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Aggies Play Florida on Sunday with Chance to Clinch Title

October 26, 2013
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Courtesy: Texas A&M Athletics
(photo: Texas A&M Athletics)

GAINESVILLE, Florida – The Texas A&M Aggies meet the Florida Gators on Sunday at 2 pm with a chance to clinch the SEC regular-season title. The Aggies enter the match in first place in the SEC standings with 24 points on an 8-1-0 league ledger and the Gators are in second place with 21 points on a 7-2-0 SEC record.

With a win, Texas A&M would claim an outright SEC title, the Aggies’ first. With a draw against Florida, the Maroon and White would claim at least a share of the league title with either a win or draw in their league finale against LSU next Thursday at Ellis Field giving them the outright title. If Florida wins, the teams would be tied atop the league standings heading into the final match with the Gators.

Texas A&M enters Sunday’s play with an eight-match win streak, all in SEC play, and a four-match road win streak.

FOLLOW THE ACTION
Sunday’s match will be televised on ESPNU with Glenn Davis (play-by-play) and Kate Markgraf (analyst) on the call. Live stats may be found at the home team web site, GatorZone.com. Sunday’s match will be streamed on the WatchESPN app and ESPN3. Every match this season will feature free live audio on RadioAggieland and AggieAthletics.com.

UP NEXT
The Aggies wrap up the home schedule on Thursday, October 31 when they host the LSU Tigers in an 8 pm contest at Ellis Field.

CONFERENCE WIN STREAK
The Aggies current eight-match conference win streak is their longest as a member of the SEC. Last season, A&M won its first four games to start SEC play. The streak marks their longest conference win streak since winning eight matches in a row in Big 12 play from Sept 26 to Oct 24, 2010. The school record is a 14-game win streak in Big 12 action between Oct 4, 1996 and Oct 10, 1997. A&M also boasts a 12-match Big 12 win streak between Oct 21 2005 and Oct 22 2006, a nine-match Big 12 win streak between Oct 11, 1998 and Aug 29, 1999 and an eight-match Big 12 win streak from Oct 19, 2001 and Oct 6, 2002.

HIGH OCTANE OFFENSE
Entering the weekend, the Aggies lead the SEC and rank sixth in the nation with 2.69 goals per match, with 43 goals on the year. A&M also ranks sixth in points per game (7.69) with 123 in their 16 matches.

Individually, Karlie Mueller is tied for first in the SEC and 11th NCAA Division I with 10 assists on the season. Her 0.63 assists per game ranks 15th in the nation. Shea Groom ranks 30th in the nation with 0.714 goals per game with 10 goals in 14 matches. The mark also ranks fourth in the SEC.

SCORING SURGE
After scoring 18 goals in the first nine matches of the season (2.00 gpm), the Aggies have erupted to tally 27 goals over the last eight (3.38 gpm), all in SEC play. The Aggies have scored at least three goals in five of the last eight matches, including eight against Mississippi State (8-0), four against Arkansas (4-3, ot) and three each against Vanderbilt (3-0), Auburn (3-1) and Alabama (3-0). Over the span, Shea Groom leads the team in scoring with 15 points on six goals and three assists. Allie Bailey has 15 points on five goals and four assists. Liz Keester has added four goals and one assist and Karlie Mueller has a team-high six assists during the run.

DIVERSIFIED PORTFOLIO
The Aggies feature the most balanced offensive attack in the SEC. A&M is the only team in the league with four players to log at least six goals on the season. The Aggies are headlined by Shea Groom with 11 goals, followed by Liz Keester with seven goals and Allie Bailey and Kelley Monogue with six apiece. A&M is also the only SEC team with six players with at least 10 points on the season. Groom leads the Maroon and White with 25 points, followed by Keester (17), Bailey (16), Monogue (15), Bianca Brinson (12) and Karlie Mueller (10).

