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HOUSTON -- Fresh off a pair of home draws last week, the UConn women's soccer team (8-3-3, 1-1-2 American) is back on the road in league play and set to visit its two conference-mates from Texas this week. Connecticut travels to Houston (1-5-4, 0-3-0 American) on Thursday at 8 p.m., then visits SMU (5-8-0, 1-2-0 American) on Sunday at 1 p.m. The Huskies are 3-0-0 all-time against the Cougars and Mustangs, defeating both in Storrs last season.
UConn and Houston met for the first time last season, a 4-1 Husky victory in Storrs. Rachel Hill (Rollinsford, N.H.) scored a hat trick in the win, and Riley Houle (Columbia, Conn.) added a goal and two assists. Last year’s contest with SMU, a 2-1 win, was the second all-time meeting between the Huskies and Mustangs, with the first coming in 1996 at the UMass Soccer Classic. In the 2013 meeting, Hill and Julie Hubbard (Waverly, Pa.) scored for the Huskies. UConn is 2-2-1 on the road this season, most recently splitting its last road trip with a win at East Carolina on Sept. 25 and a loss at Cincinnati on Sept. 28.
Danielle Gottwik (New Port Richey, Fla.) was named American Athletic Conference Rookie of the Week on Monday after scoring a goal and adding an assist in UConn’s 0-0-2 week. It was the second weekly laurel for the freshman midfielder, who is currently fourth on the Huskies with a 4-3-11 scoring line.
Hill leads UConn offensively with 12 goals and two assists for a team-high 26 points, tops in The American. The sophomore All-America candidate has made five weekly conference honor rolls and is sixth nationally in goal-scoring. Behind Hill, Samantha McGuire (Fishkill, N.Y.) holds a 5-3-13 scoring line and Houle has scored five goals and added two assists.
Houston hosts UConn with a 1-5-4 record this season, including a 0-1-3 mark at home and an 0-3-0 ledger in league play. The Cougars visited USF and No. 22 UCF last weekend, dropping the two conference games by a combined 7-1 margin. Lexa Green is UH’s top scorer with four goals and nine points on the season, coming via a team-high 15 shots. Kayla Walker has two goals and the Cougars’ lone game-winning goal, while Meghan Brascia and Georgi Dolence each have three points. Jordan Brown has played every minute in goal for Houston and holds a 1.84 GAA and .714 save percentage with two shutouts.
MAPPING THE MUSTANGS
SMU currently sits at 5-8-0 on the season, also falling in its last two contests at No. 22 UCF and at USF. The Mustangs are an even 3-3-0 at home in Dallas and hold a 1-2-0 mark in conference action. Claire Oates paces the SMU attack with five goals and 11 points via a team-high 28 shots, and has potted two game-winning goals. Lauren Guerra is the second leading scorer with three goals and Shelby Redman is the top distributor with three assists. Four players have seen time in goal for SMU this season and have combined to post a 2.14 GAA and a .617 save percentage.
A LOOK AHEAD
UConn returns home after its Texas trip to welcome USF and No. 18 UCF to Storrs on Oct. 16 and 19, respectively. The Huskies are 7-7-1 combined in their all-time sets with the Bulls and Knights.
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