The Women of Troy will conclude their regular season with one last opportunity to seize the Pac-12 regular-season title and claim the conference tournament’s top seed spot with a meeting against Arizona State Saturday. Prior to the match, the Trojans will honor four seniors who are competing in their last regular season match.
USC’s Senior Day game will celebrate the careers and contributions of attackers Emily Concialdi, Amanda Flayhan and Gabbi Klein, and defender Jackie Gilbert in pre-game ceremonies. The seniors hope to help the team one last time by securing the conference regular season title as they conclude their collegiate careers.
“Going into the Pac-12 tournament, we are focusing on playing together and pushing each other every practice,” sophomore goalie Riley Hertford said. “We know what we need to work on and that we can make the changes.”
Hertford posted nine saves and had a pair of ground balls during the last match against ASU.
The Trojans will enter their weekend match ranked No. 16 in the IWLCA coaches poll for the 51st consecutive week with a 13-3 overall season record. Additionally, the Trojans lead the Pac-12 and are 10th in the NCAA in scoring defense with an 8.30 goals-against average.
The Trojans logged the first and only shutout in both the program and Pac-12’s history with a 16-0 victory over Oregon last weekend at McAlister Field. During their 2013 season, the fewest goals ever allowed by USC was in a 19-1 victory over Fresno State.
With their hearts set on their chance to claim the tournament title, the Women of Troy want to compete as the powerhouse they were earlier in the season when they last met with the Sun Devils. USC successfully collected its seventh-straight conference-opening victory on a 15-3 win over Arizona State. Moreover, USC’s overall record against Arizona State is 4-0 all-time and 2-0 all-time in the state of Arizona.
Despite a loss against USC, the Sun Devils have impressive and dominant offensive skills that have made them a competitive foe this season. The Sun Devils currently hold fifth place in the league standings with room to fluctuate in the rankings depending on this week’s results. ASU is scheduled to play San Diego State in a midweek non-conference matchup before facing the Trojans.
Among ASU’s key players is junior attacker Kerri Clayton, the Devils’ offensive leader with 32 goals and 43 points this season. ASU’s top distributor is sophomore midfielder Emily Glagolevis, who holds an impressive season record of 18 points and 23 assists.
Another notable player who leads the team is sophomore midfielder Kylie Kroeger with 27 draw controls and 13 caused turnovers. Sheranks second with 28 ground balls. Finally, one of the Devils’ helping hands in defense this season is junior goalkeeper Berkeley Bonneau, who tops all Devils with 37 ground balls and a .477 save percentage.
The match against familiar foe in ASU should bring out USC’s top players who have made their presence known on the field all season long. USC’s team leader is sophomore midfielder Kelsey Huff who has racked up 42 points on 36 goals and six assists this season. Huff has also accumulated 29 ground balls and 25 caused turnovers. Following closely behind Huff’s impressive record this season is sophomore midfielder Sophia Donovan, who has added 40 points on 27 goals for the Trojans.
“We know what we need to work on and that we can make the changes,” Hertford said. “We are so close to our goals and I am confident that the team is ready to put in the work to achieve them.”
The Trojans will face ASU at McAlister Field at 2 p.m. Saturday on Senior Day.