SERIES RECORD: UVA leads 11-0-1
IN CHARLOTTESVILLE: UVA leads 5-0-0
WIN STREAK: UVA has won 3 in a row
LAST MEETING: UVA 1 FSU 0 (2004)
Since 2000, the Seminoles have recorded their first-ever victory against three different ACC schools and have beaten every team in the conference except for Virginia. Florida State is the only school of the first eight conference members that has recorded a win over North Carolina but never defeated Virginia. Wake Forest, NC State, Duke and Clemson, along with FSU, all have wins over the Tar Heels but Florida State is the only team from that group that hasn’t also recorded a program victory over the Cavaliers. The Tribe advanced past the Cavs in a shootout at the 2001 ACC Championships but that game was officially a tie. FSU has been close to breaking through versus UVA losing the last seven conference meetings by just one goal each time including an overtime loss in 1998. The last time Virginia beat FSU by more than one goal was 1998 when the Cavs beat FSU 2-0 in the ACC Tournament. In six of FSU’s 11 losses to Virginia, the Cavs have either tied or won the game with less than 10:00 on the clock and on four occasions the goal came with under two minutes remaining in the match.
In 2003 the Seminoles looked like they were ready to put an end to the Cav Curse in Charlottesville with a 2-1 lead and the clock nearing the 86th minute. Virginia tied the game with exactly 5:00 left and then won the match with :27 remaining. The curse not only got the Cavaliers the two goals they needed but also kept an FSU goal out. Jez Ratliff’s shot with :12 left bounced off the inside of the UVA goal post, into the back of a defender and out of bounds. During the regular season in 2001, FSU held a 2-1 lead over the Cavs in Charlottesville before Virginia evened the match with just over 20:00 remaining. The Cavaliers then got the game-winner with less than two minutes left in regulation. In 2000, FSU and UVA were tied at 0-0 before the Cavaliers scored another 89th-minute goal to record a 1-0 win. The meeting between the two schools in 1999 was another tough one for FSU. Once again the game was scoreless going into the final 10:00 before UVA scored to win 1-0. The regular season meeting in 1998 might have been the most heartbreaking of all the losses FSU has suffered at the hands of the Cavs. The Garnet and Gold took a 3-2 lead in to the 89th-minute before UVA once again tied the match and won the game just six minutes in to OT. In 1997 Virginia used another 89th–minute goal to beat Florida State.
YEAR TIME OF TYING GOAL TIME OF GWG FINAL 2003 85:00 89:33 UVA 3-2 2001 68:36 88:04 UVA 3-2 2000 88:37 UVA 1-0 1999 81:20 UVA 1-0 1998 89:00 97:00 UVA 4-3 OT 1997 84:38 UVA 2-1
GOOD IN THE CLUTCH
One of the reasons the 2005 Seminoles may finally breakthrough against Virginia is because this team has shown how good they can be in clutch situations and close games. Considering the last seven games versus the Cavs have all been decided by just one goal, all in UVA’s favor, this team may finally get the Virginia monkey off its back. Florida State has staged three come from behind wins, come back from deficits four times to go on and win games, is 2-0 in one goal games and 1-0 when the game goes into overtime. This team has tied a game with less than two minutes and gone on to win in overtime despite giving up the go-ahead goal in the 85th minute. It has come back from 1-0 and 2-1 deficits in front of over 3,200 fans in a hostile environment. It has fallen behind just a 1:33 into a game and gone on to win. And the 2005 Seminoles have defeated two ranked teams on the road already. That is a team that knows how to produce in difficult situations. Two of the team’s comeback wins have both come on the road (LMU and Florida) so they have confidence they can get back in a game on an unfamiliar pitch as well.
