Women's Soccer Opens Conference Play in Georgia
Thursday, September 24, 2009 | by Chrsi Perry

FORT MYERS, Fla. – Standing atop the Atlantic Sun Conference in shots, goals allowed, goals against average and shutouts, the Florida Gulf Coast University women’s soccer team kicks off A-Sun play as they travel to Georgia to face Mercer on Friday and Kennesaw State on Sunday.


FGCU (5-3-1, 0-0-0 A-Sun) enters this weekend having won five of their last six matches. During this stretch, the Eagles have outscored their opponents 10-2.


Goalkeeper Stephanie Powers leads the A-Sun in goals against average (.85), save percentage (.811), and is tied for the league lead in shutouts (4). Olivia Elias sits second in the A-Sun in shots (26), after collecting five shots over the weekend.


FGCU saw their five-game win streak come to an end after a heartbreaking 1-0 loss to Mississippi State in the UNF Hampton Inn Ponte Vedra Showcase championship last Sunday in Jacksonville, Fla. Despite the Eagles putting up 18 shots in the contest, the Bulldogs defense preserved the shutout with 11 total saves.


In day one of the UNF Tournament, the Eagles topped The Citadel 2-1.Sophomore midfielder Jessica Swartzentruber added her team leading third goal, while Stacey Payne added her first game-winner of the season against the Citadel. The Eagles outshot the Bulldogs, 9-1 in the second half, and 16-7 in the match. Powers ended the game with three saves and improved her record to 4-2-1 on the season.

Mercer (4-3-1, 0-1-0 A-Sun) enters this weekend on a two-game winning streak. The Bears took Georgia Southern 2-0, and Georgia State 2-1. Junior Sara Elliot scored off a free kick from teammate Patricia Ann Upson for the game winner as Mercer defeated Georgia State in double overtime Sunday afternoon at Bear Field.


Elliott leads the Bears offense with four goals, and one assist for nine points. Goalkeeper Jean Worts has recorded 25 saves on the season, and is tied for fourth in the A-Sun in goal against average.

Kennesaw State (3-3-0, 1-0-0 A-Sun) enters this weekend on a two-match winning streak. After rain cancelled Friday’s match with Samford, the Owls dominated Alabama A&M in a 6-0 win on Sunday afternoon. The Owls had their biggest offensive output of the season on Sunday as they managed two first half goals from freshman Jade Dempster and red-shirt senior Caitlin Dingle, before putting the match out of reach with four second half goals from Katie Scott, Kristin Kranick, Liz Blackburn and Dingle.

Kennesaw State’s Alyssa Mahan leads the A-Sun in assists per game with a 0.50 mark Mahan has three assists in six games. Dempster, who has made a mark as one of the top rookies in the conference, netted her second game-winning goal of the season on Sunday as she is currently ranked second in the conference in that category.

FGCU will take on Mercer on Friday, Sept. 25 with kick-off at 7:00 p.m. and will play Kennesaw State on Sunday, Sept. 27 with kick-off scheduled for 1:00 p.m. at the KSU Soccer Complex.