Complete match notes (PDF)
PORTLAND, Ore. — The Portland State women's soccer team hosts San Jose State Sunday, Sept. 21, for its final non-conference match of the season. The Vikings will host the Spartans at Hillsboro Stadium, with kickoff set for 11 a.m. (PT).
Tickets for the match against San Jose State will be available here, or at the gate. Adult tickets will be sold for $10, while youth tickets (ages 3-17) will be sold for $7. Portland State students will be admitted free of charge with their PSU ID.
Live stats will be available for the match against San Jose State this Sunday on vikslive.com, as well as viksmobile.com for mobile devices. The link to live stats for the San Jose State match can also be found on the women's soccer schedule page on GoViks.com.
A free live stream will also be available for the match against San Jose State this Sunday at WatchBigSky.com. Fans will have to create an account and download some plug-ins beforehand, however. Matt Marquette will provide play-by-play for the stream.
SCOUTING SAN JOSE STATE:
The San Jose State Spartans (2-3-2) head into their match against Portland State Sunday with a three-match road unbeaten streak, having beaten Pacific 4-0 on Sept. 7 and tied UC Santa Barbara, 0-0, and San Francisco, 1-1, last weekend. The Vikings also tied San Francisco 1-1 earlier this season, giving the Vikings and the Spartans a common opponent going in their match. The Spartans also beat Sacramento State 1-0 at home on Aug. 31, giving them a win over a Big Sky school already this season. The Spartans have not played a match outside of the state of California, however, making their match against Portland State Sunday their longest road trip of the season so far. Statistically speaking, the Spartans have played extremely well defensively so far this season, as they lead the Mountain West Conference with a 0.67 goals-against average this season, and rank tied for the MWC lead with three shutouts. Individually, San Jose State goalkeeper Zoe Makrigiannis ranks second in the Mountain West in both goals-against average (0.69) and save percentage (.848), just behind Boise State's Janelle Flores, who the Vikings faced earlier this season. Meanwhile, offensively, the Spartans have only scored six goals in their seven matches this season, and four of those goals came in their win over Pacific. Junior forward Gabriella Stange recorded a goal and an assist in that match, and leads the Spartans with five total points (2g, 1a) so far this season. Senior forward Kareli Rodriguez has also scored two goals this season, putting her just behind Stange among the Spartans' offensive leaders. The Spartans will be the third Mountain West opponent for the Vikings this season. The Vikings went 1-0-1 in their other two matches against opponents from the Mountain West, tying Boise State 1-1 on Aug. 24, and beating Colorado State 3-0 on Sept. 5. San Jose State head coach Lauren Hanson, meanwhile, will be facing the Vikings for the first time in her coaching career, as she is in her first year as a Division I head coach. Hanson is very familiar with Portland, however, as she won the NCAA Women's College Cup as a player for the University of Portland in 2002, and again as an assistant with the Pilots in 2005.
ALL-TIME SERIES AGAINST SAN JOSE STATE:
The Vikings are 0-3-0 all-time against the Spartans, though they have only played them once since 2000. The Spartans won that match, 1-0, at San Jose State on Sept. 18, 2011. Before that, the Vikings had lost 4-2 at San Jose State in 1997, and 4-0 at Portland State in 2000.
LAST TIME OUT:
The Vikings are coming off their biggest win of the season to date, as they snapped a seven-match losing streak to in-state rival Oregon with a 1-0 win in overtime last Friday. The Vikings hadn't beaten the Ducks since 2004, and did so in dramatic fashion. Oregon had the chance to win when they earned a penalty kick with the teams tied 0-0 in the 89th minute. PSU goalkeeper Caitlin Plese saved the penalty kick from Oregon's Lilly Archer, however, and the match went to overtime, where junior forward Tamia Hasan won the match for the Vikings with a golden goal in the 93rd minute. The Vikings were the aggressors for the majority of the match overall, as they outshot Oregon 13-9. Plese also made five total saves for the Vikings in earning the shutout in goal.
