Tom, Tsuchida return home with Broncos
Two former all-state players from Hawaii are in town with the Boise State soccer team for a Western Athletic Conference match against the Hawaii Rainbow Wahine.
Boise State at Hawaii
When: Today, 5 p.m.
Where: Waipio Peninsula Soccer Park Stadium
TV: Live on KFVE (Ch. 5).
Series record: UH leads, 4-1-1.
Last meeting: The Wahine edged the Broncos 1-0 on Robyn deHay's goal Oct. 17, 2004.
Annie Tom will be out to score goals, and Ali Tsuchida will do her best to prevent them in today's 5 p.m. game at the Waipio Peninsula Soccer Park Stadium.
Tom has had a frustrating season so far.
"I don't think I've been performing the way I should be. I'm not scoring goals," said Tom, who scored 28 as a four-year starter with the Mililani High School Trojans.
She has put nine of 16 shots on goal, but has yet to hit the net.
"Annie is doing OK, getting some good chances, but we're still waiting for her to break through," Boise State coach Steve Lucas said. "She is very good at taking people on and very good with the ball at her feet."
The Broncos' strikers roam from side to side, making a lot of crossing runs.
"We're almost to the point where everything is about to click, but we haven't reached it yet," Tom said.
Lucas switched Tsuchida from midfield to right back and it has worked out well for the sophomore from Punahou.
"One day in the spring he just stuck me in that position. It was kind of a shock at first. I was really nervous and it took me a while to get used to it," said Tsuchida, who now likes the move.
"Ali did a good job there with her club team, is very versatile and she can handle it," Lucas said. "She has been very steady back there."
Tsuchida was the WAC Defensive Player of the Week for the week ending Sept. 11 after BSU held two opponents to only eight shots and she cleared a potential match-tying goal off the line in a 1-0 victory over Montana.
"I like the position because I get to see everything in front of me. I also have an attacking role," Tsuchida said. "We're trying a new formation with three backs and everything seems to be clicking a lot better this year. The focus is on tactics and attacking more."
Tsuchida, who enjoyed her official visit and found her future teammates easy to get along with, spent the offseason in the weight room improving her strength. She's also working on increasing her speed.
She is majoring in health sciences with the idea of becoming a physical therapist.
Tom chose Boise State because it was the only school that gave her an official visit and offered her a scholarship.
"I liked the size of the campus, watched the team play and winter is manageable as long as I layer my clothes," Tom said.
She is majoring in computer science.