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Washington State soccer opens NCAA Tournament with AAC champ Memphis

The Washington State soccer team celebrates a goal against Montana on Aug. 30, 2019, in Pullman. (WSU Athletics / Courtesy)
The Washington State soccer team celebrates a goal against Montana on Aug. 30, 2019, in Pullman. (WSU Athletics / Courtesy)

Washington State learned Monday that it punched its ticket to its eighth NCAA Women’s Soccer Tournament in nine years.

The 24th-ranked Cougars (12-6-1) entertain American Athletic Conference champion No. 14 Memphis (17-2-1) in the first round Friday at Lower Field.

WSU, which finished sixth in the soccer-rich Pac-12, hopes the Palouse weather – it’s expected to be rainy and chilly – can be an advantage when the Tigers make the 2,065-mile trek from Tennessee.

“We got a tough draw. Memphis is a good team,” WSU coach Todd Shulenberger said. “They have a unique style but have to travel a long ways. It’s a little colder here.”

Memphis ranks seventh in the country in scoring (2.7 goals per game) and total goals (54) and is ninth in shots (8.8 per game).

The Cougars have allowed 1.16 goals per game and have posted seven shutouts.

Morgan Weaver leads WSU with 11 goals and 26 points, while Brianna Alger has a team-high nine assists.

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4 favorite Gonzaga basketball teams

The basketball court at the McCarthey Athletic Center is photographed before an NCAA college basketball game between Gonzaga and BYU, Feb. 25, 2017. (AP Photo/Young Kwak) (Young Kwak / AP Photo)

While we look ahead to future seasons of Gonzaga Bulldog basketball , it’s fun to look at highlights from past years.