PLESE NAMED BIG SKY DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK:
Redshirt junior goalkeeper Caitlin Plese was named the Big Sky Defensive Player of the Week for a second straight week Tuesday, after her performance in the Vikings' win over Oregon. Plese made the crucial save on a penalty kick in the 89th minute of the match against Oregon, allowing the Vikings to win it in overtime. Plese becomes the first PSU player to win back-to-back Big Sky Player of the Week awards since Cris Lewis was honored in two straight weeks during the 2007 season. Additionally, the award marks the third time Plese has been so honored in her career, following last week and her honor on Sept. 17 last season. Plese was also named College Sports Madness' Big Sky Player of the Week for the third time in her career, again following last week's honor and her honor on Oct. 29 last season.
The Vikings open Big Sky Conference play on the road with matches at Northern Arizona and Southern Utah next weekend. The Vikings face Northern Arizona Friday, Sept. 26, at 7 p.m. (PT), and then face Southern Utah Sunday, Sept. 28, at 12 p.m. (MT).
HOME SWEET HOME:
The Vikings take an 11-match home unbeaten streak into their match against San Jose State Sunday, as the Vikings have not lost since a 3-2 defeat to then-No. 14 Marquette in their home opener last season. Since then, the Vikings have only allowed three goals at home, two of which came on penalty kicks. The only team to score a non-PK goal against the Vikings at home since the loss to Marquette was Boise State in their 1-1 draw with the Vikings earlier this season. Overall, the Vikings are 8-0-3 over their 11-match home unbeaten streak.
DEFENSE STARTING TO HEAT UP:
The Portland State defense has had an exceptional run in its last three matches, producing two shutouts and only one goal allowed. Additionally, the one goal the PSU defense gave up came on the road against then-No. 10 Texas Tech, and came less than 90 seconds from the end of the second overtime period. The Viking defense's strong recent run has been a nice response to the unit's shakiest performance in more than a season, as the three-match run has come after the Vikings gave up five goals in a neutral-site loss to then-No. 21 California. That loss was the first time the Vikings had given up more than one goal to an opponent in their past 20 matches. The Vikings have not given up more than a goal to an opponent since then, however, and have moved up the Big Sky statistical ranks defensively. The Vikings now rank second in the league with a 1.04 goals-against average this season, and rank tied for the Big Sky lead in shutouts with three.
90 MINUTES NOT ENOUGH:
The Vikings have played two straight overtime matches against Texas Tech and Oregon going into their match against San Jose State this weekend, while four of the Vikings' seven matches so far this season have gone into overtime. The Vikings have gone 1-1-2 in those four overtime matches, earning draws against Boise State and San Francisco on Aug. 24 and Aug. 29, respectively, before splitting their last two matches between the loss to then-No. 10 Texas Tech on Sept. 7, and the win against Oregon on Sept. 12. The four overtime matches equals the Vikings' total from all of last season, when the Vikings went 1-0-3 in overtime matches, including the Big Sky Tournament final against Weber State.
SPREADING THE WEALTH:
Junior forward Tamia Hasan's golden goal against Oregon Friday not only gave the Viking the win over the Ducks, but also gave the forward her first goal of the 2014 season. Hasan's first goal in 2014 means the Vikings have now had six different players score their seven goals this season, as only freshman forward Mackenzie Bean has scored more than once. Besides Bean and Hasan, senior midfielder Ariana Cooley, freshman defender Maddire Prehoda, senior defender Kayla Henningsenand junior midfielder Emma Cooney have all scored for the Vikings. Cooley also assisted on Hasan's game winner, giving the Vikings four different players with an assist. Besides Cooley, junior defender Torie Morris, senior defender Kelsey Henningsen and sophomore midfielder Whitney Hilde all have one assist each this season.
