NACOGDOCHES, Texas – The Stephen F. Austin Ladyjack soccer team looks to continue their perfect run both in Southland Conference play and at home, hosting Central Arkansas at 7 p.m. on Friday at the SFA Soccer Field. With the current standings, a win for the Ladyjacks would claim no worse than a share of their fourth consecutive regular season title.
“We have a chance to win a championship on Friday,” head coach Wally Crittenden said. “Everybody wants to play in the games the last few weeks of the season. Every soccer player on every team across the country gets excited about their final several games, but it is those teams that have the resiliency to see the discipline and focus to be accountable and to grind through games in late September and early October that put themselves in a position to achieve what we are in position to on Friday.
“Central Arkansas is going to be a fantastic test. They are going to be a very spirited and motivated team and they have a lot to play for. We have to have a good week of practice and we got to be excited. We have to enjoy and appreciate the opportunity on Friday to potentially win a championship at home, in front of a bonfire for homecoming and what I'm told will be a crowd of 2,000-3,000 people. It is a very special occasion and I want to make sure that we go through the week and both understand and appreciate the opportunity to represent our program, university and community against Central Arkansas on Friday night.
Seniors Megan Dunnigan, Morgan Glick, Christie Hinojosa, Chelsea Raymond and Zuri Prince, are looking to become their first class the Southland Conference's history to come through and win a regular season all four seasons for soccer. Last season, SFA became the first school in the SLC's soccer history to win three consecutive.
“It is a fantastic accomplishment,” Crittenden said. “It is something that cannot be understated and has to be appreciated. In the general realm of athletics, it is something that doesn't happen that often. To have a program that potentially has had the kind of success that this program has had over the last four years, looking at all sports and conferences, there are very few programs that have had that sustained success, and that is a tribute to our seniors, to our program and to our administration. Hopefully we can represent that on Friday night and just have it all come together, because it will be very, very special.”
SFA, after picking up 3-0 and 3-1 wins against Southeastern Louisiana and at Nicholls over the weekend, is 12-2-1 on the season and remain perfect in league action at 8-0 to sit atop the standings with three matches remaining in theregular season. The Ladyjacks have outscored their conference foes 18-3 in league play and are 5-0 at the SFA Soccer Field this season. SFA enters Friday's match on a 10-match win streak, tied with the 2012 team for the third-best win streak in program history.