USC Lacrosse Wraps Regular Season at San Diego State|
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April 24, 2015
LOS ANGELES - The USC women's lacrosse team (11-4, 7-1 MPSF) completes its regular-season schedule with a Saturday-evening (April 25) meeting with San Diego State (9-6, 5-3) at Aztec Lacrosse Stadium in San Diego, Calif. The Women of Troy and the Aztecs are set to draw at 7 p.m. PT.
The Trojans have already secured one of two coveted first-round byes in the upcoming MPSF Tournament (April 30-May 3) in Denver, Colo. Besides that fact, many seeding possibilities still exist with three days left on the league's regular-season calendar. A win over SDSU and a Stanford loss would lead to a shared conference title, while positions three through six in the MPSF standings are still very much to be determined based on this weekend's games.
USC had a four-game winning streak snapped by No. 15 Stanford last week, which also put a stop to the Trojans' program-best 7-0 start in MPSF games. All of USC's losses this season have been to teams ranked in the top 20 including two losses to teams ranked No. 2 and No. 5 at the time. The last time the Trojans lost a game, they rebounded to win the next four.
The Women of Troy will visit San Diego for just the second time, but have good memories from their first trip south. In 2013, after being selected to finish seventh in the MPSF in the program's inaugural season, USC defied expectations and knocked off the Aztecs, 12-11, in the regular-season finale to secure a 5-3 league record, fourth place, and the final of four spots in the conference tournament. The Trojans also beat SDSU, 13-9, in 2014, and are 2-0 in all-time meetings.
The Trojans' offense is powered by junior attacker Caroline de Lyra, who has 56 points (28g, 28a). De Lyra ranks first in points in the MPSF (3.73 ppg) and is third in assists (1.87 apg). Sophomore attacker Michaela Michael is second in the conference for points (3.67 ppg) and leads the league in goals (3.00 gpg) and draw controls (5.87 dcpg, 6th in the NCAA). Junior midfielder Amanda Johansen has 44 points (34g, 10a) and is sixth in the MPSF for goals (2.27 gpg) and tied for eighth in points (2.93 ppg). Attacker Kylie Drexel has had a breakout sophomore season with 33 points (19g, 14a).
On defense, junior Courtney Tarleton anchors the Trojan back line with 17 caused turnovers and 25 ground balls. Tarleton has also grabbed 11 draw controls this season. Freshman goalie Gussie Johns tops all Trojans with 37 ground balls (2.47 gbpg, 3rd in the MPSF) and has produced 70 saves (.391) with a 7.78 goals-against average that leads the MPSF and ranks 15th in the country. Senior defender Elizabeth Eddy has 10 caused turnovers, 16 ground balls, and 10 draw controls, while sophomore Nine Kelty has seven caused turnovers and eight ground balls this season. USC has caused 138 of its opponent's 238 turnovers and holds its opposition to a .655 clearance rate (131 of 200).
SCOUTING SAN DIEGO STATE (9-6, 5-3 MPSF) once had a seven-game winning streak going during the midseason, but has since lost four of its last six. The Aztecs' two wins through that stretch were a 13-12 win at Brown, and a 12-9 win at UC Davis last week. SDSU is led by Christina Ricciardulli who has 35 points (33g, 2a) this season. Ricciardulli is also the Aztec leader in draw controls (53) and ground balls (35). Sophie Koubek is the Aztecs' second-leading scorer with 28 points (25g, 3a). Lauren Maack and Michaela Jarvis each lead the team with 20 assists apiece. The two have also scored 14 and 17 goals each this season. In goal, Katrina Reeves holds a 12.34 goals-against average with a .385 save percentage. Reeves also has 29 ground balls for her team. Defensively, the Aztecs lean on Lauren Paul who leads the team with 20 caused turnovers and has 27 ground balls. Madison Wallace has 15 ground balls for SDSU. The Trojans are 2-0 in all-time meetings with San Diego State. USC defeated the Aztecs, 12-11, in San Diego, to secure the final spot in the 2013 MPSF tournament, the Trojans' inaugural season. SDSU came up to McAlister Field in 2014, and suffered a 13-9 loss to USC.
TRACK THE TROJANS: Fans of USC women's lacrosse can follow the Trojans on Twitter and Instagram. For a behind-the-scenes look at the program, scores, and news updates, follow @USCTrojansLax. The Women of Troy appeared on three Pac-12 Networks live broadcasts this spring. USC's non-televised home games at McAlister Field were webcast on the USCTrojans.com Pac-12 Networks portal.
LAST TIME OUT: The Trojans went on a 14-0 run to turn a 4-1 deficit into a 15-5 win over UC Davis and extended the program's best start in MPSF games to seven straight. It was also the fourth straight win and the season's second-longest winning streak overall. Michaela Michael scored five goals and had two assists against the Aggies. She was one of eight different Trojans to score at least one goal against UC Davis. USC came up against a tough 15th-ranked Stanford team on Sunday, and suffered a 12-6 loss after the Cardinal won the draw circle, 11-9, and out-shot the Trojans, 39-23.