The Vikings' 10-member freshmen class has already made a significant impact on the 2014 season with only seven matches under their belt. Freshman forward Mackenzie Bean has quickly become the Vikings' top offensive threat, as she leads the team with two goals scored so far this season. Bean and fellow freshman Maddie Prehoda have also tallied two of the Vikings' three game-winning goals this season, as Bean scored the game winner in the Vikings' season-opening 1-0 win over Utah Valley on Aug. 22, while Prehoda scored the game winner in the Vikings' 3-0 win over Colorado State on Sept. 5. Additionally, freshman midfielder Katie Forsee has started six of the team's seven matches at the holding center midfielder position. Defender Dallas Malone has also played in six of the team's seven matches this season.
BIG SKY STATISTICAL LEADERS:
Junior goalkeeper Caitlin Plese has moved up the Big Sky statistical ranks defensively with her strong play of late, as she now ranks third in the Big Sky in goals-against average (0.91), third in save percentage (.828) and tied for third in shutouts (2). Junior forward Tamia Hasan also ranks among the conference leaders in shots, as she ranks third in total shots (20) and fourth in shots per match (2.86). Freshman forward Mackenzie Bean also ranks tied for seventh in the conference in goals scored (2). Meanwhile, as a team, the Vikings rank tied for the Big Sky lead in shutouts (3) this season, while also ranking second in the conference in goals-against average (1.04), third in goals allowed (8), third in shots per match (12.43) and fourth in corners per match (3.86).
REWRITING THE HISTORY BOOKS:
With her shutout of Oregon Friday, junior goalkeeper Caitlin Plese earned her 13th career shutout at Portland State, moving her into sole possession of second place on the all-time list at Portland State. Plese now ranks just four shutouts behind all-time leader Cris Lewis, who set the record with 17 shutouts from 2006-09. Plese also moved up to sixth all time in goalkeeper wins with her performance against Oregon, and ranks second all-time in goals-against average at 0.69, a tenth of a point behind all-time leader Melissa Ferguson at 0.59. Plese is not the only player on the verge of rewriting the Portland State record books, however, as junior midfielder/forward Cori Bianchini currently ranks ninth all-time in goals per game (0.19), and also ranks 10th all-time in points per game (0.49). Additionally, Bianchini has eight career goals, leaving her one short of moving into a tie with Juli Edwards (2004-07), Megan Plinski (2002-05) and Kala Renard (2008-11) for eighth all-time at Portland State. Senior defender Kayla Henningsen also has seven career goals at Portland State, leaving her just two goals short of moving into the all-time top 10 at Portland State.
The Vikings broke the Big Sky record for longest unbeaten streak at the start of this season, beating Utah Valley 1-0 in their home opener for their 14th straight match without a loss. That moved the Vikings past Weber State, which set the Big Sky record after going unbeaten over 13 straight matches during the 1998 season. The Vikings extended the streak to 16 matches with draws against Boise State and San Francisco, before their 5-0 loss to then-No. 21 California snapped it.
The Portland State women's soccer team has a clear agenda for its 2014 season: get to the NCAA Tournament. A tournament berth would be the Vikings' first-ever in program history, and would likely come via a Big Sky Tournament title, which would end to a series of frustrating results for the Vikings in the conference tournament. The Vikings have never won the Big Sky Tournament despite winning four of the past five Big Sky regular-season titles, and six regular-season titles overall. The Vikings made the tournament final for just the second time in program history last season, but fell 3-0 in penalty kicks after finishing tied with Weber State after regulation and two overtime periods. Overall, the Vikings are 2-7-3 in Big Sky Tournament matches.
DEFENDING THE TITLE:
The Vikings enter the 2014 season as the three-time defending Big Sky champions after winning regular-season titles in 2011, 2012 and 2013. The Vikings won their most recent title in their most convincing fashion yet, as they went unbeaten in the Big Sky Conference for the first time in program history. The Vikings won the Big Sky regular-season title in 2009 as well, giving them titles in four of the last five seasons. The Vikings should be well positioned to defend their title in 2014, too, as they return 10 starters from last season, as well as 17 letterwinners.
