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Women’s Preview: Conference Battles

Article Written by TopDrawerSoccer
Published: September 22, 2017

While some conferences are already a few games into the season, the majority start conference play this week. A good start to the league games can be a turning point for any team in the shortened college season. 

In the women’s Division I game, there are a number of crucial games this weekend for teams looking to make a mark this season. 

Games to Watch

Pac-12: No. 23 Utah (5-2-1) vs. No. 10 USC (6-1), Saturday, Sept. 23, 2 p.m. (MT)

The Utes host the Ladies of Troy on Saturday in the Pac-12 opener for both teams. Utah is 4-0 at home this season with only two goals conceded, albeit against weaker opposition. The defending National Champions stroll into town with their eyes set on starting the conference season with a bang. Midfielder Savannah DeMelo has been the leader of the attack with four goals and an assist in seven games player. Center back Ally Prisock has played every minute this season for USC. 

SEC: No. 4 South Carolina (7-1, 1-0) vs. No. 16 Tennessee (9-0, 1-0), Sunday, Sept. 24, 2 p.m. (ET)

The SEC has three teams in the Top 25 this week, and two of them are playing against each other on Sunday. South Carolina hosts the red-hot Tennessee Volunteers in a key conference battle for both programs. The South Carolina side is supposed to be the class of the conference, but Tennessee has been playing some of the best soccer in Division I this season. This is going to be a marquee clash. 

ACC: No. 14 Virginia (5-2-2, 0-0-1) vs. No. 5 North Carolina (5-2, 2-0), Sunday, Sept. 24, 3 p.m. (ET)

The Cavaliers are trying to get back on track this weekend with home games against Miami (FL) on Thursday and North Carolina on Sunday. After winning only one of their last four games, the Cavaliers are in a slump and take on one of their hardest games left on the schedule on Sunday. North Carolina, meanwhile, showed last week that this is a group that can get big wins on the road against Florida State. 

Big 12: No. 22 Texas (8-0) vs. No. 9 West Virginia (7-2), Sunday, Sept. 24, 1 p.m. (CT)

Texas is giving out free argyle socks to the first 100 fans, which should make for a rowdy crowd in Austin on Sunday. The Big 12 kicks off on Friday, but the Texas-West Virginia battle is shaping up to be the jewel of the weekend. Texas is 6-0 at home entering conference play, and West Virginia is riding a three-game unbeaten run. 

Goal of the Week

Washington’s Kimberly Keever in a 3-0 win over Seattle on Sept. 15.  

Related Topics: Atlantic Coast, Big 12, Pacific 12, SEC
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