EXPLOSIVE HALVES
Texas A&M has logged three or more goals in a half on five occasions this season. The Aggies scored five goals in a half on two occasions, including the second half against San Diego and the first half against Misssissippi State. The Maroon and White notched four goals in the second half against Cal Poly. A&M scored three goals in the second half against Mississippi State and the first half against Vanderbilt.

DAY CLIMBING CAREER WINS LIST
Jordan Day enters Sunday with a 45-14-4 record between the pipes and ranks fourth on A&M’s career win list. Kati Jo Spisak owns the school record with her 69-21-6 mark from 2002-05. Melanie Wilson (1996-99) ranks second with 66 wins followed by Kristin Arnold (2006-10) with 48. Day posted a 13-6-2 mark as a freshman and followed it up with a 19-5-1 mark last year.

MONOGUE CLIMBING THE CAREER POINTS LIST
With her assist on a Shea Groom goal in the first half against Alabama last Friday, Kelley Monogue moved into ninth place on A&M’s career points list with 82. Next on the list is Melissa Garey with 91 points between 2004-07.

MONOGUE CLIMBING THE CAREER GOALS LIST
With her two goals against Cal Poly, Kelley Monogue passed Kristen Strutz (34 - 2000-03) for seventh place on A&M’s career goals list with 35. The next targets on the list will be No. 6 Heather Ragsdale (37 - 1999-2002) and No. 5 Melissa Garey (39 - 2004-07). Ashlee Pistorius owns the school career record with 81 goals from 2004-07.

Monogue scored 19 goals as a freshman and added 10 more in her sophomore campaign when she was hindered by injury.

KUNZ REACHES THE 30-GOAL PLATEAU
With her goal in the Aggies’ 3-1 win against Auburn, Annie Kunz became the 11th player in school history to reach the 30-goal plateau for their career. The junior forward has seven points on the year with three goals and one assist. For her career, Kunz has notched 69 points on 30 goals and nine assists. As a freshman, Kunz logged 35 points on 14 goals and seven assists. Last season, the Golden, Colorado native notched 27 points on 13 goals and one assist.

SECOND HALF SCORING
Texas A&M has scored 24 of its 46 goals in the second half. The late-match outburst includes a five-goal second half against San Diego and a four-goal second-half against Cal Poly. The Aggies have outscored opponents 24-7 in the season half. Pepperdine has accounted for three of the opponents seven second-half goals in their 3-1 triumph over Texas A&M.

MONOGUE CHECKS IN WITH 11 MULTIPLE-GOAL MATCHES
Kelley Monogue has two multi-goal matches on the season, with two-goal efforts against both San Diego and Cal Poly. For her career, Monogue has logged multiple goals in 11 matches. Last season, she did the deed on three occasions with two goals apiece against Rutgers, Kentucky and Arkansas. As a freshman, Monogue rattled off six multi-goal efforts, including a hat trick against Fordham and two-goal matches against McNeese State, Iowa State, Texas Tech, Drake and Oklahoma. The Texas Tech, Drake and Oklahoma efforts were in consecutive matches.

AGGIE HAT TRICKS
With her three-goal performance in the Aggies’ 3-1 win over UMass, Shea Groom posted the first hat trick of her career and the 33rd in the history of the program. She logged the Aggies’ first hat trick since Annie Kunz and Kelley Monogue both did the deed in a 13-1 win over Fordham. Groom, Kunz and Monogue are the only active Aggies to own a hat trick, with Kunz having two of them, including three-goal efforts against both Fordham and McNeese State in 2011. The school record for goals in a game are Ashlee Pistorius, who logged four goals on two occasions against Baylor (10/28/05 & 11/2/07), and Yvette Okler, who notched four goals against Texas (10/31/93). Bryn Blalack has the most hat tricks in school history with six and Pistorius ranks second with five.

DAY SETS A&M SINGLE-SEASON SHUTOUT MARK, APPROACHING CAREER SHUTOUT MARK
Last season Jordan Day set the A&M single-season shutout mark with 14, passing Ester Thompson who is listed as having 9.5 in 2001 and Melanie Wilson who is credited with 9.3 in 1999.  Day also registered nine shutouts in 2011 and her 27 career shutouts currently ranks second behind only Wilson (32).

