Ladyjacks Clinch Sixth Southland Conference Title
Oct. 28, 2011
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks won their sixth Southland Conference regular season title Friday evening at the SFA Soccer Complex, and the first in the Tony Amato era, knocking off Sam Houston State 3-1 on Senior Night.
"This is an unbelievable feeling," Amato said. "The girls set a goal at the beginning of the season and if you work really hard and work as a team, something like this is possible. This just shows if you work hard you can achieve yours goals. We're going to celebrate tonight and then draw a line in the sand Sunday and get back to work. We've still got work to do."
The Ladyjacks (14-2-1, 9-0-0) wrapped up the regular season with their 12th straight win, setting a new single-season record in school history for most consecutive wins. They also went undefeated in conference play for the first time in program history.
SFA went up 1-0 in the ninth minute on Kylie Louw's seventh goal of the season off a cross from Becky Johnson. The ball was not struck very hard but still managed to go just beyond the reach of Sam Houston keeper Michele McCullough.
The Bearkats (8-11-1, 4-5-0) managed to do something in the 29th minute something no other Southland Conference team had done this season: score a goal. Tricia Mallory struck a ball from nearly 40 yards away that bent awkwardly and away from SFA keeper Lacey Lee to tie the contest 1-1.
SFA would respond though, on Laura Sadler's eighth goal of the year off an assist from Chelsea Raymond. Sadler's shot glanced off the top bar but bounced straight down and inside the goal line, proving to be the game-winning goal and give the Ladyjacks a 2-1 lead.
Megan Wasiak gave SFA breathing room only two minutes following intermission off a ricochet shot from Raymond to make the final score of 3-1. Raymond finished the regular season with a school-record 41 points for the season.
The regular season title is the first for SFA since the 2007 season when the Ladyjacks went 13-5-2, 7-1-1 and went on to win the Southland Conference Tournament against McNeese State.
SFA will enter the Southland Conference Tournament as the number one seed and will play an opponent to be determined on Saturday, October 5th in the semi-finals.