Soccer faces challenges in 2007 schedule
FAYETTEVILLE – The University of Arkansas Lady Razorback soccer team is scheduled to play 11 matches at Lady’Back Field during the 2007 season and face five NCAA tournament teams from a year ago, Arkansas head coach Gordon Henderson announced onTuesday morning.
The Lady Razorbacks are coming off their most successful season in a decade this fall, but will have their hands full in the second half of the year when they face a murderers row of teams that pit Arkansas against all five of their national tournament opponents over the span of six games with three taking place on the road.
“This is a challenging but fair schedule,” Henderson said. “Obviously the toughest part comes during the SEC portion of the year, but I feel as though our non-conference opponents can challenge us in ways that will make us a better team in the long run. We have tried to schedule teams with different styles of play and skill levels so that we can be ready for anything that gets thrown our way this season.”
Arkansas opens the season at home on Friday night, Aug. 31 when it takes on border rival Tulsa. The Lady Razorbacks have rattled off three-straight wins against the Golden Hurricaneand hope to continue the streak in ’07. The Lady’Backs continue their home stand with Memphis on Sept. 1.
A midweek tilt at Oral Roberts on Sept. 5 is the first of three matches in the second week of the season. The Lady’Backs return home to take on Austin Peay before making their longest trip of the season to Kalamazoo, Mich., where they face Western Michigan for the first time ever.
The Lady Razorbacks stay on the road at Louisiana Tech and Centenary the following weekend before returning to Fayetteville for the start of a six-match home stand that incorporates the start of the Southeastern Conference schedule. Arkansas looks to make up for last season’s disappointing overtime loss to Missouri State on Sept. 21 before welcoming former assistant and now head coach Julie Davis of Jacksonville State on Sept. 23.
The SEC schedule has Arkansas taking on Mississippi on Friday, Sept. 28, followed by Mississippi State and Georgia, Sept. 30 and Oct. 5. The first of Arkansas’ NCAA tournament foes, Tennessee is slated for Sunday afternoon, Oct. 7, at Lady’Back Field.
Arkansas gets a small reprieve from NCAA tournament teams on Friday, Oct. 12 when it plays Alabama, but Oct. 14, 19, 21 and 25 all feature teams that competed at last season’s tournament, Auburn, Kentucky, Vanderbilt and Florida. The Florida match is scheduled for Friday, Oct. 25 at 7:00 p.m. at Lady’Back Field.
“This is definitely the toughest portion of our schedule on paper,” said Henderson. “Tennessee and Florida are teams that will be ranked among nation’s best when we face them and I’m pretty confident that each of these teams could be among the top 25. We will need to enter this stretch of our schedule with confidence.”
The Lady Razorbacks make their final regular season road trip on Oct. 28 when they travel to South Carolina before ending the year at home on Nov. 2, against rival LSU.
The SEC Championship Tournament is scheduled for Nov. 7-11 in Orange Beach, Ala., a venue the Lady’Backs’ hope to visit. First round matches take place on Nov. 7 with semifinals scheduled for the 9th and the finals on the 11th. The winner of the SEC Tournament gets the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Championships.
For more information about Lady Razorback soccer or about Arkansas women’s athletics, please go to www.ladybacks.com.
2007 Arkansas Soccer Schedule
|Aug. 31||Tulsa||FAYETTEVILLE||7:00 p.m.|
|Sept. 2||Memphis||FAYETTEVILLE||1:00 p.m.|
|Sept. 5||@ Oral Roberts||Tulsa, Okla.||7:00 p.m.|
|Sept. 7||Austin Peay||FAYETTEVILLE||7:00 p.m.|
|Sept. 9||@ Western Michigan||Kalamazoo, Mich.||Noon|
|Sept. 14||@ Louisiana Tech||Ruston, La.||7:00 p.m.|
|Sept. 16||@ Centenary||Shreveport, La.||1:00 p.m.|
|Sept. 21||Missouri State||FAYETTEVILLE||7:00 p.m.|
|Sept. 23||Jacksonville St.||FAYETTEVILLE||1:00 p.m.|
|Sept. 28||Mississippi||FAYETTEVILLE||7:00 p.m.|
|Sept. 30||Mississippi St.||FAYETTEVILLE||1:00 p.m.|
|Oct. 5||Georgia||FAYETTEVILLE||7:00 p.m.|
|Oct. 7||Tennessee||FAYETTEVILLE||1:00 p.m.|
|Oct. 12||@ Alabama||Tuscaloosa, Ala.||7:00 p.m.|
|Oct. 14||@ Auburn||Auburn, Ala.||2:00 p.m.|
|Oct. 19||@ Kentucky||Lexington, Ky.||6:00 p.m.|
|Oct. 21||@ Vanderbilt||Nashville, Tenn.||1:00 p.m.|
|Oct. 25||Florida||FAYETTEVILLE||7:00 p.m.|
|Oct. 28||@ South Carolina||Columbia, S.C.||Noon|
|Nov. 2||LSU||FAYETTEVILLE||7:00 p.m.|
|Nov. 7-11||SEC Tournament||Orange Beach, Ala.||TBA|