Sept. 11, 2012
Michigan State hosts Western Michigan at DeMartin Stadium in their final non-conference game of the season before starting Big Ten play. Kickoff time is 5 p.m.
Michigan State is off to a 5-1-1 start on the season, and is 2-0-1 in its last three games. MSU is coming off of a week where it played to a scoreless draw at Oakland on Wednesday evening and defeated Eastern Michigan, 2-0, on Sunday.
In the game against Eastern, the teams played a scoreless first half. Michigan State scored two quick goals midway through the second half and held off a late charge by the Eagles to give them the victory. Goalkeeper Courtney Clem recorded her second straight shutout, and third on the year. Her 0.55 GAA is good for fourth in the Big Ten and she also owns a .852 save percentage. Clem has not allowed a goal in her last 225 minutes in the net, dating back to the Sept. 2 game against Akron.
Western Michigan is 4-3-0 on the season and has lost two in a row entering Wednesday?s game. Rachel Chaney leads the offensive attack for the Broncos with four goals on the season, and Aubrey Sudomier and Kylie Nylen each have two. The three combine for eight of the 11 goals Western Michigan has scored this year. Michelle Watson will likely be the keeper in net for the Broncos, with a 1.27 GAA and 16 saves on the year, good for a .640 save percentage
Michigan State is 9-2-0 all time against the Broncos and 5-1-0 at home in the all-time series. The last time the two teams played was 2010, with the Spartans claiming a 1-0 victory.
Through games of Sunday, Sept. 9, the Spartans are tied for the third-best team GAA in the Big Ten. In seven games, MSU has allowed only four goals. Iowa leads the conference with a 0.38 GAA, followed by Ohio State (0.43).
Olivia Stander is second in the Big Ten in assists (5), with Lisa Vogel, Alexandra Heffron and Jordan Mueller recording three each, and tied for tenth in the Big Ten. Stander is also second in the league in assists per game (0.71).
Courtney Clem ranks fourth in the Conference in both save percentage (.852) and GAA (0.64).
Tom Saxton is in his 22nd season as the head coach of the Spartan women's soccer program. A life-long Spartan, Saxton earned three letters as a player before returning to campus in 1989 to assist legendary Spartan soccer coach Joe Baum with both the men's and the new women's program. Saxton was appointed the second head coach in the history of the women's program on June 1, 1991. In 21 seasons, Saxton's career record stands at 213-169-39.
Tammy (Anderson) Farnum was a standout defender at MSU (1989-92) and is now in her 16th season on the staff. Stacy Heller was a standout keeper for MSU (2000-03) and was a two-time All-Big Ten pick. Jill Flietstra graduated in 2012 and joins the staff in her first post-graduate coaching position.
Megan Marsack, who had a goal and an assist in her freshman season, has already surpassed her freshman year total in both goals (2) and points (4). Lisa Vogel did not have any points as a freshman, but had a goal and two assists vs. BG. Annie Steinlage scored her first collegiate tally against Fordham, while Chelsea Peterson recorded her first college score in the win over Loyola.
Michigan State will next play Purdue at home on Sunday at 12 p.m. as they start Big Ten action. It will be a part of a women's/men's doubleheader at DeMartin Stadium, as the men's team hosts Marquette as part of the Big Ten/BIG EAST challenge.