ninth solo shutout of her career in LSU’s win over South Carolina to rank No. 7 in that category as well.
Tinaya Alexander is tied for the third most assists in program history with 20 after her assist in LSU’s 4-0 win over South Carolina; she had seven her freshman season, six during her sophomore campaign, three last year, and four this year. She’s also just a mere three points away from the LSU top-10 list in points scored in a career with 58 total thanks to 19 goals and 20 assists.
Goals From Everybody
Shannon Cooke scored the first goal of her 2021 season on October 21 versus South Carolina via a penalty kick. With the score, she became the 14th LSU player to score a goal this year; it matches the most goal scorers LSU’s ever had in a single season. The only other time LSU has had 14 different players score a goal came in 2014.
LSU has scored 35 goals in 16 matches, and the 35 goals are the 10th most in LSU single season history with one regular season match to play.
Tinaya Alexander (7) and Alesia Garcia (6) are the team leaders in goals scored. Molly Thompson (4), Athena Kuehn (3), Maddie Moreau (2), Rammie Noel (2), Riley Dixon (2), and Meghan Johnson (2) have all scored multiple goals while Shannon Cooke, Mollee Swift, Lindsi Jennings, Grace Haggerty, Jordan Johnson, and Wasila Diwura-Soale all have one apiece. The Tigers also forced an own goal off a corner against Mississippi State as well.
The Razorbacks enter Thursday night as one of the hottest teams in America having won 14 straight matches. In 12 of those 14 matches, Arkansas has won by two or more goals.
Anna Podojil (26 pts/10g/6a), Parker Goins (24 pts/8g/8a), and Taylor Malham (19pts/7g/5a) head the Razorback attack, and Hannah Warner starts in net and has a GAA of 0.64 on the season.