October 2, 2003 - by
No. 21 Soccer Set To Face No. 4 Virginia Saturday

Oct. 2, 2003

Live Stats For No. 21 FSU vs. No. 4 Virginia

Virginia Gameday notes in PDF Format
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15 & 15 in 10
Californian’s Leah Gallegos and Julia Schnugg are in the midst of a record-setting season up top for Florida State. With Gallegos’ two goals versus USF and Schnugg’s two assists on those two goals, the two forwards are leading the team with 15 points a piece. No Seminole duo has ever recorded 15 points just 10 games into a season. Even more amazingly, in three of the eight previous seasons of FSU soccer, there has never been two 15 point players in a whole season. Most of their offensive production has come during FSU’s record-tying five-game winning streak. The Cali Connection has recorded 24 of their 30 points in the last five matches. They are not only scoring goals and racking up points but they are doing it together. The Cali Connection has combined to score five of the duos 11 goals.

Junior Joy McKenzie is starting to get very comfortable in the FSU goal and that is a good thing for the Tribe. The Houston, TX native had never started a game before this season and she has now started eight of the Tribe’s 10 games and her play has been getting better and better every time out. After a 2-0 loss to Florida, McKenzie was 0-3 with a GAA of 2.15. Since then, her play and stats have been just phenomenal. Since September 14, McKenzie is 5-0 with a GAA of 0.88 and has registered her first collegiate shutout. In that span she also recorded the first ACC win of her career and has a save percentage of .810. Her play as of late has shrunk her GAA from a season-high of 2.15 to 1.36. The 1.36 GAA is currently the fourth-best single season GAA in school history.

When freshman Kelly Rowland was named to the Soccer America National Team of the Week October1, it marked the first national honor for the super freshman from Wallingford, PA. On top of being a first for the central defender, it marked many program firsts as well. The national team of the week award was the third straight for the Seminoles, which has never happened before and it was also the second time a defender received that honor this season, which is another first for the Seminoles. Julia Schnugg was named to SoccerBuzz’s National Team of the Week the previous week marking the first time in school history two freshman have been named to national teams of the week in one season and they did it in back-to-back weeks.

On their trip to Tampa to play USF, the Seminoles dominated the game in every facet including the 3-0 score. The Tribe set a program first by beating the Bulls by three goals but they just narrowly missed out on setting another record. Florida State held USF without a shot for 89:54 before the Bulls cranked an attempt about 10 feet over the crossbar with time winding down. Florida State had never held a team without a shot in program history and came within :06 of setting a new school record. The one shot allowed tied a mark set on three occasions.

While beating USF by three goals, Florida State set another program first for margin of victory against South Florida. The Tribe had never beaten the Bulls by more than one goal in the previous six meetings. While FSU’s score changed, USF held true to form as they were shut out at home by Florida State for the fourth straight time. The Seminoles have never shutout a team at their own field more than two times in series history so four consecutive blankings is obviously a program benchmark. The Seminoles have recorded two shutouts at Stetson and at South Alabama but overall, road shutouts are rare. In 182 all-time games, FSU has recorded just 16 road shutouts and one quarter have come against the Bulls.

With the Tribe cruising to a victory at USF, Patrick Baker started to give some of his reserves some playing time and nobody was more productive with her time than walk-on Colette Swensen. The invited walk-on made the team with a great fitness level in the preseason and had appeared in two games leading up to Wednesday’s win over the Bulls. She entered the games with about six minutes remaining and in with her first career point three minutes later. Her diagonal ball over the heads of two defenders was played perfectly to Alli Ferreri who also headed home her first goal of the year.

If you are unsure as to how Florida State has won five straight games, all you have to do is look to the stats. When you out score your opponents 20-4, hold a 101-43 edge in shots and have double the corners (29-14) and shots on goal (50-23) as the other team, the chances are pretty good you are going to win some games. Those numbers are an amazing when compared to the first five games of the year. The Seminoles have scored more than three times as many goals and given up 80% fewer goals during their five game win streak as they did in the first five games of the year. The team GAA has dropped 56% and shots on goal have increased to 10 per game during the streak.

From 1995 to 2000, Florida State took its lumps in the nation’s best soccer conference as would be expected. Things have turned around in a big way recently and one area where you can see the greatest improvement is in ACC road openers. After going 1-5-0 in the first six seasons, the Tribe is 1-0-1 in their last two conference openers on the road. Florida State has never opened an ACC road campaign in Charlottesville, VA but they will get the opportunity to extend their unbeaten streak to three against a top 5 Cavalier team. Combined with FSU’s three game winning streak in ACC openers overall, the Tribe is now 4-0-1 when you combine ACC home and road openers since 2001. Compare that to 1-11-0 before and the FSU winning percentage has shot from .083 to .900, which is an amazing stat.

The Seminoles’ record-tying five game win streak is similar to its predecessor from 2000 in a few ways. Both streaks involved wins over two in-state rivals, in 2000 it was UCF and FIU and this year it was USF and Miami. Both streaks include a win at a neutral site. In 2000 the win came against Oregon State (in Eugene, OR) and this years win came against San Diego State (in Lawrence, KS). Neither streak involved a game where FSU allowed more than one goal and both included just one road win (Oregon in 2000 and USF in 2003). But the biggest coincidence is where the streak took both the teams for game number six. The 2000 and 2003 squads both had to go on the road to play an ACC game to extend the streak to a school record six games. In 2000, FSU traveled to Raleigh, NC and played the Wolfpack to a 0-0 tie and then went on to set the FSU record for the longest unbeaten streak at seven with a win over No.2 North Carolina.

Soccer Information Systems puts together weekly ratings for women’s soccer and posts them on the website of the National Soccer Coaches Association (NSCAA). The ratings are similar to the RPI and take into account quality of competition, where games are played and obviously wins and losses. Florida State leaped nine spots in this week’s ratings after a big win over Maryland. Whether you believe in the mathematical formula behind the ratings or not, the strength of schedule component speaks volumes about the teams FSU has faced this season. The SIS ratings ranked 297 teams and their schedules and the Seminoles scheduled had a rating of 1777. Only 28 of the 297 teams had a schedule with a rating above 1700 and only 17 eclipsed the 1750 mark. The Tribes’ 1777 rating placed their schedule as the 12th most difficult schedule in the country. That rating only includes games through September 30. With North Carolina (No. 1 in the ratings), Virginia (No. 8), Wake Forest (No. 12), Clemson (No. 22) and Duke (No. 27) still ahead, the Tribe’s schedule could crack the top 5 before the season is over.

On top of the strength of FSU’s schedule, the SIS rating’s also illuminate just how tough the ACC is in women’s soccer. While the explosion of the sport at the youth level has allowed conferences to make up ground, there is still little doubt the ACC is still the reigning champ when it comes to the quality from top to bottom. The ACC is the only conference in the country to have seven teams amongst the top 35 in the SIS ratings. Only the Pac-10 comes close with six squads in the top 35. The BIG EAST, West Coast and Big 12 each have four schools among the group and the SEC has three.

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