Top A-Sun teams come to FGCU for weekend series
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The FGCU women’s soccer team takes its six-game conference unbeaten streak (5-0-1) into a pair of matchups against Georgia schools, Mercer and Kennesaw State, beginning on Friday night at the FGCU Soccer Complex.
After playing on the road since early September, the Eagles land back at home to host Mercer on Friday at 7 p.m. FGCU then faces off against three-time Atlantic Sun Regular Season Champions Kennesaw State on Sunday at 1 p.m.
The Eagles enter the weekend with a 5-4-1 overall mark and more importantly are 2-0-1 in conference play, and are currently tied for third in the Atlantic Sun standings behind the aforementioned Bears and Owls.
After a Saturday showdown with Campbell, the Blue and Green left Buies Creek, N.C., with a 2-0 victory in the book. Sophomore Brittany Burt (St. Petersburg, Fla./Northeast HS/USF) and senior Amanda Suchko (Greensburg, Pa./Hempfield Area Senior) netted their first goals of the season.
Freshman Jenci Villaverde (Palm City, Fla./Bayside HS) continues to lead the Eagles with seven points on two goals and three assists, while sophomore Jessica Swartzentruber (Sarasota, Fla./Sarasota Christian) is the only other Eagle to have two goals. In total, 13 players have netted one goal, while 11 have dished out at least one assist.
Junior Stephanie Powers (Seffner, Fla./Armwood) continues her outstanding work in the goal with 0.80 goals against average, which is good for second in the conference. Powers has four shutouts this season and has only allowed one goal in the opening three conference contests.
The Bears enter Friday’s contest with a 4-6-1 overall record and stand at 3-1 in the conference after going 1-1 over the weekend. Mercer dropped its Friday game against UNF (1-0) before defeating Jacksonville (1-0) on Sunday. Sara Elliot and Kacie Hudson pace the Orange and Black with six points apiece. Hudson leads the Bears with three goals, while Elliot has two goals and two assists. Cagney Valloch, the Bears' main keeper, has 22 saves and 0.71 goals against average in nine games played to lead the conference. The Blue and Green own a 2-0-1 record against Mercer with the tie coming in the 2008 season at FGCU.
Kennesaw State (6-4-1, 3-1 A-Sun) stops at Stetson before heading south to Fort Myers on Sunday. The Owls were predicted to finish atop the conference and win the A-Sun tournament. Senior goalkeeper Staci Pugh is now first in career saves at Kennesaw State with 51 on the season. Freshman Alma Gardarsdottir (4g, 2a) and junior Alyssa Mahan (3g, 4a) lead the Owls with 10 points each. Kennesaw State and FGCU each own a win in their series history and battled to a double-overtime 1-1 draw in 2008.
Live stats, box scores and recaps for every FGCU contest are available at www.FGCUAthletics.com. Live updates of FGCU’s games can also be followed on www.twitter.com/FGCUEagles.
Tickets are on sale and can purchased through the FGCU Ticket Office in Alico Arena either in person or by phone at (239) 590-7145. Tickets are also available on www.FGCUAthletics.com/tickets.