Seven Ladyjacks Earn All-SLC Honors
Nov. 7, 2007
FRISCO, Texas - Three days after scoring seven goals against Nicholls State to secure a share of the Southland Conference championship, the Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks put another lucky seven together; this time on the all-conference teams. League officials announced the 2007 All-Southland Conference Soccer Teams on Wednesday, and seven Ladyjacks -- four on the first team and three on the second team -- made the cut.
That number is the most of any team in the conference this season and is the most players SFA has ever had selected in a single year. The previous best for the Ladyjacks was six All-SLC selections, recorded in both 2004 and 2005. The four first-team choices on this year's squad tie a school record for first-teamers set in 2004.
Juniors Amanda Lackey and Jessica Cotton, along with sophomores Kelli Wilson and Erika Palmacci, earned first-team all-conference recognition. Junior Amanda Alders was named to the second-team list, as were sophomores Megan Cash and Crystin Pactor. Redshirt sophomore Jenna Turner was named to the honorable mention list.
Lackey is a three-year starter at midfielder who has been an integral cog in the SFA strategy. After scoring seven goals with three assists as a freshman, Lackey was moved to more of a defensive mid position for each of the last two seasons. There, her work is less noticeable on the stat sheet but no less important to the team's success. She directs traffic and helps shut down opponents' attacks before they turn into scoring threats. Lackey has been credited with two assists on the season. She is making her second appearance on the All-SLC squad, having been a second-team selection in 2005.
Cotton, like Lackey, plays in the back third of the field. Her efforts as a defender have helped SFA post five shutouts this season and a 1.04 goals against average that ranks second all-time in school history. The junior's strong leg and opportunistic attacks have led to three goals, the most of any SFA defender this season.
After combining for just two goals and eight points as freshmen, Palmacci and Wilson have each put together breakout seasons on the offensive end. Palmacci's 12 goals lead the team and rank second in the SLC, while Wilson has posted the next-best total on the squad with eight goals, good enough to tie for eighth in the league. Wilson is also among the league leaders in assists with five and ranks sixth in the conference in total points with 20. Palmacci's 25 points this season place her third in the SLC ranks.
Dogged by nagging injuries, Alders has played in only 11 games this season, but she has still managed to produce some nice numbers. The Colleyville, Texas, native has scored five goals and assisted on four others this season to earn second-team all-conference consideration. This marks the third straight season for Alders to earn All-SLC honors. She was a first-team selection in each of her first two years after leading the Ladyjacks and the Southland Conference in both goals and points as a freshman and sophomore.
In her first season at SFA, Cash is off to a solid start. A talented forward who transferred from Tulsa after earning a spot on the Conference-USA All-Freshman Team, Cash was forced to move from the front third to the back third due to a rash of midseason injuries. She has flourished as a defender, using her speed and ball skills to chase down and rebuke attacking forwards. Along the way, she also scored a goal and assisted on two others.
Pactor is in her second season as a Ladyjack but her first as a full-time starter. After being forced to the sidelines with a concussion for much of last season, she is showcasing her goalkeeping abilities in her sophomore campaign. The Houston product has started every game this season and posted a 1.03 goals against average, good enough for third in the league. Her .798 save percentage ranks fourth, and her five shutouts are tied for second in the conference. Pactor has recorded 71 saves in all this season with 18 goals allowed.
Turner has started every game this season and is one of the Ladyjacks' most consistent defenders. In addition to lending a hand in SFA's stellar defensive effort, she has posted a goal and three assists on the year.
The Ladyjacks will look to add to their postseason honors this weekend, when they head to Natchitoches, La., to play in the Southland Conference Tournament. SFA enters as the No. 2 seed and will have a first-round bye. The Ladyjacks will play Friday at 7 p.m. against the winner of Thursday's game between No. 3 Texas-San Antonio and No. 6 Sam Houston State.
-- SFA --