BATON ROUGE, La. – The University of Arkansas Lady Razorback soccer team knows what it must do to advance to the Southeastern Conference Tournament, win. The Lady Razorbacks face rival Louisiana State on Friday evening at 7:00 p.m., in Baton Rouge, La.
Arkansas is currently outside the SEC Tournament picture, but still have a chance to play in the postseason thanks to its tremendous start in conference play. On the other side of the coin, LSU has been mathematically eliminated from the post-season picture and can only play the role of spoiler on Friday evening.
“Its great to be involved and have something to play for,” Arkansas head coach Gordon Henderson said. “To make the SEC tournament we have to win and that’s exciting. We are going to go out and play the same game we have all season and play with confidence.”
The last time Arkansas went to Baton Rouge in need of a win, the Tigers bunkered in their defensive half and kept the Lady Razorbacks from mounting much offense. The Lady’Backs did score, but a late penalty kick was awarded to LSU which they converted to tie the game at one. The game ended in a 1-1 tie and knocked the Lady Razorbacks out of the SEC Tournament.
Arkansas heads to LSU slightly on its heels after dropping its last four matches, but also with confidence as it kept the 25th-ranked Florida Gators at bay last Sunday afternoon on the road. The Lady’Backs also set the conference championships as one of its team goals for the season and don’t intend to let it slip away.
“The SEC Tournament has been one of our goals all year,” senior Jenni Brashear said. “I really want to go because I haven’t gone and I think that this is the best situation to be in because we have to fight for it.”
Brashear, Arkansas’ lone senior on the active roster, will be key to the Lady Razorbacks chances through both her leadership and play. Playing one of her finest games of the season against the Gators a week ago, Brashear’s tenacity and speed can cause opposing teams fits, a tactic that would work just fine for the Lady Razorbacks.
Also key to Arkansas’ success is its defense which is on pace to allow fewer goals in 2004 than it has in more than 10 years. Led by goalkeeper Carrie Dillsaver, Arkansas has conceded just 25 goals this season, the fourth fewest in Arkansas’ 18-year history.
For more information about Lady Razorback soccer or about Arkansas women’s athletics, please go to www.ladybacks.com.