SERIES RECORD: FSU leads 2-0
IN BLACKSBURG: First ever game
WIN STREAK: FSU has won 2 in a row
LAST MEETING: FSU 1 VT 0 (2004)
WELCOME TO BLACKSBURG
Florida State and Virginia Tech have met on two occasions. The first was at a tournament at the University of Miami and then last year the squads met in Tallahassee in their first ever ACC meeting. FSU has won both games against the Hokies by identical 1-0 scores. Sunday’s ACC match will mark the first time FSU has ever played in Blacksburg. Overall, FSU is 1-5 in the state of Virginia. The Seminoles are 0-5 against UVA and picked up their lone win in the state in Fairfax with a 3-1 victory at George Mason. Overall, Florida State is 19-19-1 the first time they play at an opponent’s field but 0-7 in their first trip to an ACC opponent’s stadium. Last season, the Hokies were a very impressive 3-2 at home in their inaugural season of ACC play while FSU went 2-2-1 in road games within the conference. The two wins tied the school record for wins away from home in conference play. After posting a 0-12-0 record on the road in conference from 1995-1998, FSU has posted a record of .500 or above in four of the last seven seasons in ACC away matches. The 2004 season was the second time in just the last three years that FSU was at .500 or above in those matches. Against the three new ACC schools, FSU has only played on the road in a conference match once. Last season, Florida State won its first ever ACC game versus the Hurricanes in Miami 1-0.
FSU IN ACC ROAD GAMES
2004 2-2-1 2003 1-2-1 2002 2-0-1 2001 1-3-0 2000 1-1-1 1999 0-4-0 1998 1-1-1 1997 0-5-0 1996 0-2-0 1995 0-5-0
THIS IS NEW
With the addition of Miami, Boston College and Virginia Tech, the 2005 ACC schedule has a very different look to it. For the first time in conference history, the season will be made up of primarily back-to-back weekend games versus conference foes. Teams will travel in pairs and play the same two opponents on Thursday and Sunday. We saw that this weekend with NC State and UNC coming to Florida to play FSU and Miami. This weekend FSU and UM will travel to Virginia to face the Cavaliers and Hokies. How teams handle playing back-to-back ACC games on the road will most likely be one of the biggest determining factors in the 2005 ACC Conference title hunt. Most of the road teams handled the challenge pretty well on the first weekend. Overall, UNC, NC State, Virginia and Virginia Tech combined to post a 5-3 record on the road in their travel pairs last week. The only team that lost both games was Virginia Tech. This will be a big test for an FSU squad that has only played back-to-back ACC road games nine times in 10 seasons and only three times in the span of four days or less. Since 1998, the Seminoles have played consecutive ACC road games in the same week three times and fared pretty well posting a 2-2-2 record. Last season FSU did it against NC State and Miami winning both of those contests. In its last two sets of ACC road games, FSU is 3-0-1 although the back-to-back games in 2003 took place five days apart.
THE ROAD TO SUCCESS
Florida State enters this weekend’s huge ACC road trip in better position than any year before. The Seminoles are a perfect 5-0 on the road with all five of those wins coming against teams that were ranked or who have played in the NCAA Tournament recently. This season, two of FSU’s five road wins have come over ranked opponents (USC and Florida) and two came against teams that have played in the NCAA Tournament in the last two seasons (UCF and Ole Miss). The fifth was a win at Loyola Marymount who has played in an NCAA Tournament as well in the last three years (2002). Florida State’s five road wins this season already ranks as the second most ever in a single season and FSU still has four more roadies left. The record for road wins at FSU is six and that was set by the 1996 and 2003 squads. The best road winning percentage in school history is 75% and that was established by both the 1996 and 2002 teams. FSU will beat that road winning percentage mark if they are able to go 2-2 in their last four road games, which would give the 2005 squad a winning percentage of 77%. Going into this weekend’s road trip at 5-0 puts the Seminoles in unfamiliar territory. Florida State has only entered an ACC road game with an unblemished road record once before and that was in 1996 when the team started out 5-0 on the road as well. That season the Seminoles took that perfect road record to Duke and lost that game 3-0. ACC road games are always tough. Florida State is 8-25-5 all-time on the road in conference play. When it comes to ACC road openers Florida State hasn’t fared much better going 2-7-1.
