Oct. 30, 2013
The Colorado State Rams are on the road as they conclude the program's inaugural season. The first-year program has had varied results throughout the season, coming up just short in many matches. With a matchup against intra-state rival Northern Colorado, the Rams are looking to pick up their first win against a rival school and end the year on a good note.
At the conclusion of its first season in program history, the Colorado State women's soccer team is not backing away from some of the premier programs in the sport. The Rams have brought in five transfer students, including two Fort Collins locals, Megan Speed and Jami Vaughn, with NCAA Division-I experience.
Scouting Report on Northern Colorado
The Bears enter the match with a 9-5-4 record, and are unbeaten at home with a 4-0-2 record.
At 5-2-2 in the Big Sky, Northern Colorado finished tied for third and has earned a spot in the semifinals of the Big Sky Conference Tournament.
UNC has played three other Colorado teams this year. The Bears lost 3-0 to the University of Colorado and 3-0 to Denver University, while they defeated Air Force 1-0.
UNC has played some of its best soccer at the end of the year. The Bears are 5-1-1 in their last seven matchups.
Northern Colorado has scored 23 goals this season and conceded 19.
Northern Colorado: Senior midfielder Danielle Birdsall has been and integral part of UNC's attack this season. A former Big Sky Offensive MVP, Birdsall is second on the team with three goals and three assists for nine points total. The senior has paced UNC's offense with a team-leading 27 shots, including 14 on goal.
A Win Will...
Give Colorado State its first victory over a rival school.
Give CSU its third victory of the year, and second on the road, giving the program momentum heading into its second season next year.
Improve Head Coach Bill Hempen's career record to 281-200-46. He currently ranks No. 19 among Division I active coaches in all-time wins.
Going the Distance
Through 17 matches this season, junior defender Jami Vaughn and sophomore defender Megan Speed have played every single possible minute this season. The co-captains join New Mexico senior defender Brianna Webster as the only three players (not including goalies) in the Mountain West to have accomplished this feat.
Fort Collins Connection
The rivalry matchup between Colorado State and Northern Colorado will feature many familiar faces of girls who have played with, and against, each other growing up.
For Colorado State, co-captains Megan Speed and Jami Vaughn are both Fort Collins natives as well as freshman midfielder Kasey Dietrich.
Northern Colorado's junior defender Ambree Bellin is also a Fort Collins native, and was part of the same freshman class as Speed, who transfered from UNC after her freshman year.
Last Time Out
In its final matches of the Mountain West season, the Rams found themselves battling on the road. Facing off against second-ranked Fresno State, CSU held its own and forced the Bulldogs on the defensive in the early stages.
An unlucky bounce in the 41st minute led to a Fresno State penalty pick which Morgan Castain put away. Just three minutes later, the Bulldgos once again found the back of the net to give them a 2-0 lead at halftime.
While the second half continued to be tightly contested, Fresno State found its insurance goal in the 82nd minute to give them a 3-0 victory over CSU.
In its second match of the weekend, the Rams faced off against San Jose State. While CSU relentlessly attacked, it couldn't find a way to score the decisive goal.
In the 55th minute, Alexis Venegas capitalized on her scoring chance to give SJSU a 1-0 lead. The Spartans survived a furious push from the Rams late in the match and held on to win 1-0.
Fort Collins Soccer Complex - Home of the Rams
Located northeast of the Colorado State campus, FCSC serves as the Home of Rams Soccer. CSU's pitch is at the far northeast corner of the complex.
Directions: Take I-25 north to Exit 271, Mountain Vista. Turn west (left) on Mountain Vista and then north (right) on the frontage road. Continue 1.5 miles on the frontage road, crossing Richards Lake Rd. Address: 3955 NW Frontage Rd.
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