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Women's Soccer Kicks off Mountain West Play at First Place TCU
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics  
Release:  09/30/2008
Courtesy: New Mexico Athletics

Sept. 30, 2008

Adragna Earns Mountain West Conference Defensive Player of the Week

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- The University of New Mexico women's soccer team (5-2-4) will kick off Mountain West Conference play with a trip to Fort Worth, Texas where they will take on the TCU Horned Frogs. This will be the first of three consecutive road conference matches for the Lobos. After TCU the Lobos will head north to take on Air Force in Colorado Springs, Colo., on Oct. 10. New Mexico will then travel to Laramie, Wyo., on Oct. 12 to take on the Cowgirls.

New Mexico is 5-2-2 in MWC openers. Last season the Lobos opened conference action with Wyoming in Albuquerque and beat the Cowgirls 1-0. New Mexico has not lost a conference opener since Oct. 9, 2003 when BYU defeated the Lobos 5-1 in Provo.

HEAD COACH Kit Vela's WEEKLY ADDRESS

"TCU is a very good team. They are very aggresive and they score a lot of goals. TCU has had a good season so far but so have we. I think it's going to be a great match. Above and beyond that we are opening up conference. I think there will be a lot of emotion and a lot of desire to play well."

"I think it's a pretty good match up. Over the past few years we've had a tie and a loss. I think that they are two good teams that will compete well against each other. Both teams have different styles of play and coaching but I think we match up very well with them."

LIVE VIDEO AND STATS

The match against TCU will be broadcast through All-Acces on www.GoLobos.com.

Live stats will be kept through Gametracker, which is also available at www.GoLobos.com.

SERIES INFORMATION AGAINST TCU

New Mexico is 5-2-1 all-time against TCU. The Lobos lost 1-0 to the Horned Frogs on Oct. 14, 2007.

SCOUTING TCU

The Horned Frogs are 8-1-1 on the season and are currently in first place of the Mountain West Conferece. The Horned Frogs lead the conference in every offensive category including, goals, assists and points. TCU has posted six shutouts this season and have scored more than three goals four times this season. The Horned Frogs are lead offensivley by Jordan Calhoun who has nine goals and two assist for 20 points. Defensively, TCU is lead by goalkeeper Kelsey Walters who has only allowed six goals in 10 matches.

ADRAGNA EARNS MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Senior goalkeeper Shannon Adragna has been awarded the Mountain West Conference Defensive Player of the Week honor. The Albuquerque, N.M. native, lead New Mexico defensively to a 2-0 record this past weekend at the 4th Annual High Altitude Tournament. Adragna had five saves and faced eight shots in a 3-1 win over Utah Valley University on Sept. 26. Against Central Arkansas, Adragna had four saves on four shots and picked up her fifth shutout of the season and her fifth win in a 7-0 victory over the Bears.

This is the second time in Adragna's career that she has been awarded the honor. On Oct. 23, 2006 the Sandia High product picked up her first MWC Player of the Week award.

NEW MEXICO RECIEVES REGIONAL ATTENTION

The University of New Mexico women's soccer team has caught the attention of Soccer Buzz Magazine regional polls. New Mexico who has won or tied seven out of its last eight matches, has received votes to be placed in the top-15 of the Central Division.

The Lobos have tied two top-25 teams this season. On Sept. 12, New Mexico battled 24th-ranked Wisconsin-Milwaukee to a 1-1 tie and held the leading scorer in the nation, Sarah Hagen to one goal on six shots. The Lobos held off 25th-ranked San Diego, winners of five consecutive matches. The Lobos blanked the Toreros for the first time in five matches. Coming in to the match with New Mexico San Diego averaged 2.2 goals per game.

FINDING FIRSTS

Seven of New Mexico's 10 goal scorers found the net for the first time in their young careers. True freshmen Jael Fanning, Jennifer Williams, Nicole Reed, Amanda Collins, Zaneta Wyne, redshirt freshman Jordan Craig and sophomore Rachel Fields each have ripped the ball into the back of the net. The first timers have accounted for 63 percent of New Mexico's scoring. Wyne and Williams each have four goals which is tied for the team lead.

SOPHOMORE SENSATION

Alexis Ball had a dream freshman season as she lead the Lobo offense with six goals and one assist and is the only all-MWC selection from last year. Ball scored the game winning goal in four games last season which ranks her in a six way tie for sixth place all-time at UNM. Ball was also the MWC player of the week on Oct. 1, 2007 as well as the Soccer Buzz Elite Team of the Week on Oct. 2, 2007. While she had a nose for the net, Ball was no different in the classroom. She received all-MWC Academic Honors. Ball will roam the midfield this year and has already scored a goal and notched an assist in an exhibition against New Mexico Highlands. Ball has started every game to this point and scored two goals this past weekend against Utah Valley Univeristy on Sept. 26 and against Central Arkansas on Sept. 28 and was named to the 4th Annual High Altitude Tournament all-tournament team.

