Tennessee leads the all-time series over Alabama by a 9-2-1 margin and is 9-0-1 over the last 10 meetings between the two programs. UT is 4-2 in six previous contests in Tuscaloosa, Ala., and has won its last four matches at the Alabama Soccer Stadium.
The Crimson Tide enters this weekend with a 7-6-2 overall record and a 2-4-1 mark in Southeastern Conference action. UA is a stellar 5-2-1 this season, however, on its home pitch. Alabama's league victories both occurred in Tuscaloosa against Vanderbilt (2-0) and Arkansas (3-0), while it tied Mississippi State in Starkville (2-2, 2OT).
Alabama redshirt freshman MF Theresa Diederich leads a crew of five Crimson Tide players that possess three or more goals each with 5 G and 1 A for 11 total points. Freshman F Pia Rijsdijk and sophomore F Kendall Khanna each own 3 G and 4 A. Between the pipes, Alabama has a senior GK in Justine Bernier. The Oakville, Ontario, Canada, native is 5-6-1 overall with five solo shutouts, a 1.36 GAA and 70 saves in 13 matches of work (1129 minutes).
Alabama enters its contest against the Lady Vols rated ninth in the SEC in goals scored (23) for an average of 1.44 per match. Conversely, UT has tallied 36 times for a 2.25 goal-per-match average. UA is dead-locked for ninth in goals allowed having permitted 25 (1.56 per match), while Tennessee has given up just 14 (0.88 per match).
Tennessee Soccer Free Kicks
Top Drawer Soccer has released a ranking of what it deems the Top 20 Players in Southeastern Conference soccer and the Lady Vols are well represented. Sophomore forward Caroline Brown came in at #5, senior forward Emily Dowd was #8 and senior forward Chelsea Hatcher rated #16. Tennessee joined Florida and LSU as the only three league schools to boast a trio of players on the illustrious listing.
Time before the annual SEC Tournament in Orange Beach, Alabama, is growing short and teams are jockeying for one of eight spots in the league's showcase event slated for Nov. 2-6. As of Oct. 17, Tennessee sits sixth overall in the standings, but is just three points out of first place with three matches remaining. The Lady Vols already own a win over Florida and still have contests to play against Auburn and Georgia. LSU and South Carolina own the head-to-head tiebreaker advantage over the Big Orange by virtue of their wins over UT.
At this point in any season certain trends begin developing statistically with a team and Tennessee soccer in 2011 is certainly no different. Entering their match at Alabama on Oct. 20, the Lady Vols are an impressive 8-0-0 during day matches but just 4-4-0 during night contests. UT is a perfect 7-0-0 when leading at the half, but only 1-2-0 when behind at the break and 5-4-0 when trailing or tied at the half. The Big Orange is 10-0-0 in contests in which they total at least two goals and just 2-4-0 when scoring a single tally or less. Tennessee is also 10-1-0 when permitting one goal or less and just 2-3-0 when allowing two or more scores.
The latest NCAA Ratings Percentage Index (RPI) for women's soccer has been released (10/19) and the Southeastern Conference boasts eight of the top 50 teams in the listing. Florida leads the way at #5, followed by Kentucky (#15), Auburn (#22), TENNESSEE (#25), Georgia (#32), LSU (#33), South Carolina (#39) and Vanderbilt (#43). The RPI is one of the factors utilized by the NCAA in handing out tourney seeds and slots in the annual NCAA Field of 64. It consists of three factors that are weighted as follows: a team's Division I winning percentage (25%), opponent strength of schedule (50%) and opponents' opponent strength of schedule (25%).