In 2012, Day ranked third in the nation in goalie minutes (2271:13) and led the country with 14 shutouts. She tied the SEC school record with seven consecutive shutouts.

INAUGURAL SEC CAMPAIGN RESULTS
In their first season in the SEC, the Aggies went 10-2-1 and won the SEC Western Division crown, in the last season the league will recognize divisional champions, in 2012. Texas A&M posted shutouts in eight of its 13 league matches, including the first four of the season. The Maroon and White outscored league opponents 29-7 and went unbeaten on the road with a 5-0-1 ledger. The blemishes to the Aggies’ record were provided by Kentucky (T, 2-2), Florida (L, 2-1) and Tennessee (L, 1-0).

GUERRIERI RANKS AMONG THE NATION’S WINNINGEST COACHES
Texas A&M head coach G Guerrieri ranks among the Top 10 in both winning percentage and victories among Division I coaches. With a career record of 367-116-26 (.746), he ranks sixth in winning percentage (minimum five years as a Division I head coach) and eighth in victories, passing SMU’s Chris Petrucelli during the 2012 campaign. Guerrieri is looking to make up ground on James Madison’s David Lombardo (370) and William & Mary’s John Daly (369) who rank sixth and seventh on the victories list, respectively.

MULTIPLE-GOAL GAMES IN 2013
The Aggies have had a player record multiple-goal games on seven occasions in 2013. Shea Groom leads the team with three multiple-goal matches and Kelley Monogue has registered a pair. Meghan Streight and Liz Keester have both added one. Groom logged a hat trick against UMass and two goals versus Mississippi State and Alabama. Monogue notched two goals in games against San Diego and Cal Poly. Streight recorded two goals against Mississippi State. Keester notched two goals against Arkansas, including a golden goal in overtime.

LAST TIME OUT – OLE MISS
The Aggies fell behind the Rebels in the 31st minute when Olivia Harrison converted on a cross by Mandy McCalla into the six-yard box. Texas A&M trailed at the intermission despite outshooting Ole Miss 8-6, including 6-3 in the shots-on-goal column. In the second half the Maroon and White turned up the offensive pressure, outshooting the Rebels 12-3.  The assault paid off with an equalizer in the 67th minute when Bianca Brinson went on a one player counterattack and raced 70 yards down the right side of the pitch before launching a shot from eight yards out to tie the game at 1-1. A&M was awarded a penalty kick when the Rebels were whistled for a hand-ball in the penalty box with 4:57 remaining in the second half. Shea Groom converted on the PK for her 11th goal of the season.

SCOUTING FLORIDA
The Gators enter the weekend nipping at the heels of the Aggies in the SEC Standings with 18 points, three points behind the Maroon and White. Florida is 12-3-1 overall and owns a 6-2-0 mark in SEC play. The Gators are coming off two 3-0 wins in home action last weekend, including victories over then No. 23 Kentucky and LSU. Florida’s other SEC victories have come against Alabama (3-0), Ole Miss (4-1), Auburn (3-0) and Mississippi State (1-0 - 2ot). The Gators have dropped SEC matches to Missouri (1-0) and South Carolina (2-1 ot). In non-conference action, Florida has wins over Florida Gulf Coast (3-1), Oregon State (3-1), Florida International (4-0), Oklahoma (3-0), Oklahoma State (2-0) and Minnesota (2-0). The Gators non-conference blemishes came against Florida State (L, 3-0) and South Florida (1-1 - 2ot). Florida ranks third in the league in scoring with 36 goals (2.25 goals per game). The Gators also rank second in the league in goals against average at 0.60. Savannah Jordan is Florida’s leading scorer with 31 points on 15 goals and one assists. The 15 goals are tied with Vanderbilt’s Cheyna Williams for most in the SEC. Annie Speese and Lauren Silver both have six assists to lead the Gators. Taylor Burke has played 939 minutes in goal for Florida and leads the SEC with a 0.48 goals-against average and five shutouts. Nora Neset Gjøen has played 559 minutes between the pipes, posting an 0.81 goals-against average and three shutouts.

