After winning six out of seven of their home matches this season, the No. 24 Cougars will host the No. 5 UCLA Bruins in their final home match of the regular season Friday at 3 p.m.
When it comes to playing at home, the WSU women’s soccer team has showed time and time again that they can accept and rise above the challenge of playing against the best teams in the country.
Last week, the Cougars had a successful weekend hosting Utah and Colorado, giving Utah its first conference loss and dominating Colorado in stats, resulting in a 4-0 loss for the Buffalo. This week, a talented team of Bruins will come to town looking to bounce back from a loss to Stanford last week.
“When teams come here to play, we want them to understand they’re in for a battle,” Head Coach Matt Potter said. “This weekend isn’t any different. We expect to compete against a very good UCLA team, but they’re also going to have to handle us.”
The Cougars currently hold a 10-4-1 record for the season and have only lost one match in the Pac-12 to No. 1 Stanford at home. Last week’s performance has landed them in the top 25, according to The Soccer Times, sitting in front of Cal in the No. 24 spot.
“If we can get a level of consistency, we’re capable of putting in good games one after the other and that’s important as we progress through the season,” Potter said. “ At this point, we want to continue at a consistency level of performance now.”
UCLA leads the all-time series with WSU 14-2-2 and have not lost to the Cougars since 2004. The Bruins dropped in the rankings this week from No. 2 to No. 5 after last week’s draw against Cal and 4-1 loss to Stanford, according to Soccer America.
The Cougars are on a roll with a three-game winning streak and have only lost one match during Pac-12 play. They look to continue their success in this last home match for the three seniors on the team.
“I think, number one, our energy is going to be good this weekend because it’s senior day, and we want to send those seniors out with a good team performance,” Potter said. “We’re going to commit to the game and commit to the players that have put four great years here.”