ASSIST QUEEN

Senior Hannah Hand is rapidly moving up the UNM all-time assist record for a career. Since coming on in 2005 Hand has 17 assists that ranks her second all-time at UNM. The senior from Los Angeles Calif., recorded her latest assist against Utah Valley University on Sept. 26 when she found freshman Jael Fanning on a cross. Hand is six behind all-time leader Laurie Hegedorn.

LAST MATCHES

The Lobos went 2-0 this past weekend at the 4th Annual High Altitude Tournament hosted by Northern Arizona. New Mexico faced the Utah Valley University Wolverines on Sept. 26. in the first game of the tournament. The Lobos fought off a scrappy Wolverines squad and handed UVU their third loss in-a-row by a score of 3-1. Freshman Jael Fanning put the Lobos on the board first when she scored her second goal of the season off an Alexis Ball cross.

After a UVU goal that tied up the score at 1-1, freshman Jennifer Williams collied with the UVU goalkeeper but managed to head the ball over and into the net to put the Lobos on top 2-1. Freshman Roxie McFarland was credited with her first career assist. With 20 seconds left in the match the Lobos mounted an offensive attack. The ball eventually ended up on the trigger foot of Ball who ripped a goal into the back of the net with just one second on the clock.

On Sept. 28 the Lobos put on an offensive showcase show for those in attendance at NAU's Lumberjack Stadium. The Lobos shutout the Central Arkansas Bears by a final score of 7-0 and tied a Lumberjack Stadium record with seven goals scored. Sophomore Rachel Fields got the Lobos on the board first when she picked up and Alexis Ball cross in the Third minute of the match. Ball would pick up a goal of her own as she was able to put a foot on an Amanda Collins cross which put the Lobos up 2-0.

Freshman Jordan Craig was credited with the assist, the first of her career. Craig would also score the first goal of her career as she put away another Collins cross and managed to beat a UCA defender and goalkeeper to put the Lobos up 3-0. Sophomore Kate Wyrick netted the first of two goals in the 69th minute off a McFarland cross. Wyrick second goal came when she was awarded a penalty kick after she was taken down from behind in the box. Wyrick converted on the PK and scored the third goal of her career.

Freshman Zaneta Wyne would also get two goals on the day. Her first was courtesy of an Elizabeth Lambert through ball. Wyne's second goal would come off another McFarland cross. The goal was Wyne's fourth of the season and McFarlands third assist in two games.

COACH VELA NETS 50th CAREER VICTORY

New Mexico head women's soccer coach Kit Vela reached a milestone of 50 career wins against Drake on Friday, Sept. 5. The Lobos blanked the Bulldogs 1-0. Vela has become the only women's soccer coach at UNM to reach the 50 win mark. She has since picked up her 53rd win against Central Arkansas by a score of 7-0. Vela's record at UNM is 53-65-24 and has included three straight eight-win seasons. Vela has taken her team to the MWC tournament six out of seven years and have advanced to the MWC Championship game twice in 2002 and 2005. Vela has an overall MWC record of 15-21-9.

During her tenure at UNM, Vela has made remarkable strides in a short period. In 2005, Vela's squad was 2-0-1 against nationally-ranked opponents. Perhaps the biggest win of the season came when the Lobos defeated sixth ranked BYU in Provo 1-0. The Lobos would go on to defeat No. 22 Utah in the MWC tournament. In 2001, Vela's first year, the Lobos had their best conference finish with a mark of 3-2-1.

Vela's first victory came in dramatic fashion as the Lobos took down No. 12 Kentucky 1-0 on Sept. 30, 2001.

LOBOS SELECT CAPTAINS FOR 2008 SEASON

The New Mexico women's soccer team has selected four senior players as captains. Goalkeeper Shannon Adragna, defenders Samantha Bevis, Kaci Paetz and Krista Peterson were selected by their teammates for ability to lead on the field and how to represent the Lobos and the University off of it. The four captains will lead the Lobos in to the 2008 season with energy and excitement.

KEEPING HISTORY

Senior goalkeeper Shannon Adragna is on track to leave UNM as the best to play her position. Adragna is currently ranked in the top-five in eight UNM single season and career school records. The product of Albuquerque's Sandia High School, Adragna is ranked first in goals against average with a 1.16 mark since 2004. Adragna is currently in second place all-time at UNM in shutouts with 18, only seven behind leader Kristen Winters. Her seven shutouts last season was good for fourth best in a single season and her eight wins ranks her fifth. Adragna is also fourth all-time in saves with 173.

FRESHMEN A PLENTY

New Mexico welcomes 15 new freshmen to the University in their pursuit of higher learning. The newcomers will don the Cherry and Silver in pursuit of playing time and a collegiate career. The freshmen come from far and wide to play soccer for head coach Kit Vela, with six from right in New Mexico and as far as Adelaide, Australia. Five come from the Calif. while Ariz., Utah, and Texas each have one current lobo on the roster for the Lobos.
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