NINE DOWN, NINE TO GO
It is hard to believe that the 2005 regular season is already half way over but after Sunday’s win over NC State, FSU has already reached the mid-point of the 2005 campaign. The 2005 squad reached the half way point of the season with the best record of any FSU squad through nine games at 8-1-0. Combined with last year’s 7-2 start, FSU has posted its best record through nine games in each of the last two seasons. This is the sixth season in a row that Florida State has made it to the midway point with a winning record. That only happened once in the first five seasons of the program’s history. In the first five years, FSU combined to post a record of 19-25-1 winning 43% of its games in the first half of the regular season. Over the last six seasons the team has gone 36-15-2 for a winning percentage of .698. This season FSU enters the later part of the year with a phenomenal .889 winning percentage. What makes that stat even more amazing is that this is the first time in six years that FSU has faced perennial powerhouse North Carolina in the first nine games of a season. The good news for FSU is that the team has been even better in the second half of the year since 2000. Over the last five seasons FSU has finished the regular season 32-12-4, which is a .708 winning percentage. The best second half record was posted by the 2000 squad who finished the year by going 8-1-1. No FSU team has lost more than three games in the second part of the regular season since 1999. If the 2005 squad holds form and goes at least 6-3, the team will finish with the best regular season record and the most wins ever in a regular season. The previous record was held by the 2000 and 2001 teams that won 13 regular season games but both of those squads played 19 games, one more than the 2005 team will play.
YEAR 1st Half 2nd Half REG SEASON WINS 1995 3-5-1 1-8-0 4 1996 6-3-0 6-3-1 12 1997 3-6-0 5-5-0 8 1998 3-6-0 4-4-3 7 1999 4-5-0 5-4-11 9 2000 5-4-0 8-1-1 13 2001 6-3-0 7-3-0 13 2002 5-2-2 6-3-1 11 2003 5-4-0 6-2-1 11 2004 7-2-0 5-3-1 12 2005 8-1-0
The 2005 Seminoles are making quite a name for themselves when it comes to comebacks. Of Florida State’s eight wins in 2005, three have been come-from-behind victories. Even more impressive is the fact that FSU has fought back from being behind four times in those eight wins after trailing Florida 1-0 and 2-1 before winning 4-2. Florida State is already just one comeback away from tying the single season record for comeback wins in just nine games. The record was set by the 2000 squad who played 24 games that season. Florida State has now recorded at least two come-from-behind wins in six straight seasons. The 1999 and 1995 teams were the only squads in 11 years that didn’t record a single comeback win. Last year FSU won its first two games of the year after trailing but the squad didn’t come from behind to get a win the rest of the way. Part of the reason for that was the team’s 12-5-1 regular season record didn’t afford them many opportunities to stage those kind of victories.
YEAR WINS TIES 2005 3 0 2004 2 1 2003 2 0 2002 2 1 2001 3 0 2000 4 0 1999 0 0 1998 3 0 1997 2 0 1996 1 0 1995 0 1
Sel Kuralay has been the biggest factor in all three FSU comebacks this season. The sophomore has scored either the game-tying goal, the game-winning goal or both in all three of FSU’s comebacks. Versus LMU, she tied the game and then won it in OT becoming just the third Seminole in school history to record a game-tying goal and game-winning goal in the same match (Emma Breland and Leah Gallegos). Versus Florida she scored both game-tying goals and then versus NC State she got the winner after Mami Yamaguchi tied the score at 1-1. That gives the Australian Olympian three game-tying goals and two game-winning goals in come-from-behind victories. So in just nine career games, Kuralay already ranks first for game-tying and game-winning goals in FSU comebacks. The only other player in FSU history to score as many game-tying goals and as many game-winning goals in FSU comebacks was Leah Gallegos who has three goals to tie games and two goals to win games when Florida State fell behind.
PLAYER GTG GWG Sel Kuralay 3 2 Leah Gallegos 3 2 Jez Ratliff 2 2 Amber Tollefson 1 3 Camie Bybee 2 1
NOT JUST BRINGING US BACK
Sel Kuralay is in the midst of the best start to a soccer career at FSU in the program’s 11 years despite playing in only nine games. The sophomore (as noted above) already is tied for first in both game-winners and game-tying goals in Florida State comeback wins. Kuralay’s 10 goals ranks her sixth for the most goals scored in a season and four of those goals were game-winners, which is the third-best single season total. She is already just four points away from moving into the top five for single season points as well. She has four multi-goal games in the first nine outings of her career, which is already the second-most by any Seminole in one season. No player in Seminole soccer history has reached double digit goals in fewer games than Kuralay. The quickest any Seminole had ever reached the double-digit goal plateau was 12 games and that was done in 1996 by Kelley Poole. One of the most overlooked stats surrounding Kuralay is that she has scored the first goal of the game four times this season for FSU and the Seminoles have won every one of those games. Getting off to a good start is vital and in 44% of Florida State’s matches, she has been the first player to get FSU on the scoreboard.