VIKINGS TABBED AS NARROW FAVORITES IN BIG SKY PRESEASON POLL:
Big Sky coaches picked the Vikings as slight favorites over Weber State in the Big Sky Preseason Coaches' poll, released earlier this month. Both teams received five first-place votes in the poll, but the Vikings finished with one more point at 93 to Weber State's 92. Besides the Vikings and Wildcats, Northern Arizona picked up the remaining first-place vote to finish third in the poll with 86 points, while Northern Colorado (69), Montana (62), Idaho State (52), Sacramento State (51), Southern Utah (32), Idaho (29), Eastern Washington (27) and North Dakota (12) rounded out the poll.
HENNINGSON TWINS' SWAN SONG:
Senior defenders and twin sisters Kayla and Kelsey Henningsen enter their fourth and final year within the Portland State women's soccer program this season. The Henningsen twins, prized recruits when they came into the program, have seen unprecedented success since joining the Vikings, as neither has been on a team that didn't win at least a share of the Big Sky regular-season title, while both have also earned numerous individual honors during their PSU careers. Kayla was named the Big Sky Defensive MVP last season, while both Kayla and Kelsey were named All-Big Sky honorees (Kayla: 1st team; Kelsey: 2nd team). Additionally, both Kayla and Kelsey earned CoSIDA Academic All-District VIII second-team honors last season. Watch an interview with the Henningsens' on their final season at Portland State here, or on the Vikings' YouTube channel.
The Vikings have been battling through a tough non-conference schedule so far in 2014, as four of the Vikings' eight non-conference opponents finished in the top half of their respective conferences last season. The Vikings have also faced two 2013 NCAA Tournament participants in Texas Tech of the Big 12 and California of the Pac-12 so far, leaving them well-tested for the upcoming Big Sky Conference schedule. Additionally, the Vikings have faced several individual stars during the non-conference schedule, as four of their opponents have members playing some level of international youth soccer.
Opposing players with national team camp or playing experience:
IT'S ALL ABOUT ALTITUDE:
The Vikings' matches against Colorado State and Texas Tech two weekends ago were both played above 3,000 feet of elevation. Those matches were the first of six matches the Vikings will play above 3,000 feet this season, including four in Big Sky play. The Vikings played Colorado State at 5,004 feet of elevation, and played Texas Tech at about 3,200 feet of elevation. The Vikings will also play at elevation against Northern Arizona on Sept. 26 (6,903 feet), Southern Utah on Sept. 28 (5,800 feet), Idaho State on Oct. 10 (4,462 feet) and Northern Colorado on Oct. 17 (4,658 feet).
The Vikings added 10 incoming freshmen during the 2014 signing period, giving the team extra depth going into the season. Of the 10 incoming freshmen, the Vikings signed two goalkeepers, one defender, five midfielders and two forwards. The 10 freshmen also come from six different states between Oregon (3), California (2), Washington (2), Colorado (1), Arizona (1) and Illinois (1).
THORNS FC GOALKEEPER CRIS LEWIS RETURNS TO ALMA MATER AS VOLUNTEER ASSISTANT:
Cris Lewis, the all-time leader at Portland State in shutouts, saves and goalkeeper wins, will return this season as a volunteer assistant coach. Lewis, the 2009 Big Sky Defensive MVP, will work closely with this year's crop of goalkeepers, which includes 2013 Big Sky Co-Goalkeeper of the Year Caitlin Plese. Plese ranks just six shutouts behind Lewis on the all-time list at PSU, and could pass Lewis as Lewis coaches her this season. Since leaving PSU, Lewis has played off and on with Portland Thorns FC as an amateur. Lewis started the Thorns' match against the Chicago Red Stars on June 1, 2013.
2013 SEASON REVIEW:
The 2013 season was easily one of the best in program history, as the Vikings completed their first unbeaten run through the Big Sky Conference at 8-0-1, and advanced to the Big Sky Tournament final for just the second time in program history. The Vikings also set program records for shutouts (12) and goals-against average (0.76) during the season, and only gave up three goals to Big Sky opponents during the season, two of which were penalty kicks.