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Women's soccer Head Coach Neil Piper: "We need to win"

Lions to take on Southwestern Oklahoma in Homecoming game

By Adam Troxtell
On October 22, 2010

Women's soccer

With only four regular season games left for A&M-Commerce women's soccer, Head Coach Neil Piper has put the pressure on his team, deeming their weekend home games must-win situations.

The Lions currently sit fifth in the Lone Star Conference table, and Friday night's opponents, Central Oklahoma, are right behind them in sixth. A&M-Commerce plays the Bronchos tonight at 7:00 p.m. at the A&M-Commerce soccer field before taking on Southwestern Oklahoma State in another home game at noon on Sunday.

Piper said his team's place in the table, plus the history they have with the Central Oklahoma, combine to make Friday night a crucial time.

"The key one is the one we've got up next, so that is UCO," he said. "We have been evenly matched over the years, yet we haven't beat them in nine years. So, definitely we need to beat them. Because of some bad results we've had, this is a must-win weekend."

As the game falls on Homecoming weekend, Piper said he hopes to use the occasion as an extra boost to his team.

"We need to get some excitement somehow, and any little excitement can help," he said. "Obviously, it's a big game for us. Any motivation we can get from fans or the whole weekend, we'll try to use."

Piper said he is not overlooking Sunday's game either, as the Lady Bulldogs have proved formidable opponents in the past.

"We lost to Southwestern last year, we've lost to Southwestern at home before, so it's nothing easy," he said. "If we want to make it to the conference tournament, both are games we need to win."


The A&M-Commerce volleyball team lost its match Thursday against the Midwestern State University Mustangs three sets to one.

The Lions took an early lead only to drop the first set to the mustangs 25-22. MSU capitalized on their momentum coming out of game one with a 25-11 victory over the Lions.

"It was really frustrating that we started so strong and then we just kind of tapered off, but hopefully we can bounce back this Sunday and get a ‘W," Lions Head Coach Craig Case said. "I'm always trying to get them to talk more and hustle more and do all these things that are not really second nature to this young team yet."

During the third set, the Lions rallied to a 25-23 win, but the Mustangs ended the game in the fourth set with a 25-16 victory.

"We are going to spend this week watching film from tonight, in these situations this is what we normally do," Case said. "We're not going to beat ourselves up about the loss; it's not going to do us any good to panic."

With only seven matches left in the season, Case said his team is still in a good enough position to reach postseason play.

"We've played every team in the conference as tough as they've been played," he said. "We have played the top four teams already, and that means the teams that we're tied with have not. Conceivably, we could end up in that fourth or fifth spot. The scary part is we have no margin of error, and as a coach you always like to have a bad game and not let it hurt you. We have to go out and win our conference matches and play with a sense of urgency."


The Lions face the only other team lower than them in the LSC North tomorrow at 2:00 p.m. when they host Southwestern Oklahoma State at Memorial Stadium.

A&M-Commerce is coming off a late 34-31 loss to Tarleton last weekend, when the Texans ended a 92-yard drive with a 21-yard passing touchdown to win the game. Despite coming so close to a win, the Lions were penalized 12 times for 137 yards in that game, and Head Coach Guy Morriss singled that out as a key factor in their loss.

Along with a more disciplined performance, the Lions will hope to get more out of the running back partnership between juniors Marcus Graham and Jamar Mosley. They had three touchdowns and 149 yards between them last Saturday.


Both the men's and women's teams take part in their final tournaments of the fall season starting Sunday. The men travel to San Antonio to play in the Bruce Williams Memorial Invitational, while the women play in the Oklahoma Invitational hosted by Cameron.

Both freshman, Kaley Jackson and Chantry McMahan, were in action for the women's golf team earlier in the week at the DBU Classic. They shared 28th place, and McMahan had the best score of the tournament for the Lions with a 79 in the final round.

Cross Country

The Tiger Chase Invitational in Ada, Oklahoma is the host of the Lions' final regular season cross-country meet before the LSC Championship on Nov. 6. The meet takes place tomorrow and is hosted by East Central University.

Sophomore Cody Hughes was the men's team leader in the Chile Pepper Festival last weekend, with a time of 31:51.12 and 83rd place. For the women, junior Carolyn Bell was, once again, the first to cross the line with a time of 19:47.82

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