Conference play begins for the women’s soccer team as the Wildcats take on Southland teams in Sam Houston Friday and Houston Baptist Sunday.
The Wildcats will open up with SHSU for the second year in a row in hopes of repeating the success in conference the team had last year.
“Both these schools have played a pretty tight schedule like we have, and it seems like they’ve had decent results,” said Casey Wilson, head coach. “I imagine that, as we go along with the Southland Conference, there will be a lot of parody, and it’s going to be a battle.”
The Wildcats enter conference play with a 3-5 record. The team has faced stiff competition, facing North Texas, Texas Christian and, recently, seventh ranked Texas Tech.
“These games have been huge confidence boosts both on and off the field for us,” said Kelsie Roberts, sophomore defensive from Lucas. “We got off to a slow start this year and lost to some really tough teams, but in every game, we felt like we deserved to be on the same field and were in the mix the whole game.”
Sam Houston has only won one out of the seven games they’ve played so far this season. Its latest loss was against TCU in Huntsville. In their past three games, the Bearkats have been outscored 9-2 but are still a formidable conference foe.
Similarly, the Huskies of Houston Baptist have gotten off to a slow start, going 1-5 with a tie against the University of Houston ending in double overtime. North Texas defeated HBU 2-0 in the Huskies final non-conference game before ACU.
“I think if we can play like we did against Tech for the full 90 minutes, we will have no problem coming out on top this weekend,” said Taylor Brown, senior forward from Southlake. “We saw what we can do Sunday when we realized that we are playing for a bigger purpose, which is each other and God. If we can all give that same effort, heart and passion next weekend, and the rest of season, we will be unstoppable.”
Last year, ACU defeated the Bearkats and the Huskies, 2-1 and 1-0, respectively. The Wildcats overcame a one goal deficit with two minutes remaining against Sam Houston to claim the win. Against Houston Baptist, Sydney Newton, sophomore goalkeeper from Mansfield, saved seven shots on a total of 22 shots faced to secure her first career shutout.
The match against Sam Houston is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. in Huntsville. The Wildcats will then make the two and a half hour trip to Houston to face the Huskies at 1 p.m. Sunday.