UP THE COAST
Before Miami, Virginia Tech and Boston College joined the ACC, Florida State spent its first 10 years as the ACC newbie. The Seminoles struggled for the first six years before head coach Patrick Baker brought the team to prominence and now Mark Krikorian is continuing that rise in America’s top soccer conference. Since 2001, only North Carolina and Virginia have won more ACC games than FSU. While Carolina has a commanding lead in overall ACC wins, FSU is just three games behind the Cavaliers for second place over the last five years, which includes the 2005 season. Florida State’s win over NC State gave the squad 17 conference victories, which trails only UNC’s 29 and Virginia’s 20. Florida State has more victories than half the ACC in that span and at least six more wins than three other teams. With just five wins in its first six years and 42 ACC games, FSU has tripled that number of victories in less time and in five fewer conference matches.
ACC WINS SINCE 2001
UNC 29 UVA 20 FSU 17 CLEM 16 DUKE 14 MARY 11 WAKE 11 NCST 5
Coming into 2005, India Trotter had never scored goals in back-to-back games. In fact, she had never scored two goals within a span of 14 games. This year through just nine games she has scored goals in three straight games (JU, Mercer, UCF) and in back-to-back ACC games (UNC and NC State). In the span of games versus JU, Mercer and UCF, Trotter recorded four goals, which bested her career total of three that she accumulated in the 46 previous games. Her two goals last weekend doubled her career goal production in ACC games. Dating back to last season’s Miami game, Trotter now has all three of her career ACC goals in the last four conference matches. The junior came into 2005 with two career ACC points and in just two ACC games in 2005 she already has five. Trotter’s offensive numbers are just impressive compared to her career totals coming into this season, they are stacking up with the best in the conference. Trotter is currently third in the ACC in goals per game and points per game. To enter the season with three lifetime goals and now be ranked in the top three of the best women’s soccer conference in America is quite a feat. The only players that rank ahead of her are teammate Sel Kuralay and North Carolina’s Heather O’Reilly.
While FSU’s Australian All-America candidate prefers to be called Sel, her full name is actually Selin Kuralay. That might explain why she is playing so well with the player who her teammates refer to as “In”, India Trotter. When you look at this week’s ACC stats it isn’t a pair of North Carolina, Virginia, Duke or Wake stars sitting in the top three for points and goals, it is Trotter and Kuralay. The two Seminoles are the only teammates even in the top four for goals and assists per game in the entire conference. Kuralay leads both categories and Trotter is third in both as well. While many people didn’t know about Kuralay coming in, she is a world-class goal scorer so seeing her at the top of the charts isn’t a huge surprise but Trotter is a different story. The junior has been an All-ACC first team selection in the past but she has never been asked to be as offensive minded as she has been in 2005. She is proving she is up to that task. The midfielder has the second-most goals in the conference and the third-most points. She is averaging almost 10 times as many points per game and almost 15 times as many goals per game as her career averages. The two players have combined to score six goals with Trotter assisting on three of Kuralay’s goals and Kuralay servicing Trotter on four of her seven goals.
WE BOUNCED BACK
While the loss to UNC was disappointing, the Seminoles shifted their focus to NC State and found a way to get a result despite a Wolfpack goal just 1:33 into the game. Since 2002, FSU has played 25 ACC games and on only two occasions have the Seminoles lost back-to-back conference matches. That is a pretty amazing accomplishment considering FSU lost back-to-back ACC games 26 times from 1995-2001. From 2002-2005, FSU has gone 4-2 in an ACC game following a conference loss (on three occasions in that span FSU closed conference play with a defeat). The last four times FSU has played NC State they have come into that game off of an ACC loss or tie and gone on to win all four games versus the Wolfpack. The last two seasons North Carolina has ended FSU’s ACC slate with a loss and for just the second time in eight tries, FSU has followed a loss to Carolina with a win in their next ACC game. The only other time that happened was 2002 when FSU fell to UNC 5-1 and then beat NC State 5-1. Sound familiar? Overall, FSU was 1-8 in ACC games following a match against UNC so Sunday’s bounce back win was a major accomplishment for FSU. Following a UNC game versus any competition the Seminoles are 6-5 in those matches. Following the first loss of a season whether it is an ACC game or not, FSU has gone 6-5 in its next match and 3-1 over the last four years.