SERIES VS. FLORIDA
The Aggies own a 4-3-0 advantage in the all-time series against the Gators. Texas A&M owns a 3-0 advantage in games played in Gainesville. The Maroon and White won the first two matches of the series with a 3-2 victory in Gainesville in 1995 and a 2-1 win in College Station in 1996. A&M was also victorious in Gainesville in 2000 (3-1) and 2008 (2-1 - NCAA Tournament).  Florida triumphed in College Station, 1-0, in overtime during the 1998 campaign. The Gators also won a 3-2 decision in Knoxville in 2011 and a 2-1 contest in College Station last season. In last season’s match, Shea Groom scored in the 22nd minute to give A&M a 1-0 lead, but the Gators responded with goals from Jo Dragotta in the 30th minute and Adriana Leon in the 39th minute to claim the win.

MEET THE SEC
Each of the 14 schools in Southeastern Conference (SEC) sponsor women’s soccer. The Aggies will play 11 of the 13 schools in the conference this season, beginning with Tennessee on Sept. 20 in Knoxville, Tenn. A&M plays five home SEC contests and six road SEC matches. Texas A&M will not play Kentucky or South Carolina during the 2013 regular-season.

AGAINST THE SEC
In the 20-year history of the program, Texas A&M owns a 32-8-2 record against teams who were members of the SEC at the time and a 47-14-2 mark against current members of the SEC. The ledger includes a 15-5-1 mark against former Big 12 foe Missouri. The Aggies own winning records against Alabama (4-1), Arkansas (4-1),  Auburn (2-1) Florida (4-3), Georgia (2-0), Kentucky (1-0-1), LSU (3-0), Mississippi State (2-0), Ole Miss (2-0), South Carolina (3-0) and Vanderbilt (5-0). The only SEC team Texas A&M has a losing record against is Tennessee (0-3).

WHERE ARE THE AGGIES RANKED?
The Aggies enter the weekend unranked in the NSCAA/Continental Tire coaches poll. A&M opened the season ranked No. 12 in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA)/Continental Tire coaches poll, but fell seven spots to No. 19 after a weekend in which A&M lost to No. 7 Duke (1-0) and beat UTSA (1-0) and another five spots after the second weekend’s action. The Aggies were No. 20  before dropping out following their loss at Tennessee. The Maroon and White are ranked No. 7 by Bennett Ranking, No. 19 by TopDrawerSoccer.com, No. 21 by Soccer Times and No. 24 by Soccer America.

ELLIS FIELD ADVANTAGE
Texas A&M owns a 197-29-6 (.862) all-time record at Ellis Field (formerly Aggie Soccer Stadium). The Maroon and White have called the field home since the 1994 season, playing the inaugural 1993 season at Old Tiger Field. Since 2005, the Aggies have registered a 81-11-7 mark on the friendly pitch.

BIG 12 ERA
The Aggies won their 12th-and-final Big 12 Championship during the 2011 conference tournament. With just 15 seconds left in the Championship match, Tournament MVP and then-freshman Kelley Monogue weaved through three defenders and ricocheted a shot off of the left post that found then-senior Megan Majewski at 18 yards from goal. Majewski fired with nine seconds on the clock and netted the 1-0 goal against Oklahoma State to win the tournament. The Aggies were the only school in the conference to earn a Big 12 Tournament berth in the 16 years of its existence.

