JACKSONVILLE, Ala – The Arkansas soccer team will conclude play at the 2008 adidas Gamecock Classic with a Sunday matchup against the Samford Bulldogs. As the winner of its respective first match, Arkansas and Samford will play for the tournament title. The game is scheduled for a 1 p.m. start and will be the first ever meeting between the two teams.
“Samford is going to be a great challenge for us,” head coach Gordon Henderson said. “We’re expecting our opponents to play a very high-pressure kind of game which they’re certainly known for.
The Razorbacks (3-1) will be looking to build off their 4-0 win over Jacksonville St. in their first outing of the Classic. Arkansas got goals from Kelly O’Connor, Kathleen Paulsen and Beth McVean—all of whom scored a goal in Arkansas’ last game. O’Connor, in the first two-goal performance of her Razorback career, scored the first two goals against the Gamecocks to give her team the early lead.
Defenisively, the Razorbacks posted their second shutout of the year and held Jacksonville St. to three shots. It was the eighth career shutout for sophomore keeper Britni Williams.
Samford picked up a 1-0 win over Mercer on day one of the JSU event, its first win of the season. The Bulldogs return six players who earned all-conference honors last season when Samford was a member of the Ohio Valley Conference. It is now part of the Southern Conference.
“This is a legitimate NCAA Tournament, so we have the utmost respect for our opponent,” Henderson said. “They’ve played a very tough schedule to start their season and to be fair, we’re probably the underdogs going in to this game. I think it will be a great measuring stick for us because this is the level of team we’re going to face in the SEC.”
The Bulldogs have advanced to the NCAA Tournament in two of the past three seasons. In 2005, they advanced to the second round after beating Vanderbilt in the opener. Last season, Samford lost a 1-0 decision to LSU in double overtime in the first round.
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