Women's Week 2: Three things we learned this weekend

No. 1 Florida State has lost just two games the last two seasons -- both to Florida, which jumped out to a 3-0 halftime lead and held on to beat the Seminoles, 3-2, on Sunday. A record crowd watched No. 8 BYU win its 2015 home opener. After falling below .500 and not making the 2014 NCAA Tournament, Duke isn't taking any chances. The Blue Devils have opened the new season with four shutouts in four games.

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1. Florida is more than just Savannah Jordan.

Florida has one of the most dominating forwards in women's college soccer in junior Savannah Jordan, who scored 41 goals in her first two seasons. The 2013 Soccer Freshman of the Year scored her fifth goal in four games, but the Gators also got goals from freshman Sarah Troccoli and Slovenian junior Pamela Begic to give the No. 10 Gators a 3-2 win over No. 1 Florida State, marking the second year in a row they beat the Seminoles.

Florida scored on its first two shots to get the crowd of 3,252 fans at Pressly Stadium quickly into the game. Troccoli set up Jordan for the first goal  on a diagonal ball that Jordan put away with an angled shot scored the far post in the 18nd minute. Troccoli scored on a header off a Christen Westphal corner kick three minutes later. The opening half’s final goal came after freshman Melanie Monteagudo was fouled in the area. Begic, who scored in last year's 2-1 win over FSU, scored on the penalty kick to make it 3-0. Troccoli was among three freshmen to start for the Gators, while Monteagudo was one of five other freshmen who entered the game as subs.

"They had a lot of fight today," said Jordan, "and they showed a lot of heart especially in the second half when we had two goals scored on us. We fought back, and I think they had a lot of intensity that they brought to us. Especially being a big game like this, I think they did an awesome job and I'm really proud of all of them."

Goals by Kirsten Crowley and Berglind Thorvaldsdottir cut the lead to one with 10 minutes remaining, but Florida held on for the win, the second in 12 games by Florida against the nation's No. 1 team. The other? The win over North Carolina in the 1998 College Cup title match to culminate Abby Wambach's freshman season.

Women's Top 25 Matchups, Week 2:
MONDAY, AUGUST 24
No. 3 Stanford vs. No. 8 BYU-postponed
FRIDAY AUGUST 28
No. 17 Clemson 2 (Horgan 14, Atanda 16) No. 9 South Carolina 1 (McCaskill 10).
No. 21 Pepperdine 2 (Assumma 27, Maemone 29) No. 20 Wisconsin 0.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 30
No. 10 Florida 3 (Jordan 18, Troccoli 21, Begic 42) No. 1 Florida State 2 (Crowley 75, Thorvaldsdottir 80).
No. 11 UCLA 2 (Miranda 28, Munerlyn 74) No. 20 Wisconsin 1 (Lavelle 31).

2. BYU could be nation's best-supported program.

Portland led the nation for the 10th straight year in average attendance -- 2,971 fans a game in 2014 -- but BYU might end the Pilots' reign in 2015.
The No. 8 Cougars defeated Colorado, 2-0, in their home opener Friday night in front of a record crowd of 5,589 at South Field. The new record beat the old mark of 5,402 set in the 2013 season in a game against Utah.

“The energy from the crowd was incredible," BYU head coach Jennifer Rockwood said. "It was as good as I’ve ever seen it. I’m proud of the way our girls came out and played against a very good tournament team. I think we are in great shape, and we were better in this game than the last. Hopefully, we can come out and continue to get better each game.”

BYU should get good crowds for its next two home games Friday against Utah and Sept. 10 against Utah State. In between, the Cougars travel to Stanford to play the Cardinal on Sept. 7. Their match scheduled for last Monday in Hawaii was canceled. They also play at Nebraska on Monday night.

3. Blue Devils hold their own own in Happy Valley.

Coming off an 8-9-1 record -- and 4-5-1 in the ACC -- a year ago that made it ineligible for consideration for the NCAA Division I Tournament, Duke needed a strong start to build momentum for the ACC season. The Blue Devils have certainly gotten it as they recorded their third and fourth shutouts of the season with a 0-0 tie at No. 4 Penn State and 2-0 win over No. 25 William & Mary on goals freshman Taylor Racioppi and Toni Payne.

In the tie at Penn State before 4,207 fans, sophomore goalkeeper E.J. Proctor saved the Blue Devils with a career-high 11 saves. “It was one of the toughest places that we have been in my 15 years at Duke,” said Duke coach Robbie Church. “We have a young squad. It was our first time in this type of environment. This is a win-win game for everybody. We are going to grow and get better from this game. I thought at times we played really, really well.”

Church did not like how the Blue Devils performed in the first half, but he was pleased how much better they played as the game went along. “We started connecting passes," he added. "We started running at them, creating opportunities. We had better movement in the second half and played the ball quicker.”
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