SFA Soccer Announces Schedule
May 9, 2007
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin Ladyjack soccer team announced its 2007 schedule on Wednesday. The Ladyjacks are set to play 18 games with a non-conference slate highlighted by two Big 12 road contests and an expanded nine-game Southland Conference schedule. Four first-time opponents are included in the fold, as are four non-conference rematches from 2006.
SFA will take on Texas Tech of the Big 12 in the third game of the season and will play its first game ever against Texas two games before opening SLC competition. In a challenging non-conference schedule, Texas is the toughest opponents the Ladyjacks will face. The Longhorns are coming off an 18-4-3 season when they set a school record for wins in the regular season and earned a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Championships. Texas reached the third round of the postseason tournament. The Longhorns finished the year ranked in the Top 10 in three separate national soccer polls.
"The teams we'll play in the early portion of our schedule will demand that we play at a high level and force our team to make quick and intelligent decisions," SFA head coach Jaime Frias said. "This will hopefully make us better prepared to handle the challenges of conference play. After a successful spring, our team is ready to compete for another conference championship and an NCAA bid. The quality of our conference will make this a tough task to accomplish."
SFA will begin the schedule on Aug. 17 with an exhibition at Centenary, followed by a home scrimmage against TCU on Aug. 22. The Ladyjacks will open the regular season on Aug. 31 with the first of two straight home games when they host St. Edward's. It will mark the first meeting between the two teams, as will SFA's game against Creighton two days later. The Blue Jays finished second in the Missouri Valley Conference last season.
SFA will open its longest road stint of the season the following weekend, when the Ladyjacks head to Lubbock for a game against Texas Tech, followed by a Sunday showdown at Rice. The Owls expect to be at full strength again, after a 2006 season that saw them ranked as high as No. 9 in the nation before a rash of injuries left them with an 11-6-1 record. Rice defeated SFA, 5-0.
The following weekend, SFA will head to Oklahoma for a pair of games against Tulsa and Oral Roberts. The Ladyjacks picked up their first win over Oral Roberts last season, when they took a 1-0 victory in Norman, Okla. This year's Sooner State games will both be played in Tulsa.
On Sept. 21, the Ladyjacks will make a brief stop at home to take on Louisiana Tech. It is a return match from last year's 2-1 loss in Ruston, La. Two days later, SFA will travel to Austin, Texas, for a showdown with the Longhorns, before wrapping up its non-conference schedule with a home game against Grambling on Sept. 30.
The Ladyjacks will open SLC action on Oct. 5 with a home game against Sam Houston State. Road games against Texas-San Antonio and Texas State are set for the following weekend before a two-game home stand against Central Arkansas and Northwestern State. SFA will travel to Lake Charles, La., for a game against McNeese State on Oct. 26, then head west to Beaumont, Texas, for an Oct. 28 game against first-year program Lamar. This season marks the second straight year for the SLC to expand its field. The league brought in Central Arkansas and first-year program UTSA last season.
SFA will wrap up the regular season with a pair of home games the following weekend. The Ladyjacks will host Southeastern Louisiana on Nov. 2 and Nicholls State on Nov. 4. The Southland Conference Tournament is scheduled for Nov. 8-11 in Natchitoches, La.
-- SFA --