LONE STAR DOMINANCE
Since the 2008 season, the Aggies own a 19-0-4 mark against in-state rivals, including an 11-0-3 record against their former Big 12 Conference colleagues. A&M went a perfect 2-0 against in-state foes in 2012, winning the two games by a combined 3-0 margin with a 2-0 win vs. UTSA in the regular-season and a 1-0 win over Stephen F Austin in the opening round of the NCAA Championship. This season, Texas A&M is 1-0-1 against Lone Star foe, topping UTSA 1-0 in the second game of the season and tying Baylor 0-0 in the sixth game of the year.

AT THE TOP AGAIN
With the 2013 No. 12 preseason ranking, A&M has been in the preseason national top 15 every year for 18 consecutive seasons. The Aggies have also consistently appeared in top 25 polls for the past 17 years.

SEC PRESEASON POLL
Texas A&M, the reigning SEC Western Division champion, was named the team to beat in the Southeastern Conference after edging out Florida (6) with eight first-place votes. The Aggies were almost a unanimous selection to again claim the Western Division throne, receiving 91 total points and 13 first-place votes. LSU came in second in points for the Western Division with 67 points and one first-place vote.

SIX AGGIES ON SEC PRESEASON WATCH LIST
Senior Rachel Lenz and five of her junior teammates in Jordan Day, Shea Groom, Annie Kunz, Kelley Monogue and Meghan Streight were named to the SEC preseason watch list the conference announced in early August.

MAC HERMANN TROPHY WATCH LIST
Junior Meghan Streight was placed on the Missouri Athletic Club (MAC) Hermann Trophy Watch List. The award is the highest honor in collegiate soccer and will be given to a winner on Jan. 10. The field will be narrowed to 15 semifinalists in late November, and three finalists will be named in December.

TOPDRAWERSOCCER.COM SEC TOP 20 PLAYERS
The Aggies ranked No. 12 in TopDrawerSoccer.com’s Preseason Rankings and placed five players on the publication’s SEC Top 20 List. Juniors Meghan Streight (No. 2), Annie Kunz (No. 3), Jordan Day (No. 5), Shea Groom (No. 17) and senior Rachel Lenz were named to the Top 20 Players to Watch list in the SEC according to TopDrawerSoccer.com. The Aggies led the way with four players in the top-six and led all teams with five players named to the top-20 list.

CLEAN SHEETS
Texas A&M finished the 2012 campaign tied with UCF for third in NCAA Division I with 15 shutouts on the season. Marquette and Florida State led the nation with 17 shutouts on the year. A&M finished tied for seventh in shutout percentage at .600 (15 shutouts in 25 games). Marquette led the nation at .739 (16 shutouts in 23 games).  This season, the Aggies have six shutouts in 17 matches.

DAY EARNS SECOND CAREER SEC PLAYER OF THE WEEK HONOR
Texas A&M junior goalkeeper Jordan Day was named the SEC Defensive Player of the Week on September 9. The Gilbert, Arizona native was recognized for her efforts in a week in which she allowed just one goal in 200 minutes of action as the Aggies defeated San Diego, 6-1, on Friday and played No. 9 Baylor to a double-overtime, 0-0, draw on Sunday.

On Friday night, she registered the 35th victory of her career to move into a tie with Kelly Dyer (2007-10) for fifth place on A&M’s career list for goalkeeper wins. Day earned her second shutout of the season and the 25th of her career on Sunday, making six saves against the Bears and winning all four of Baylor’s corner kicks in the air. This marks Day’s second career SEC Defensive Player of the Week honor as she also earned the award on September, 24 2012.

MUELLER TABBED SEC PLAYER OF THE WEEK HONOR
On September 30,  Karlie Mueller was recognized for her efforts in a week in which the Aggies were the only SEC team to record multiple shutouts, with an 8-0 win over Mississippi State and a 3-0 victory over Vanderbilt. The Sioux Falls, South Dakota native also provided a spark for the A&M offense with five assists on the weekend, including four on set pieces. All five of her well-placed services found the head of an Aggie.

