Katada Lands National Honor As Miners Prepare For Regular-Season Finale At North Texas
Oct. 30, 2013
EL PASO, Texas – The UTEP soccer team, which will play its 2013 regular-season finale at North Texas at 12 p.m. MT Thursday, has made some news nationally by having redshirt-sophomore Lauren Katada being named to the CS360 Primetime Performers Weekly National Honor Roll. UTEP has also picked up votes in the NSCAA Central Region Poll in addition to climbing up to 70th in the RPI.
The Last Meeting
September 2, 2007
The Miners (12-4-3, 5-2-2 C-USA) secured a first-round bye for the upcoming 2013 C-USA Women’s Soccer Championships (Nov. 4-10 hosted by Rice) by going 2-0-0 in their final home weekend (W, 2-0 vs. UTSA, 10/25 & W, 2-1 vs. Colorado College, 10/27). Katada played a huge role, scoring in both matches while also assisting on the game-winning goal against the Tigers.
It marks the second straight season and 18th occasion overall in program history (all under head coach Kevin Cross) that the Miners have had a player be tabbed to a national team of the week.
"We are very proud of Lauren bringing national attention to UTEP Soccer,” head coach Kevin Cross said. “Lauren's success is a result of an incredible weekend for UTEP Soccer. We hope to keep this positive momentum rolling."
UTEP is 9-2-2 over its past 13 games, and it has started to earn some respect in the NSCAA Central-Region Rankings by securing some votes in the weekly poll. The Miners have been ranked regionally in nine straight years. It is also making a dent in the RPI rankings, climbing to 70th. It is the second-best ranking of any C-USA school, trailing only Colorado College (24).
“We have a very tough game on Thursday against North Texas,” Cross said. “North Texas has an excellent attack, and we will need to be very focused in order to secure a positive result. We have confidence after this past weekend, and want to play well to carry momentum into the Conference USA tournament. We will be ready, give it our all, and have a great game plan in place.”
The Mean Green have nearly doubled up the opposition on goals this year (45-23). Four players have scored at least five goals, in the form of Rachel Holden (11), Kelsey Hodges (seven), Amber Haggerty (six) & Vanessa Ibewuike (five).
While the offense grabs the headlines, UNT has also been a quality defensive unit. They have been especially sharp in the second half, yielding only 38 shots in goal in the second stanza. It has given up 51 in the first half.
As far as the Miners, it has been a complete team effort across the board. Seven different players have scored at least two goals, with senior Azia Nicholson (nine) setting the tone. No other Miner has more than four tallies, which is an indicator of the squad’s depth and unselfish play. Another sign of that stems from the Orange and Blue receiving match-winning goals from seven different players.
On the defensive side of the ball, Keighton Allen and Sarah Dilling have both proven to be capable leaders from the GK position. Allen has replaced Dilling, sidelined with an injury, and she has been up to the task. Overall she has given up two goals in five games on the campaign, while forging a mark of 3-0-1.