Soccer embarks on final road trip of regular season

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The University of Arkansas Lady Razorback soccer team embarked on its final road trip of the 2005 regular season on Thursday when it traveled to Columbia, S.C., to take on the South Carolina Gamecocks in Southeastern Conference action on Friday night at 6:00 p.m., with a trip to the SEC Championship Tournament hanging in the balance.

By virtue of its stirring 2-1 victory in Tuscaloosa, Ala., last weekend, the Lady Razorbacks thrust themselves back into the SEC Tournament picture and sit just outside the top eight of the SEC who are invited to the Championships. Thanks to reigning SEC Freshman of the Week Abbey Wilburn and a complete team effort, Arkansas is playing its most inspired soccer in recent memory and control its own fate when the possibility of the post-season looms.

“This is a big game for us,” Arkansas head coach Gordon Henderson said. “We are essentially playing for the post season against South Carolina and the team knows that. That motivated them to play great soccer against Alabama and I anticipate it to motivate them again on Friday.”

Arkansas’ 2-6-0 SEC record gives it six points, just one point outside the top eight in the conference, while South Carolina owns a 1-7-0 conference record and needs a win if it has any hope of returning to the post season. With three matches remaining in the season, the Lady Razorbacks likely need at least a win and a tie versus the Gamecocks, Florida and LSU to move into the post season for the first time in several years.

The Lady Razorbacks have been using sound fundamentals to keep themselves close no matter who their opponent is in 2005 as evidenced by their 10 one-goal matches. While the Lady Razorbacks may not have been on the winning end of the majority of the contests, the Lady Razorbacks feel that they could easily have four or five additional wins or ties if they were to have gotten a fortuitous bounce.

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