In Friday night’s drubbing of Mississippi State, Mueller spearheaded a defense that held the Bulldogs without a shot-on-goal for the entire match and held All-SEC forward Elisabeth Sullivan to just one shot. She also served up three assists, including one on a corner kick and two on free kicks. On Sunday, Mueller offered up two more assists, including her third of the weekend on a free kick. The Aggie defense held Vanderbilt to four shots-on-goal for the match.

KEESTER EARNS AGGIES FIRST-EVER SEC FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK HONOR
On October 14, Liz Keester was named the SEC Freshman of the Week, becoming the first Aggie to ever earn the honor. Keester earned the recognition following a two-goal performance in A&M’s only match of the week, a 4-3 overtime win over the Arkansas Razorbacks. Keester opened the scoring in the third minute of action with a goal from 15 yards out and capped of the win with a golden goal from 20 yards out to extend the Aggies’ win streak to five matches.

2013 ROSTER
The Aggies’ 21-player roster features 11 upperclassmen, four sophomores and six freshmen. A&M’s squad is guided by two seniors. The team returns seven starters and 14 letterwinners from a year ago.

RETURNING OFFENSE
The Aggies returns 72.4 percent of their point production from 2012 (97 of 134), including 38 of their 48 goals and 21 of their 38 points. The biggest loss from the offense is Jayne Eadie who elected to forgo her final year of eligibility. Eadie tallied 12 points on two goals and a team-high eight assists. 2013 graduates Chelsea Jones and Beth West added seven and six points, respectively.

The leading scorers returning from last year are headlined by five juniors in double digits. Annie Kunz logged 13 goals, one assist and 27 points. Kelley Monogue tallied 10 goals for 20 points. Shea Groom logged five goals, seven assists and 17 points. Meghan Streight notched 12 points on three goals and six assists. Allie Bailey booked 10 points on four goals and two assists.

RETURNING STARTERS
The Aggies return 188 of their 275 starts on the pitch from 2012 (68.4 percent). The bulk of lost starts were from graduated senior Lyndsey Gnatzig (25 starts) and Jayne Eadie (22). Other starts lost include Lindsey Witz (16), Beth West (13), Katie Perry (8) and Chelsea Jones (3). Returnees Jordan Day, Rachel Lenz and Meghan Streight started all 25 matches in 2012. Other returnees to log 20 or more starts, include Allie Bailey (23) and Shea Groom (23).

FRESH TALENT
The Aggies welcome six freshmen and one senior transfer this season, in Taylor Saucier (Omaha, Neb.), Liz Keester (Tulsa, Okla.), Ashlynn Harryman (Dana Point, Calif.), Ana Cruz (San Diego, Calif.), Grace Wright (College Station, Texas), Sarah Shaw (Keller, Texas) and Cristina Sanchez-Quintanar (Campo de Criptana, Spain).

TENNIS STANDOUT JOINS THE SQUAD
Spanish native and former Aggie tennis standout Cristina Sanchez-Quintanar joined the squad for the 2013 season. She concluded her tennis eligibility by becoming A&M’s first two-time All-American. Sanchez-Quintanar was ranked as high as No. 3 during her senior campaign. She was also the first player in A&M history to win 40 or matches twice during a career. She went  81-15 with the Aggies and her .765 all-time winning percentage set a school record. In 2012-13, she went 41-9 overall and 27-7 against ranked opponents. As a junior, Sanchez-Quintanar went 40-6 overall, setting an A&M record for highest winning percentage in a season (.870). She transferred to A&M from Maryland where in her lone season she became the first Terp to ever advance to the NCAA round of 32.

Sanchez-Quintanar played in seven matches as a member of the Maryland Terrapins squad in 2010. She played 71 minutes of action as Maryland reached the finals of the ACC Championship, earned the NCAA No. 1 seed and finished 18-2-3.

This season, Sanchez-Quintanar has appeared in 10 matches, logging 210 minutes. She recorded her first career goal capping off the scoring in an 8-0 win over Mississippi State.

Happy Days Continue at Ellis Field with 3-0 Victory over Marquette
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